MacMost Q&A Forum • View All Forum QuestionsAsk a Question

How Do I Convert a PDF File To Text Using Preview?

I want to convert a pdf file using preview to text. The way I’m receiving it is in picture format, evidently being scanned in that way then posted. Please help. Thank you for all you do.

I am receiving a PDF file in picture format, in other words, I cannot do a key word search. I want to try and covert this documenting to text so I can do keyword searches.
Frank Natalie

Comments: 4 Responses to “How Do I Convert a PDF File To Text Using Preview?”

    1 year ago

    So someone scanned in an image and now you just have an image embedded into a PDF?

    This is tricky to do. Monterey has a Live Text feature where it can get test from images, but the images have to be image files, not PDFs with images inside them.

    Hopefully this is just a one-page document. You can then export from Preview as an image (PNG is best) then open that image in Preview and see if you can select the text in it, copy and paste. This is doing character recognition on the image, so the results won't be perfect.

    Another option is to simply get an OCR app from the App Store that handles PDF files.

    1 year ago

    A portion of a screenshot of a PDF Will work on text if it is large enough. I tested this on a Medicare card that I downloaded from the government web site. The original pdf of a full page rendered as a photo using a screenshot skipped the Medicare numbers and other information on the card. But when I magnified just the card and did the screenshot then the recognition software in Photos worked.

    5 months ago

    Just looking for a way to convert a PDF file to a txt file. I've tried various applications including Adobe Acrobat. The resulting txt file spills a single line into multiple lines. In general all of the text from a PDF is moved into the new txt file, but the text from each line is all over the place; never a line to line conversion.

    5 months ago

    Andrew: You are definitely going to have to do some clean-up afterwards, yes.

Comments Closed.