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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In an effort to collect useful market research for Amazon regarding the Kindle 2 fonts, I would like testers to use this discussion topic to post feedback on the alternate fonts that you have tested.

Please indicate the name of the font, the size(s) you use for reading, and your impressions comparing that font to the native fonts shipped with the K2. If you use a different size for the alternate font than you used for the native fonts, please note this as well.

Additionally, if you have special font requests due to issues with your vision , feel free to post those as well. It will be useful for Amazon to understand the special needs of people using the Kindle.

Note: for those who have already contributed in other topics, if it's not too much of an inconvenience, your feedback posted again here would be most useful.

Thank you for your feedback.
-Ted

P.S. The font install files are found here:
https://sites.google.com/a/etccreations.com/kdesignworks/Home/font-install-files
 

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Are you kidding :), we would be more than happy to post our feedback if it helps; you've already helped so many Kindle users "optimize" their own reading experience. Lots of us are truly grateful.

Now to business:

1) I like the Arial Round Narrow best at font size 4 line spacing ALT + 1.

2) I'll have to rank the newest "flavor," Tall Font, a close second. It's great because it is a couple of shades DARKER than the original K2 text; it's a fraction taller at font size 3; and it seems a bid narrower, which allows me to fit more words on each line. I'm currently reading with this font on size 3 with line spacing ALT + 3. I'm betting that in a week, it'll be my favorite.

3) Bold Narrow Native is great as well, but it has been trumped by the Tall Font. Bold Narrow Native's only weakness was that at font size 3 it was slightly smaller than the K1's size 3.

- Keep up the good work, Ted-san; we are all the richer for your font-artistry!
 

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Ted,

I'm new here but a consummate and relentless tweaker! Thanks so much for your efforts. I noticed right off that the K2 was not as contrasty as I'd like (been an owner for a whole week!).

I'm pretty set on using Size 1 for now (not a fan of page turns). I may move to Size 2 later.

So far I've tried:

cmodNarrow: Very nice, I think I prefer serifs, but not sure yet

Arial Round Narrow : Also VERY nice and legible. Not sure I want to read for extended periods sans serifs, but we'll see.

Droid: OK, I've tried this one now and think it's my favorite so far. I'd prefer a serif font but I think it just looks clearer than the cmodNarrow at this point. EDIT: I've found some of the letters a bit muddy. Particularly bothersome are the exclamation marks on Size 1, they look identical to an L.

Georgia2: I've now moved bnacked to a serif font. I fond serif fonts better for extended reading. Just put this one in but it looks very nice so far. It is a tad big even on Size 1.

Thanks again.
 

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tedsan - I am using your Droid fonts and I read at type size 3.  I sometimes read at size 4 if I am tired, but I prefer for most reading.  I found the fonts on my Kindle 2 to be too light and was delighted to find out the fonts could be changed.  I was a previous owner of Kindle 1 and the difference in the font darkness between the Kindle 1 and 2 was very noticeable.  I originally made my own fonts, but had a problem with the quality of the fonts when I went to the Amazon store (they were fuzzy for some reason).  I next tried your fonts, found that the font issue with the Amazon store went away (much clearer), and really like the darkness of the fonts you provide.  I also tried the Narrow Ariel fonts on size 3, but they seemed to be a little too small for my liking, so I went back to the Droid fonts.  I also like the style of the Droid fonts. I wish Amazon allowed you to pick from a variety of fonts, but the font hack will have to do I guess.

I only have one problem with your Droid fonts.  I find the fonts on the main screen (the listing of my books) to be too dark or bold.  If these were lightened slightly, the Droid font hack would rate a 10 out of 10.  Since I spend most of my time reading and not looking at the main screen, this issue is not so bad that I will unstall the hack.  I was close to returning my Kindle until I found out I could modify the fonts darkness.  At that point, I decided to keep the Kindle and I am happy I did.  My big worry is Amazon modifies their firmware to disable the font hacks.  As long as the firmware continues to work, I will be happy.  

Thanks again for all of your hard work and I hope this helps.
 

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The Arial font works great for me. My only problem is that I have many, many MOBI conversions and, as you know, they don't render perfectly. Fortunately, the damage is so minor compared to the vast improvement in readability that I can easily live with it. Do you think this is something that Amazon will find relatively easy to remedy, or should I simply avoid the MOBI format to the extent possible.

I hope Amazon appreciates your efforts as much as we all do, Ted. Many of us would have returned our Kindles were it not for your efforts. I'll be writing to Amazon directly to express these sentiments and I encourage all others to do likewise. IMO, you deserve to be financially rewarded.

With sincere thanks,

Spad
 

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I use the bold narrow native on size 4. This is the same size I used with the original font.

The text certainly wasn't unreadable before...but is so much better (darker) now.

Thank you!
 

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I'm a bit confused here.  Why is there mention of; "Droid Bold" "default Droid", etc.  Is there a "bolding" feature on the Kindle I've missed?  I was under the impression that each font was simply a single set.  This also begs the question, why is the .bin file for Droid 6mb while the other fonts are all under 1mb?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The Droid font is a "unicode" font - that has many more characters than a normal English character set, hence the large size.

As for the references to bold etc - I believe that's a holdover from my naming conventions. As I modified off the shelf fonts, I add notations to indicate what I did to them. You are correct that there's single sets of fonts that are loaded. Each set contains a regular, a bold, an italic and a bold-italic font.

So, for example, the Droid Bold font is one that I ran through a font editor and had all the characters made a bit thicker, hence making them bolder.

As for the question about MOBI conversions, I haven't experienced that, so I'm afraid I can't comment on that issue.

Regarding the home screen display - they appear to display it in a large, bold format. Unfortunately, there's no control over that rendering. It's a compromise of making the entire font set bold enough but not too bold. That's what I've been experimenting with in the 'tall' font.

Clearly though, there's a variety of preferences that vary reader-to-reader, so it's already becoming clear that Amazon really should provide a handful of fonts so that readers can select whichever one suits their needs best.
Ideally, there's be customization, just like supported by most computers, so you could set the font and size for the home screen and other areas. But that's really icing.

As for compensation - my compensation is your happiness. But if Amazon wanted me to be a beta-tester or consultant on the design of the K3, I wouldn't complain!
 

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I really appreciate your effort to help resolve this issue with Kindle 2 fonts that Amazon is so obviously ignoring.

As for the font preferences, I think I like the cmodBold and Droid the best, after that I like the arialRndNrw.
When using the Droid, I set the font size to 2 or 3. When using the cmodBold, I like 3. When using the arialRndNrw, I like the size to be 4 with the spacing set to 1 or 2. As one other person stated previously, the Droid would be perfect if it didn't make the menu on the Home screen so overly dark. I personally prefer to read with serif fonts.

These fonts a MUCH NICER, darker and easier to read than Kindle 2 native fonts. The letters with curves are more definitive and sharper. I wear bifocals, so the improvised fonts are extremely helpful. I doubt I would have kept the Kindle if this option was not available. Thanks so much! :)
 

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I had my Kindle about a week before I tried the hack, spent a couple days trying the various fonts out, settled on Arial for a week and spent last week unhacked for the update. Using the default font, I mostly read on size 3. This was frustrating because I could almost outread the page turns, but size 2 was too small.

Of your fonts:
  • Bold Native & Bold Narrow Native were both distinct improvements, allowing me to read comfortably at size 2. I would give a slight edge for Bold Narrow as better looking.
  • I tried Droid Bold and could read at size 1, but I also disliked the appearance of the home screen.
  • Arial Round Narrow is my Goldilocks font so far -- sharp enough for me to mostly read on size 1 (may bump to size 2 if I've been reading for a prolonged period) and the home screen doesn't look heavy.

Overall, I prefer the cleaner look of the two sans-serif fonts, but I find all of them much better than the stock font.

I have not tried Large or Tall since I do prefer reading on the smallest size possible. If I get a chance to demo them for my cousin with retinitis pigmentosa (tunnel vision), I will report back. Finally, I want to thank you for making these available as my Kindle is definitely more enjoyable with the hack.
 

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Law. Sorreneson said:
Are you kidding :), we would be more than happy to post our feedback if it helps; you've already helped so many Kindle users "optimize" their own reading experience. Lots of us are truly grateful.

Now to business:

1) I like the Arial Round Narrow best at font size 4 line spacing ALT + 1.

2) I'll have to rank the newest "flavor," Tall Font, a close second. It's great because it is a couple of shades DARKER than the original K2 text; it's a fraction taller at font size 3; and it seems a bid narrower, which allows me to fit more words on each line. I'm currently reading with this font on size 3 with line spacing ALT + 3. I'm betting that in a week, it'll be my favorite.

3) Bold Narrow Native is great as well, but it has been trumped by the Tall Font. Bold Narrow Native's only weakness was that at font size 3 it was slightly smaller than the K1's size 3.

- Keep up the good work, Ted-san; we are all the richer for your font-artistry!
Law, you read my mind! I would like to second Law's post for lack of better wording.
 

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I received my K2 on Feb 25th and was happy with the font it came with and the contrast. I would read on font size 4, which was the size I used on my K1. Then, yesterday, out of curiosity, I did install the font hack. I tried a few and for the past 24 hours, have been reading Droid on font size 3. I am a little amazed because 3 always seemed to small to me, on the K1 and K2. It's nice having more words on a page and not having to change screens so often.

Last night, I did get tired and bumped it up to 4, but this morning I am back to 3.

Thanks for this, Ted. Great work.

L
 

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Having vision problems, I need and use fonts 5 or 6.  They work for me more comfortably.  I would like the print darker.
 

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I LOVE the ArialNarRound because it feels like a "smooth" read. Hard to explain, but it's like speed reading, the words flow without stop or stutter. It's great for blogs and newspapers with it's urgent, sans-serriff-informational vible! Haven't tried the TALL or DARK yet, but I also like the bold native - definitely an improvement upon the native serriff font.

Honestly, I don't think darkening/lightening is as much of an issue with font sizes 5, 6 (maybe size 4). Anything that improves the 1, 2, 3 - standard-size print in publications (novels, newspapers, blogs) - would be HUGE. So although I'm in love with my new ArialNarRound, my eyes still rove and yearn for that "perfect font."

Anyway, Mr. Ted-san, your work confirms what many of us knew all along: The Kindle 2 is lighter than the K1 on font sizes 1, 2, 3:

"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

- Arthur Schopenhauer: Three stages of Truth
 

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I tried arial narrow and didn't like it, but then tried arial round and its perfect! I read on size 3 lines spacing 1 or 2
 

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I'm torn between Bold Narrow Native and the new "TALL" (which I think is just a taller version of Bold Narrow Native?). While I like the slightly larger "TALL" font size, I do notice a slight fuzzy, bleed in the text. It's dark enough, but doesn't look as clear n' crisp as the Bold Narrow Native.

Anyway, all these new fonts look TONS better than the original K2's light text.  I guess beggers can't be choosers, but I'm hoping Ted-san goes "a la carte" and provides MULTIPLE fonts for our reading consumption! Dude is an absolute GURU...

Oh, some vital statistics: size 3 font. line spacing at 4.
 

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After playing around with the fonts some more last night and today, I have come to a final conclusion of what I like best.

My first choice is the Droid, text size 3, spacing 3.
My second choice is the arialRndNrw, text size 4, spacing 3.
My third choice is the cmodBold, text size 3, spacing 2 or 3.

They both look excellent. I will probably change between them intermittently just for a different reading experience.

I appreciate so much what you have done, Ted. Thank you for taking over where Amazon left off (and should have done) and making the Kindle an excellent e-reading device.
 

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I've tried all of the fonts and have settled on the cMod Bold as my favorite with the cMod Large as a close second.  I used to read at size 4, 5, or 6 on my K1, depending on the time of day and how much I'd been reading that day.  On the K2, I was forced to use size 6 and even that was difficult for me.

With many of the new fonts, I can go down as low as size 3 comfortably.  This is wonderful and has made my Kindle experience nothing but fun again!

P.S.  I won't see my Mother until June again, but I'm hoping the cMod Large or the Georgia Bold font on size 6 will allow me to buy her a Kindle 2.  She has macular degeneration and was not able to see the text on the K1 or the K2 last time I showed it to her.  She even had trouble with Lg. Print books from the library.  This could be life transforming for her to be able to read again.  Thank you so much, Ted.  You have no idea how profoundly this could affect some readers!
 

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S.Quick here!!  I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the Georgia Font.  It is PERFECT!  Thank you so much.  The other fonts were awesome, and they were very bolded which was good for the contrast issue.  But the Georgia Font is bolded just the right amount, and it is a very pretty font.  I love it!!!  Thank you so much.
 

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I do have one question:  When I tried out each of the fonts, I would uninstall the previous font before installing a new one.  Was that necessary?
 
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