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Adobe Acrobat Reader allows you to alter the background and text colors of pdf - either to preset 'high contrast' colors or your own choices - and this makes reading onscreen much easier.

Is it possible to do this with Preview?

Thanks.

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4 Answers 4

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That feature does not appear to be implemented in Preview.

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Anything is possible with the right tool. In this case you need Acrobat Pro, since Acrobat is the only app authorized to edit PDFs. Even then some PDFs ask for a password when you try to make any changes.

You can get a pro copy from some "shady" sites, which I think is justifiable, no one in right mind can expect one to buy a $400 app just to change a background colour. Install, do it, uninstall. If pro version has a demo, then you can try that first.

You will find 'Add Background Color' in Tools menu or right hand Tools column.

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There are cheaper and more legal methods of editing PDFs. I tend to subscribe to the philosophy that if you don't want a feature enough to pay for it, then you don't want that feature enough to use it. That being said, I would recommend looking in to Foxit Software's editor (foxitsoftware.com/products/editor); it costs less than $100. You can download a free demo to see if this has the functionality you want. –  Llamanerds Dec 18 '12 at 0:50
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changing the text and background color of a document is not supported in preview. however, you can change the background of the window (grey by default) through preferences -> general -> window background. additionally, you can try using the quartz filter to improve your reading experience, accessed through save as... -> quartz filter.

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Wow, I can change the tiny strip that outlines the window in Preview! I can't wait to tell all my friends and family! Hey, Grandma, look what I can do! –  Scott Biggs Nov 18 '12 at 5:56
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If you are just trying to make PDFs more readable, you can try inverting your colors by pressing [CONTROL] + [OPTION] + [COMMAND] + [8]. Note that this inverts the display colors system-wide, so it may not be the best option, but it does make reading B&W text easier.

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