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7 Best QuickLook Plugins for macOS

by Kaushal
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QuickLook is an ingenious way of previewing files on macOS with the press of the spacebar. It lets you have a quick glance over the file contents so that you can take appropriate action. But QuickLook doesn’t support every file type and if your work uses a niche file type then worry not, there is probably a plugin for that. Let’s check out the best QuickLook Plugins for macOS.

How to Install QuickLook Plugins

You can install QuickLook plugins either with Homebrew or Manually. Unless stated otherwise, you would have to use either of these methods to install the plugin. I’ll list both methods so even if you have no experience with QuickLook plugins, it would be easy.

Option 1: Using Homebrew

If you wish to use Homebrew to install Quicklook plugins, first install Homebrew on your Mac by following the instructions from their website. After you’ve installed Homebrew, simply open Terminal on your computer and type the command listed below every plugin on the list.

brew cask install <package>

Option 2: Install Plugins manually

If you don’t have Homebrew on your computer then you can download the plugins manually. Simply download the plugin file by clicking the link every plugin on this list. After the download is complete, move the downloaded file (filename.qlgenerator) to the following directory.


Now, open Terminal and run the following command.

qlmanage -r

Best QuickLook Plugins

1. QLVideo

QuickLook supports most video formats natively but it doesn’t support newer formats such as .mkv, .flv, .webm, etc. QLVideo fixes this problem. This plugin also supports a variety of other codecs that are not natively supported by macOS.

Install with Homebrew:
brew cask install qlvideo

Download QLVideo

2. QuickLookASE

If you’re a graphic designer or your workflow involves Adobe Swatches then this plugin would come in handy. QuickLookASE lets you peek into Adobe’s color pallette files .ase using QuickLook.

Install with Homebrew:
brew cask install quicklookase

Download QuickLookASE

3. QuickLookAPK

APK is an Android package and isn’t supported by macOS natively. If you frequently use a mac to build android apps then perhaps you’d find this plugin useful. It lets you see the contents of an APK file without any special tool.

Download QuickLookAPK

4. QLStephen

If you have a text file that isn’t natively supported by macOS such as README files, CAP files, JSON, etc, then QLStephen is the one plugin you’d need.

Install with Homebrew:
brew cask install qlstephen

Download QLStephen

5. QuickLookAddict

SRT files or commonly known as subtitles work normally in Media players such as VLC but if you want to have a quick peek with QuickLook, it isn’t possible natively. QuickLook adds that functionality.

Install with Homebrew:
brew cask install qladdict

Download QuickLookAddict

6. QLImageSize

When you open a picture in the QuickLook, it displays the file name. However, if you want to see the image size on the top instead of the file name then this plugin does just that. It comes in handy when you’re scrubbing through a lot of pictures and need a quick glance at the image size.

Install with Homebrew:
brew cask install qlimagesize mdimagesizemdimporter

Download QLImageSize 

7. BetterZip

While BetterZip started as a QuickLook plugin, it has evolved into a full-fledged app. You can still just choose to use the plugin feature and add the functionality of peeking into zip archives before extracting the files. Simply download the app using the link below and install it on your system. After that simply press the spacebar on any zip archive to see a preview of it.

Download BetterZip

Final Words

These were a few of the plugins that I use to preview files on my mac. While most files are natively supported and new formats are being added with every new update but there are always things that are overlooked by Apple and the plugins fill those holes, nicely. What do you think of these plugins, let me know in the comments below or hit me up on Twitter?

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