I seem to have solved my problem by a clean, direct install of Reader X 10.0.1
(not an upgrade from 10.0.0) after the following intermediate steps...
(1) Upgraded from 9.4.1 to 9.4.2 after receiving an auto update detection.
The rendering was then as blurred as with X 10.0.0, even with preference setting
Smooth Text = "For Monitor".
(2) Uninstalled 9.4.2 using XP Add/Remove Programs and manually removed
directories for Reader 9 in \Program Files and my user account folder tree.
(3) Downloaded AdbeRdr1001_en_US.exe for Reader X 10.0.1 to install later.
(4) Installed it and manually reconfigured my preferences, including Rendering:
Smooth Text = "For Monitor" (even though I have a TFT screen).
Smooth Text = "For Monitor" gives me sharper vertical strokes in characters than
Smooth Text = "For Laptops/LCD screens".
The text smoothing for CRT is too sharp and the one for LCD is too blurred.
Nothing can match the older style rendering provided by previous version of Reader.
I also installed the X cleanly.
I acknowledge your comment about the previous Reader having better
A lot of the pdfs I have been reading are relatively old academic papers and
were often created with LaTeX.
I might have said that Reader X was optimised for newer pdfs, or for those
written with Acrobat,
but I've since observed that I could improve the rendering by thorough
housekeeping after uninstallation of all
my versions of Reader and then installation of Reader X 10.0.1.
I think the rendering could still be sharper, even then!
I've also tried Foxit reader and it was as bad as my first encounter with
Reader X 10.0.0. That was disappointing
because I hoped to take advantage of Foxit's document tabs, which Adobe no