Problem printing or postscript exporting variable family

I have a 2-axis work in progress, a large family of 25 weights. However, the variable version will only print one weight/style. If I use more than one variation in a document – only the first one gets printed or exported. Somehow I get the feeling this is a PS-naming issue, but I have no idea as to where to start looking when it comes to variable fonts.

What do you mean by “only print one weight/style”? What app are you using? How do you install the font? (See Eliminating font cache problems | Glyphs and Testing your fonts in Adobe apps | Glyphs)

What I mean is that I can print a text using one specific set of settings of a variable font, but if I add a second or third set for various paragraphs, it will only print the first one. The fonts are installed in the Adobe “Fonts” folder. I forgot to mention – this happens when I export to PostScript, or print, using InDesign.

Are you sure you don’t have installed a static font with the same name?

Yes, I’m sure.

What version of Glyphs do you have?

3.1 (3133)

Can you update to the latest version (3.1.2).
And make a duplicate of the app and update this one to the latest cutting edge version (activate it in Preferences > Updates).

Tried 3.1.2 now, but it didn’t work.

There are important improvements with variable fonts in 3.2. So this should work now.

Care to share which version of which app?

Test OTVARs in browsers first. If it prints from a recent web browser, it is most likely a bug in that version of the app you are trying to print from.

I am in the process of updating the Variable Font tutorial with suggested best practices for OTVAR production.

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Do I need to rearrange the axis mapping?

InDesign 17.0.1

Sounds good! Please, let me know when the tutorial is ready.

No, that is updated automatically. It will not work in an older version. But you should use “Axis Location” parameters in the masters and instance. That it much easier.

I tried 3.2 now, with other issues besides the ones mentioned above. for instance, If “Axis Location” is checked, the variable font won’t export.

What is your setup with the Axis Location parameter? Did you correctly set parameters in all masters and instances? Do you receive an error when trying to export your variable font?

Do you get an error message?

Can you send me the .glyphs file?

Yes, I get an error message. I now feel lost setting up the different Axis Parameters.

I’ll send the .glyphs files, thanks!

Do you have static and variable fonts installed at the same time? That may have been the cause.

  1. You are setting nameIDs 4 and 6 twice. In the instances, remove them (‘Font Name’ and ‘Full Name’) from General, and keep the Name Table Entry parameters only. That way, those will be used exclusively for the static fonts.
  2. Call your variable font differently, so there cannot be a font conflict when both statics and variables are installed, that goes for both the Family Name and the PS Name Prefix (must be different from the part of nameID 6 before the dash).
  3. Use just the nameID for your Name Table Entry parameters, like this: 6; Xxxxx-Yyyyy.
  4. Suppress creation of Mac name table entries with the Export Mac Name Table Entries parameter (left checkbox on, right checkbox off) in File > Font Info > Font.

HTH, Rainer

Thank you for the input.

As of now, I only have the variable fonts installed.

I removed the General entries for “Font Name” and “Full Name” – no difference.

The variable family name and PS Prefix already differ, and I have tried it with and without the static fonts – no difference.

I also unchecked all the name table parameters for the variable fonts.

Except for the printing problem – the fonts behave just as I would expect them to.

I added an “Export Mac Name Table Entries” with the left checkbox on, and the right checkbox off – no difference.

Side note: If I add an “Axis Location” to each weight, the menu listing breaks and only the black weights get listed.

What more can try or change?

Can you send me the .glyphs file? (Email to support at this domain (without forum or www)) or send a link to the file in a direct message)