3 ways to make rasterized text easier to read on the web

Blocks of pixel text at small sizes often appear blurry, smudged, or just plain unreadable when viewed on a Web page. Photoshop has built-in features that can render small type crisp and sharp. Here are three handy tips for improving the appearance of text at small sizes on the Web.

INGREDIENTS

webtext
  • Pin It

3 ways to make rasterized text easier to read on the web

There are a few little tricks you can do in Adobe Photoshop to make your text look a bit sharper on your Web pages, especially at smaller sizes.

Resizing

When resampling blocks of text, there is an option you may not have noticed that will help you achieve sharper results. This is particularly useful when you have scanned in blocks of text or line art

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.08.52 PM

When we go to resize the image (Image> Image Size), Bicubic resampling is the default option. This works best for most images.

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.09.45 PM

Here is the result of Bicubic resampling on our text

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.16.12 PM

Try it again, but this time choose Bilinear (Or try Bicubic sharper) resampling

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.12.02 PM

Notice how much sharper the text is?

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.16.33 PM

 

Here they are again, side by side, so you can compare them better.

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.16.12 PM Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.16.33 PM

Tracking

The second trick you can use in Photoshop applies to small text and its tracking, or kerning, which is the spacing between letters. Here is a line of text with standard tracking

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.20.11 PM

In the tracking box (Window> Show Character), increase the amount to 20

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.20.45 PMScreen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.21.19 PM

See how much more legible the text is? Look at a road sign and notice that the tracking is set very wide. That’s why you can read them from a distance.

 

Anti-Aliasing

Many people use anti-aliasing on text on the Web, with mixed results. Here is a line of text with the crisp anti-aliasing applied (Layer>Type>Anti-Alias Crisp). It’s kind of blurry

091002_fg9

Here is a line with sharp anti-aliasing applied Notice the difference?

091002_fg10

These little tips help you to produce Web pages with sharper, easier-to-read text.

 

Get in-the-know!

Join our list to receive more tutorials and tips on Photoshop. Get exclusive tutorials, discounts and the free super guides. No spam, all content, no more than once a week.

Get your free 77 page CS6 Superguide

Given email address is already subscribed, thank you!
Oops. Something went wrong. Please try again later.
Please provide a valid email address.
Thank you, your sign-up request was successful! Please check your e-mail inbox.
Please complete the CAPTCHA.
Please fill in the required fields.

 

 

Colin Smith

Colin Smith

Colin Smith is founder of the #1 PhotoshopCAFE online community which has received over 30 million visitors. Colin has Authored/Coauthored 18 books. He has won numerous awards including 3 Guru awards. He’s been nominated for the Photoshop Hall of Fame twice. Colin is a regular columnist for Photoshop User Magazine. He’s been featured in almost every major imaging magazine, and is in high demand as a speaker at major industry events including Flash Forward and WPPI . He consults such companies as ABC Disney, Apple and Adobe

More Posts

Colin Smith

About Colin Smith

Colin Smith is founder of the #1 PhotoshopCAFE online community which has received over 30 million visitors. Colin has Authored/Coauthored 18 books. He has won numerous awards including 3 Guru awards. He’s been nominated for the Photoshop Hall of Fame twice. Colin is a regular columnist for Photoshop User Magazine. He’s been featured in almost every major imaging magazine, and is in high demand as a speaker at major industry events including Flash Forward and WPPI . He consults such companies as ABC Disney, Apple and Adobe