Is is possible to make a PDF in Beamer such that notes are visible only on computer and not on the projector?

  • 1
    @Daniel: I think the questions should be merged, since both have useful answers. Feb 23, 2014 at 7:09

3 Answers 3


Only if your graphic card supports the two screen mode:

\setbeameroption{show notes}
\setbeameroption{show notes on second screen=right}

\begin{frame}{The \texttt{\textbackslash note}-Macro}
\item normal text for the presentation.
\note<1-2>[item]{Say something to the audience!}
\item and text for the presentation.
\item foo
\note<2>{Another note for you!}

\note[enumerate]{\item foo \item bar \item baz \item foobar}

\begin{frame}{second slide} 

The image shows on the left the presentation and on the right your screen.

  • 19
    Unfortunately, in my experience most PDF viewers will still show both sides in one full screen on the main screen. Feb 4, 2011 at 21:57
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    I don't have an opportunity to try this right now with a projector. Does anyone know PDF viewers known to correctly display this setup in Linux and Windows?
    – denilw
    Feb 11, 2011 at 18:12
  • you can try with a monitor instead of a projector. A desktop monitor usually have two ports in its back. One port to connect to the desktop computer, and the remaining port can be used to connect it to your laptop.
    – Jisang Yoo
    Feb 13, 2011 at 16:11
  • It looks nice. But how to use it in full screen mode with the left on the screen to present and the right on the screen for the presenter personally? Mar 16, 2017 at 11:42
  • @AlexanderZeng: It's long ago when I used it, but I suppose that you have to increase the windowsize by yourself. It is not possible with a keystroke.
    – user2478
    Mar 16, 2017 at 12:05

For those who use a Mac, here's a pretty useful application : SplitShow.

It does exactly what you want, you simply open your PDF presentation in it and it automatically displays your notes and the slides side by side, and most importantly you can go full-screen.

  • 1
    Splitshow seems to be out of active development and my experience is that this thing isn´t stable at all. I tried this on tiger, snow leopard and leopard and would never ever recommend this monster (unless u want to have some software crashes during your presentation).
    – bloodworks
    May 17, 2012 at 13:01
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    The project is active on github, and it is the only one that I found to be working on OSX (I 've tried all others). The latest alpha version works fine on Yosemite, and it seems the guy is porting it for El Capitan
    – Paschalis
    Dec 22, 2015 at 9:30
  • I've done a quick test, and this seems to work on the latest version of macOS, and the latest beta (as in todays beta).
    – Jay
    Feb 28, 2017 at 4:31

I haven't looked at SplitShow, but on Mac I found that the pdf viewer Skim can be useful. If you have two different pdf's with the same number of pages, you can put the main presentation on one screen and the notes on the other and enable a synchronized presentation mode.

See this guide for how to use beamer to create the two different pdf's.

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