9/6/219:00 am Use Quick Look Instead Of Preview To View Files WHen trying to find images or other files to use, many new Mac users try to use the Preview app to view these files to pick one. Despite its name, Preview is not the ideal app for previewing files. Instead use Quick Look or one of two other methods. Video Transcript: Hi, this is Gary with MacMost.com. Let me show you why you should be using Quick Look to preview files on your Mac and not the Preview App. MacMost is brought to you thanks to a great group of more than 1000 supporters. Go to MacMost.com/patreon. There you can read more about the Patreon Campaign. Join us and get exclusive content and course discounts. So this is a common mistake that new Mac users make particularly if they are switching from Windows. There's an app called Preview. You think you would use that to preview things like images that you have in the Finder. For instance, here I have a folder full of images. If I double click on anyone of them it will open up the image in Preview and I could see what it looks like. You would think from the name that you would use this to preview the image and then if it's the right one open it up in another app like PhotoShop. But the problem arises when you want to preview more than one image. Here I've double clicked on the first image in the folder and I want to preview the next one. I can't simply use the arrow keys to arrow down or right. It doesn't go anywhere. You can however select several files, like these three, and open them. I'm going to use Command O and it will open all three in Preview. Then you see them here on the left. You can use the down arrow to go between them. But if you want to add a fourth image to that you can't easily add them to it. Now the Preview App is great for lot of things. You can quickly preview files. You can use Markup Tools to edit them and do things like Crop them, Rotate them, do all sorts of functions inside of Preview. It's a pretty capable app and it works for images as well as pdf files. But if you want to do is actually view the file so you can pick one out to use then what you want isn't Preview but Quick Look. Quick Look is built into macOS. It isn't really a separate app. You can get to it a few different ways. One is with the file selected you can hit the Spacebar. Officially the keyboard shortcut is Command Y. That works in more situations. But in most situations Spacebar will bring up Quick Look. Now some of the great things about Quick Look are that it stays in this floating window that's always on top. You can resize it and you even have some of the tools that Preview has like the ability to mark things up. Crop and Rotate them and all of that. There's even a handy button here to open up the document in the default app. But the important difference is that it's actually just showing you a preview of whatever you have selected here in the Finder. So you can actually use the arrow keys in this case. I'm going to use arrow down to go to the next one in the list. I can look through all the files in a folder. I didn't have to choose them in advance before activating Quick Look. I can just start with one and then use the arrow keys to go to the next. Use the up arrow key to go back. There is however a special mode where if you select several images, I'll select five here, and then activate Quick Look I use the spacebar. Then you get these little arrows here on the top. You can use the right and left arrow to go through the group that you've selected. In addition you get this little button here. Click that and it will show you thumbnails for each one. So Quick Look has two modes there. The single file mode and the multi-file mode where you get this button here to get an overview of everything. You can switch between the modes depending upon what you have selected. So with these five items selected I press the spacebar. But if I then go and select a single item here then it's going to show me that item. If I select three items by holding down the Shift key it will switch into that mode. So you can still use the arrow keys and even Shift and the arrow keys to change what is viewed here. It's a great partnership between Quick Look and the Finder to show you exactly what you have selected. Another great thing about Quick Look is it will show you just about any kind of file. So, of course, we've got images. But if I were to go up one you could see it's going to show me a preview of a Numbers document. It even shows me the different sheets in that document. Here's a pdf and I can actually look at the different pages in the pdf. Here's is a Pages document. Here's a Microsoft Word document. You could view a video like this. It even has playback controls here at the bottom. A Sound file also gives you playback controls and you could hear the sound. So most files that you work with can be previewed in Quick Look. You can even leave the Quick Look window open, I'll make it smaller here, put it there and I can select any file here in this folder. I can dive down into another folder. You can see the folder selected so it shows me information about the folder. I can select a file here. I can just leave that Quick Look window open to continue to preview files no matter where I go. There's also a Full Screen mode here which will show you the image full screen and you can exit full screen. That's really handy if you select several files like this. You go to Full Screen mode and now you can actually arrow through them or actually play it as a slideshow. Then you can also go to the Index Sheet mode as well in Full Screen Mode. Now I've been using List View this whole time and I can use the up and down arrows to go through the images. But if I switch to Column View I could do the same thing. Let me shrink this here so you can see and I can do up and down. I can even go to the left in Column View and then up and down at this level and then the right arrow to go down to this folder. If I'm in Icon View I could do the same thing but I could use all four arrows to navigate around. So I could do Quick Look there and go to the right, I could go down, I could move around through all of the different files in this folder. There are some other alternatives as well. For instance, in any viewing mode here you can go to View and then Show Preview and you'll get the equivalent to Quick Look at a column here on the right. So I can select an image, another image or a document and I'll see the Quick Look preview here but as part of the Finder window. That will work in List View and Column View as well. Gallery View is a view that is just about previewing. You'll get the list of files here at the bottom arranged horizontally. You get a large preview there. You can select anyone to jump to it and you can use the right and left arrow keys to move around through them. So in addition to Quick Look you have View, Show Preview, and also Gallery View. So there are actually three better options for viewing files to find one than actually using the Preview App. Hope you found this useful. Thanks for watching.Related Subjects: Finder (294 videos) Related Video Tutorials: No related posts. Comments: 10 Responses to “Use Quick Look Instead Of Preview To View Files” Jeanne Bragg 2 years ago Gary--Do you name your files just after you take them, or what is your method? I am, sadly, not so disciplined. Gary Rosenzweig 2 years ago Jeanne: Yes. You have to save the file, so might as well use something better than "Untitled." If you aren't doing that because it takes some effort to come up with the perfect file name, then forget about perfect. Just put something OK. You can always change it later. Better to put "gs stuff" than "Untitled 7" and change to "Garage Sale 2021 Item List" later on. Mick 2 years ago Thanks Gary - As always I learn something new in every one of your tutorials. Regards Mick Sherry Elliott 2 years ago Love Quick Look and your videos. When I try to use it about half the time it opens the file in Preview. Just one click. How to make that only happen with 2 clicks as you describe? Gary Rosenzweig 2 years ago Sherry: One click should just select a file, and two to open. If you click to select, then spacebar to bring up Quick Look. Maybe you are pressing twice by accident? Sherry Elliott 2 years ago No definitely pressing only once. This has been driving me nuts for weeks. I've tried changing all the mouse settings. Changing the Preview preferences. Running Disk First Aid. Restarting the computer. Replacing the battery in mouse. Think it might have started when I upgraded Big Sur. Currently running 11.2.3. Rob 2 years ago Started using Quick Look after watching this video, thanks Gary! It worked great until one day it it stopped adjusting the window size to previewed images (so the dimensions and popup position of the QL window are always fixed) and stopped playing videos (it used to show basic playback controls, now it only shows a static thumbnail). Did I trigger a setting for that by accident? I want to revert it back to the old behavior. Gary Rosenzweig 2 years ago Rob: See if a restart fixes that. Rob 2 years ago That indeed fixed it. I still wonder whether that was a bug or did I trigger a setting by accident (and if so, where is it, maybe I'll need it one day). Anyway: thank you! Rob 2 years ago This worked for me too: "Relaunching Finder fixed this issue for me without rebooting. Press Option (⌥) while two-finger clicking (or right click, or control-option-click) on Finder in the Dock; select "Relaunch" and try Quick Look again." from https://discussions.apple.com/thread/253315511 Comments Closed.