# [texhax] pdflatex vs. dvipdfm

Luca Turchetti luca.turchetti at uniroma1.it
Fri Jan 16 16:17:34 CET 2004

The bad looking file produced by pdftex will print just fine.
If you need a better look on screen, you have to tell pdftex to download
type1 (vectorial - resolution independent) fonts in the pdf file.
To do this, you need the postscript type1 font outlines files (.pfb files)
and you have to edit the pdftex font map adding the entries for those font
files (I don't know TeXLive, but in other LaTeX distribution pdftex is
natively set up this way).

If you are completely unaware of what I'm talking about , and if you have
dvips and ps2pdf, you could try this (assuming that you are using standard
Computer Modern fonts with OT1 encoding):

latex myfile.tex
dvips -Ppdf -o myfile.ps myfile.dvi
ps2pdf myfile.ps

Best Regards
Luca Turchetti

Michael Barr wrote:

> Using a virgin (newly installed) copy of texlive8 installed on a Win2000
> machine, I ran the following file
> \documentclass{article}
> \begin{document}
> This is a test.
> \end{document}
> through pdflatex and latex/dvipdfm.  The latter produced a pdf file that
> was grossly superior to the former.  Dvipdfm produced sharp letters and
> looked just like the dvi file (on screen, anyway), while pdflatex produced
> output that was all fuzzy and really did not look good at all.  Is there
> something that can be done to spruce up pdflatex?  The reason I need this
> is that I am reprinting a book that exists as a scanned pdf file, but with
> a new foreword written by the author, the whole compiled by pdflatex.  The
> scanned book, although not perfect, looks better than the foreword.  I
> suppose I could compile the foreword into a pdf file using dvipdfm and
> then use pdfpages to bind them together, but there are reasons I would
> like to avoid that.
>
> Incidentally, dvipdfm complains that it couldn't open fonts.map.  It
> didn't seem to have any effect on the output.  What is that all about?
>
> Michael Barr
>
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