Minimum Height Of Font Characters

How does minimum height work?

The minimum height of the smallest character will always be assigned to the shortest character regardless of what the combination of characters is. e.g. a lone ‘a’ will be the same height as a lone ‘b’ despite the character 'b' being a taller character.

However when the characters ‘ab’ are together, then the height will adjust to accommodate both, with ‘a’ having the minimum height and ‘b’ having a height relative to ‘a’.

Further Explanation:

Let's start with the word "google", this is a great word to use since it has what you would call an ascender ("l") and a descender ("g") that reaches a font's highest and lowest point and a base letter like "o".

If the min-height of the smallest letter was set to 5cm the following outcomes for height would be shown in the measurements.

  • The min-height for the smallest letter applies to the shortest letter on the word. In the word "google" this would be the letter "o" at a height of 5cm
  • Adding "g" adds on top of that minimum height makes the height now 10cm
  • Adding the "l" would further increase the height to 17cm

How do I acquire these minimum height values for my font?

If you are NOT building the signs yourself e.g. you are a drop shipper.

Then you will need to request the minimum height for the smallest and uppercase letters for every font that you want to use in our app from your supplier, every font is unique in shape and size and thus your suppliers would know the minimums heights when creating signs using these fonts. Further instructions on how to do so can be found here.

How to measure the minimum height ( ONLY for builders and Suppliers )

Q: When specifying the height of the smallest letter, shall we exclude symbols and characters? Symbols like _ (underline) or . (period) usually takes the minimum height in all typefaces.

A: Yes, symbols and other similar characters should be excluded.

Q: When specifying the Minimum Height of the Smallest Letter, shall we just measure every letter, no matter if it's upper or lower case?

A: Yes if you can. Usually, it would be the lowercase letter but some fonts will have only uppercase letters, so it should be adjusted accordingly.

Q: When it says "smallest". does it mean shortest, most narrow or takes the least amount of space as a whole?
A: It should be the shortest, we’re only looking at the height for this measurement.

Video Explainer

To explain all the concepts mentioned in this article further we have created a short video. 

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