I have 1.1 GB PSD file which contains 25560x14400 image with a lot of pictures/vectors/layer effects etc... Now I'm aware of the absurdity of such project structure, but I wasn't a few years ago.

Too late did I realize that using PDF would be much more convenient (than PNG), however, when I tried to save it as PDF, 60 GB of space disappeared and Photoshop stated there's still not enough.

Therefore, approximately, which is the smallest size possible of such project saved as PDF? And what're the best settings for it? In the best case scenario not losing quality.

2 Answers 2


I've been in 'the business' 15+ years and still can't believe people are working with files this large. It is, ultimately, also part of global warming, because ignorance like this is what gets internet traffic, server overload and electricity overconsumption. Imagine your client downloading a 60gb PDF and then sending that to their business partner.

It is why people buy too many hard drives to store this ridiculous amount of information. It is generally why more c**p is being consumed that needed, like buying 10 chocolates 'for the fridge', when all you really need is one. Its like throwing that plastic cup in the river. Ok, now. Hopefully you got this part.

Then, assuming you need this no-compromise PDF for print, in which case:


25560x14400 px

  1. Do you need that size? What is the real physical size you need this document for? (And no, a billboard is not made at 300 PPI)

a lot of pictures

  1. So, you do not need PNG, you need JPG with good quality. Probably TIFF with good compression settings, or a flat PSD.

Too late did I realize that using PDF would be much more convenient (than PNG)

  1. The same. No. PDF is not just one format, there are several configurations that will make a project suitable or not, including resizing the image to the physical size (Point 1) and making internal compression of images as JPG (Point 2)

In the best case scenario not losing quality.

  1. The best scenario is making things the right way from start... Back to point 1. What is the real size of the project?

I. Define the real size you need for the project. (A quick tip. You almost never, ever, need a file that is larger than 12,000 px in the longest side. Normally with 6,000 px on this side is enough)

II. Flaten your PSD... I have not worked with that size, if flattening all the layers at once cannot be done in your computer, try merging some layers step by step.

III. Resample this flat image to match point I. Use Bicubic Sharper.

IV. Save as PSD. Most people on the planet can use this image for print. You can also try a good quality JPG.

V. Avoid using PDF for this project. As you do not know the additional configurations needed.

A PDF file is when you prepared a vector file and you have vectors, and pictures (raster) images. But if you only have one humongous raster image, a PDF file is just one PDF with an image inside... so send the image alone (JPG, PSD, TIF)

  • Haven't considered including more info on project necessary, seems I was wrong. It is actually a really big scheme, timeline, more precisely, which contains a lot of text and pictures related to timeline itself. It was not supposed to be printed, I thought it would be more convenient to view it as PDF rather than huge PNG.
    – Solar
    Commented May 27, 2019 at 18:16
  • The problem is that it is already raster image. A pdf will be a pdf with a raster image inside.
    – Rafael
    Commented May 28, 2019 at 6:59

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