DEC Logo

Paul Koning paulkoning at
Mon Jun 29 14:36:49 CDT 2015

> On Jun 29, 2015, at 3:19 PM, Toby Thain <toby at> wrote:
> On 2015-06-29 1:26 PM, Paul Koning wrote:
>>> On Jun 29, 2015, at 11:26 AM, Toby Thain <toby at> wrote:
>>> ...
>>> There's reason to believe it's "Chalet". See my previous mail for a link to one revival of that family.
>> I looked at that.  There are plenty of variations, but none of them match at all.  Take a look at the 11/45 processor handbook, or the peripherals handbook (for example the 1976 edition).  The inside cover page is particularly helpful because it shows the company name for an additional bunch of characters.
>> If you mix & match letters from all the different variants of Chalet
> (like the a from Paris 1980 but the k from Paris 1970) you can get
> closer. But that’s not plausible,
> I worked in graphic design for a long time. Modifications and substitutions of any kind are not unusual in a logo. So yes, it's plausible, but just annoying when reverse engineering it later, of course.

For a logo, absolutely.  For a house style typeface used as display text in manuals and for panel labels, not quite so likely.

> ...
> This *could* be due to differences betwen the House revival and the original Chalet font. The next research step could be to find specimens of the latter.
> Or perhaps it was indeed a "custom font" as you said earlier, "based on" Chalet or something like it, with variant letters cherry picked. That explanation might satisfy everyone. :) I think it's pretty unlikely that a font will be discovered that is a better match than Chalet out of the box, though.

Perhaps.  I think the similarities are faint enough that I would not point to Chalet any more than I would point to Avant Garde.  Designed from scratch by a guy with a set of drafting tools seems more likely to me.  But unless someone with first hand knowledge comes along, as was done for the 7-block digital logo, all this will likely remain speculation.

Meanwhile, if you want a font file that’s a better match than Chalet, try the “handbook” font I created some years ago from the DEC document samples I have on hand.


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