Tip: Flash CS4 Zoom Keyboard Shortcut

So as you may already know I recently installed CS4 and have been getting used to working in it on a daily basis. I use mostly keyboard shortcuts for choosing different tools in the tools panel and today I wanted to used the Magnifying Glass tool for the first time since installing CS4. Naturally, I pressed Z and thought to myself, “What the *&%^ just happened?”

Turns out that Adobe thought it’d be a good idea to make Z the shortcut for the new Bind tool and move the Magnifying Glass to M. I guess it makes sense because “M”agnifying Glass starts with M, but shouldn’t you have though of that, like, 10 versions ago when originally creating the program? I know Macromedia did it originally, but why break something that isn’t broken and everyone has gotten used to? I usually keep my left hand on the keyboard and right hand on mouse when doing stuff in the IDE so its very convenient for me to just hit Z and zoom in on something. What does Z have to do with “Bind” anyway? Why couldn’t Bind just be M?

Anyway, if you’re like me, you want to change this back to the original way it was. Go to the Keyboard Shortcuts (Flash > Keyboard Shortcuts on a Mac, forgot what it is on PC) and click the icon next to the Current Set dropdown (Duplicate Set). This creates a new set for you to use since you can’t re-map the default set. I just called mine “Matt” for obvious reasons and in the Commands drop-down you want to go to Tools Panel. Scroll down to “Magnifier” and select it, then highlight the M in the “Press Key” textfield and put in something that isn’t currently used anywhere (if you don’t, you’ll get an error that says this is already being used by the Bind tool, I just put the number 5 from the numpad). Then go to the “Bind Tool” and repeat the process and change it to M. Now go back to “Magnifier” and press Z. Click “OK” and you’re all set, back to the way things should be.

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I just checked in Flash CS3 what was the shortcut for Magnifying Glass and it was both: M and Z. 🙂 Though I always use CTRL+Space+Mouse Drag. Faster for me.

interesting, never used M. And I believe you don’t have to press CTRL, just Space+Drag to move around the canvas (although I didn’t check before I wrote this).

Space+Drag – to move around the canvas
CTRL+Space+Drag/click – to zoom in
CTRL+Space+Alt+Drag/click – to zoom out

ah, gotcha, thanks for clearing that up, don’t have Flash currently open.

Dude, thank you so much. I knew I’d find someone that shared my pain. =)

Not only was I saying “Whyyyyyyyy?!” when I first pressed z in flash CS4 to zoom… But I immediatly fired up AI CS4 to find out that z was still the zoom tool in it (along with PS CS4)! I am all about Keep It Simple (optional Stupid). So all CS4 products should use the shortcuts for the same tools!

Oh and who’s the genius that decided to animate the zoom in Photoshop CS4 and have a drop shadow around the canvas!


hi, in flash 8 pro (and all previous versions) i used all the time the zoom keyboard shortcut simply pressing cmd +, cmd -, it looks that it isn´t going to work like that anymore, i,ve found the M for activating the zoom tool, just what you are talking about, but it´s not the same, the flash 8 shortcut was a lot more faster than the: M letter – zoom tool – click. and for backwards: M letter – zoom tool – alt – click. and when you´re done with zooming you have to press the V letter or any other letter you need for exiting the zoom tool and keep on working… fweeeuuuu! in relation to the previous zoom keyboard shortcut, that is a complicated and misterious trip!

I’ve been serching everywhere but cannot find the Tools Pannel in my Commands when I go into edit my keyboard shortcuts. This is driving me nuts too. Which dropdow munu do you see it in? Maybe I am just blind today.. If it is in the actual “Commands” I don’t seem to hav it for some reason 🙁

You’re probably looking at the Commands fly-out rather than the Commands drop down. The Commands drop down is by default set to Drawing Menu Commands and you want to set it to Tools Panel. You’re probably clicking on the traingle next to the Commands fly-out in the Drawing Menu Commands and seeing Manage Saved Commands, Get More commands, etc, right? 😛

Hi Matt,
OOoooo, I was! Thanks so much for the help and quick response!! That was super annoying for a few hours there…

Hi, I just recently moved from Windows to Mac and CS3 to CS4, the quickest way to zoom (on windows), was keeping down ctrl+shift and scrolling the mouse wheel, now my problem is, I can’t seem to find the same functionality on the Mac (CS4)! I went through all the shortcuts, but I can’t set a shortcut using the mouse wheel :/. All the mentions above are useful, but it’s not quick enough for me… Please advise, thanks!

ctrl-shift mousewheel. Excellent! thanks for the tip.

Hey Matt, I’ve just had the same Z/M issue last nite and I did the same. But… why the mouse wheel event doesn’t fire when you test the movie in Flash IDE?

@Og2t: You’re talking about mouse wheel events? That’s a totally separate issue 😛 Are you using osx or pc? either way though, i don’t really know what to tell you 🙂

thanks for this info… i hate press M for zoom…
see ya!


I’m also thoroughly annoyed at the lack of zoom functionality using the mouse scroll wheel on mac os and Flash CS4.

It was so simple and fast on a windows system! I’m not sure why the equivalent was not implemented on the Mac edition…

I hope I’m wrong. Please post info if you’ve got it

Hi Dwayne,

I’ve got the solution! I was very simple from the start… OSX even makes it easier… … Simply dual boot (using Boot camp) your Mac with Window 7! After giving the OSX a good go (and I really tried), I realized that I was way more productive on Windows and that CS4 Flash on the Mac is buggy! Now I’m back to Windows with all the classics! One of the BIG ups is Total Commander! I simply can’t live without it! Path Finder on Mac simply doesn’t compare!

I still don’t know why Adobe decided to ignore the control key on Mac, if they hadn’t, I’d probably still be on Mac.

Thanks for the comment!

That is not the solution I was looking for!
I might have to start using ctrl +/- for now (lame)

I didn’t realize this would be a ‘downgrade’

I don’t have CS4 for windows…so bootcamp isn’t an option.

Let’s hope I don’t encounter the same bugs in CS4…

Thanks for the info

CS4 sucks… wtf they changed the key-shortcut for zooming..?.. that’s the most basic tool for all users and everyone know even a kid.. its should be ‘z’… I think their mind thoughts for changing it is to see their new feature.. if you press ‘Z’ “… hey we have a new tool.. come and try it.. its cool…”

Great Man! Really a good jog, and fuck you Adobe, leave my shotcuts alone!

hi govi i need flash shortcut keys to do my job perfect
ilike flash cs5 also

hold space bar and drag for hand tool. I designed flash logo. visit http://www.riyasonline.info.

The Commands drop down is by default set to Drawing Menu Commands and you want to set it to Tools Panel. You’re probably clicking on the traingle next to the Commands

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