Michael Wagner <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> writes:

> or> Yep, these fonts should be perfect. But indeed, 16 pixels is a little 
> or> troublesome to have nice text: I have tried with Nimbus and Vera, and 
> or> the result is not satisfying...
> I tried Tahoma and Verdena and the result gets better...

The quality of the font becomes more important the smaller you render
it. Good fonts have hinting information that improve the rendering at
small sizes. If you get poor results for small font sizes, there are a
couple of possible reasons:

(1) The font sucks. This is very common as there are only few good
    fonts and almost all of them are expensive.

(2) There's no hinting information for the particular font size you
    are trying to use. Sometimes it helps to make the font slightly
    larger or slightly smaller. Some fonts only have hints for
    standard sizes like 10pt, 12pt, 17pt.

(3) Your font has hints but your version of the Freetype library
    doesn't have the TrueType bytecode interpreter enabled. Due to
    patent problems (see http://www.freetype.org/patents.html), many
    distributions disable this code in the Freetype library. You won't
    be able to use the hints embedded into the font then. Recent
    versions of Freetype have a fairly good auto-hinter but for very
    small sizes it can hardly compare to hints choosen by the font

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