12 Replies Latest reply on Aug 10, 2013 7:16 AM by peterpica2

    OT: Compugraphic Palatio


      Am looking for the ORIGINAL Compugraphic Palatio TEXT font (if it was ever digitized). CG was the only foundry that reproduced the original Hermann Zapf 'text' designs for it's Unified Composer/Unisetter photocomp system (fonts were produced on filmstrips in negative format that were on a wheel that rotated; individual characters were 'exposed' by a high-intensity xenon light and assembled into lines, paragraphs, etc., being exposed to photo paper that was in turn, pasted up into 'mechanical' pages for reproduction. It reproduced beautfilly the monotone text (not thick-and-thin) of the Linotype fonts, for sizes up to 12 pt. I don't think they ever did the display size design, at least not until AGFA joined with them. All other foundries copied the foundry versions of display sizes 14pt and up...which are more 'engraved' or thick-and-thin in appearance. I'm trying to mimic the look-and-feel of an old letterpress-printed book that was done from hot metal Merganthaler Linotype Palatino in 12pt.


      I've searched & researched. Anybody have any ideas?





        • 1. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
          nkgillett Level 1

          I think you mean CG Palacio? It certainly was digitised because I remember we had it on our old MCS8400 system back in the eighties. It was a popular font at the time and was their version of Palatino as they couldn't get a licence for the original. I also have a Compugraphic type book from 1988 that lists it.


          This site lists the font but you need to email them to get further info: http://www.fontfactory.com/index.php/manufacturers_id/36


          Your mention of the negative filmstrips brings back a lot of memories - good and bad!

          • 2. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
            peterpica2 Level 1

            THANKS MUCH! I was beginning to think that I was going back too far in history to get a response.


            Much obliged.


            PS: Filmstrips: You gotta remember the PhotoTypositor? A filmstrip machine with two rotating handles, L & R?


            We did all of our custom headers on that machine! We had about 20 versions of Murray Hill. Ugh.

            • 3. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
              nkgillett Level 1

              I certainly do remember the PhotoTypositor! Having just completed an apprenticeship as a hot metal compositor/typesetter in the seventies, using one of those and a Compugraphic 2 was a whole new world. We also had a Diatype machine too, I think the fonts were on glass discs if I remember correctly, characters exposed one at a time using a trigger. Things have moved on slightly since those days ...

              • 4. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
                Steve Werner Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                You haven't gone back too far. There are a few of us whose graphic arts careers go back to the days of Compugraphics. ;-)


                It's just that my mind has blissfully archived the details of Compugraphic font names to make room for more recent acquisitions. But I do remember CG Palacio as well, now that it was suggested.

                • 5. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
                  peterpica2 Level 1

                  NKGILLETT: I think I predate you somewhat...I was a messenger boy/toilet cleaner for my Dad's shop (National Type & Typekrafters, both in Philly) back in the 50's. Then graduated to proof boy, repro pressman; then to office; then to sales in the late 60's early 70's. We had foundry, linotypes, monotypes, ludlow, & finally Compugraphic. Used to do the trade magazine "Printing Impressions" back then. My Dad redesigned it from a newsprint 8.5x11 to it's current full color format back then. CG was publisher's best advertiser, and he wanted us to do the whole thing in 'cold type'... We still did it in hot metal (linotype) but he advertised as being done on Compugraphic. We never could hide all those 'hairlines' from metal squirts in the linotype slugs when pulling repro proofs used for printing! We'd use the page repros to prepare film acetates for the printer; then bought the original bright-type machine (previously used for National Geographic) so we could make film acetate positives directly from the metal page forms. Whew....and all for $45/page! Which was big money back then. ;-)


                  Diatype? Wasn't that a Varityper headliner machine?

                  • 6. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
                    peterpica2 Level 1

                    Steve: I think I predate you by quite a bit too!






                    • 7. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
                      peterpica2 Level 1

                      Steve et al: for S & G's...here's a nifty time-capsule link to Varityper office (anyone can do it) typesetting system:



                      • 8. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
                        [Jongware] Most Valuable Participant

                        Yup, used that. My first typesetting job was to swap the rotating disks (every now and then I swapped with the wrong one), but then I "graduated" to keying in codes.


                        These machines sure had lovely heavy "industrial strength" keyboards. Recoiled like a machine gun, nothing like the flimsy plastic of today :)

                        • 9. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio

                          Try to look for a typeface named Palazzo, sold by Softkamer in the "MegaFont XXL 2.0" collection. Apparently, it is the only available digital version of the original metal Palatino. The copyright issues in those fonts seem to be debatable, by the way: http://typophile.com/node/65198

                          • 10. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
                            peterpica2 Level 1

                            THANKS TONS! I see they only offer for PC; I've just inquired if they have for Mac (I don't want to have to do any conversions unless absolutely necessary.)

                            • 11. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
                              ncaleffi Level 1

                              For what is worth - and since attaching pdf here isn't possinle - here's a quick comparison between standard Linotype Palatino (above) and Palazzo (below). Perhaps you can see the slight irregularities in the latter, which, by the way, has been set with a +30 tracking since its original letterspacing is very tight:




                              As I said, the overall quality of those fonts - which may have been "ripped" from original sources - have been debated few times among the typography community. But since they are very cheap, you may try to have a closer look and judge by yourself.


                              By the way, there's another website, Datascan, apparently selling CG Palacio - but I don't know how faithful it is to the typeface you mention.

                              • 12. Re: OT: Compugraphic Palatio
                                peterpica2 Level 1

                                Thanks for comparison. The bottom (Palazzo) is MUCH closer to the way I recall it in my Dad's hot metal shop back in the 50's & 60's. We had an 'edge' on the other book typographers because we were the only shop in the Delaware Valley that had all the sizes with small caps & old style figures… The book publishers insisted on these for page 'color evenness' demands. Also, they wanted more of a 'monotone' than the others in machine sizes (6 thru 12pt)…was much easier for their letterpress book printers back then.