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Pixelated font in Affinity Photo


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I am working on a photo passepartout, with a picture in the middle and a logo with font underneath, in Affinity Photo. Somehow, no matter what I do, the font always appears pixelated in the document, and in the exported file, even when I convert it to curves. It is shown sharply in Affinity Designer, but if exported from there it's the same problem. I have to say I'm quite new to Affinity and this kind of work, so I don't really know what I'm doing and what could be wrong, but web searches haven't helped so far. I attached a few photos to illustrate the problem.

The document is set at 300 DPI / 2250x2250px.

Let me know if there's anything else you need to know in order to help.

The passepartout project.jpg

The project

The logo and font in Affinity Photo : when exported.jpg

The logo and font as in Affinity Photo and when exported (in both programs)

The logo and font in Affinity Designer.jpg

The logo and font the way it's meant to be, as in Affinity Designer

Edited by MKGö
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Welcome to the Serif Affinity forums, @MKGö.

First, you need to be aware that Photo and Designer use different display technology. Photo is always using a pixel (raster) display format, whereas Designer uses a primarly vector display format (though it allows a pixel view; see View > View Mode).

So, even with something that is a vector like a font, if you zoom in using Photo it may appear pixellated, though it will appear smooth in Designer. This is merely a matter of how it displays.

Second, though, is the question of the export format you use, and once exported how much you zoom in. Some export formats (JPG, PNG, TIFF) are pixel (raster) formats, and some (PDF, SVG, EPS) are vector formats. If you export to a pixel format, and zoom in, you will see pixellation in text or images.

So: what format are you exporting to, and what size are you exporting to, and how much have you zoomed in when you notice the pixellation?

-- Walt

   Desktop: new:  Windows 11 Home, version 21H2 (22000.613) 64GB memory, AMD Ryzen 9 5900 12-Core @ 3.00 GHz, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090  (old: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970 )
   Laptop:  Windows 10 Home, version 21H2 (19044.1706) 32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU.
    Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1282 Beta
 iPad Pro M1, 12.9", iPadOS 15.4.1, Apple Pencil 2, Magic Keyboard

  Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.280) and 1.10.2 (.266) Beta / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.21) and 1.10.3 (.19) Beta 

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30 minutes ago, walt.farrell said:

Welcome to the Serif Affinity forums, @MKGö.

First, you need to be aware that Photo and Designer use different display technology. Photo is always using a pixel (raster) display format, whereas Designer uses a primarly vector display format (though it allows a pixel view; see View > View Mode).

So, even with something that is a vector like a font, if you zoom in using Photo it may appear pixellated, though it will appear smooth in Designer. This is merely a matter of how it displays.

Second, though, is the question of the export format you use, and once exported how much you zoom in. Some export formats (JPG, PNG, TIFF) are pixel (raster) formats, and some (PDF, SVG, EPS) are vector formats. If you export to a pixel format, and zoom in, you will see pixellation in text or images.

So: what format are you exporting to, and what size are you exporting to, and how much have you zoomed in when you notice the pixellation?

Hey, thanks for your answer! 
I understand the difference between the programs now, that's good to know, thanks.

I'm planning to upload the pictures to Instagram and Facebook, so I exported in JPG. I exported in just the same size as the document is set in (see picture). I did have to zoom in quite a bit to see the pixellation, that is true, so it might just be the way it has to be.

If I open the same document in Designer, the font shows perfectly in vector view, but is also pixellated in pixel view, even if I redo the font in Designer. Is that correct? I thought a graphic text like that would also be vector-based.

Bildschirmfoto 2021-02-14 um 22.46.00.jpg

Bildschirmfoto 2021-02-14 um 22.56.05.jpg

Edited by MKGö
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51 minutes ago, MKGö said:

If I open the same document in Designer, the font shows perfectly in vector view, but is also pixellated in pixel view, even if I redo the font in Designer. Is that correct? I thought a graphic text like that would also be vector-based.

Yes, it will be pixellated even if redone in Designer. Text cannot be vector-based in a raster data format like JPG; nothing is.

-- Walt

   Desktop: new:  Windows 11 Home, version 21H2 (22000.613) 64GB memory, AMD Ryzen 9 5900 12-Core @ 3.00 GHz, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090  (old: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970 )
   Laptop:  Windows 10 Home, version 21H2 (19044.1706) 32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU.
    Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1282 Beta
 iPad Pro M1, 12.9", iPadOS 15.4.1, Apple Pencil 2, Magic Keyboard

  Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.280) and 1.10.2 (.266) Beta / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.21) and 1.10.3 (.19) Beta 

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Walt, I'm having same type issue, but it did make a difference in how it was viewable in a PDF and how it printed. 1.) Last year I was adding a logo that included both graphic and text to the back of a book I published, and it showed up pixelated on the edges in PDF and when printed. I used Affinity Photo. I then did something between copying over file from Designer to Photo, but I don't remember what, and it then had clean edges in the PDF file and then when printed on the cover of the book. When I went to reopen the file this week it showed it all blurred out and saying resource could not be found. I thought I did it embedded and not linked, so not sure why that's happening. Nevertheless, I can't reproduce it to work again, and I want my logo to be clean around the edges when printed, not pixelated. 2.) I do have an original EPS file of the graphic as well, but want to change it to white and do so by doing a color "overlay" on the layer. But when I export it as a PDF it puts the color back in. 

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5 hours ago, KJV1611 said:

Walt, I'm having same type issue, but it did make a difference in how it was viewable in a PDF and how it printed. 1.) Last year I was adding a logo that included both graphic and text to the back of a book I published, and it showed up pixelated on the edges in PDF and when printed. I used Affinity Photo. I then did something between copying over file from Designer to Photo, but I don't remember what, and it then had clean edges in the PDF file and then when printed on the cover of the book. When I went to reopen the file this week it showed it all blurred out and saying resource could not be found. I thought I did it embedded and not linked, so not sure why that's happening. Nevertheless, I can't reproduce it to work again, and I want my logo to be clean around the edges when printed, not pixelated. 2.) I do have an original EPS file of the graphic as well, but want to change it to white and do so by doing a color "overlay" on the layer. But when I export it as a PDF it puts the color back in. 

For the "resource not found" it sounds like your resource was linked, and is no longer where it was. If you can find it, you can Replace it, or move it to the right place to fix that one.

For the pixelated edges in PDF, perhaps you applied some effect to the text that rasterized it. If we had the file, or a screenshot of the Layers panel and, for any layer with an "fx" marking, the effects panel, someone could probably tell you what caused it.

I've no idea about your color overlay. Sorry.

-- Walt

   Desktop: new:  Windows 11 Home, version 21H2 (22000.613) 64GB memory, AMD Ryzen 9 5900 12-Core @ 3.00 GHz, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090  (old: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970 )
   Laptop:  Windows 10 Home, version 21H2 (19044.1706) 32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU.
    Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1282 Beta
 iPad Pro M1, 12.9", iPadOS 15.4.1, Apple Pencil 2, Magic Keyboard

  Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.280) and 1.10.2 (.266) Beta / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.21) and 1.10.3 (.19) Beta 

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Ok! Looks like I figured out how to keep the white by changing the stroke color instead of using an "overlay." And looks like I figured out my main issue with how I was working things as well. Looks like I just need to change old habits. I always used Affinity Photo to make covers for books, but I noticed with my logo that it would not print out as clean as I wanted to. I just opened my Affinity Photo file in Affinity Design, added the logo, exported as a PDF and it's showing it very clean! I then tried using Affinity Publisher, added the logo, exported as PDF and its showing it really clean and not pixelated.

Should I always be using Affinity Publisher to do my covers now? I always used Affinity Photo as I was using that before Affinity Publisher came out. I then began using Affinity Publisher for the interior pages content, but didn't think of changing to that for the cover. But thinking about it now, Publisher would be a better choice to use for covers than Photo would be right? 

 

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1 hour ago, KJV1611 said:

Should I always be using Affinity Publisher to do my covers now? I always used Affinity Photo as I was using that before Affinity Publisher came out. I then began using Affinity Publisher for the interior pages content, but didn't think of changing to that for the cover. But thinking about it now, Publisher would be a better choice to use for covers than Photo would be right? 

As far as I know (which isn't too much without seeing your actual file) you should be able to do the same thing in Photo as you've worked out for Designer and Publisher, and get the same results. So I think it's completely up to you.

-- Walt

   Desktop: new:  Windows 11 Home, version 21H2 (22000.613) 64GB memory, AMD Ryzen 9 5900 12-Core @ 3.00 GHz, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090  (old: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970 )
   Laptop:  Windows 10 Home, version 21H2 (19044.1706) 32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU.
    Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1282 Beta
 iPad Pro M1, 12.9", iPadOS 15.4.1, Apple Pencil 2, Magic Keyboard

  Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.280) and 1.10.2 (.266) Beta / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.21) and 1.10.3 (.19) Beta 

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  • 8 months later...

Thank you MKGö for raising this issue and Walt for providing insight into the applications. I was having a similar issue when making a banner for my Etsy shop which was to be located in a PDF I was creating under Publisher. Thanks to the discussion I opened the banner in Publisher, rewrote the slogan in the same font and it was perfect. I then removed the previous pixel layer and saved as an SVG and reloaded into my PDF using the Image Place Tool and exported and it is perfect when opening in the PDF. 👍😊 

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