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The scanned documents on a Mac are saved in the form of images, even if you convert these documents to PDF files, you still will not be able to edit scanned PDF on Mac using a normal PDF editor. However, there is way to edit image-based PDF on Mac using software which has the OCR feature in it. This OCR feature will convert the scanned PDF documents to the editable text, so, you can edit the documents either using the same PDF editor or convert these documents to a text based editor such as Microsoft Word or Preview on Mac. Here’s how to edit scanned PDF on Mac (including macOS High Sierra) using PDFelement 6 Pro for Mac which has OCR feature.

PDFelement 6 Pro for Mac is one of the best PDF editors with the OCR feature which will let you edit the documents in the real time. Even if your document is another language other than English, it will recognize the text according to that language to provide you with the best results. Most of the PDF editors with this professional level OCR feature has a very complicated user-interface but the developers at PDFelement for Mac has made editing possible even for the newbie users.It is compatible with Mac OS X 10.10, 10.11, 10.12 and macOS High Sierra.

Apart from editing the scanned documents, if the PDF file has some pages with the text or images, the same tool can be used to edit such type of text or images in real time. You can also edit the already present link in the PDF file and replace them with the new links.

It is not mere a PDF editor with OCR capability, it is a PDF managing tool to annotate or convert the PDF files. You can add different type of comments or notes to the PDF files, add stamps to PDF or can even add different types of the objects such as “Circle, Squares” to your PDF file. All-in-all, it is the best productivity tool to do anything with PDF files on Mac OS X. Here’s the step by step guide to edit scanned PDF on Mac.

How to Edit Scanned PDF on Mac

Step 1: Open Scanned PDF

The first step is to open the scanned PDF file. Click on the "Open File" button on the Home window. You can also click on the "File > Open" button to import the scanned PDF.

how to edit scanned PDF on mac

Step 2: Perform OCR to Scanned PDF

The program will automatically detect the scanned PDF and you will see a new notification bar in the program. Click on the "Perform OCR" button in this bar. If you were unable to see the notification bar, click on the "OCR" button under the "Edit" menu.

Select the language of your scanned document on the next screen and click on "OK". After performing the OCR, the PDF file will be saved in the Document folder.

edit scanned pdf on mac free

Step 3: Edit Scanned PDF on Mac

After performing OCR, PDFelement will generate a new file, you should click the "Magnifier" to open it.

Click on the "Edit" button. Now, double click on the text or the image that you want to edit. In case of text, a box will be drawn around the text, however, in case of image, another window will be opened on the screen where you can change different aspect of the images.

editing scanned pdf on mac

Step 4: Save Changes after Editing Scanned PDF

After editing the document, you will have to save the edited PDF file, there are two ways of doing that:

  • Save the recently edited file by using "Command + S" shortcut from the keyboard.
  • If you want to save the edited file in a separate location, use the "Save As" option which can be activated by using "Command + Shift + S" from your Keyboard. Select the location for the PDF file, name the file and hit the "Save" button to complete this process.
edit a scanned pdf on mac

Tips for OCR Scanned PDF or Image Based PDF on Mac

Optical Character Recognition or OCR is a feature which will allow you to convert any scanned document to editable PDF format. This feature will match the selected language with the characters present on the PDF file to provide you the completely editable text with the same formatting. Here's how you can use the OCR feature in the best possible way:

  • Always use the document language while performing the OCR.
  • OCR feature can also be activated while converting the PDF document to word or any other format.
  • Instead of using the online OCR tools, use the offline tool which will do this task more efficiently on your computer.
Home > PDFelement for Mac How-Tos > How to Edit Scanned PDF on Mac OS X (High Sierra Included)
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Posted by to PDFelement for Mac How-Tos
Published: Oct 20,2017 14:30 pm / Updated: Mar 09,2018 19:57 pm

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