Layout file exporting too large

HI, When I export my layout plan to a PDF it is enormous, usually over 150MB. Have I got a setting ticked that is causing this? Obviously a bit annoying for the people I’m sending it to.
Thanks in advance!!

Hard to tell exactly without more information. Are you exporting at high quality? How many sheets? How large are the sheets? What’s on the sheets? Are there a bunch of images or SketchUp viewports with lots of textures?

I have seen cases where on Mac the images are exported as PNG and not JPEG, because of containing some transparency information. Also, the PDF may include the full size images. Check the size of your inserted images. They only need to be detailed enough to do the job. For example, to get a perfect print on a 300 dpi printer, of an image that fills 1/4 of US Letter landscape, that only needs about 1600x1200. If you are using a 20 megapixel image, you are being 10 times more demanding than you need to be.


I would love to see a sketchup video on YT that goes over this topic. I don’t have much on a box of rocks so my mind just read your comment and my head turned like a dog’s does when it is trying to understand spoken words.

If it was demonstrated…now maybe I might get it…300 - 1600x1200 - 20 MP - 10x…spinning beach ball…forever.

Could you make a new LayOut file that has one page and includes some images from your 150 MB PDF version? I could then confirm whether the issue is what I am suspecting, and I can do a YouTube video to show what to do about the problem.

I never use JPEG compression in my PDF exports. It produces really ugly artefacts as it is not really suited for images fith areas of flat colour.

I have found that using available optimizing functions in my PDF editors (Acrobat and PDF Xchange Editor) often can reduce the size of my PDF files exported from LayOut by even 90% without apparent reduction in quality. Bloated PDF files are common from CAD and BIM applications. It might be the used translation library that causes it.


HI Dave, the layout file is full of scenes from my sketchup model. The sketch up model is set to A3 and there are 23 pages on the layout file. It’s a landscape design with multiple elevation images created in scenes and then inserted into my layout doc? Then the last few pages are 2d plans with notes.

what about the SU model.

is it as lean as it can be - are you able to purge materials, components, etc. that are redundant?

This should be done regularly, but I don’t see how it would affect the size of exported PDF files that are just representations of what is seen on the LayOut page.

maybe my understanding is not correct but my experience seems to show that if there are redundant components in the SU model then that could inflate the LO file size…??

That’s true. The SketchUp file size affects the size of the LayOut file. In fact usually the .skp file is the majority of the LO file size. But the size of the .skp file shouldn’t affect the file size of the exported PDF.

It would be interesting to see your LayOut file, Amy. I expect it’s too large to upload directly to a reply in the forum but you could upload to Drop Box and share the link. If it’s something you don’t want to release to the world, you could send me a private message by clicking on my name here and then Message and put the link there.

I would like to chime in here that this is a huge problem, and that it is much worse with SU/LO 2020 than previous versions. I try to use Mac Preview to downsize, but with lousy results. My old (purchased, fully owned, wonderful) Acrobat CS no longer functions on new 64-bit macOS, and I am not renting (ie subscription to Adobe) to make up for shortfalls of LO. I am holding out on using LO 2021 because each new version seems to be buggier and slower than the previous, with very few useful updates. I seriously fantasize about going back to MacOS Sierra and SU 2019.