Freebie: Exo 2.0, A Contemporary Geometric Sans Serif Font

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Back in the days when he was a student, Portuguese graphic and type designer Natanael Gama1 started to play with glyphs — as a way to discover typography. Doodling around, he created Exo2, a font which he released for free in a Kickstarter project. The project turned out to be quite successful. Exo became so popular that Natanael did a complete redesign.

It was two years ago. Today, Natanael is no longer a student and Exo has evolved into what we are happy to present to you today: Exo 2.0, an elegant, contemporary geometric sans serif typeface.

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For Exo 2.0, every single glyph has been redesigned from scratch to achieve maximum legibility without compromising on the aesthetics.

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Exo 2.0 has a more organic look and increased contrast, so it performs much better at small font sizes and on long passages of text. The fatigue of the reader is reduced by increasing the white space around the glyphs. Exo 2.0 has been released under the SIL Open Font License 1.15.

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Exo 2.0 now has a bigger language coverage specially due to the integration of cyrillic characters in all the glyphs on all of the 9 weights both in upright and italic. All glyphs were hinted. Hinting adjusts the design of the glyphs to the pixel grid, creating a better flow of text specially on small font sizes.

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Exo 2.0 is a very versatile font. It has 9 weights (the maximum on the web) and each with a true italic version.

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Download The Freebie

Behind The Design

Here are some insights from Natanael himself:

Along with the redesign of the glyphs, I also redesigned the space around the glyphs. Typography is designing the form as much as designing the counter form. Spacing and kerning was a problematic issue in the older Exo, but now it looks beautiful (however, don’t buy it from me, test it for yourself).

This new design is very versatile and I hope to see it used in very different contexts, as the first version has been used. Exo 2.0 has a very contemporary look, so if you want your design to look fresh and stand out, I encourage you to use it.

Even though this font was primarily designed with screens in mind, I also thought about print, so don’t be admired if you see subtle ink traps and find some ligatures for you to have some fun.

(ea)

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  1. 1

    Do you ever love something so much that you just hate it? And by hate, I don’t mean the literal hate, but moreso you’ve transcended the love and found out the scale was somehow cyclical and went back towards hate? lol.

    I love me some good typography, and that’s a great-looking font! When you look into all the work that goes into making a quality typeface, those who do it well like with Exo here, almost make it look too simple. Thanks for the freebie!

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  2. 2

    Just wondering, will it be available on Google webfonts or typekit?

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  3. 4

    Thanks Natanael! What an awesome font and free makes it that much better… Thanks for the share, it’ll definitely be on my shortlist in the future :)

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  4. 5

    Wow! Thank you! One of my favourite font is Exo.

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  5. 6

    Portuguese design FTW!

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  6. 7

    This is such a great font. I find I am always looking for a font like this and bam! here it is. Great work and thank you for making it available on Google Web Fonts.

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  7. 8

    Thanks for your efforts. Very clean and useful font.

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  8. 9

    I have completely stopped using Google Fonts due to rendering issues on Windows, caused by the built-in font smoothing in the operating system. It seems Google Fonts doesnt have a workaround for this. At least when using @font-face, I know which browsers don’t support it and I can set a fallback font, ensuring a much cleaner onscreen rendering and more predictable results.

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    • 10

      Exo 2.0 was adjusted for hinting. And it was hinted using ttfautohint, for a good rendering on windows. I am satisfied with the tests I made. Some fonts, like the old Exo, don’t had such a thorough work on that level.

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  9. 11

    WHAT-A-FONT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  10. 12

    I hope that Exo 3 will support Greek languange!

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  11. 13

    Mundstrom – thanks for pointing that out. Or rather, glad to hear I’m not the only one with those issues. I tried just pulling things from Google Fonts for ages, but I think the best bet is to download from Google Fonts and then upload to the web space.

    Thanks for (re)sharing this font though :)

    Martin Oxby
    Summit Web Solutions

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  12. 14

    As someone who has created some fonts in the past, I really appreciate the amount of work that has gone in to this. And it shows! Excellent font, thanks for sharing.

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  13. 15

    I just compared Exo 2 to the previous version from late 2011 and I’m excited about the changes in literally every single letter: WOW! Congratulations, Natanael, and thanks as well!

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  14. 16

    Thanks a lot!!!! It is beautiful!!

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  15. 17

    So besides i like the redesign from 1.0 to 2.0 – in what extent is this derived from Neo Sans / Neo Tech?
    was that the starter data for Exo?

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    • 18

      It is non derived. Exo (both 1.0 and 2.0) started with some sketches on paper and every single bezier point was placed by my hand. :)
      Actually that was an old discussion when I released Exo for the first time. And because of that on this redesign I also developed Exo in a different direction making it more organic and less ‘tech’.

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  16. 19

    There is an error in this font. Cyrillic letters ћ and ђ are switched.

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  17. 21

    Which software do you use to design typeface?

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  18. 22

    It’s obvious a lot of work went into this font. Great job. Thank you for sharing it …

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