How To Preview In Indesign

With the excellent page layout tool in Adobe InDesign, you can design almost anything you can imagine. However, it might be challenging to understand what’s going on after you receive a complicated document loaded with strategically positioned photos, text frames, baseline grids, instructions, and more! Fortunately, there’s an easy way to switch between a clear preview of your final product and the default InDesign editing mode.

To preview your work in Adobe InDesign, all you really need to do is press the W key. This will instantly take you to preview mode. If you want InDesign to incorporate Bleed and Slug areas into preview, then you have to use the shortcut Shift + W.

Keep reading below as we describe these steps in more detail.

Switching Screen Modes In Indesign

  • Press the W key to swiftly switch view modes in InDesign so you can preview your work. That is pretty much all you need to do.

For more information on how to switch to preview mode in InDesign, watch this informative video below:

The object borders, margins, guides, and other on-screen components like the bleed and slug regions will all be hidden by InDesign, so you can see exactly how your project will appear after it has been published.

  • The Screen Mode popup menu, adjacent to the toolbox, allows you to alternate between Normal and Preview modes. If you don’t like it, you may click “Preview” after opening the View menu and choosing the Screen Mode submenu.

Previewing Bleed And Slug Areas In Indesign

There are a few more alternatives for previewing your work based on what you’d like to do, as you presumably observed when experimenting with the screen mode popup menu.

It is possible to examine a preview that incorporates bleed and slug sections in addition to the trim size of your document in the standard preview mode mentioned above. 

  • You will need to manually choose the Bleed and Slug screen modes using one of the screen mode menus because the convenient keyboard shortcut is ineffective for these settings.

Previewing As A Full-Screen Presentation In Indesign

  • You may see a preview of the work in full-screen presentation mode by pressing the keyboard shortcut Shift + W if you would like to show your work in an even more professional manner for a business meeting or a manager who drops by your desk without warning.

The Screen Mode popup menu underneath the toolbox and the Screen Mode part of the View menu may be used to start the full-screen presentation mode, although they all have the same effect. 

By doing this, all InDesign user interface components will be hidden, and your work will be shown as large as it can be. Due to the ease of use of rich media and other engaging aspects, this is a great way to preview digital documents.

  • Press Escape to leave full-screen preview mode once you’re done.

A Word On Display Performance

Although everyone is aware that computers are always becoming more powerful, not so long ago, a document created in InDesign with hundreds of high-resolution photographs might have caused a computer to stutter.

In order to maintain a functional and snappy interface, Adobe countered this by employing low-resolution preview images for on-screen presentation. However, many amateur InDesign users were perplexed by the fact that their high-resolution images started to look terrible on display even if they printed out perfectly fine.

Images can be displayed at their maximum resolution using the Display Performance setting in the View menu; however, this feature is turned on by default if InDesign determines that your computer contains a graphics processing unit (GPU) that can handle it.

Most contemporary computers can do this easily, and your photographs should be shown correctly throughout editing and preview.

  • Check your Display Performance option by accessing the View menu, choosing the Display Performance submenu, and choosing High-Quality Display if you’re editing with InDesign and encountering fuzzy pictures.
  • As a substitute, you can lower the quality to “typical” or “fast” if your machine is having trouble enhancing speed.

Keep in mind that this only alters how pictures seem when viewed inside of InDesign; it has no bearing on how they look once exported or printed.


That’s pretty much all there is to learn about using InDesign’s preview feature. There are a few other preview modes for color proofing and verifying overprints, but they are extremely specialist modes that require their own lessons.