At SGS, we’re all about ways to Get Noticed! And we really mean it. A big piece of this is the size of your lettering. Think about the environment of your sign. Is it intended for people walking by? Or cars zooming by?  If traffic passes your business quickly – lean toward the “Best Impact” end of the range.  But if you attract pedestrians, customers will have more time to focus on your message even at a further distance.  This Letter Visibility Chart is a great reference.

The best height for letters to be read is half of the equation.  It doesn’t matter what size letters you have if they blend in to the background.  We also have a color contrast chart that shows you which color combinations of lettering and backgrounds that stand out best.

Letter Visibility Chart

 

The Letter Visibility Chart is an effective way to quickly judge the size of letters you need for a sign to be visible at various distances.  The size of letters on signs is only one factor of visibility.  A rough rule of thumb is one inch per 10 feet.  A sign with one-inch lettering is best for viewing at 10 feet.  Examples of sign letter visibility:

30 feet is about two car lengths.  The best size for this distance is 3-inch letters.

4-inch tall letters work best at 40 feet and can be read at 150 feet.

6-inch tall letters work best at 60 feet which is the length of a bowling alley

9-inch letters work best at 90 feet which is the distance between bases in baseball.

36-inch letters work best at 360 feet.  A football field is 360 feet in length.

60-inch letters work best at 600 feet.  The Space Needle in Seattle is 600 feet tall.

Empire State building is 1,200 feet tall.   You can see 30 inch letters, but you need 10 foot tall letters for best readable.

The Shanghai Tower in China is 2,500 feet tall.  You can see 5 foot tall letters but 10 foot tall letters are best.

The Grand Canyon is 6,000 feet deep.  You need letters about 15 FEET tall for best reading from the canyon rim to the floor.

3 inch letters can be seen up to 100 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 3 inch letters is 30 feet.

4 inch letters can be seeen up to 150 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 4 inch letters is 40 feet.

6 inch letters can be seen up to 200 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 6 inch letters is 60 0 feet.

8 inch letters can be seen up to 350 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 8 inch letters is 80 feet.

9 inch letters can be seen up to 400 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 9 inch letters is 90 feet.

10 inch letters can be seen up to 450 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 10 inch letters is 100 feet.

12 inch letters can be seen up to 525 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 12 inch letters is 120 feet.

15 inch letters can be seen up to 630 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 15 inch letters is 150 feet.

18 inch letters can be seen up to 750 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 18 inch letters is 180 feet.

24 inch letters can be seen 1,000 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 24 inch letters is 240 feet.

30″ letters can be seen 1,250 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 30 inch letters is 300 feet.

36 inch letters can be seen 1,500 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 36 inch letters is 360 feet.

42 inch letters can be seen 1,750 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 42 inch letters is 420 feet.

48 inch letters can be seen 2,000 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 48 inch letters is 480 feet.

54 inch letters can be seen from 2,250 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 54 inch letters is 540 feet.

60 inch letters can be seen from 2,500 feet away.  The distance for the best impact of 60 inch letters is 600 feet.