Best way to handle fine details

Hi All

I working on something with a halftone which creates some fine details, like small circles, that I’d like to maintain. To do this I can set my Grid Spacing to 0, or I can get an acceptable level of detail with 2000 UMP and a grid of 1 and subdividing.

I’m wondering what the most efficient and compatible method is, plus any downsides.

I assume a possible consideration for removing the grid spacing might be that every coordinate would have 6 digits, which across a whole font, with a halftone, would raise the file size considerably?
I’m conscious that raising UPM can cause issues in some software, but maybe not at just 2000?

Thanks for your thoughts


Grid step of zero is incompatible with PDF mastering in recent versions of QuarkXpress.

It is smarter than that. The file size increase will only be small. Try it.

Should be fine. It starts getting hairy in Office software at approx 3000. There was a version of OS X that had problems with non-standard UPMs.

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You should pay attention to the number of nodes per glyph. Something around 8000 nodes per glyph is too much.

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And you will run into performance troubles long before that if you have many curves (rather than straight segments). Screen rendering can become very slow, to the point where you have to wait about 10 seconds for a word to appear, and printers will start to misbehave or print a PostScript error rather than your font. One quick way around that is to export as TTF.

Can you post an example of what you are planning to do?


Thanks @GeorgSeifert and @mekkablue. Good information.

Here’s a relatively crude test example. I think this O represents once of the largest areas of detail the halftone will cover. I’m planning to make sure those little dots are as close to proper circles as possible (so the font can be used BIG) so I’m avoiding coordinate rounding.


That should be fine.

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Thanks. So on the balance of it, would you raise UPM or loose the Grid Spacing?

If you are fine with a 2000 or 3000 unit grid, do that.

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Thanks @GeorgSeifert