How to Change the Default Image File Type of Screenshots on Mac

Learn how to change the default image file format when you take screenshots on Mac (from PNG to JPG).

By default, when you take screenshots on Mac, the file format you save your screenshot as, is PNG. But what if you want to save your screenshot as JPG?

If you want to save your Mac screenshots as JPGs instead of PNGs, open your Mac Terminal and type the following command and hit enter:

defaults write com.apple.screencapture type JPG

You’ll now see that your screenshots are saved as JPG files.

If you’re not sure how to take different types of screenshots on your Mac, check out this article that we published earlier this year.

If you want to revert to using PNG for screenshots, just run the same command as above, but with PNG instead of JPG:

defaults write com.apple.screencapture type PNG

Troubleshooting

If the effects don’t take effect immediately on your end you can try running the following command in your terminal:

KillAll SystemUIServer

Now take a new screenshot and see if it works now.

If it still doesn’t work, your last resort is to restart your computer.

If it still doesn’t work, it’s either because your MacOS X (Operating System) is outdated or because your computer is very old.

This has been tested on macOS High Sierra and Mojave.