1403 Vintage Mono Pro

“I may steal that…you may see that again.”—Matthew Carter, in reference to a glyph design in 1403 Vintage Mono Pro.


Overview

1403 Vintage Mono Pro was inspired by the IBM 1403 mainframe line printer. The idea to create it was sparked by Mark VandeWettering wondering aloud if a font existed reminiscent of that printer. This all uppercase, monospace typeface was quickly expanded from the initial 52 characters making up the A and H print chains to over 1,500 glyphs, supporting most languages that use the Latin alphabet (including Vietnamese), Cyrillic, Greek, and Hebrew. Small capital forms were added to act as lowercase. Continued research, design, and development led to a new release in early 2016 with over 2,300 glyphs, along with refinements throughout.

Check out the 1403 Vintage Mono Pro interactive specimen site designed with Kenneth Ormandy:

1403 Vintage Mono Pro typeface interactive specimen site

History

During the creation of 1403 Vintage Mono Pro, a few blog posts were written about the history and progress of designing the typeface. At TypeCon 2013, Jeff Kellem gave a well-received presentation on Resurrecting Type of the IBM 1403 and heard nice compliments about the 1403 typeface during the conference and the TypeCrit critique session. He was also invited to talk about it at Hackers Conference 29, November 2013.

The 1401 Demo Lab Exhibit

On Wednesday, 20 November 2013, the Computer History Museum (@ComputerHistory) in Mountain View, California, USA opened The 1401 Demo Lab exhibit with two working, restored IBM 1401 mainframes, 1403 printers, card punches & sorters, tape libraries, and related equipment (see the restoration team's progress status updates and a nice post on the restoration by project lead Robert Garner). Weekly demonstrations happen on Wednesdays at 3pm PT and Saturdays at 11am PT. Another great exhibit to visit at the museum! See the printer that inspired this typeface!

OpenType Features

In addition to small caps, the following OpenType features are included: contextual fractions, including pre-built fractions, and support for arbitrary fractions up to 10 numerators and denominators; superscripts, subscripts, and scientific inferiors; ordinals; dotted zeros for slashed zero; historical variants; and locale variants for Bulgarian, Moldovian, Romanian, Polish, Catalan, Navajo.

Character Sets & Glyphs

1403 Vintage Mono Pro supports most of the Adobe Latin 4 character set (including Vietnamese), Cyrillic (including Bulgarian variants), Greek (Monotonic), and Hebrew. A partial sample of the glyphs included is below:

Languages

Over 160 languages are supported, including:

Afar Inari Sami Portuguese
Afrikaans Indonesian Rhaeto-Romance (Romansch)
Albanian Interlingua Romanian
Aragonese Interlingue Rundi
Asturian / Bable / Leonese / Asturleonese Inupiaq (Inupiak, Eskimo) Russian
Avaric Irish Samoan
Aymara Italian Sango
Azerbaijani in Azerbaijan Javanese Sardinian
Bashkir Kanuri Scots Gaelic
Basque Kara-Kalpak (Karakalpak) Secwepemctsin
Bislama Kashubian Selkup (Ostyak-Samoyed)
Bosnian Kazakh Serbian
Breton Kikuyu Serbo-Croatian
Bulgarian Kinyarwanda Shona
Buriat (Buryat) Kirgiz Slovak
Byelorussian Komi (Komi-Permyak / Komi-Siryan) Slovenian
Catalan Kuanyama / Kwanyama Somali
Chamorro Kumyk Sorbian languages (lower and upper)
Chechen Kurdish in Armenia Sotho, Southern
Chichewa Kurdish in Turkey South Sami
Chuvash Kwambi Spanish
Cornish Latin Sundanese
Corsican Latvian Swahili
Crimean Tatar / Crimean Turkish Lezghian (Lezgian) Swati
Croatian Limburgan / Limburger / Limburgish Swedish
Czech Lithuanian Tagalog
Danish Low Saxon Tahitian
Dutch Lule Sami Tajik
Edo or Bini Luxembourgish (Letzeburgesch) Tatar
English Macedonian Tonga
Esperanto Malagasy Tsonga
Estonian Malay Tswana
Faroese Maltese Turkish
Fijian Manx Gaelic Turkmen
Filipino Maori Tuvinian
Finnish Mari (Lower Cheremis / Upper Cheremis) Ukrainian
French Marshallese Upper Sorbian
Frisian Moldavian Uzbek
Friulian Mongolian in Mongolia Venda
Galician Nauru Vietnamese
Ganda Navajo / Navaho Volapuk
German Ndebele, South Votic
Greek Ndonga Walloon
Greenlandic North Sami Welsh
Guarani Northern Sotho Wolof
Haitian / Haitian Creole Norwegian (Bokmal) Xhosa
Hawaiian Norwegian Bokmal Yakut
Hebrew Norwegian Nynorsk Yapese
Herero Occitan Yiddish
Hiri Motu Oromo or Galla Yoruba
Hungarian Ossetic Zhuang / Chuang
Icelandic Papiamento in Aruba Zulu
Ido Papiamento in Netherlands Antilles
Igbo Polish

Latin script sample:


Type Specimen

Specimen shown in the TypeCon 2013 TypeGallery in Portland, Oregon, USA:
1403 Vintage Mono Pro specimen (PDF) (updated with the February 2016 release).

Check out the 1403.slantedhall.com interactive specimen site designed with Kenneth Ormandy:

1403 Vintage Mono Pro typeface interactive specimen site


Font in Use

Let us know if you use our typefaces in your projects.

Trevor Brymer’s 6EQUJ5 Film

A custom subset was designed to recreate the 1977 SETI Wow! signal printout from an IBM 1403 mainframe line printer (all CGI) in Trevor Brymer’s short film 6EQUJ5 [IMDb], released in 2016. “A tale of love, loss, and signals from outer space.” Here’s a sample image from the film, courtesy of Trevor Brymer.

printer_sh002_v002website.jpeg

Along with a closeup before full integration into the shot:

wow_printout_construct_v003website.jpeg

The custom font was also used for title cards throughout the film. Samples are shown in this clip:

And, on the film’s poster:


Client: Trevor Brymer, “6EQUJ5” film
Designer: Jeff Kellem, Slanted Hall

Book Cover: Talk Nerdy to Me: Grantland's Guide to the Advanced Analytics Revolution

Jason Oberg (@ExtraBlase) used the 1403 Vintage Mono typeface in the book cover design for Talk Nerdy to Me: Grantland's Guide to the Advanced Analytics Revolution (2014). The book's in the 2014 MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference (@SloanSportsConf) attendee gift bag. You can buy the sports analytics compilation from Grantland (@Grantland33). Read our blog post about it.

tntm_comp_01.jpg
Photo credit: Jason Oberg

Client/Book Cover Designer: Jason Oberg
Book: Talk Nerdy to Me: Grantland’s Guide to the Advanced Analytics Revolution
Typeface Designer: Jeff Kellem, Slanted Hall

Let us know if you use our typefaces in your projects.

Purchase font

1403 Vintage Mono Pro
Designer: Jeff Kellem
Scripts: Latin (inc. Vietnamese), Cyrillic, Greek, Hebrew
Languages: 160+
Glyphs: 2,300+
Released: Nov 2013
Version: 2.001, Feb 2016
Related blog posts

Starting at $90 USD.