I have Photoshop CS3 on a Windows 7 32bit machine with onboard / integrated Q45/Q43 chipset graphics.

I have a problem where it seems any Photoshop element; shapes, text and the like do not align themselves properly to my 1px grid.

This is a screenshot. I am fully zoomed in on a square shape.

Photoshop square not aligning to grid

As you can see, it doesn't align properly.
If I try to use the transform controls to force it to align to the grid, this happens...

Photoshop square not aligning to grid

These are my grid settings...

Photoshop grid settings

These are my snap settings...

Photoshop snap settings

How can I get Photoshop to behave properly?

  • 1
    Looks aligned to the grid to me. But it also looks like the anti-aliasing is causing the weak edges. You might simply turn off anti-aliasing.
    – Scott
    Sep 18, 2013 at 8:32
  • I use CS6 on my Mac and the behavior is completely different. This is not correct at all, the square shape clearly doesn't align to the pixel grid in the picture above. Just to confirm, I also have "Snap to pixels" enabled in the "shape" settings.
    – Clarkey
    Sep 18, 2013 at 8:38
  • Does Photoshop Elements have a pixel grid? I see no indication in the control bar of your screen shot. There's an option in Photoshop to use the pixel grid there.
    – Scott
    Sep 18, 2013 at 8:40
  • It's not elements. I've just realized that the question is misleading. I meant "shapes", "text", etc when I said elements.
    – Clarkey
    Sep 18, 2013 at 8:41
  • After looking closer at your screen shots..... the screen shots are from CS3. CS3 has no pixel grid awareness. The pixel grid was introduced later.
    – Scott
    Sep 18, 2013 at 8:42

2 Answers 2


You appear to be using Photoshop CS3.

Photoshop CS3 has no awareness of the pixel grid. The pixel grid was introduced in later versions. If you need pixel perfect images you can disable anti-aliasing and / or use the pencil tool to manually edit pixels. There's no way to get things to snap to the pixel grid in CS3.

  • @Dominic Snap to Grid, snaps to the grid. But there is no pixel grid in CS3. If you look at Clarkey's second screenshot, it is snapped to the grid, but it's completely unaware of any pixel grid. The "Grid" and the "pixel grid" are two different things.
    – Scott
    Sep 18, 2013 at 19:07
  • @Dominic If you started with CS5, then you've always had the benefit of the Pixel Grid.
    – Scott
    Sep 18, 2013 at 20:51

I am using CS2 and has the same problem. Was eventually able to get it right by setting the grid size to percentages and to show grids every 6.4% for a 64 x 64 image.

Try setting it to percentages enter a number and revert back to pixels. (otherwise try the exact same steps)

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