How to Screenshot on Mac: A Step-by-Step Guide

As Mac users, we have experienced the struggle of needing to take screenshots, but not knowing exactly how to do it. Luckily, taking screenshots in Mac computers is not as complicated as it may seem at first. In this article, we will guide you through the 12 steps on how to SS in Mac so that you can easily take screenshots on your computer.


Step 1: Full Screen Capture

To capture the full-screen on your Mac, press “Command + Shift + 3” keys simultaneously. This will take a screenshot of the entire screen, and it will be automatically saved in the desktop folder.

Step 2: Active Window Capture

If you only want to capture one window, press “Command + Shift + 4” keys, and then hold the “Space” key. This will allow you to select a specific window to capture. Once selected, release the spacebar, and click the trackpad or mouse button to capture the image.

Step 3: Selected Area Capture

For a specific area capture, press “Command + Shift + 4” keys, and then select the specific area that you want to capture by clicking and dragging the mouse cursor over it. Release the mouse button to capture the image.

Step 4: Delayed Capture

If you want to capture a screenshot with a delay, press “Command + Shift + 5” keys, and you will see a menu with options for capturing screenshots. Select the “Capture Selected Windows” or “Capture Selected Portion” options, and then choose your preferred delay time.

Step 5: Save to Clipboard

If you want to save your screenshot to the clipboard, press “Control + Command + Shift + 3” keys for a full-screen capture or “Control + Command + Shift + 4” keys for a selected area capture. You can then paste the screenshot into any application that accepts images.

Step 6: Edit Screenshot

To edit your screenshot, open it in the Preview app by double-clicking on the image. Once open, the editing tools are available by clicking on the “Markup” button. From there, you can add text, shapes, lines, and more.

Step 7: Change Screenshot Format

To change the format of your screenshot, open the “Terminal” app and enter the following command: defaults write type [file format]. Replace [file format] with your desired format, such as “png,” “jpg,” “tiff,” or “pdf.”

Step 8: Enable or Disable the Screenshot Sound

To enable or disable the screenshot sound, open the “Terminal” app and enter the following commands:
– To disable the sound: defaults write disable-sound -bool true
– To enable the sound: defaults write disable-sound -bool false
Once you enter the command, press “Return,” and the changes will take place.

Step 9: Use Third-Party Apps

There are various third-party apps available in the App Store that can also help you take screenshots in Mac. Some popular apps include Skitch, Snagit, and Jing. These apps offer more advanced features than the built-in screenshot tool.

Step 10: iCloud Screenshot Sharing

If you want to share your screenshots with others, you can enable the “iCloud Screenshot Sharing” feature on your Mac. To do this, go to “System Preferences > iCloud” and make sure that the “Screenshot” option is checked.

Step 11: Siri Commands

If you prefer to use voice commands to take screenshots, Siri can help you with that. Simply say, “Hey Siri, take a screenshot,” and the capture will be automatically taken and saved to your desktop.

Step 12: Screenshots for Touch Bar MacBooks

If you have a MacBook with a Touch Bar, taking screenshots is slightly different. Press “Command + Shift + 6” to take a screenshot of the Touch Bar. The screenshot will be automatically saved on the desktop.


Taking screenshots in Mac is easy and straightforward. With just a few clicks or keystrokes, you can capture anything on your computer screen. Whether you need to capture an entire screen, an active window, or a specific area, Mac offers multiple ways to take screenshots that suit your needs.

Additionally, you can customize your screenshot preferences to include options such as saving to the clipboard, changing the file format, enabling or disabling sound effects, and more. And if you prefer to use third-party apps or voice commands, Mac offers those options as well.

Tips and Tricks

1. Use Preview App for Quick Edits

If you want to quickly make edits to your screenshots, the Preview app offers various tools that you can use to do so.

2. Use Terminal for Advanced Customization

Terminal is a powerful app that you can use to customize your screenshot preferences beyond what is available in the System Preferences menu.

3. Use Keyboard Shortcuts for Efficiency

Learning and using keyboard shortcuts for taking screenshots can save you time and make the process more efficient.

4. Use Third-Party Apps for Advanced Features

Third-party apps such as Skitch, Snagit, and Jing offer advanced features and tools that can enhance your screenshot capabilities.

5. Use iCloud Screenshot Sharing for Sharing Screenshots

Enabling iCloud Screenshot Sharing makes it easy to share screenshots with others without needing to send them separately via email or messaging apps.

6. Use Siri for Hands-Free Capture

Using Siri can be convenient for hands-free capture, especially if you have your hands full.

7. Use Touch Bar for Touch Bar MacBooks

If you have a Touch Bar MacBook, use the “Command + Shift + 6” keyboard shortcut to capture the Touch Bar.

8. Use Color Picker App for Color-Coded Screenshots

Using a color picker app can help you capture screenshots with precise color codes.

9. Use Snapping Tool for Accurate Captures

Snapping tools enable you to capture specific areas with accuracy and precision.

10. Familiarize Yourself with Screenshot Settings for Optimization

Take some time to explore and familiarize yourself with the different screenshot settings available to optimize your workflow and efficiency.

In conclusion, taking screenshots in Mac is simple and easy. With just a few clicks or keystrokes, you can capture anything on your computer screen and customize your preferences to suit your needs. Whether you need to capture an entire screen, an active window, or a specific area, there are multiple ways to do so on a Mac.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Taking Screenshots on Mac:

Screenshots are a great way to capture important information or share moments with others. For Mac users, the process of taking screenshots is quite simple and straightforward. However, like all things, there are both advantages and disadvantages to taking screenshots on a Mac.


1. Quick and Easy: One of the biggest advantages of taking screenshots on a Mac is how quick and easy it is. With just a few clicks, you can take a screenshot and save it for later use.

2. Various Options: Mac offers multiple options on how to take a screenshot. This includes capturing the entire screen or specific sections.

3. Useful for Work: Screenshots are especially useful for work purposes. With just a screenshot, you can share valuable information or show a problem to a coworker or boss.

4. Shareable: Screenshots are easily shareable. You can easily send them in an email or upload them to social media.

5. Creative: Screenshots can be used for creative purposes too. You can use them to create custom graphics or simple memes.

6. Saves Time: Screenshots can save you a lot of time. Instead of typing out a long message or description, you can provide a visual aid.

7. Accurate: Screenshots are accurate and can capture everything on the screen. This is especially useful when trying to replicate a problem or look for a specific detail.

8. Works Offline: Screenshots can be taken without being connected to the internet. This makes it easy to work on projects even without Wi-Fi.

9. Editable: Screenshots can be easily edited. You can crop them, add annotations, or highlight important details.

10. No Extra Software Needed: With a Mac, you don’t need to download extra software to take screenshots. It’s all built-in!


1. Limited Quality: Screenshots may not always produce the highest quality image.

2. Limited Information: Screenshots may not capture all the necessary information to share with others.

3. Not Suitable for Presentations: Screenshots may not be suitable for presentations where a higher resolution image is required.

4. Captures Extra Pixels: Screenshots capture all the extra pixels, including ads and pop-ups.

5. Limited Editing: Although screenshots can be edited, not all editing options are available.

6. Requires Setup: To take a screenshot, some setup may be required.

7. Can Be Misleading: A screenshot may not always accurately represent the situation or information at hand.

8. Takes Up Space: Screenshots can take up a lot of space on your hard drive, especially if you take many of them.

9. Not Always Easy to Find: Screenshots can be difficult to find if you don’t save them somewhere accessible.

10. Limited Flexibility: Screenshots are limited in what they can show. They cannot capture dynamic or interactive content.

In conclusion, taking screenshots on a Mac has both advantages and disadvantages. It’s up to the user to determine whether or not the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. Regardless, it’s always useful to know the pros and cons before making a decision.


1. What is a screenshot?

A screenshot is a digital image of what is displayed on a computer or mobile device screen at a specific point in time.

2. How do I take a screenshot on a Mac?

Press “Command + Shift + 3” for a full-screen shot or “Command + Shift + 4” for a selective area shot. The screenshots will save to your desktop in .png format.

3. Can I take a screenshot of a specific window?

Yes, press “Command + Shift + 4” and then press the “Spacebar.” Your cursor will turn into a camera, and you can click on the window you want to screenshot.

4. How do I take a screenshot of a menu?

Press “Command + Shift + 4,” and then press the “Spacebar.” Your cursor will turn into a camera, and you can click on the menu you want to screenshot.

5. Can I customize where my screenshots save?

Yes, use the keyboard shortcut “Command + Shift + 5” and click “Options.” From there, you can choose where to save your screenshots and select the file format you prefer.

6. Can I take a screenshot using a timer?

Yes, use the keyboard shortcut “Command + Shift + 5” and click “Options.” From there, you can select a timer for your screenshots.

7. How do I take a screenshot of the Touch Bar?

Press “Command + Shift + 6.” The screenshot will save as a .png to your desktop.

8. Can I edit my screenshots on a Mac?

Yes, open the “Photos” app and select the screenshot you want to edit. Click “Edit,” and use the available tools to adjust the image.

9. How do I take a screenshot on a MacBook with a Touch Bar?

Press “Command + Shift + 3” for a full-screen shot or “Command + Shift + 4” for a selective area shot. To take a screenshot of the Touch Bar, press “Command + Shift + 6.”

10. Can I take a screenshot on a MacBook with a non-functioning keyboard?

Yes, connect an external keyboard to your MacBook and use the keyboard shortcuts mentioned above.

11. How do I take a screenshot on a Mac without using keyboard shortcuts?

Click “Launchpad” and search for “Screenshot.” You can select the type of screenshot you want to take from there.

12. Can I take screenshots on a Mac in dark mode?

Yes, the screenshot will still capture the image regardless of the display settings.

13. How do I take a screenshot on a Mac using third-party software?

Download and install a third-party software, such as Lightshot, Snagit, or Monosnap. Follow the instructions provided in the software to take screenshots.

How to Screenshot on a Mac

Taking screenshots is a common task for many computer users. Whether you need to capture a funny meme, share an important document, or create a tutorial, there are several ways to capture your screen on a Mac. In this article, we’ll show you how to take screenshots on a Mac using different methods and provide some tips for customizing your screenshots.

One of the quickest and easiest ways to take a screenshot on a Mac is by using the keyboard shortcut “Command + Shift + 3.” This will capture your entire screen and save the screenshot as a PNG file on your desktop. If you prefer to capture only a portion of your screen, you can use the keyboard shortcut “Command + Shift + 4.” This will turn your cursor into a crosshair, allowing you to select the area of your screen you want to capture.

Another option for taking screenshots on a Mac is by using the “Screenshot” app. To access this app, press “Command + Shift + 5” on your keyboard. This will open the “Screenshot” app, which allows you to capture your entire screen, a selected window, or a selected portion of your screen. You can also set a timer for the screenshot, adjust the cursor, and choose where to save the file.

If you use the “Screenshot” app frequently, you may want to customize its settings. To do this, open the app, click “Options” in the toolbar, and select “Show Floating Thumbnail.” This will display a thumbnail of your screenshot in the corner of your screen, which you can click to edit, share, or save your screenshot without having to navigate to the file.

By default, Mac screenshots are saved as PNG files on your desktop. If you want to change the file format or save location, you can do so by using the Terminal app. Open Terminal, type “defaults write type [file format]” (replacing [file format] with your desired format, such as “jpg” or “pdf”) and “defaults write location [file path]” (replacing [file path] with your desired save location). Press “Enter” after each command and restart your Mac for the changes to take effect.

Conclusion and Closing

Taking screenshots is a useful feature for any Mac user, and knowing how to capture your screen using different methods and customize your screenshots can help you become more productive and efficient. Whether you prefer using keyboard shortcuts or the “Screenshot” app, the process is straightforward and easy to learn. So next time you need to capture something on your Mac, give one of these methods a try and impress your friends and colleagues with your new skills. Thanks for reading and see you next time!