[tex-live] Real Helvetica?

Zdenek Wagner zdenek.wagner at gmail.com
Tue Sep 21 23:45:32 CEST 2010

2010/9/21 Philip Taylor (Webmaster, Ret'd) <P.Taylor at rhul.ac.uk>:
> Joseph Wright wrote:
>> This may seem like an odd question, but do you own a copy of the
>> Helvetica fonts?
> Helvetica comes bundled with certain HP products, so it
> is by no means unusual for someone to have a legitimate
> copy of the real thing without ever having explicitly
> purchased a copy of the same.
Yes, Helvetica is present in HP printers. It is possible to modify the
font maps so that phv* just maps to the font names of the Helvetica
family but does not load the file with the URW fonts of the Nimbus
family. Thus the resulting PS and/or PDF file will ask the RIP to use
Helvetica but the font will not be embedded. While this seems to be
nice, there is one danger. The truth is that Helvetica in device A
_IS_NOT_EQUAL_ to Helvetica in device B. What might look fine on your
printer will likely be rubbish if you give such a PS/PDF file to
someone else. I know what I am saying. I have such a bad (ane
expensive) experience with Times and Helvetica. What looked well in
Ghostscript and on my HP printer turned into garbage somewhere else,
interword spaces disappeared, almost all accented characters were
damaged. If you want to use real Helvetica and you want to give such
PS/PDF to someone else, it is mandatory to have the real Helvetica
font and embed it in the file. Good printing houses will not accept
PDF requiring Helvetica if the font is not embedded because they know
well that Helvetica != Helvetica and Times Roman != Times Roman.

> Philip Taylor

Zdeněk Wagner

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