How to Print Screen for Selection or Full on Mac with Keyboard 2019

How to print screen on Mac? That sounds like a stupid question, but no one should feel shameful for something they are not familiar with. For example, if you’re just switching from Windows to macOS and find the screenshot methods that served for Windows no longer work. It frustrates people, but not necessarily for you since you have landed this tutorial.

How to Print Screen on Mac.

Users switched from Windows or other operating systems are understandably at a loss on Mac. More often than not, when people need to take a screenshot, it is usually quite urgent, so we are going to introduce several methods to print screen Mac keyboard that are really straightforward even for newbies with no tech knowledge. You will know how to print screen on Mac to clipboard for pasting and save as a PNG or JPG image.

Method 1. Print Full Screen on Mac with Keyboard Shortcuts

If you need to print Mac screen for primary use, such as showing some information to someone else, then the quickest and easiest way is by capturing the full screen with keyboard shortcut. Depending on how you’d like to use the screenshot, here are two shortcut groups.

  1. Shortcut to print the full screen to clipboard
    Command ⌘ + Ctrl + Shift + 3
  2. Print the full screen and save the file to the desktop
    Command ⌘ + Shift + 3

Method 2. Mac Print Screen Selection with Keyboard Shortcuts

This method will assist you with capturing chosen territory of our screen, for example, menu bar, opened applications, some piece of work area, some application window or whatever else. This method is apparently more useful than Method 1, especially for designers, IT workers, students, etc. Though a little time may be required for proficient operation, the investment will be proven to be worthy.

1) Capture selected screen to clipboard and paste in applications

2) Capture selected screen save the file to the desktop

Method 3. Print Screen on Mac with Keyboard for Particular Apps

This method will assist you with saving a print screen of a specific application window, for example, internet browser, Keynote, Pages, Numbers or other. It would be really helpful for both daily and business work since these are common productivity tools. You will find the options in the method are similar to that in Method 2, but actually they differ in Step 3 and Step 4.

1) Capture a screen on Mac of specific applications to clipboard

2) Capture a screen on Mac of specific applications and save the file on the desktop

These 3 methods, actually 6 options, in this tutorial should be able to cover almost all needs for printing screenshot on Mac. You may have a try with them all and keep the best one for you in the mind, then practice it a lot. You will be highly appreciated to share this page to your social channels so that more Mac new users as well as you can review all available methods.

Change Mac Screenshot Format from PNG to JPG

The PNG format is compatible with most photo organizers and viewers, but the screenshot sometimes could be of a size up to 8MB, which is too big for file transfer means, like email. This case usually happens when your MacBook or iMac is equipped with a 4K monitor. Is there any workaround?

We can change the default format for screenshot by utilizing a basic terminal command. The terminal tool can be accessed at Applications – > Utilities.

Image formats widely supported by macOS X are PNG, JPG, GIF, TIFF, etc. In consideration of versatility and size, JPG is recommended as the format of screenshot.

You may be required to enter your Mac password in order to execute the command. The change will take effect after the next rebooting.

Pro tips: The screenshots are usually named by letters and numbers, which is confusing at the first sight. Make sure to check the images carefully before deleting, especially when it is impossible to capture the same screen, like a game or streaming video. In case you need to recover mistakenly deleted photos or videos from Mac, please use Gihosoft Free Photo Recovery software as soon as possible.

WindowsFree DownloadWin Version MacFree DownloadMac Version


In this tutorial, we have learnt several ways for taking screenshot on Mac computer. The methods are easy to follow and really similar to a certain extent, but they work for slightly different purposes. Therefore, please distinguish each method from the other by practice. Besides, you may need to add timestamp to photos so as to organize them well. If you have any questions or experience about screen shot on Mac, don’t hesitate to share with us in the comment.

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