Looking for a nice, condensed, but readable font
I'm working on designing some badges and am looking for a nice, condensed, but readable font.
I usually use Helvetica-Condensed, but for this project I need type that is smaller than 9pt. Helvetica has the disadvantages of very closed letters, very static, similar forms, and very tight spacing.
Does anyone have any recommendations for a free font I could use?
Also, maybe your favorite condensed fonts that look good at 7pt, 8pt and 9pt.
That's a relatively tall order.
Free fonts (at least the kinds you'd find on a site like Dafont) are often characterized by not having condensed or expanded variants and not doing extensive hinting work for smaller sizes.
That said, here are a few suggestions:
- Calibri is not free, but it is relatively freely available, more narrow than your typical sans, and looks good on the screen. Might be worth a shot.
- Roboto Condensed is Google/Android's ripoff of Helvetica, but it's a decent ripoff and it's made for the screen, particularly mobile screens.
- Open Sans Condensed isn't bad, but it doesn't have a normal weight.
- Go to Google Fonts and either search for "condensed" or use the "Width" filter to get some different widths. Plug 'em in and see how they work for you!