# Fonts too thin when A4 scaled down to A5 in printing

In my document I am using the same settings as in the MWE below. I need copies of the document in A4 and A5. Both have to be identical so I cannot optimise the appearance of both by using a4paper for the A4 copies and a5paper for the A5 copies. The A5 copies are hence produced simply by scaling them down on the printer.

The problem:

The fonts in the A5 copies are so thin that in some cases the lower part of the little e, for example, is not even visible --> see the image at the bottom of the question (it's a scan of the print-out; the problem is visible, for instance, in the word "discrete"; of course, the low quality of the image is partially due to the scan quality but the problem with the e's is not due to the scan itself). NB: The copy shop is a professional one with over 25 years of experience so I don't think the problem is due to unprofessional handling of printers.

My question:

• I use PDFLaTeX. Should I rather use LaTeX + dvi2ps + ps2pdf? The lady in the copy shop says that using Ghostscript for ps -> pdf might produce better pdf's.
• Should I use different font settings?
• Is there any method to scale the A4 output down to A5 already in LaTeX? Would this improve the font quality in the A5 copies?

Unfortunately, I do not have a laser printer anywhere near where I am right now. So I can't try and look whether the printing output improves when I change settings.

\documentclass[11pt, a4paper]{book}

\usepackage[ngerman,english]{babel}
\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}
\usepackage[latin1]{inputenc}
\usepackage{setspace}\setstretch{1.15}

\usepackage{lipsum}

\usepackage[
a4paper,
textwidth=16cm,
outer=2cm,
textheight=45\baselineskip,
heightrounded,
]{geometry}

\usepackage{microtype}

\usepackage[pdfproducer={LaTeX with hyperref},
pdfcreator={PDFLaTeX}
]{hyperref}

\begin{document}
\lipsum
\end{document}


PS: I have prepared the document for A4. Due to time constraints changing everything to A5 + 10 pt and scaling up in the printer for A4 is not really an option, since this would mean I would have to go over all formulae in displays and make adjustments so that they fit into the new textwidth. (It's quite a long document.)

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use another font, eg \usepackage{tgpagella} –  Herbert Aug 19 '12 at 8:41
Is this a common font? Never heard of it. Should I use it in addition to the settings I have now or does it replace something? Sorry, though having some elementary understanding of LaTeX I don't know anything about fonts! :-( –  lpdbw Aug 19 '12 at 8:58
put it right after the fontenc. And yes, it is a common font, the free Palatino from the TeX Gyre Project –  Herbert Aug 19 '12 at 9:01
In general, if you're going to print on A5, then you'd be much better off if you were to design for A5 (I.e a5paper, smaller font sizes, possibly even ragged right). Simply scaling stuff generally doesn't give good results. –  Brent.Longborough Aug 19 '12 at 9:09
You can design for a5 an then scale up to a4 –  JLDiaz Aug 19 '12 at 9:31

You can use a different font, e.g.

\usepackage[sc]{mathpazo}


or

\usepackage{pxfonts}


However, much better would be to use a5paper paper format if you're going to print your document on A5 paper. To change various dimensions on the paper (margins etc.), use e.g. the package geometry.

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