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How to Copy Screen on Mac

2023-03-24 14:37:59 • Filed to: Cropro How-tos • Proven solutions

Doing a copy screen on Mac is essentially taking a screenshot. In other words, when you take a snapshot of what’s on your screen, it’s called a copy screen, screengrab, or screen capture. Unlike Windows, there is no dedicated key that is automatically mapped to the copy screen function in macOS. However, there is a key combination (shortcut keys) that you can use to either save a screenshot to your desktop as an image file (PNG by default) or just copy it to the clipboard for the purpose of pasting it inside another app to subsequently edit, annotate, crop, and otherwise modify the file before saving or sharing it.

Best Ways to Copy Screen on a Mac

The inherent screen capture function in Mac is triggered by a combination of keys that, when pressed simultaneously, will initiate the screen snapshot feature. You then select the area of capture (based on the variation of the key combination) and take the screenshot, either saving it to the desktop or to the clipboard. The keyboard shortcut has Shift + Command as the base combination, and the options are to use 3, 4, or 5 as the final key. In addition, you can add the Ctrl key to alter the function slightly.

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Limitations: The obvious drawback to using these methods is that there’s no image editor to edit the screenshot. You also don’t have features like annotations and cropping, which means using a different image editor to finish the job. What’s worse is that Mac saves these copy screen images in the PNG format, which can go into several GB per file. That makes it hard to share by email, one of the most common ways people share image files.

Margarete Cotty

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