Typically, if you’re looking for a free font, the choices many websites offer tend to be somewhat limited. On the other hand, when a website offers thousands of free fonts, it sounds almost too good to be true.
You can also be excused for wondering how you could ever find a free font that meets your needs if you have to sift through thousands of potential candidates.
FFonts Can Help You Build Your Personal Font Library
FFonts.net offers more than just a few thousand free fonts. This website has in fact compiled tens of thousands of free fonts; somewhere between 40,000 and 50,000 to be more exact; all neatly placed in 87 different categories.
Whenever you come across a free font that appeals to you, you can preview it, add it to your wish list, download it, or continue your search if it’s not exactly to your liking.
FFonts makes it all sound easy, and it is.
FFonts’ categories are listed on the left side of their web page. As you scroll down, you’ll find categories containing just a few fonts, many that contain several hundred different fonts, and a few that have several thousand to offer.
There’s an 88th category that contains roughly 25,000 fonts that have yet to be categorized or can’t easily be placed in a specific category.
Are you looking for fonts that were popular in the 50s, 60s, or 80s? What about Art Deco, Art Nouveau, Classic, or Calligraphic fonts? There are selections of Formal fonts, Industrial fonts, Corporate fonts, and Professional fonts that could fit in with the appropriate website designs.
Plenty of wild and weird font styles are available and ready for you to browse through in the Quirky fonts, Wild fonts, Messy Fonts, and Funky fonts categories.
If you’re in need of a high-tech font style, there’s a Hi-Tech category, a Computer category, and a Sci-Fi category; and the list goes on. Serif and Sans Serif fonts haven’t been forgotten either.
Finding the Font You Want
You can zero in on the font you’re looking for, or one that’s close enough, by entering a name or keyword in the search box, browsing through a given category, or searching alphabetically.
Bear in mind that browsing through such a large collection of fonts can easily become addictive, and succumbing to impulse shopping when looking through such a large collection is not unheard of.
Fortunately, FFonts provides a wish list you can add to for eventual downloading.
Once you’ve found the font you want, click on it for a preview. You’ll be provided with a list of characters the font supports and upper and lower-case examples. There’s also a box where you can enter a string of text to get a better picture of how the font will appear in actual use.
The preview page also includes download, web download, wish list, and share buttons.
There’s no need to register to download one or more free fonts. You’re limited to 50 per day; more than enough for most purposes. After you hit the download button, you’ll receive an exec file. When you run the exec file, a zip file will be placed on your computer. When you open it, you’ll be presented with several boxes. You’ll probably want to uncheck most or all of them and select “Custom Installation” to avoid having programs you probably don’t want or need installed on your computer.
The FFonts website’s FAQ page provides details on how to install a font under Windows, Mac OS, and Linux. It also contains a cautionary note that suggests installing1,000 fonts or more could slow your computer’s operation.
If you plan to download multiple fonts at once, simply add them to your wish list. All you have to do is hold down the CTRL key and click on each font on your wish list you want to download.
Is FFonts Safe to Use?
FFonts has been on the web for more than 8 years. There were some complaints in years past regarding malware and spanning, but they appear to have been addressed. You’ll still want to make use of the custom installation option to avoid having extras added to your computer (a different browser for example); or, you can opt for the Premium Version to avoid the issue entirely.
Neither Norton Safe Web or McAfee findings reported any security issues, and Scam Advisor gives FFonts a highly trusted rating. The bottom line is that FFonts is safe to use.
When the Premium Version Makes Sense
The FFonts Premium Version is ideal for heavy users. This version enables you to download up to 200 font files and/or 200 web font files per day (versus the standard 50). You also have the option to download the FFonts’ 14,000 font collection.
A premium feature that both heavy and occasional users will like is the absence of ads, allowing you to avoid the possibility of mistakenly downloading a program you don’t want. Priced at $29 per year, the Premium Version is quite affordable.
Summing Up – A Valuable Resource for Designers
Thousands of fonts may sound like a huge number, but having a resource like FFonts to tap into all but guarantees you’ll find the font you need. So many cool and unusual fonts can also inspire you to try new and different design approaches.
As far as pros and cons are concerned, the only real negative about this website are the ads that accompany the standard version downloads. These can, however, be avoided by using custom search, or by selecting the premium version. The preview pages are a definite plus, as is the well thought out font categorization scheme, and the wish list feature that allows you to save fonts and download them later.