Miscellaneous: font size

started by O770 on Jan 19, 2005 — RSS Feed

O770 O770
Posts: 2

[list][*]How do I know what size a pixel (or bitmap) font was designed to use, if I no longer have the documentation for the font?
I read Photoshop will tell that under the style field but I don't have Photoshop. I use Paint Shop Pro instead (and Macromedia Flash MX 2004 Pro). So how do I know what size if I no longer have the font documentation and want to use the font in any application?
How do I know if a font ever requires a fixed size?[/list]
[list][*]Are there any fundamentals to using fonts in Flash movies that I'm possibly not aware of?
I downloaded the free font package off the minifonts website and followed the recommendations and despite that, the fonts looked blurry. I've had them aligned to the screen pixels and haven't modified any of the their properties such as size and styles. The same will always happen to any font that's supposed to make use of a fixed size.[/list]

Joe Gillespie Joe Gillespie
Posts: 528

o770 said:
[list][*]How do I know what size a pixel (or bitmap) font was designed to use, if I no longer have the documentation for the font?
I read Photoshop will tell that under the style field but I don't have Photoshop. I use Paint Shop Pro instead (and Macromedia Flash MX 2004 Pro). So how do I know what size if I no longer have the font documentation and want to use the font in any application?
How do I know if a font ever requires a fixed size?[/list]


No, Photoshop won't tell you that. The only way is trial and error but if you are trying to set pixel fonts in PaintShop Pro, you won't have much luck. Pixel fonts have to be set at 72 ppi but PSP always uses 96ppi even you set a document resolution of 72. To set a pixel font at 96ppi, you need to specify three quarters of the font size. So, if you have a 12 pixel font, it will work as intended at 9 points at 96 ppi. If your font size is not devisible by 4 exactly, it won't work and the only option is to go into your Window's monitor resolution settings and change to 72.

[list][*]Are there any fundamentals to using fonts in Flash movies that I'm possibly not aware of?
I downloaded the free font package off the minifonts website and followed the recommendations and despite that, the fonts looked blurry. I've had them aligned to the screen pixels and haven't modified any of the their properties such as size and styles. The same will always happen to any font that's supposed to make use of a fixed size.[/list]

All small fonts look blurry in Flash becuase of it's dreadful anti-aliasing. If pixel fonts fit the screen grid exactly, they will not be anti-aliased and will look crisp but they won't look good if they are scaled. Flash is a scalable technology. With Flash, you either have to use regular fonts that scale or publish the movie at a fixed size that it can't be scaled.

Flash MX allows you to lock pixel fonts to the screens grid. The best way to check is to make the grid visible and zoom-in to 800 or 1600% then you can actually see if the pixels are off-grid.

Be aware that Flash's built-in player does not necessarily display your images at 100%, sometimes you have to zoom out or in to get actual size. Files published within HTML pages are more likely to display correctly - do Publish Preview. If possible, publish at 'Low Quality' which switches anti-aliasing off.

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