8 Replies Latest reply on Apr 15, 2015 1:32 AM by Peter Villevoye

    Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign


      I am an ePubs newbie and have been watching some of the training videos on Lynda.com and  tried creating my first ePub document today.


      I am having problems with mixed fonts when exporting the file and viewing on iBooks on an iPhone.


      I have a document with paragraphs of text to be in a regular weight and certain words within the paragraphs are to be picked out in bold. So I've used a Paragraph Style for the main text and then used a Character Style to pick out the bold words. Simple enough!!


      On export I am not embedding any fonts as I have unchecked that option on the export dailaogue. I have used the same font family in InDesign, but I cannot work out why I am getting both Serif and Sans Serif fonts displaying when viewing it on the iPhone. The main body appears in the Sans Serif font, but I have the bold character styles, subheads and even the numbers in the numbered lists are all displaying in a Serif Font.


      In iBooks I can change the display font (I have the choices: Georgia, Iowan, Palatino, Seravek and Times New Roman) and this affects the fonts which are displaying as Serif, but the main body font remains constant as a Sans Serif (looks like Helvetica).


      I would ideally like all the fonts in the document to display as Sans Serif with certain words, plus the headings and subheadings to be in the bold weight version of the same font family.


      I've tried this in CS5.5 and CS6 with the same results.


      Can anyone offer any suggestions please.

        • 1. Re: Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign
          Michael Witherell Adobe Community Professional

          In the Export to Epub dialog, under Advanced, what are your choices under CSS options?

          In your Paragraph Style options, under Export Tagging, what html tags have you chosen?

          • 2. Re: Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign
            JGEvans Level 1

            The only CSS option I have checked is "Include Style Definitions". I have unchecked "Preserve Local Overrides" and "Include Embeddable Fonts".

            Under Export Tagging I have left these as "Automatic".

            • 3. Re: Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign
              Steve Werner Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              You need to do some more investigation in two areas:


              (1) You need to test your EPUB file with other EPUB readers. It sounds like you've been watching Anne-Marie Concepcion's videos on Lynda. com. Look at the videos about different EPUB readers. For sure, you should preview the EPUB with Adobe Digital Editions and other EPUB readers for Macintosh or Windows like Calibre or Nook or Reader Library. Anne-Marie mentions several. That will separate out what iBooks is doing from other readers.


              (2) You need to go ahead to the chapters on previewing your EPUB in EPUB editors. That way you can view and show us what the HTML and CSS is appearing in the EPUB file. Then you can show us what output you're getting.

              • 4. Re: Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign
                JGEvans Level 1

                Hi Steve,


                Yes, you are correct. It is Anne-Marie Concepcion's videos that I've been watching.


                I understand what you are saying about testing in other readers and I will be looking into that further. However our main task is to get some of our client's manuals and documents into a digital version that can be read on  Apple devices, as these are what are being used by their sales force.


                We have already produced some documents for use on the iPad and have used iBooks Author for that with some success. They have now asked about getting something onto iPhones, so we are now looking into the ePub format to do that. I realise that ePubs can also be used on iPads, but we would still be pushing the iBooks Author files for use on iPads as there is more interactive widgets that can be included. But the main ePub reader that will be used is going to be iBooks, so we are looking to get something to work in that App. Other formats may follow, but we are starting with getting something to work on iBooks first.


                I have tried viewing the file in Adobe Digital Editions as you have suggested and have to say that this displays the file in a way that is certainly more appealing, as the fonts are at least consistent. However, I understand from Anne-Marie's videos that ADE is rather basic and is only intended as a rough proofing device. Which is why I transferred my ePub to my iPhone and iPad to view in iBooks.


                As I have mentioned, I am a total ePub newbie. I come from a mainly print background and my knowledge of CSS and HTML is very basic. I have an understanding of the concepts, but I would always rely on developers to produce websites that I may have designed.


                You seem to be implying that it may be in iBooks where the issues lie and from viewing the file in ADE this would certainly look that way. So I am simply trying to establish what I would need to do to make it work in iBooks in a more satisfactory way.


                I have included some screen grabs below to illustrate my problems...


                ePub viewing in ADE



                If it looked like this on the iPhone I would be relatively happy!!!



                ePub on iPhone


                The main body copy is displaying in a sans serif font (Helvetica?) yet the heading, subheadings, numbers of the numbered lists, address, URL and legal line are all displaying as a serif font. All the style sheets are assigned to the same font family in InDesign (Helvetica). I have managed to get the bold text to appear in the sans serif font, by mapping the character style to the "strong" tag in the Export Tagging dialogue. All other paragraph styles are left as "Automatic".




                I can change the font in iBooks and this affects the displaying of all styles apart from the main body, which stays consistently in the "Helvetica" font.


                iPhone Fonts



                iPad Fonts



                On the iPad I'm also getting some elements coming in justified which looks awfull (see the main heading above). This image also shows how changing to an alternative font changes the heading and subheadings, but does not affect the main body!!!


                Any suggestions???



                • 5. Re: Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign
                  JGEvans Level 1



                  Please feel free to offer any suggestions!!

                  • 6. Re: Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign

                    I recommend cracking open the ePUB and viewing the CSS associated with the headings/subheadings vs. the main body. Set all to be "Sans Serif" for the font family. If that doesn't work in the iPAD, then the iPad is doing something to it.

                    • 7. Re: Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign

                      Hi there,


                      I've noticed this problem for some time on the ipad. I haven't been able to fix it. Sorry I can't offer any advice, but just know that it's nothing you're doing wrong (as far as I can figure out, anyway).

                      • 8. Re: Mixed fonts when exporting ePub file from InDesign
                        Peter Villevoye Adobe Community Professional

                        It has been a while, but I stumbled over this thread only now, and I guess many others will still do too...


                        The problem is with Apple – no wait, the ePub 2 standard. This standard doesn't oblige ePub 2 readers (like Apple's iBook) to honor any embedded, or encrypted, or linked, or desired font setting. It's the intention of the ePub to be style-less, any styling can be ignored freely, even partially. So it's a boon that Apple is willing nowadays to at least let readers choose the "Original" theme of the ePub in iBooks, but for a long time they indeed only allowed some styling of headings (and even that could go wrong, from the perspective of the designer).


                        So relax, it's not a bug, it's a feature, and it's damn difficult (actually just impossible) to get around it.