FontLab 4.6: kerning/spacing problem with type 1 on OS X 10.3.x only when printing

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Patrick Horn's picture
Joined: 3 Apr 2004 - 12:51pm
FontLab 4.6: kerning/spacing problem with type 1 on OS X 10.3.x only when printing

I have a big problem with type 1 fonts and OS X 10.3.x (Panther). These are fonts I use already for a long time. I had modified them with Fontographer (Euro glyph added for example; changed some glyphs a little). The Fontographer generated fonts already had this problems (only with Panther, nbot before) and I bought FontLab some weeks ago with the hope to solve this problem … but it doesn’t work.

OK — what happens? The fonts look ok on the screen, but when printing on any postscript printer (I tried several ones — original postscript level 2 printers, harlequin level 3 imagesetter RIP and so on) — kerning/spacing is quite wrong; usually the lines get longer (word spacing is increased and at the same time charakter spacing seems to be decreased.
Even the same character pairs differ in different lines!!! Some are OK, some not (all “wrong” ones are wrong in the same way).

This happens with any software (I tried Freehand MX 11.02, Illustrator CS, InDesign CS, QuarkXPress 6.1 and so on), but only under Panther. With Jaguar, everything is OK!!!

And another strange thing: when making a PDF by distilling a PS-file with these fonts, everything is also OK and the PDF even prints correctly.

The only thing I didn’t try is if it also happens with non-former-Fontographer-fonts.

And: the same font as TrueType also works, but looks horrible on screen, specially in small sizes (no TrueType hinting?).
I use now the TrueType version, but I would prefer the type 1 version because of the screen appearance. But I also want to know where this problem comes from — and I would like to be able to generate type 1 fonts which work also in Panther!

And I also tried a lot of different settings when generating the font from FontLab 4.6 — nothing helps. It is also not an issue of one Mac — I tried it on 3 different Macs — everywhere the same.

Has anyone an idea or is this a known problem with type 1 and panther? (I couldn’t find a thread here with this probem.)