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How to magnify the screen in macOS 10.15 Catalina

How to magnify the screen in macOS 10.15 Catalina

In this article

Using Zoom with keyboard shortcuts
Using Zoom with scroll gesture and modifier key
Zoom settings
Zoom style (Full screen or Picture-in-picture)

Using Zoom with keyboard shortcuts

  • To turn the Zoom magnification feature on or off at any time, press Alt + Cmd + 8
  • To zoom in: Press Alt + Cmd + = (equals)
  • To zoom out: Press Alt + Cmd’+ Β­- (hyphen).
  • Move the mouse pointer around the screen to view the magnified page.

Using Zoom with scroll gesture and modifier key

  • To zoom in: Press the modifier key (by default this is the Control key) and drag two fingers upwards on your keyboard or magic mouse (if using a conventional mouse, you can use the scroll wheel).
  • To zoom out: Press the modifier key (by default this is the Control key) and drag two fingers downwards on your keyboard or or magic mouse (if using a conventional mouse, you can use the scroll wheel).
  • Move the mouse pointer around the screen to view the magnified page.

Zoom settings

  1. Select the Apple icon  in the top left corner of the screen.
  2. Select System Preferences from the menu.
    The Apple menu with System Preferences highlighted
  3. In the System Preferences window, select Accessibility.
  4. On the Accessibility settings screen, select Zoom in the left column.
    macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 1
  5. In the Zoom settings pane you can enable the following options:
    macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 2

Use keyboard shortcuts to zoom

If you enable Use keyboard shortcuts to zoom, you can use the following shortcuts:

  • Toggle Zoom: Alt (βŒ₯) + Command (⌘) + 8
  • Zoom In: Alt (βŒ₯) + β€˜Command (⌘) + (equals)
  • Zoom Out: Alt (βŒ₯) + Command (⌘) + - (hyphen)
  • Toggle smooth images (see below): Alt (βŒ₯) + Command (⌘) + \ (backslash)

Use scroll gesture with modifier keys to zoom

This enables you to activate zoom by holding down a modifier key (by default this is the Control βŒƒ key) and using a two-finger scroll gesture (or mouse wheel) to zoom in and out. If you would like to change the modifier key, select the  drop-down menu and choose from:

  • Control βŒƒ
  • Option (βŒ₯) 
  • Command (⌘)
    macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 3

Smooth images

When the screen is zoomed in, text and images can become pixelated. Tick the checkbox for Smooth images to rectify this.

Zoom follows keyboard focus

If you ordinarily use the keyboard to navigate the screen and activate menus you may find this option useful – with it enabled, the screen automatically moves so that the area where the keyboard is currently focused is always visible and zoomed in.

Speak items under the pointer

When enabled, the computer will read aloud the item that is currently under the pointer. You can adjust the delay for how long the pointer needs to be over an item after which the computer starts talking.
macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 4

By default, Speak items under the point is only active when the screen is zoomed in. If you would prefer to use this option even when the screen is zoomed out, select the drop-down menu for Speak items under the pointer and choose Always.
macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 5

Zoom style

  1. There are two Zoom styles you can choose from:
    • Full Screen Zoom’(default) - the entire screen becomes magnified.
    • Picture-in-picture Zoom - only a small section of the screen surrounding the mouse pointer becomes magnified.
      macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 6
  2. To open the zoom style settings, select the Apple icon  in the top left corner of the screen.
  3. Select System Preferences from the menu.
    The Apple menu with System Preferences highlighted
  4. In the System Preferences window, select Accessibility.
  5. On the Accessibility settings screen, select Zoom in the left column.
    macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 1
  6. To change the zoom style, choose from the drop-down menu for Zoom Style in the right column.
    macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 10 

You can customise the settings for both Zoom styles, see the steps below

Full Screen Zoom settings

To change the settings for Full Screen zoom:

  1. Make sure the zoom style is set to Full screen.
  2. Select the Options button next to Zoom style.
    macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 7
  3. You can enable several options for Full Screen zoom on this screen.
    • Maximum Zoom - adjust the slider to increase or decrease the maximum magnification level.
    • Minimum Zoom  - adjust the slider to increase or decrease the minimum magnification level.
    • Show preview rectangle when zoomed out β€“ a black outline will appear on the screen indicating the area that will be magnified when Zoom is activated.
    • Hold βŒƒ (Control) +βŒ₯ (Alt) to temporarily toggle zoom β€“ when zoomed in you can temporarily view the screen at normal size whilst holding this shortcut.
    • Hold βŒƒ (Control) + ⌘ (Command) to temporarily detach zoom from pointer β€“ If you find it difficult to see the content underneath the pointer when you are zoomed in, use this shortcut to temporarily hide the pointer whilst moving around the screen.
    • Flash screen when notification banner appears outside zoom view β€“ the entire screen will flash once when a notification arrives.
      Full-screen zoom settings
  4. You can also choose how the zoomed screen image moves in relation to the pointer. Choose from:
    • Continuously with pointer β€“ the zoomed screen moves as you move the pointer.
    • Only when the pointer reaches an edge β€“ the zoomed image remains stationary until the pointer reaches an edge of the screen. Once the pointer is touching an edge, keep moving your mouse or your finger on the trackpad and the screen will reposition.
    • So the pointer is at or near the centre of the screen β€“ When you move your mouse or your finger on the trackpad the screen will move but the pointer will remain as centred on the screen as possible.
      The Zoom settings screen, default magnification settings
  5. When you are happy with settings select OK.

Picture-in-picture Zoom settings

To change the settings for Picture-in-picture zoom:

  1. Make sure the zoom style is set to Full screen.
  2. Select the Options button next to Zoom style.
    macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 11
  3. You can enable several options for Picture-in-picture zoom on this screen:

    Window position

    • Stationary β€“ the screen image moves within the stationary Zoom window.
    • Follow mouse cursor β€“ The Zoom window moves in relation to the pointer.
    • Tiled along edge – One edge of the screen becomes the Zoom window. You can resize this window and choose which edge it should appear on under the Adjust Size and Location settings (see section below).
      macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 12

    Cursor Style

    • System cursor β€“ show the default pointer and cursor in the Zoom window.
    • Crosshair β€“ show an enlarge crosshair in place of the pointer.
      macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 13
       
    • Invert colours β€“ the colours of the image inside the Zoom window will be inverted to make it easier to distinguish between the zoomed and non-zoomed sections of the screen.
    • Hold βŒƒ (Control) +βŒ₯ (Alt) to temporarily toggle zoom β€“ when zoomed in you can temporarily view the screen at normal size whilst holding this shortcut.
    • Hold βŒƒ (Control) + βŒ˜ (Command)  to temporarily detach zoom from pointer β€“ If you find it difficult to see the content underneath the pointer when you are zoomed in, use this shortcut to temporarily hide the pointer whilst moving around the screen.
      macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 14

    Adjust Size and Location

    If you would like to reposition or resize the Picture-in-picture window.

    1. Select the Adjust Size and Location button.
      macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 15
    2. A preview of the Picture-in-picture window will appear. You can drag any edge or corner to resize the window. Click and drag within the window to reposition it on the screen.
      macOS Mojave – Magnifying the screen Fig 16
    3. When happy with the size and position of the window, select OK.
    4. When happy with your Picture-in-picture zoom settings, select Done.

When you are finished, click the Close (red) button in the top left corner of the System Preferences window.

Note: If this does not work it could be because someone else manages your computer settings (an IT department or administrator). If this is the case, you will need to contact them to access these settings or for further help.

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