Power Point and Typefaces

ashosaki's picture

Hello all:

I have a problem with the MS Power Point 2003 program. So many typefaces does not work with it. Only several typefaces work with this program such as Arial, Times New Roman, Verdana and other typefaces do not work on it.

What could be the problem and how could I use free typefaces on this program???

cuttlefish's picture

Some free fonts are as good as or better than commercially available fonts from major foundries, others can be crap. You'll have to be more specific on which ones you intend to use.

As for why some fonts work with PowerPoint and others don't, somebody else will have to explain that.

riccard0's picture

I suspect the problem it’s not that PP “doesn’t work” with those typefaces. It just doesn’t “embed” them. So, if you create a document using them and pass it to someone else which doesn’t have them on their computer, they cannot see them.
Maybe there is a way to embed fonts in PP documents, but I don’t know it.

Theunis de Jong's picture

Microsoft acknowledges that Type 1 OTFs cannot be embedded using PowerPoint 2003, as a quick web search tells me.
The OP is extremely vague about "what works" and "what doesn't". Perhaps some more detail would be useful.

JamesM's picture

> Maybe there is a way to embed fonts in PP
> documents, but I don’t know it.

You can embed fonts if you're using a PC (google for instructions), but unfortunately you can't with the Mac version.

Personally I prefer to prepare slides using Photoshop or InDesign and then import them into PowerPoint as JPEGs. More work but much greater control, you can use any fonts you want, and there's no risk of PowerPoint changing fonts or resizing / reflowing text.

riccard0's picture

Unless you need to share editable content…
And at that point, maybe a PDF would be better than JPG.

JamesM's picture

Yep, if you need the Powerpoint to editable by other people, then making each slide a JPEG isn't the way to go.

But I'm not sure how a PDF would be better for making content editable. Editing text in a PDF can be done in Adobe Acrobat but isn't very practical (text doesn't reflow, for example). Or are you talking about keeping the doc in an editable format like Word and then making a PDF when done?

riccard0's picture

Yes, I wasn’t clear. I meant that if you’re going for non editable content, then using directly a PDF would be give a better quality than JPGs pasted into PowerPoint (plus, one can also extract the text).

JamesM's picture

OK, I understand. Most of the PPTs I work on are intended to be projected on a large screen for a big group to view as a slide show, so PDFs wouldn't be the way to go, but in other situations certainly PDFs can be a great solution.

marcox's picture

@JamesM: Acrobat has a presentation mode (Command + L on the Mac) which expands the document to fill the screen. You can set transitions between pages, and it responds to USB "clickers" to advance the pages. As mentioned, it's not a great solution when you're trading slides with the sales team. But for self-produced, self-contained presentations, I greatly prefer the typographic/image control of an "InDesign to PDF to Acrobat presentation mode" workflow.

As for the OP's original question: do those free fonts work in other applications? Have you restarted PPT after installing them? Unlike the Creative Suite apps, Powerpoint (at least on the Mac) isn't smart enough to recognize newly activated fonts on the fly.

JamesM's picture

Thanks marcox, I'll check that out.

joe graham_typespec's picture

Always best to use TrueType (.ttf) format with Powerpoint, or any other MS software for that matter, but it's an awful program that should be avoided like the plague.

JamesM's picture

> it's an awful program

Yep. I use PowerPoint daily because that's what my corporate clients require, but I've never liked it.

rs_donsata's picture

Power Point, a good use for Marty Mc Fly's Delorean.

Joshua Langman's picture

I would like to second marcox's full-screen PDF presentation scheme. This is how I have done many "PowerPoint" presentations. PDFs even support sound and video files. If I need more sophisticated animations than I can do in PDF, I will use Apple's Kenote, which has some very decent typography controls. Even then, though, I will usually set all my text in InDesign, output to PDF, and then place into Keynote. Because of the non-ubiquitousness of Keynote, though, this only works if you are providing your own computer (and projector dongle) for the presentation. I have also been known to use QLab for presentations, and various other programs. PowerPoint is never one of them.

Thomas Phinney's picture

PowerPoint offers one main thing that PDF lacks in presentation mode, and that is the ability to have my laptop screen displaying mostly my notes (along with a mini slide, and preview of the next one), while projecting just the slide on the other screen, and keeping the two in sync.

That being said, I use PDF more often than PowerPoint for presentations. Especially when I might need to present on somebody else's hardware.

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