[XeTeX] XeLateX minimizes the output?

Jan Eden lists at janeden.org
Fri Dec 3 15:43:58 CET 2004

Hi Jonathan,

Jonathan Kew wrote on 03.12.2004:

>On 3 Dec 2004, at 2:08 pm, Jan Eden wrote:
>>I just noticed that documents produced with XeLaTeX have a
>>different page layout, and the text appears slightly smaller when
>>compared to the same document typeset with pdfLaTeX.
>Using what fonts? If using the same fonts in both, I'd expect to get
>identical layout; but if you use OS X fonts directly in XeLaTeX,
>compared with the same typeface but using traditional tfm files,
>etc., in pdfLaTeX, there will almost certainly be differences.
I am using Adobe Garamond Pro in both cases. The OTF font was previously converted to pfb/afm files and then manually adapted to use with LaTeX. I still wonder how I managed to do that, and the result is certainly not reproducible. ;-)

>>There also is an additional margin at the top of the page which is
>>only visible when printing the page (not on the screen).
>This sounds like perhaps the Page Setup used when printing the PDF
>doesn't match the media size for which it was created?

You are right and I am sorry: I wasn't passing the papersize option to xelatex on the command line, and while pdflatex and latex are configured to typeset on A4 paper by default, xelatex obviously chose letter. So my PDF plugin decreased the size to fit on the sheet without noticing me. When trying to print through Preview, I get a warning about the page being too large.

Now I corrected that and called

xelatex -papersize=a4 filename

But, surprise: Preview complains again about the page being too large. Acrobat Reader reveals the following dimensions:

LaTeX output: 209,9 x 297 mm
XeLaTeX output: 210,2 x 297,3 mm

While I do not care about an additional 0,3mm in each dimension, publishers certainly will. Why does XeLaTeX incorrectly maps its output to A4 sheets?

Related question: How do I configure XeLaTeX to use A4 by default? I seldom have to use letter paper.


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