Fontwise (Clares) Review | A&B Computing - Everygamegoing

A&B Computing

By Clares Micro Supplies
BBC Model B

Published in A&B Computing 3.03


Fontwise is a very interesting printer utility from Clares. It uses the graphics Mode on Epson compatible printers in order to produce a variety of fontstyles at a surprisingly fast rate. Documents are printed from Ascii files created previously by a word processor, though only Wordwise and Wordwise Plus users can embed control codes as explained below. When the utility disc is booted, you are presented with a menu from which font style, line length etc can be selected directly. One can also specify a separate text drive (for dual drive users) and enter commands for loading and printing text.

There are ten basic font styles available which can also be printed in condensed Mode and with or without proportional spacing. The default styles provide proportional spacing and right justification together as illustrated in the attached sample. This was printed using my Shinwa CP-80 which does not, however, seem to be 100% Epson compatible in graphics Mode. For example, the condensed Mode would not work at all, and the standard print - as illustrated - seems somewhat compressed compared with the Epson examples in documentation. This gave poor results with some font styles.

Wordwise users can enter green codes for most of the usual formatting commands, such as left margin etc, but these must be done in a special way - each code on a separate line followed by a carriage return. Additional codes for Fontwise, for example to change font style, are also available.

Fontwise seems to be an excellent product, but my experiences with the Shinwa suggest that owners of 'Epson compatible' rather than Epson printers should check with Clare's on the range of effects possible before parting with their money.

Jonathan Evans

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