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I'm very dissatisfied with the nasty type on my site:
the avenir on the left is ok, but the two lines of text i have up top - nothing set that small seems to have the elegant, classy nature i want without being almost illegible (it's berling italic now). any suggestions for fonts to try, or a way to make it nicer...?
So there is your solution, make it bigger.
Track that shit out, for starters.
Couldn't hurt to make all the type just a tad bigger either.
bump for the monday morning crowd
repeating for Monday morning crowd
TRACK THAT SHIT OUT
if you really want type that small on screen then you're gonna want to invest in some quality pixel font research. Anything else is going to be subject to sub-pixel rendering, which will be unpredictable depending on os and browser.
Why not just use html text for the menu items? That way the type will render well at that point size. It will also give you the ability to easily incorporate a hover state which, in my opinion, would help users differentiate better which part of the site they're clicking into.
You could still use avenir for your headers (as images of course.) Or if you wanted to get fancy use font-replacement like cufon or sifr. Might want to look into @fontface or typekit as well.