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Presets are badly needed yes - fiddling with these curves didn't bring me satisfying results either. It reminds me of many options in Rawtherapee and Darkroom that never brought me anything better (or equal to) than what a simple slider in Capture One Pro can produce of results. And man did I try for hours ... methodically.

Such options are great - but many belong behind an "advanced" button.


"Men are like sheep, of which a flock is more easily driven than a single one."

"Experienced vector artists and infographic designers will find a noticeable lack of the more advanced tools found in Illustrator CC." (source)

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Posted (edited)

My typed text is very rough and looks terrible.  I have spent an hour googling, searching the forum, and trying the Gamma Blend options, and it still is rough and looks terrible. This makes Affinity useless for my needs.  A new user should not have to spend hours searching for a solution for typing decent looking Text.  I couldn't even find a Video Tutorial on the Text Tool.  There needs to be easy option like those in Photoshop - a drop down menu with presets,  None - Sharp - Crisp - Strong - Smooth.  I see that this anti-aliasing  issue has been active,  and Anti-Aliasing presets requested for 4 years, since 2015, without any action by Serif to add this much needed improvement .  I guess I'll have to go back to using Photoshop and request a Refund for this Affinity program purchased yesterday. 

DO THE PROGRAMMERS / DEVELOPMENT DEPT. EVEN SEE THIS  FEEDBACK IN THE FORUM & THE IMPROVEMENT REQUESTS?

1566500093_affinityroughtext.jpg.0a751bd4f8d4e6375299da873ad2df38.jpg

Edited by KirkS

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4 hours ago, KirkS said:

My typed text is very rough and looks terrible. 

Welcome here, KirkS. The text should look better (if your picture was not enlarged afterwards). So if you give us more information (which settings you used to save/export) we could help.

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6 hours ago, KirkS said:

My typed text is very rough and looks terrible.

It looks like zoom level is bigger than 100% 
Or when the export is made with Nearest resample method. Select Bilinear.

zoom100.png.02277590dc55d4a825d15c7c0b99b710.png

Bilinear.png

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5 hours ago, KirkS said:

DO THE PROGRAMMERS / DEVELOPMENT DEPT. EVEN SEE THIS  FEEDBACK IN THE FORUM & THE IMPROVEMENT REQUESTS?

Sadly, they couldn’t care less about what we say. If they had been listening to us, Adobe would now be scrambling to win market share back from Serif!

Serif, please be nice to your paying customers and start implementing our intelligently thought out feature requests starting today!  Many requests wouldn’t take you years to code. Most would require only a week to code. Just pause your current plans, implement some of our requests and make us all happy in the process, then proceed as planned.  It really is that simple.

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6 hours ago, KirkS said:

My typed text is very rough and looks terrible.  I have spent an hour googling, searching the forum, and trying the Gamma Blend options, and it still is rough and looks terrible. This makes Affinity useless for my needs.  A new user should not have to spend hours searching for a solution for typing decent looking Text.  I couldn't even find a Video Tutorial on the Text Tool.  There needs to be easy option like those in Photoshop - a drop down menu with presets,  None - Sharp - Crisp - Strong - Smooth.  I see that this anti-aliasing  issue has been active,  and Anti-Aliasing presets requested for 4 years, since 2015, without any action by Serif to add this much needed improvement .  I guess I'll have to go back to using Photoshop and request a Refund for this Affinity program purchased yesterday. 

What you should do is start your own topic in the Questions section, and provide us with a sample .afphoto or .afdesign or .afpub file that demonstrates the problem and let us work with you to figure it out. You have 14 days to request a refund, assuming you purchased directly from the Serif Store and not from the Mac App Store or the Windows Store.

Many users are successfully using text without having your problem.

And yes, the developers read the Feedback forum.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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58 minutes ago, JDW said:

Just pause your current plans, implement some of our requests and make us all happy in the process,

They do implement our requests. Arrowheads, for example, were a frequently requested function that we got in 1.7. We also got TGA export, which was frequently requested.

CRW file support is another one, new in the 1.8 beta.

And we've been told that Expand Stroke is being worked on.

So they are listening, and working, though not as fast as you'd like.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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3 minutes ago, walt.farrell said:

So they are listening, and working, though not as fast as you'd like.

Thank you for providing a small number of examples, but I’ve been posting in this forum for YEARS and none of my proposed future requests, despite the many follow-up comments of praise and Likes, have been implemented. It’s not a matter of time. It’s a matter of will. I don’t see the will. Hence my comments.

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10 minutes ago, JDW said:

It’s not a matter of time. It’s a matter of will. I don’t see the will. Hence my comments.

I would say that more likely it's a matter of priorities, and resources, or of Serif's ideas of where they want the products to go.

But only Serif knows the reasons that they do or do not implement any given request. And they are unlikely to comment. Perhaps they need to say "no" more often, as they did with the requests for Linux support.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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Posted (edited)

I didn't mean to repost this a 2nd time.  It was in my browser in edit mode when I opened Firefox, and when trying to clear,  it was posted again - please delete

and when I My typed text is very rough and looks terrible.  I have spent an hour googling, searching the forum, and trying the Gamma Blend options, and it still is rough and looks terrible. This makes Affinity useless for my needs.  A new user should not have to spend hour searching for hours to find a the solution for typing Smooth Text. There needs to be easy option like those in Photoshop - drop down menu - Noner - Sharp - Crisp - Strong - Smooth.  I see that this issue has 1566500093_affinityroughtext.jpg.0a751bd4f8d4e6375299da873ad2df38.jpg

Edited by KirkS
This previous post was mistakenly re-posted - please delete

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I am accustomed to working in Photoshop CS6, and when working with text at 150% zoom the text is smooth without any pixelization. So yesterday when I worked with Affinity text for the 1st time, at 150% zoom, the text was pizelized and looks terrible.   See attached comparisons of Affinity Text at 150% without anti-aliasing (because it doesn't exist), compared to Photoshop text at 150% zoom with anti-alias set to Smooth, and Photoshop text at 150% zoom with Anti-Alias set to None.  There is a big difference in Quality.  You say that Affinity Text at 100% zoom looks acceptable, but it is inferior to Photoshop text quality with anti-alias.  I don't know why Affinity developers are satisfied with much inferior text quality without anti-alias,  and have not improved it for at least 4 years.

Affinity & Photoshop Text Comparisons.jpg

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37 minutes ago, KirkS said:

I am accustomed to working in Photoshop CS6, and when working with text at 150% zoom the text is smooth without any pixelization. So yesterday when I worked with Affinity text for the 1st time, at 150% zoom, the text was pizelized and looks terrible.   See attached comparisons of Affinity Text at 150% without anti-aliasing (because it doesn't exist), compared to Photoshop text at 150% zoom with anti-alias set to Smooth, and Photoshop text at 150% zoom with Anti-Alias set to None.  There is a big difference in Quality.  You say that Affinity Text at 100% zoom looks acceptable, but it is inferior to Photoshop text quality with anti-alias.  I don't know why Affinity developers are satisfied with much inferior text quality without anti-alias,  and have not improved it for at least 4 years.

It depends on the Affinity application that you use.

Designer defaults to using a vector-based view mode, in which vector objects such as text will look smooth at any magnification. But you have the option of using pixel view, or a mix of both vector and pixel.

Photo does not have a vector-based view mode. All displays are pixel-based, and if you enlarge a vector item such as text it will look pixelated. It should be fine when you export it, though.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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3 hours ago, KirkS said:

See attached comparisons of Affinity Text at 150% without anti-aliasing (because it doesn't exist), compared to Photoshop text at 150% zoom with anti-alias set to Smooth, and Photoshop text at 150% zoom with Anti-Alias set to None.

Raster graphics should only be viewed at 100%. In any case, the final result, too, will only be displayed 100% or less 100% Viewing a bitmap more than 100% does not make sense.

I'm glad that when i zoom in, affinity does not use interpolation, which leads to a blurry image.

The text antialiasing method has nothing to do with how it appears when you zoom in. (even if antialiasing is set to Smooth for text and displayed smoothed at 150%)

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At the end of the day, you cannot tell experienced Photoshop users to "use Affinity Photo very differently" or "you can't do that in AP" because that will only reinforce in their mind that Photoshop is still better.  This is why we have people calling for improvements in AP.  For people who never used Adobe apps before, none of this really matters.  And even for some Adobe users, they don't care -- they are just happy to be free of the hated subscription model.  But MOST PEOPLE will care, hence the best approach is to handle text anti-aliasing as Photoshop does.  Then AP becomes a more natural and seamless design environment for the Photoshop user.  Eliminating barriers to adoption of Affinity apps should be the primary goal here, not changing user behavior.

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9 minutes ago, JDW said:

At the end of the day, you cannot tell experienced Photoshop users to "use Affinity Photo very differently"

But we must tell them that, because Photo is not a clone of Photoshop and Serif is not going to make it one. Even if Serif adds some functions that PS can do but Photo can't, they will not try to make it work identically, and users coming from PS will always have to do some things differently, possibly very differently.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.356), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.486 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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I disagree when talking about KEY functionality.  I am not talking about ALL functionality.  I am talking the basics of what your average PS user would deem important.  One need not take my opinion alone as gospel on this.  Look what others are saying on that subject in this forum.  And that's why Serif needs to consider those voices.  It's not about making AP a clone of PS.  It's about making AF a tad closer to PS such that PS users can more seamlessly transition to AP without ripping out a lot of already thinning hair.

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11 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

Photo is not a clone of Photoshop and Serif is not going to make it one

It’s about quality (including usability). Serif tries to be compatible with .PSD and the level of quality of PS and other apps. Because texts are so fundamental, it hurts that we still have no answers to questions like "How exactly can we achieve sharp text? Can we get examples where small text does not lose so much more quality than in other apps?” after it was claimed that the blend gamma slider is probably the simplest way to control sharpness of text.

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Right, there seems to be a bit of confusion here. Before continuing, I think we should make it clear that there is a difference between:

A) on-screen text rendering while working on a project, and

B) text rendering quality when the file is rendered for final output.

It is important to distinguish between the two when discussing text rendering and anti-aliasing quality, because even when (A) looks atrocious, the actual output (B) may be perfectly fine.

@KirkS You mention that Affinity's text anti-aliasing looks ugly when zoomed in at 150%. This falls into category (A). And yes, you are correct, and the rough text rendering is due to the way Affinity needs to convert pixels to a view which renders half pixels: 150% is an awkward on-screen zoom factor which forces the application to render pixels to scaled up half pixels.

This used to be an issue with all image editors, including Photoshop, and the situation improved when video cards were utilized with either OpenGL or DirectX rendering. When graphics acceleration (OpenGL based) in Photoshop is turned off (or is not supported on a flimsy GPU) the text rendering at 150% will look even worse than in Affinity. Other applications such as Krita also use graphics hardware acceleration to render the viewport, and zooming in will result in a (much) more acceptable view quality, albeit often with fuzzy edges.

Looking at your posted Photoshop example, you will notice that the edges of the text look quite fuzzy, and OpenGL rendering is utilized to anti-alias the text rendering on the fly. Turning off the text's anti-aliasing looks terrible due to the awkward conversion to 150% zoom factor, and really has no bearing on this argument except to underscore the fact that zoom factors other than exact multipliers generally result in bad on-screen text rendering. Zoom in at 200%, and it will look pixel precise.

In short, screen rendering of text in graphics software may or may not rely on the video card (GPU) to anti-alias the result on-screen. Some software is really good at this (Photoshop, Krita), but it will still produce fuzzy looking text when zoomed in, of course.

Mind, the way your text looks on the screen is in no way guaranteed to be representative of your final output, in particular when zoomed in or out at a decimal zoom percentage. And then there is the impact of vector output or bitmap output. When we save the file as a PDF from Affinity Photo, the text will remain vector, and be rendered beautiful in any good PDF viewer and at any zoom factor (within limits, of course).

Anyway, if the text rendering bothers you at 150% or other zoom factors like 125%, 109%, etc.) avoid previewing the work at those zoom levels. Only preview the text at 100%, 200%, 300%.

Next, lets discuss (B): final output text rendering.

The quality of the final text rendering output depends on a number of factors:

  1. the anti-aliasing settings (on/off, specific controls like the ones in PS or Fireworks)
  2. whether or not the design software allows for text to be positioned at decimal pixels
  3. whether or not the design software features pixel snapping, and whether this is turned on or off
  4. the font rendering engine behind the text rendering
  5. the resolution of the final file
  6. whether the text is output to vector (see above) or to bitmap

For GUI designers (1), (3) and (4) are quite important. Some graphics software utilizes the OS's font screen rendering to render the text: for example, PhotoLine uses the Windows font rendering when pixel snapping is activated, which results in a 1:1 result compared to how Windows would render the text. GUI prototyping/design software will do the same, generally. This is of course the preferred method for GUI designers. And the font rendering looks arguably better than Photoshop's sharp setting in my opinion.

Photoshop does NOT, as far as I am aware, make use of the OS text rendering, and the final rendered bitmap result will look different compared to OS rendered text (as is demonstrated in the example posted earlier in this thread).

So how does Affinity Photo perform in the output (B) category?

PDF output of text is perfect. No problems there. It depends on the PDF viewer's on-screen anti-aliasing and text rendering engine, of course. But Affinity is not to blame for any issues related to the PDF viewer's text rendering. If this is an issue, pick a different PDF reader.

As for bitmap rendered text output, Affinity's anti-aliased small text rendering is indeed marginally fuzzy looking compared to other design applications. Personally, I feel the anti-aliased text looks good enough. It would be nice to have control presets for the anti-aliasing, but the coverage map is quite helpful, if a somewhat cumbersome method. But it does offer more fine control compared to fixed presets. Which is a plus in my book.

That said, the major issue in Affinity Photo is the lack of an option to just plain turn off anti-aliasing for text (and vector objects in general). This is required for GUI work and often for very small text output. The Coverage Map won't cut it here. As long as (1) doesn't include a simple option to turn off anti-aliasing altogether, it will remain an issue for screen designers and pixel artists.

 

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22 hours ago, Medical Officer Bones said:

The quality of the final text rendering output depends on a number of factors:

  1. the anti-aliasing settings (on/off, specific controls like the ones in PS or Fireworks)
  2. whether or not the design software allows for text to be positioned at decimal pixels
  3. whether or not the design software features pixel snapping, and whether this is turned on or off
  4. the font rendering engine behind the text rendering
  5.  the resolution of the final file
  6.  whether the text is output to vector (see above) or to bitmap

 

Would be great if Serif would explain those basics graphically in their help for newbies. The important resampling hides in one of the points? ;-)

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Resampling becomes quite important when scaling down to a lower resolution and keeping the text crisp looking. In my experience CatmulRom works really well in these cases. It also helps to work at a much higher resolution, sharpen before scaling down, and sharpen a bit afterwards.

Resampling also takes place in (4): the vectors must be rasterized to a bitmap representation on-screen.

 

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18 hours ago, Medical Officer Bones said:

CatmulRom

You mean Catmull-Rom? We don’t know the code used by Serif. Even if we would have Catmull-Rom as an option.

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