I have a A0 size PDF document with multiple layers, and I want to get this document printed at a copy shop. The copy shop doesn't have the option to select/deselect the layers, and I only want 3 of approximately 10 layers printed. I have Preview & Adobe Reader on my Mac. Preview doesn't have much going on with layers, and just shows the document as if it were a flattened file, and Adobe Reader will allow me to select/deselect layers, but won't let me save a copy with just the selected layers. I downloaded a free trial of Adobe Acrobat, and I was able to save the document with just the selected layers, however this is an expensive option for something that will get minimal use.

I've also tried 'PDF Studio Viewer 2019' from the Mac App Store, which supports layers, but when I 'Save As' the file it includes all the layers. I am able to Print > Save As PDF which Adobe Reader doesn't allow, however the resolution is severely reduced (2383 × 3369 to 595 × 841)

Does anyone have any other suggestions?

1 Answer 1


You can use the free program called GIMP. It can edit and delete layers in PDF files. GIMP is an image processing program that runs on the Mac.

  • Thanks, I'll check it out. I didn't even realise GIMP did PDF Aug 21, 2019 at 3:20
  • GIMP can load the PDF as an image, but the PDF layers do not turn into GIMP layers -- the entire page is loaded as one layer. However, any disabled layers are omitted from the image once loaded. (using GIMP 2.10)
    – Evan Krall
    Jul 29, 2020 at 5:43

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