TYPE DESIGN INFORMATION PAGE last updated on Fri Dec 8 19:03:19 EST 2023






Hell GmbH [Rudolf Hell]

Foundry started by Dr. Ing. Rudolf Hell in 1947 in Kiel, Germany. The business started off repairing Hellschreiber machines, but went on to produce the Klischograph, Hell's invention---an electronically controlled printing block engraver. In 1964 he invented the Digiset, the first digital typesetter. His Digi-Grotesk S (1968) is said to be the first digital typeface. Gerard Unger worked there until the mid eighties. In the late 1970s Hell became a subsidiary of Siemens. It merged with Linotype in 1990 to become Linotype-Hell. Its main designers were Gerard Unger (Demos, 1975; Hollander, 1983; Praxis, 1977; Swift, 1985) and H. Zapf (Edison, 1978; Marconi, 1976).

MyFonts sells Vario Com (by Hermann Zapf for Hell, but now a Linotype face), and Sierra Com by Kris Holmes, also first done for Hell but now owned by Linotype. About Sierra Com, they write: Sierra is an antiqua with a high x-height and generous, open counters. Many curves of the letters are almost right angles, which was particularly suited to the Digiset machines.

Linotype now has digital versions of Digi Grotesk and Digi Antiqua in its library. DigiGrotesk N was influenced by Neuzeit Grotesk, while DigiGrotesk S was a more general sans in the style of Akzidenz Grotesk, Univers and Futura. Digi Antiqua (1968) goes back to the 1820s in England.

Hell created Holsatia (Latin for Holstein, as in Schleswig-Holstein), a Helvetica clone.

Rudolf Hell was born in Eggmühl, Germany in 1901 and died in Kiel in 2002.

MyFonts also shows Hell Design Studio.

Hell GmbH
 [Buy fonts]
 [Designer info]
MyFonts search
Monotype search
Fontspring search
Google search

Extinct 20th century foundries ⦿ History of type ⦿ German type scene ⦿ Akzidenz Grotesk ⦿

file name: Rudolf Hell Digi Antiqua Light Condensed 1968

file name: Rudolf Hell Digi Grotesk Bold Condensed 1968

file name: Rudolf Hell Digi Grotesk N E F Bold 1968

file name: Rudolf Hell Digi Grotesk N E F Semi Bold Condensed 1968

file name: Rudolf Hell Digi Grotesk S E F Semi Bold 1968

file name: Gerard Unger Swift L T 1985

Luc Devroye ⦿ School of Computer Science ⦿ McGill University Montreal, Canada H3A 2K6 ⦿ lucdevroye@gmail.com ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org/fonts.html