We have done some extensive testing of filaments throughout the years (http://devel.lulzbot.com/filament/) and we have found that filament settings can vary a lot within a specific type of filament. We are still not sure what manufacturer you are using, but we have definitely found issues when printing with certain brands. The ones we include within Cura are profiles we have done testing with on our machines with those settings, and have found to work well. We do not require you to use any specific vendor for your printing materials, but our profiles will require tweaking for optimal results.
Cura LE is also the program that we have chosen to work on and with, as it provides the greatest ease of use for our customers. If you would like to use another slicing program, you will just want to be sure to copy and paste the start and end gcode as it will control you bed leveling routine.
Thanks for posting the photos!
This is due to the initial layer height setting. If it is larger than the depth of the letters, those letters will be ignored. Reduce that a little bit to get it fixed up. You can check the layer view before printing to ensure that gcode is generated to your liking.
When using “other” brands be sure to measure your filament diameter with a micrometer over an ~ 2meter section to ensure it is consistent in size and diameter. Update the average into your slicers filament diameter setting to prevent over extrusion.
In the photos, it sill looks quite shiny. Generally when PLA comes out shiny, it is printed on the hot side which can lead to stringing. The other major “globs” may need to be tweaked with either a retraction distance and/or speed.