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Begun by Rudolf Koch in 1925 for the Klingspor foundry. The typeface family was expanded and changed over the decades by D. Stempel AG and Linotype. The face was named to honor the newly completed trans-Atlantic telephone cable. Today the typeface is licensed by the Elsner+Flake GbR foundry.
Kabel is a geometric sans serif, similar to Futura, Erbar, and Nobel. It is best characterized by its angular stroke endings, its Venetian e, and its distinctive g (similar to the lowercase g used in many Koch designs, including Koch Antiqua and Wallau).
Walter Tracy wrote about Kabel in the Rudolf Koch chapter of his Letters of Credit. The Beatles used Kabel in for the film titling in their 1960s animated classic, Yellow Submarine. It was also used for the titling and credits of Sofia Coppola’s 2003 film, Lost In Translation.
Victor Caruso designed a version of Kabel for ITC in the 1970s, named ITC Kabel, which is not faithful to the original design. Similar to ITC Garamond, ITC Kabel has an excessively large x-height, created to please New York advertising tastes of the day.
An overview of the Kabel type family is available on the Linotype website.