What Is a PSD File?


A PSD -- or Photoshop Document -- is a file generated by Adobe Photoshop. You've seen images that have a surreal quality: Women have purple faces or the Eiffel Tower appears on the moon. They are likely a result of Photoshop, a popular photo and graphics editor used by professionals and amateurs alike to edit image files in myriad ways — everything from resizing an image to adding new backgrounds.

What to Do With a PSD File

  • Since a PSD file is native to Adobe Photoshop, you can use Photoshop to open and edit it. The popular and versatile image editor offers many features including an abundance of support forums and tutorials. However, with its price tag and steep learning curve, Photoshop best serves frequent users who need a lot of control over their images.

    If you simply need to view a PSD image, downloading Photoshop is overkill. The Go2Convert website converts PSD files into formats that include JPEG and PNG, which can be displayed by most image-viewing software.

Editing a PSD File Without Photoshop

  • If you're interested in editing PSD images, whether resizing or something more complex, inexpensive or free options are available. Both Pixlr and Photopea are free online applications you can use to edit PSD files right in your Web browser.

    You can also download applications to your computer for use offline. GIMP and Wenovo PSD Viewer are Photoshop alternatives that open PSD files.

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  • Photo Credit Ryan Murray/Hemera/Getty Images
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