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How to make good Small Text in a GIF

Posted on 1998-06-11
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Last Modified: 2013-12-25
How do the web sites put such small text into a GIF image and still have it look good?
I've tried PhotoShop with anti-aliasing and can't get anywhere near that small without it
getting fuzzy and blurred.
Which fonts work at the small sizes?
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Question by:gnewman
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7 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:Hardaway
ID: 1866677
I think that you may try to type the small text in an image with true color first, then convert it back to a 256 color Gif. Please remember to choose the "nearest" color while doing converting.

Hope this help!!
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Author Comment

by:gnewman
ID: 1866678
Of course I assumed true color all along, otherwise how could PhotoShop anti-alias it?  That's not the issue.
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Accepted Solution

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Tuff earned 100 total points
ID: 1866679
Gnewman try this.....get PaintShopPro 5.0 (It's shareware)if you dont already have it, type your text in either word or notepad...when you are done minimize the screen to the size of the gif you would like, then hit "Print Screen" on your keyboard...open Paint shop up and go to "Edit" then "Paste as new image" it will open an image of your desk top and then text file...then on the left bar go down to selection (6th button down)then trace the inside of the text file so it's outlined , then go to "Image" and select Crop, it will then crop the image to just the text, if the image looks small hit the zoom button on the left bar and it will save at that size...then just save it as a gif.

Hope this helps.

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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Hardaway
ID: 1866680
Actually, you haven't stated clearly that what is the size you excepted.
If the size is too small (say, less than 8), then no matter which font type you used,
the text cannot be read.

Maybe you can also try "Sharpen" the text when they appeared fuzzy/blurred.
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Expert Comment

by:maslow
ID: 1866681
I think that the best way is to not use anti-alias, and instead use a good small font like Ms Sans Serif or Small Fonts (2-7 pts). Ok, these fonts isn't very beautiful, but they do the trick.
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Expert Comment

by:MorFF
ID: 1866682
gnewman,

Make the image bigger than you intend to display it (eg 300x200), then use a larger point size on your image.  then when you display it in your web-page set the WIDTH/HEIGHT values to a smaller value than the image (eg 150x100).

Works for me - MorFF
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Author Comment

by:gnewman
ID: 1866684
My goal is to use something like PhotoShop to make small type so it can be merged into a GIF.  I've had trouble getting PhotoShop to render small type (equivalent of what you can get by typing into WordPad).  Since PhotoShop doesn't make the raster fonts available, its hard to get the outline fonts to render cleanly at the same small sizes you can get from a windows app.

Its not very appealing to do use something like MS Word to render the type and cut and paste it off the screen into PhotoShop, but it should work.

MorFF's method of having the browser resize doesn't make any sense at all.  If I wanted to drop-sample the text (that's what the browsers do to resize) I would just do that in PhotoShop rather than have a "too big" gif.
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