Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Accurate Font Sizes.

Accurate Font Sizes

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 10, 2018)

You already know that Excel allows you to easily change the size of your fonts using various tools and menus. You may not know, however, that Excel can use virtually any point size you want, not just those listed in the drop-down size lists.

Font sizes are specified in points, which are a typographer's measurement roughly equivalent to 1/72 of an inch. You can either select a size from the drop-down list or you can enter your own size. Select the size shown in the list and then type the size you actually want. When you press Enter, the size of the text in the cell (or your selected text within a cell) is changed.

It is also easy to overlook the fact that Excel can display and print fonts in increments of half a point. Depending on the typeface being used, this can make a big difference. For example, there is a very marked difference between 10 and 11 point Verdana, and 10.5 may be just what you need.

You obtain the half-sizes by typing them directly into the size box. If you try to type in any other fractional size (like 10.25 or 10.4), Excel rounds your entry to the nearest half-point. (Remember—you can only set full-point sizes or half-point sizes.)

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2125) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Accurate Font Sizes.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Special Characters in Pattern Matching

The most powerful search engine in Word use pattern matching, but the way you specify special characters in a ...

Discover More

Changing an AutoShape

Need to change a shape you previously added to your worksheet? It's easy to do using the graphics tools provided by ...

Discover More

Quickly Inserting the Date Your Way

Tired of messing with inserting the date and then changing it to a format that is more to your liking? There's a quick ...

Discover More

Excel Smarts for Beginners! Featuring the friendly and trusted For Dummies style, this popular guide shows beginners how to get up and running with Excel while also helping more experienced users get comfortable with the newest features. Check out Excel 2013 For Dummies today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Understanding Monospace Fonts

Information in a worksheet needs to be displayed using fonts. If you understand the two different types of fonts ...

Discover More

Setting Horizontal Alignment

You can horizontally align the information in a cell in any of eight different ways. This tip explains not only how to do ...

Discover More

Changing Font Sizes

Want to change the size of the font within a worksheet? Excel allows you to choose from a list of sizes, as well as ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 2 + 9?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.