Is there a way to adjust Acrobat's scaling such that 1 inch/1 cm will correlate with "real-world" 1 inch/1 cm?

I have a document on screen 11 inches wide. When I hold an 11 inch wide paper next to the screen, the image on the screen is much bigger than the paper in my hand.

This is causing a lot of difficulty when choosing font sizes in documents and so on.

Any advice?


2 Answers 2


It confuses me a little that you are talking about having difficulties choosing font size, but when you view the file in Acrobat you have already chosen a font size in your layout program.

Anyway, it is possible to setup Acrobat so it behaves the way you want:

  1. Measure the height of your screen in inches. (My screen is about 11.61 inches)
  2. Find the resolution of your screen by dividing the height in pixels by the height in inches. (In my case: 1050 px / 11.61 inches = 90 ppi)
  3. In Acrobat, enter Edit > Preferences > Page Display and set Resolution > Custom Resolution to the number you just found:
  • This is actually what the duplicate posted above states. :)
    – Scott
    Commented Mar 17, 2019 at 10:52
  • Oh, you're right. I didn't notice that.
    – Wolff
    Commented Mar 17, 2019 at 11:18

The computer does not know the size of your monitor. It really can not, because you might have 2 monitors attached with different resolutions and the image might span both pf them, you might be attached to projector etc etc.

So 100% in case of a image is just each pixel visible. For legacy reasons for all other things it is probably assumes 72 DPI.

Anyway measure what zoom is actually 100% then use that as your zoom level.

  • Can I not modify the settings such that 100% reflects real-life size? Commented Mar 17, 2019 at 8:34
  • @MichaelSeltenreich depends a bit on your operating system and wether you want to live with the consequences of this. (It dont generally work out very well since not all applications have been reprogrammed from scratch to account for screen size so for foreseeable future wont work out) Also it does not work out if you are going to ever attech more then one monitor to the computer.
    – joojaa
    Commented Mar 17, 2019 at 8:57

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