Adobe Illustrator is making my PDFs HUGE! Why?

I received a pdf of about 1Mb, with 6 pages. I opened each page, one at a time, in Illustrator, changed some text, then saved, so it saved back to the original PDF. After 6 pages of minor text changes, my PDF swelled to 23 Mb!

I have tried changing image compression to the minimum. Besides making the original, crisp images look terrible, it does little to the file size.

This makes no sense. I have tried saving without preserving editing capabilities, and all else I can find that might save bytes, including optimizing in Acrobat. The best I have been able to do is to get file size down to about 12 Mb with terrible image quality.

Addendum. I did not mark this as duplicate of another question because the edits I am making are so simple, there is no reason for increased file size, and the answers there do not help with my situation. The point one answer makes about the Audit feature, however, might prove helpful.


When you Save a PDF with Illustrator, that is essentially an Illustrator document. It’s meant to be used as part of a PDF workflow, so it is saving as much information as it can.

If you want to make a shareable PDF with the smallest file size, choose File ▶ Print and print to PDF. That is a final PDF that is meant for distribution.

Source : Link , Question Author : stevero , Answer Author : Simon White

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