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Improve font rendering to be on par with Firefox or at least original Edge

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Deleted
Not applicable

The thing that always made me swithc back to Firefox when trying out Chromium based web browsers was font rendering. You can even see that in the UI of Chromium-Edge, where the Segoe UI font is much thinner than in the rest of the Windows UI.

 

Some websites, such as reddit.com display text that is not only more blurry than in Firefox (and sometimes original Edge), but also seems to lack contrast - the letters are somewhat brighter, much more grey instead of black like in Firefox.

 

Here are screenshots that will best show what I mean:

 

First one is reddit on Firefox:

 

1-fx.PNG

 

And this one is on all Chromium based browsers, including Edge:

 

2-ce.PNG

Notice how the letters on the second screenshot are much harder to read...

5 Replies

@Deleted 

This is a great feature request.  Thank you for that suggestion.

 

Gabriel

I also have this issue, its one of the main things i dislike about chromium/new edge
it seems that the cleartype settings defined in the windows OS are not honoured by chromium/new edge

this is often an accessibility issue for me forcing me to further increase font size, zoom, bold which have their own unwanted side effects

in the mean time this chrome extension seems to the best workaround for me:
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/font-expander/fnhfmlkfcdodpcaenlbfjfcahannopkj

likely unrelated but videos in chromium/new edge similarly seem to ignore the driver defined colour settings i use, i have the assumption/perception that these issues are connected as if the "rendering engine" in chromium is completely unable to inherit configurations from the OS, despite most other software doing so

@Deleted 

That is an interesting discovery you have made and I will be sure to bring it to the product team's attention.

 

Gabriel

@v-gapart - thank you very much for taking this into consideration! Upon searching for more info about this issue, I found this source code modification: https://codereview.chromium.org/2674883002/diff/1/skia/BUILD.gn

So a simple change of "SK_GAMMA_CONTRAST=0.5" to "1.0" makes the fonts more bold and on par with both Firefox and the old Edge. The screenshot below shows the original Chromium/Edge font rendering (on the right side) and the left one is with the modified contrast value:

 

relanium.PNG

 

There has been some discussion about this, but most of such threads died out after a while, for example, here: https://bugs.chromium.org/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=534732

This is the most annoying thing about all Chromium-based products. They do not align with the system font rendering, and the fonts are so thin and low-contrast at small sizes. I don't know how it doesn't bother more people. At any rate, I would hope MS would fix this in Edge before the final release. Millions of people are going to be forced to use new Edge on mostly low-grade corporate computers and kiosks without the permissions to install alternative browsers... at least help it to look readable and native to the OS. If it is a question of "following Google" to maintain exact Chrome compatibility, at least provide a flag to change this.
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