Note: this is a re-post, originally posted April 4, 2016. When planning the posts for this month it made sense to include this tutorial again.

Printing slides is a common need. But the Microsoft presets are not optimal. For example, let’s look at “2-up” printouts directly from PowerPoint and then we’ll look at my preferred option which is using Adobe Acrobat to create the 2-up PDF printout.

Using Microsoft’s PowerPoint preset:

1. Go to File > Export > Create PDF/XPS Document

2-up PDF printout Export_Image1

2. In the PUBLISH OPTIONS section, change the drop down menu to HANDOUTS. Slides per page = 2. Keep HORIZONTAL setting. A print preview of the pages will be on the right.

2-up PDF printout PPT_Image2

Select OK and your PDF will be created.

2-up PDF printout PPT_Image3


But, these can be larger images of each slide if we do not use the PowerPoint preset.


To create 2-up printout using Adobe Acrobat (Note: This is a multi-step process, but the result is great):

1. Go to File > Export > Create PDF/XPS Document. This time don’t worry about the options, just create PDF with 1 slide per page (the default print setup).


2. Now we are going to print the PDF again. From the PDF of the slides, Go to File >Print

2-up PDF printout PDF_Image5

3. Select ADOBE PDF as your printer.

4. In the Page Sizing and Handling select MULTIPLE.

5. In Pages Per Sheet select Custom.

6. Set to 1 by 2, the small print preview should look like the below example.



As you can see, side-by-side, the Adobe Acrobat 2-up PDF printout on the left has larger slide images than the PowerPoint 2-up printout, the Adobe Acrobat 2-up takes up the page significantly more than PowerPoint does.


Just a simple option to provide better printouts. 

-Troy @ TLC