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Photoshop Tip: Scrubby Zoom in Photoshop CS5 and CS6

Posted in:
Tips & Tutorials, by Mark White
September 5, 2012

Scrubby Zoom lets you control precisely how much, and the location of where, you want to zoom in on your image

Scrubby Zoom in Photoshop

The Zoom tool in Photoshop has seen various changes over the past couple of versions. Photoshop CS5 introduced the Scrubby Zoom feature, giving us another way to look at pixels.

With Scrubby Zoom enabled, hold down the left mouse button and drag with the tool to the right to zoom in. Dragging your mouse to the left will zoom out of your image.

Remember to position the cursor over the subject you want to look at, as Scrubby Zoom will go into this area.

To zoom in subtle increments, click, hold and drag gently. Repeat this for zooming back out again.

However, if you’re not a fan of this feature you can head to the Options bar and untick the box ‘Scrubby Zoom’ to turn it off.

  • Toad

    This scrubby zoom, which I may someday learn is actually useful, was really throwing me; I’ve skipped a couple of versions, and I couldn’t figure out why the Zoom tool was acting extremely erratically. Googled up this page real quick, and voila there’s the answer. Thanks!

  • Quree Kim

    scrubby zoom is greyed out and even if I reset my settings for the zoom tool it won’t work :(. It’s changed into a marquee tool sort of zoom

  • Suzanne Cordier

    Thanks so much! I could not for the life of me see what logic the zoom tool was following before stumbling on your explanation. Life is good when you suddenly feel like maybe you’re not such a moron after all.

  • JoinMyConversation

    I Hate Scrubby Zoom. How can I kill it forever?

  • oyvi00i

    wtf is wrong with you, skrøbby soom for life