Tag Archives: font

Works by 1mposter.

Microsoft Font Assistant (1993), via


CGA and MDA, Part 2
As I briefly touched upon in my previous writeup on CGA vs. MDA, CGA’s 80×25 text mode is significantly coarser than MDA’s. CGA’s 80 column text mode is rendered at 640×200 with 8×8 characters (stretched vertically to approximately 640×400), while MDA’s 80 column text mode is rendered at 720×350 with larger 9×14 characters. MDA was capable of giving text attributes such as being bolded, italicized or underlined.

Seen here are the two side-to-side on the same display, a Compaq Portable’s screen.

The first image shows a ROM-dump of the font in the legendary terminals VT100 and VT220. The second image is a representation of how they appear on screen. The difference is more than just aspect ratio. Look at letters like q and p: pixels are sometimes doubled, sometimes tripled. The fascinating explanation is here.

Southwest Technical’s 6800 computer and the CT-64 terminal, and a photo of its 64×16 textmode. Launched in 1975. First image from Creative Computing and second one from here.

(First?) conversion from video to variable font text mode. Made by Toshi Omagari, via @pixelambacht.

The 1986 retina screen: the WY-700 video card/screen gave the PC a 1280×800 resolution, and a text-mode of 160 columns by 50 lines. It had a built-in 16×16 font (download), and you could even use your own custom fonts. The high-res modes only supported greyscale, but who needs colours anyway?

Sources: John Elliot, thecomputerarchive.com, PC Mag.

Glyphdrawing, a new online textmode editor that supports ttf-font import and independent font size and cell size. Made by grmmxi (images from his Instagram) and Ian Tuomi.

The Amstrad PC 1640 character set is similar to Code Page 437, but there are a few differences.