I have a lot of PSD files in many random directories. Sometime I need to view many files quickly without loading into Photoshop.

I am looking for a lightweight PSD viewer application, is there any?


You didn't state OS, so I am assuming Windows in my answer.

If you prefer to view them in Explorer etc. you can install this little (free) utility that will display thumbnails for PSD and a bunch of other formats. It's for Win XP, win 7 (32/64 bit):



For the Mac OS, just hit the space bar with the file highlighted.

You can also use Preview on the Mac to view .psd files.

And if you have Photoshop, you have Bridge. You could easily view (very large) thumbnails of everything in Bridge.

  • 1
    +1. This has one caveat though: Maximize PSD and PSB File Compatibility will have to be set to Always (under File Handling in Preferences), otherwise QuickLook shows an all white image. – Marc Edwards Oct 31 '12 at 10:59
  • Wasn't aware, Marc. Thanks. I always maximize compatibility. – Scott Oct 31 '12 at 11:11

IrfanView can view PSD files, among many others. It probably requires that the file contains the Image Preview, but it's on by default in Photoshop, so it shouldn't be a problem.

Also, installation includes Thumbnails software, which might be helpful for browsing through the directories.



I usually use Picasa and it's free. But sometimes it can't preview the PSD - usually if the size is big, say like over 200mb.


I like to use adobe bridge. It't not lightweight, but it's light enough. Kind of like picasa. Also it comes with the Adobe Suite, and has some other useful tools built in it to work with Adobe files.

You can it use it to browse, and select the files you need at the same time, and you can also zoom in the preview, which is pretty useful.


Just install Irfan Viewer and problem is solved, no matter your OS use.

Hope this washelpful.

  • Do you have a link to download that application? Please consider adding it to your answer, to save people the effort of a Google action. Thanks! – Vincent Oct 30 '17 at 16:04
  • Could you add a sentence or two explaining what Irfan Viewer does? Is it free? – Ashlee Palka Oct 30 '17 at 16:18

...view many files quickly without loading into Photoshop

If your problem is not the time to open PS but the time to open the PSD, you can force PS to open a preview almost instantly.

Hold OPT + SHIFT on Mac (or ALT + SHIFT on Windows) and double click the file and Photoshop will quickly open a flat version (no layers).

This method almost instant compared to Quick Look on a Mac (when PS is open). Great when you have to sort out lots of large print files.


'psd codec' is the best way, which enables preview on windows explorer itself. Not only psd, it supports many filetypes

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