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Thread: Display fonts

  1. #1
    Banned orijinel is on a distinguished road
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    Display fonts

    Is there a huge difference between a regular font and a display version of a font? Not seeing a difference on my end.

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  3. #2
    Banned mbkern is on a distinguished road
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    mhhh Neue Haas is actually really better for display than the Helvetica for example

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  5. #3
    Junior Member xamiam is on a distinguished road
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    Generally, most people are familiar with the concept of font weight: regular, light, bold, black, thin, etc. If I was to ask a person about the scale of the font, I would imagine most would think about the point size of the text, but how many would also think about Optical Size?.

    Display, Text, body, subhead, caption, headline, banner, grand, XL, poster, etc., are all expressions of Optical Size or Scale. Optical Sizing is where a typeface has subtle variations that allow the integrity of the character forms, features and proportions to hold together at various point sizes. Some aspects of the characters are exaggerated or beefed up for smaller point sizes (text, body, subhead, caption, etc.) while other aspects are thinned down or made incredibly delicate for larger sizes (display, banner, headline, grand, etc.) The serifs are generally the biggest winner or looser when it comes to optical scale, but don't count out other features such as cross bars, ascenders, descenders, x-height, etc., as having a stake in optical sizing.

    A Didot Display face, for instance, that was intended to be set at point sizes of 72 points or above may have the most impossibly thin serifs that are absolutely stunning, but completely disappear when set at 12 point body, leaving the font looking like Helvetica and Didot had a baby, whereas the text version of that same Didot family looks every bit like didot at 12 point, with the thin serifs we would expect, suddenly looks downright slab-serif-ish and chunky at 60 point when those serifs are scaled up with the rest of the face.

    While, like font weight, there is a general direction the font designer may have intended for the use of the optical sizes, ultimately, you should use the face that speaks to you as there are no rules to follow just expanded options and opportunities when you have a font with faces intended for optical scale.

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  7. #4
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    I recommend a display font, looks better.

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  9. #5
    Member zeitgeistsfo is a splendid one to behold zeitgeistsfo is a splendid one to behold zeitgeistsfo is a splendid one to behold zeitgeistsfo is a splendid one to behold zeitgeistsfo is a splendid one to behold zeitgeistsfo is a splendid one to behold zeitgeistsfo is a splendid one to behold
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    No, not a huge difference, but noticeable enough that some designers will want access to both sets (display and text). The best way to tell is to try out your headline using both versions, either locally on your computer or using the typesetting/testing features of online font stores.

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  11. #6
    Junior Member tonyzafi is on a distinguished road
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    yes there are. Display faces are made for uses at large size so there will be a bigger contrast between thick and thin strokes

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  13. #7
    Normal Member withoutsans is on a distinguished road
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    The replies above address letterform changes correctly. Adding to what has already been said, display fonts are also able to do away with elements that reflect small size printing (such as wells in letterform vertices to adjust for dot gain).

    One big consideration for display fonts not addressed yet is their default letterspacing. A normal font will be letterspaced for text size usages, and need more tightening for display usages, but a display version will often have it's default tracking set more tightly. This means that it could need to be tracked out if it were to be used for text sized usage instead of display.

    I have worked on several font families where tighter default tracking for the display weights has been specifically requested by the client. It's not an uncommon request (or feature), and should be taken into consideration when using a display font elsewhere.
    Last edited by withoutsans; 09-06-2014 at 02:43 PM.

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  15. #8
    Junior Member cancar will become famous soon enough cancar will become famous soon enough
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    Display fonts are used for large scale printing in fact you can tell by the thickness in some details

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