A4 paper size

International Standards Organization ISO

This is a descriptive page of general information about A4 paper. We have a separate page [122440] for a summary of the full ISO definition.

A4 is the size of everyday, common, office paper used throughout Europe, and most of the World apart from the Americas.

An A4 sheet of paper weighs 5gm.

Most office paper is of a substance, or "weight", called "80 gram", which is short for 80 grams per square metre (80gsm). 16 sheets of A4 paper have an area of one square metre.

To find the substance of any A4 paper take 16 sheets and weigh them. The weight corresponds to the substance of the paper.

Many office papers are now made to 75gsm. By making them whiter ~ firmer ~ stronger ~ or whatever ~ manufacturers can save more than 5% of fibre on each sheet without seriously affecting the usability.

A4 paper is invariably made so that the grain runs lengthwise. A fold of short edge to short edge is against the grain. For most practical purposes this is of no importance. The grain direction affects the runnability of paper in some office printers.

A4 paper measures 210x297mm, or about 8"x12".

The aspect ratio for A4 paper is 1.414.

There is an explanation for the name "A4" [122440]

All common computer printers are designed to take A4 paper, although they can usually be adjusted to take similar sizes.

A fairly large bundle of A4 papers can fit into a C4 envelope.

A C4 envelope is about the largest that can be sent by Royal Mail at the Large Letter postage rate. (There are thickness and weight limits also to be considered when posting items.)

Because of its popularity, and consequent bulk-buying and mass-manufacturing possibilities, A4 is usually the cheapest way to buy paper. An A4 sheet costs less than a penny (or a Euro-cent) (or about a US$ cent) for a sheet. It is invariably available wrapped in packs of 500 sheets from any stationer or supermarket or similar store. One make of paper, or another, is usually on special offer in most on-line stores.

 

 


 

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