Q: My company recently purchased pdf2svg in attempt to create a
digital reading web application for magazines. We came across to
major issues that we were wondering if pdftron has solved.
1. size of svg files: Conversion of pdf files to svg seem to keep a
large file size. An approximate page in a magazine is often
approximately 3 megabytes in .svg, where the same page may only be
approximately 500kb in a .swf file.
PDFtron offers pdf optimizer that reduces the size and quality of
pdfs, but is there also methods of optimizing the size / quality of
the svg conversion?
2. embedded fonts: Another major problem we realized after converting
a few files, is that some browsers have lots of issues reading the
embedded fonts and opacities inside a pdf. We tested that webkit
browsers (safari/chrome) have better renderings of embedded fonts,
where as firefox completely substitutes the fonts. Is it possible for
pdf2svg to keep embedded fonts, or convert fonts to outlines etc to
save such issues from happening inside firefox?
Thanks for your time,
I realize from reading some google groups and forums that these issues
have come up before, but I have yet to find solutions for them. It
would be very helpful if you could point in the right direction
A: Regarding the file size it is not surprising since they are not a
binary & compressed format (like PDF or SWF). You could use compressed
SVG (i.e. svgz), but ultimately PDF or SWF will always be smaller than
➢ PDFtron offers pdf optimizer that reduces the size and quality of
pdfs, but is there
➢ also methods of optimizing the size / quality of the svg conversion?
You could run the ‘pdftron.PDF.Optimizer’ as a pre-processing step
before exporting to SVG, however we do not offer a solution that works
on pre-generated SVG documents.
➢ Is it possible for pdf2svg to keep embedded fonts, or convert fonts
to outlines etc to
➢ save such issues from happening inside firefox?
PDFTron PDF2SVG always embeds all fonts (by default). The problem is
that SVG font support is far from ideal in many browsers. IE9 does not
support SVG fonts at all, and Firefox has many bugs. Out of popular
browsers, we found that Chrome has the best support for SVG, although
it is a far cry from discontinued Adobe SVG viewer… Despite the hype,
it is unlikely that all the compatibility issues will be resolved
Converting all text to outlines could be done as a pre-preprocessing
step with PDFNet SDK before conversion to SVG, however this is also
not ideal because it would further increase the SVG file size and slow
down the rendering.
As a potential solution to the above problems we are in the process of
implementing HTML5 viewer/control for SilverDox. SilverDox currently
comes with a viewer for Silverlight, however HTML5 is in the works.
The same documents converter (or streamed) from SilverDox will be
viewable in any browser with HTML5, Silverlight, (and perhaps Flash)
You can access some current online samples using the following link: