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Old 06-12-2010, 09:46 AM   #1
droople
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Question Which typeface should use for ebook, Serif or Sans-serif

Hi All

I'm new to making ebooks.

I have a question about the typeface used in ebook, should I use Serif or Sans-serif?

I know the general rules is that Serif is more suitable for print, and Sans-serif is more suitable for screen reading.

How about ebook screen, should I still consider it as a normal screen and use Sans-serif typeface, or I can use Serif typeface as it's an e-ink screen (more than 140ppi)

PS: I forgot to mention that I'm not making Latin language ebooks, so I have to embed fonts, instead of letting reader choose themselves.

PS2: I'm using Nook, so Nook is the only device I can test the ebooks, basically Nook only has three Latin typefaces for users to choose.

Cheers

Last edited by droople; 06-13-2010 at 07:13 AM.
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Old 06-12-2010, 09:55 AM   #2
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None.

Do not specify any font, let the user choose his/her preferred font. I usually like serif better.
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Old 06-12-2010, 09:59 AM   #3
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My rule of thumb has been serif for "body text" and sans-serif for titles, subtitles, etc.
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Old 06-12-2010, 10:26 AM   #4
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My personal preference would be for a serif font, but one that isn't too fancy or too narrow in the narrow parts. Sometimes slab serifs work well for ebooks.

I also think the font needs to suit the subject matter. A book on medieval history shouldn't be in a modern sans serif font, for example. If you're just looking to choose a single font for all e-books irrespective of content or other special concerns, then I agree with jellby that you should leave things to the user’s choice.
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Old 06-12-2010, 12:12 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jellby View Post
None.

Do not specify any font, let the user choose his/her preferred font. I usually like serif better.
This implies that the user is able to choose a custom font. Most Reading Systems are not this flexible.

I agree with the general idea though, but one has to accept reality. In light of this, I find that using a "sensible" typeface (say, Caecilia) for the book is usually a good idea. The default RS fonts usually suck pretty bad.

Last edited by Valloric; 06-12-2010 at 12:15 PM.
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Old 06-12-2010, 12:19 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jellby View Post
None.

Do not specify any font, let the user choose his/her preferred font. I usually like serif better.
In most cases this would be fine, but the OP says they're not using Latin languages in the ebooks, so embedding is probably definitely the better option as not all ereaders are equally well "localized", in my understanding.
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Old 06-12-2010, 01:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by droople View Post
PS: I forgot to mention that I'm not making Latin language ebooks, so I have to embed fonts, instead of letting reader choose themselves.
I agree that makes a point in favour of embedding, but still it's not strictly necessary. For instance, while ADE does not support non-Latin scripts, the Cybook readers let the user select a custom font, and if the font supports the scripts all is fine.

For non-Latin scripts, however, the distinction between serif and sans-serif is often not valid, and there are other styles used. I'm not so sure a clear rule can be given, it depends a lot on the script and the particular font... and still it's a matter of user taste!
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Old 06-13-2010, 06:29 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jellby View Post
None.

Do not specify any font, let the user choose his/her preferred font. I usually like serif better.
I very much agree that the user should be allowed to choose his or her preferred font.

Some people like serif; some people like sans-serif. Why should those who like serif impose their preference on those who like sans-serif, and vice versa?

Regards, Alex
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Old 06-13-2010, 07:20 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jellby View Post
I agree that makes a point in favour of embedding, but still it's not strictly necessary. For instance, while ADE does not support non-Latin scripts, the Cybook readers let the user select a custom font, and if the font supports the scripts all is fine.

For non-Latin scripts, however, the distinction between serif and sans-serif is often not valid, and there are other styles used. I'm not so sure a clear rule can be given, it depends a lot on the script and the particular font... and still it's a matter of user taste!
Sadly, for a Nook user, they only have three Latin typefaces to choose , no non-Latin typefaces support, unless you embed them for users.
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