EDIT: the below is due to me recently installing the STIX fonts, which came with an installation of texlive-full. This question is now concerned with how to avoid rendering the aesthetically inferior fonts.

I have noticed that capital Sigma, both as $\Sigma$, and as the summation symbol as in $\sum_{i}^{n}$, appears to have been subject to a recent graphics change. The $\sum$ symbol now looks markedly different from what it used to look like a few days ago. Here is a comparison between MathJax and native LaTeX: $$\sum_{i=0}^{\infty} i^2$$$\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\quad\;\:\:$enter image description here

Just in case that this is actually a fault with my system, here's a screenshot of what $$\sum_{i=0}^{\infty} i^2$$ currently looks to me on M.SE:

enter image description here

What's going on here? Why this change? I know that it is inconsequential to the mathematics concerned, but I think that it is aesthetically inferior.

  • $\begingroup$ In my system (Vista, Firefox 26.0), the $\LaTeX$ and the MathJax summations are the same. But I do feel like I've seen that "bolded" looking sum on one of my devices... $\endgroup$
    – apnorton
    Dec 30, 2013 at 4:34
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ My screenshot of your post (with your screenshot, yay recursion). Looks like it's your system. Did you get STIX fonts recently, by any change? By the way, changes to the version of MathJax used are usually (always?) announced here on Meta, and there was no such announcement recently. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2013 at 4:52
  • $\begingroup$ @PostNoBills I recently installed texlive-full. $\endgroup$
    – Newb
    Dec 30, 2013 at 4:54
  • $\begingroup$ I don't use TeX Live, but a Google search shows they were working on adding STIX. This may be the cause of your change. See this comment from MathJax team. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2013 at 4:59
  • $\begingroup$ What should I do to use MathJax without the STIX fonts? I could just uninstall STIX, but I don't want to risk that in case of dependencies. $\endgroup$
    – Newb
    Dec 30, 2013 at 5:01
  • $\begingroup$ @Newb The summation looks good for me: i.stack.imgur.com/YRdFX.png $\endgroup$
    – user93957
    Dec 30, 2013 at 10:08
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Using Arch Linux, I don't have STIX fonts with my texlive package and everything works. I installed them as an additional package at some point, and removed them shortly after. Nothing bad happen. If you are not afraid of reinstalling texlive, I suggest you to perhaps try and see if you can remove the fonts cleanly. $\endgroup$
    – Asaf Karagila Mod
    Dec 31, 2013 at 10:30

1 Answer 1


As suggested by Post No Bills, it appears you have installed the STIX fonts, and MathJax will use local STIX fonts before its web-based fonts (since that is faster). There are two ways to prevent this.

  1. Install the MathJax TeX fonts locally (these will be used in preference to local STIX fonts). You will need to download them individually, as we don't have them packaged for distribution directly.

  2. Open the browser console window and type MathJax.Menu.showFontMenu(true) in the command line. This should make the MathJax contextual menu include a new "Font Preferences" menu in the "Math Settings" submenu. Select "TeX (web)" from this menu to force the use of the MathJax web fonts. Note that the page will reload when you change this setting.

    This setting is sticky, so should be in force for a year (on the site where you set it). The font menu will not reappear after the page is reloaded (you will have to issue the command again if you want to change the setting again).

Either should resolve the issue for you.


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