T1 Encoding causing bad PDF quality? [duplicate]

I recently noticed that some of the papers I've listed on my homepage look a lot sharper than others when rendered in a PDF viewer. Curious about this, I tracked it down to this import:

\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}

As a brief example of what I mean, here's a test case:

\documentclass{article}
%\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}
\usepackage[english]{babel}
\usepackage{blindtext}
\begin{document}
\blindtext
\end{document}


Here's the result in TeXstudio with and without the T1 encoding (with is marked with a little red dot in the lower right-hand corner):

Likewise here's the result in Adobe:

And here's a close-up:

I'm compiling the PDF in TeXstudio using

pdflatex.exe -synctex=1 --extra-mem-bot=1000000000 -interaction=nonstopmode %.tex


If I simply drop the fontenc package, I have problems with braces ({}) used in the text. And the package seems to be recommended in the general case.

My questions are:

• Is this a local effect due to my font set-up?
• How could I resolve this problem?

(Sorry if the question is naive; I'm afraid I only have passing knowledge of T1 and the font system in LaTeX.)

marked as duplicate by egreg, Malipivo, Adam Liter, Heiko Oberdiek, Peter JanssonApr 17 '14 at 20:43

• – egreg Apr 17 '14 at 19:51

Upon further reading, I just found a solution here. Install the cm-super package. It will install T1-compatible versions of the Computer Modern fonts. No need to import anything more or to change the document.

Now with

\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}

the output looks like:

• Did you actually mean cm-super package instead of cmssuper? – porst17 Jul 14 '14 at 9:47

You need T1 font encoding for languages that use a latin alphabet with diacritics. Diacritics are used in English in exceptional cases, generally borrowed from foreign languages, so the Computer Modern fonts have no accented letters, and your .pdf displays bitmap fonts, that have no antialiasing.

You need to use type 1 fonts, and the recommended fonts are Latin Modern, that are the closest to the original Computer Modern — at least as long as you stick with the cm family. So you should load the lmodern package.