I have a custom font with symbols that overlap other symbols for an effect. An example is an arrow that overlaps the next symbol.

In photoshop, when I export to pdf, the overlapped symbols appear fuzzy, and print fuzzy. If I space them out so there's no overlap, they appear fine, so I assumed the font is being embedded properly. And in both cases, I can select the symbols in a pdf viewer.

I can't change the text to shape without losing coloring.

Any suggestions to fix this?

EX: http://www.filedropper.com/test_30 enter image description here

  • So in your example, in the original document, the circle and the e are separate glyphs in a single typeface and the overlap is a result of extreme kerning or hinting? If yes, is this embedded in the font definition or are you doing it manually when setting the type?
    – horatio
    Jan 14, 2014 at 18:39
  • @horatio - the font is like that. I made it like that on purpose. There are no effects applied to the font whatsoever. If I space the symbols apart (no overlap), they render fine, so its the overlap causing the problem.
    – C_K
    Jan 14, 2014 at 22:23
  • so when you "space them apart," you mean in a separate copy of the font file? And the example is a single glyph? What software are you using to make the font?
    – horatio
    Jan 14, 2014 at 22:25
  • Does it still happen if you create outlines from the text? Have you tried other PDF presets?
    – mnxd
    Dec 11, 2014 at 10:36

1 Answer 1


The sample is miniscule! It's only .8" x .2" in size, and when you view it as a PDF, it zooms to windows size.

I'd imagine there is some sort of effect on the 'e' symbol that is kicking off the transparency flattener, and causing that part of the artwork to be rasterized. Combine that mith the massive enlargement due to the tiny dimensions and you have blur city.

  • The sample was made on the fly, the size isn't like my other thing. It shouldn't matter though, vector text is vector text. Why are those symbols combining into raster?
    – C_K
    Jan 14, 2014 at 1:40
  • Some sort of effect? Blur? Drop Shadow?
    – TunaMaxx
    Jan 14, 2014 at 19:02

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