[pdftex] Pale print with Adobe Reader

Rodolfo Medina rodolfo.medina at gmail.com
Tue Mar 27 12:21:37 CEST 2007

On 3/8/07, Rodolfo Medina <rodolfo.medina at gmail.com> wrote:

>>>>> I did:
>>>>>  $ tex file.tex
>>>>> and got file.dvi; then
>>>>>  $ dvips file.dvi -o
>>>>> and got file.ps; then
>>>>>  $ ps2pdf file.ps
>>>>> and got file.pdf. Now, with some printers the print is all right; with
>>>>> some it comes out very pale. If I use pdftex:
>>>>>  $ pdftex file.tex
>>>>> , the result is even worse. The same printer prints other pdf files fine.
>>>>> I need printing my pdf file through MS Windows and Adobe or Acrobat
>>>>> Reader.
> [...]
>> What I would actually like is to go on using
>> a font which look exactly like Knuth's TeX default Computer Modern, but that
>> will come out dark and not `pale' or light

Heiko Oberdiek <oberdiek at uni-freiburg.de> writes:

> The CM fonts and variants do have very thin lines. Therefore the fonts
> may look "pale". It's a decision of the font designer. If you don't like it,
> use other fonts. But it doesn't make much sense in deliberately using
> a pale font and complaining about its paleness.

Reinhard Kotucha <reinhard.kotucha at web.de> wrote:

> in this case it seems that what Rudolfo needs is a font with heavier
> strokes than Computer Modern, for instance Palatino.  A pdfTeX update
> will not solve this problem.
> [...]
>> Coming back to the original question,  does \usepackage{mathpazo}
> help?

"George N. White III" <gnwiii at gmail.com> writes:

> The O.P. was using plain tex, so the answer is no.  With TL2007, xetex is
> the easiest tool to support other fonts for a plain tex source
> document (with the caveat that maths fonts would be a problem -- I
> don't know if the O.P. needs extensive math, but perhaps not since the
> CM fonts looked odd to him).

Reinhard Kotucha <reinhard.kotucha at web.de> writes:

> It seems entirely wrong to me to ask people to upgrade their TeX
> installation when they only need a replacement for Computer Modern.

I've been using CM happily for years now, for documents including math
formulas: I also created font macros in plain TeX.  When I needed printing I
used Unix machines and the .ps format.

Recently, though, I wanted to create documents without math that only need a
12pt `normal' font and its correspondent italic, but that need to be printed in
printing shops and internet points (that only have MS Windows with Adobe or
Acrobat Reader), anywhere and at any moment.  So I converted them into pdf
format via the ps2pdf command.

Then I noticed for the first time that with some printers the CM characters were
too light.  I thought it was a problem concerning the pdf format together
with bitmapped fonts and not the thinness of the font in itself, as some
posting in the present list seemed to state:

> With current outline fonts, most systems are quite good at reproducing
> the intended
> appearance.  With bitmapped fonts, there can be considerable variation
> in the appearance of a given document depending on the settings used
> to generate the bitmapped (.pk) fonts, the version of Adobe Reader and
> the printer.

Instead, if lightness is a normal characteristic of the CM fonts, then the
whole present thread is based on a misunderstanding.  Anyway: the problem is
virtually solved (as I wrote) simply switching to the ptmr font with the pdf
format for the documents without math, and continuing on using CM and .ps for
the others.  However, once the problem has been arised by now, and we're in it,
I've been considering:

a) that, after all, CM is much more beautiful than ptmr, so it'd be nice to go
   on using it also for documents without math;

and, on the other hand:

b) suppose I need printing my math documents through pdf format one day?

So I was wondering if it's possible to have CM without the problem of
`paleness'.  I hope I was clear enough.  Thanks to all for their replies.


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