How to reduce the size of a PDF

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    PDF files are very convenient. They enjoy wide compatibility on all operating systems, making it a format that makes it very easy to share digital documents. However, depending on their content, the total size of these files can skyrocket. This can be a problem when sending them by email. Is there an efficient way to reduce the size of a PDF? Let’s examine this case a bit.

    In the following sections we will know ways to reduce the size of a PDF. We show you with various online tools and some that you can install on your PC. Depending on how many times you perform this operation, you will surely find it useful to follow one method or another.

    How to reduce the size of a PDF with iLovePDF

    If you don’t know it, iLovePDF is a platform that helps you manage your PDF files, applying a large number of operations to them. Although each of its functions is separated in a specific section, if we take a look at all of them on the main page, it is clear that iLovePDF is a complete PDF file editor.

    Well, one of its features is to reduce the size of a PDF. How can you take advantage of it? To make this guide, we will use a sample file that weighs about 100 MB. This way, we get a standard measuring stick for all options, allowing you to choose the most effective or convenient one, depending on your needs.

    To compress a PDF file with iLovePDF, the first thing is to access the tool by clicking on this link. Then, press Select PDF files or drag the document to the browser window.

    With the file explorer, select the document you want to compress. Then, mark the type of compression you want to apply by clicking on the corresponding option located on the right side of the screen.

    To know how far this tool can go, we will select Extreme compression. Then, click on Compress PDF. Our 100 MB file went down to 1.60 MB, as can be seen in the comparison between the Properties of each file.

    If we talk about loss of quality, the truth is that the compressor does a great job. It is evident that the images have lost some quality. On the left is the original file and on the right is the compressed one. Taking into account that a compression of 99% can be applied and therefore an extreme loss of data, the results are very acceptable.

    Keep in mind that the most aggressive compression could significantly reduce the quality of some elements in your PDF. In our test file it has been maintained more than acceptable, but it is possible that the tool does not behave the same with other files. In any case, you don’t lose anything by trying different compression levels on the file you want to shrink.

    How to compress a PDF file with Adobe Reader for Chrome

    There is another tool that, personally, we like a lot when manipulating PDF files. We refer to Adobe Reader for Google Chrome (it also works in other Chromium browsers). Once you have installed the extension, open your PDF files with the browser. If everything is configured correctly, Chrome will use Adobe Reader instead of the default viewer. When the file has loaded, press Tools. Then, click on Compress a PDF.

    The file will first be uploaded to the cloud for the Adobe server to process it. If you have a good internet connection, you will have to wait a little. Additionally, we must tell you that the compression also does not take too long. Once it is finished, the results appear on the screen.

    The file, which originally weighed 100 MB, was reduced to a size of about 14.50 MB. Adobe Reader has a clear advantage, and that is that it is integrated into the PDF viewer. That is very comfortable and allows you to complete the operation with just opening the document in the browser. On the other hand, we did not like that it is necessary to log in to download the file.

    How to compress a PDF file with CIB PDF Brewer

    The previous two options had one commonality. Both require an internet connection and force the user to upload a file to the cloud. If this does not convince you, we recommend CIB PDF Brewer.

    Although it is a paid software, it offers a free version that you can use to compress PDF files. Just access its official page and download the Freeware version. Once you have the installer, run it to enjoy this tool on your PC.

    The steps you must follow to compress a file with CIB Pdf brewer are as follows:

    1. Locate the file with the Windows explorer.
    2. Right-click on the PDF document and click on More options, if you have Windows 11.
    3. Then, place the cursor over Convert with CIB pdf brewer.
    4. In the context menu that will open, press Compress.
    5. Now, a new window will open where you can enjoy some related parameters.
    6. Select Automatic compression to let the program run the process by itself.
    7. On the other hand, if you want to control the compression, click on Compression settings for experts and use the lower selector.
    8. Save the work so that the results are applied.

    This tool, which works completely offline, offers very interesting results. With the most aggressive compression function you can reduce a file from about 100 MB to one of 3 or 4 MB.

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