Ansi Paper Size Chart – North America paper Sizes And Formats

This post was last updated on February 19th, 2022 at 09:46 am

Take a look at the ANSI paper size chart with sizes and formats used in North America to guide you in formatting your work and printing.

Ideally, the commonly known paper size standards in the world are North American systems and an International standard (ISO 216).

The North American system has been adopted in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The system uses Legal, Letter, Ledger/Tabloid, and Executive paper sizes and is formalized in ASME Y14.1. In fact, ISO 216 standard paper sizes are incorporated in ANSI with ASME Y14.1M. You will find the commonly used American paper Sizes as per American National Standards Institute. 

Looking for Postcard Dimensions? Read it here.

Discover Ansi North America Paper Size Chart

Depending on the type of paper American paper users use the standard size ANSI paper formats, however, the popular formats for international paper size is ISO 216. The user experience of the two common paper sizes formats can be different and many universities around the world have opted for ISO 216. The conversion factor of ANSI to ISO 216 has been considered, it is easy to do so today. 

North American Paper Size Chart. 

 The inch-based sizes “Half Letter”, “Legal”, “Letter”, “Junior Legal”, “Ledger”, and “Tabloid” are the commonly used American paper formats. American Quarto also commonly known as letter size paper ( 8.5 × 11 inches or 215.9 mm × 279.4 mm) can be compared to Demy (a British paper size) (17½ in ×22½ in or 445 mm × 572 mm), which allows half-inch trimming. 

The American sizes Legal, Letter, and Ledger/Tabloid are commonly used in offices. For notepads, personal letter writing, and diaries half-letter is recommended. Government legal is not commonly used today as legal size paper in the US, but a Government letter is still in use in the US, but according to international standard it isn’t popular in other parts of the world. 

SizeWidth by Height (mm)Width by Height (inches)Aspect Ratio
Half Letter140*216 mm5.5*8.5 inches1:1.5455
Government Letter203*254 mm8.0*10.0 inches1:1.25
Letter216*279 mm8.5*11.0 inches1:1.2941
Junior Legal127*203 mm5.0*8.0 inches1:1.6000
Government Legal216*330 mm8.5*13.0 inches1:1.5294
Legal216*356 mm8.5*14.0 inches1:1.6471
Ledger/Tabloid279*432 mm11.0*17.0 inches1:1.5455

ANSI Paper Size Chart Standard.

American National Standards Institute (ANSI) created a series of paper sizes using Letter (8.5″ x 11″) format and named it A size and the larger sizes named B, C, D, and E. ANSI A sized paper is known as Letter and ANSI B Tabloid or Ledger. In 1992, ANSI standard sizes were defined using ISO standard sizes, however, Letter format paper had been defined in 1921 as a national standard but the US government formally adopted it in the 1980’s.  

The aspect ratio 1:1.2941 and 1:1.5455 is used for ANSI standard sizes and the single aspect ratio 1:√ 2 is used for ISO standard sizes. This makes it difficult to reduce and enlarge between sizes in ANSI sizes unlike ISO leaving a wide margin on the reduced/enlarged document. 

SizeWidth by Height (mm)Width by Height (in)Aspect RatioClosest ISO
A216*279 mm8.5*11.0 inches1:1.2941A4
B279*432 mm11.0*17.0 inches1:1.5455A3
C432*559 mm17.0*22.0 inches1:1.2941A2
D559*864 mm22.0*34.0 inches1:1.5455A1
E864*1118 mm34.0*44.0 inches1:1.2941A0


Architectural Paper Sizes Chart

Apart from the ANSI system, another series paper sizes exist and it is used for architectural purposes. The ARCH paper sizes when bisected produce two sizes with aspect ratio alternates.  

The fact that Arch A and Arch B have aspect ratios of small integers, architects for architects in North America prefer it against ANSI or ISO 216. Aspect ratio 4:3 is equivalent to the traditional aspect ratio which is used in computer displays. 

You will also find Arch E2 26 × 38 inches or 660 × 965 mm with an aspect ratio 13:19 and Arch E3 27 × 39 inches or 686 × 991 mm with an aspect ratio 9:13. Arch E3 is available for purchase, however, Arch E2 doesn’t exist on the American National Standards Institute website. 

SizeWidth by Height (mm)Width by Height (in)Aspect Ratio
Arch A229*305 mm9.0*12.0 inches4:3
Arch B305*457 mm12.0*18.0 inches3:2
Arch C457*610 mm18.0*24.0 inches4:3
Arch D610*914 mm24.0*36.0 inches3:2
Arch E914*1219 mm36.0*48.0 inches4:3
Arch E1762*1067 mm30.0*42.0 inches7:5

For perfect architectural drawing sizes, American architects use the above table for architectural plans. 

Simplified Reduction and Enlargement.

The fact that there is a wide range of paper sizes had traditionally made it hard to format documents from for example A3-A4 with copy machines. Today print machines have a present magnification factor to reduce or enlarge all common paper sizes. The conversion factor is made easy by modern machines. To be precise, using the correct magnification factor reduces the time paper suppliers knock on your office door as there is minimum wastage. 

If your copy machine doesn’t show the presents we have a table with additional magnification factors to use below. 

FROM TOA0A1A2A3A4A5A6A7
A0100%71%50%35%25%18%12.5%8.8%
A1141%100%71%50%35%25%18%12.5%
A2200%141%100%71%50%35%25%18%
A3283%200%141%100%71%50%35%25%
A4400%283%200%141%100%71%50%35%
A5566%400%283%200%141%100%71%50%
A6800%566%400%283%200%141%100%71%
A71131%800%566%400%283%200%141%100%

ISO Paper Series.

The best attribute of ISO paper formats is that each format has a consistent aspect ratio among all ISO size which is equal to 1:√ 2 making it easy to reduce or enlarge the even larger size document format for printing. 

A Series

This is the most known series of the ISO standard and A4 size paper format is the most widely used paper format in this series.  The paper sizes start with an A followed by a number e.g A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, and more. A smaller number represents larger paper sizes. 

The system is formed from the A0 format which is one square meter with a consistent aspect ratio equal to √ 2 ending up as (841× 1189) mm. It is easy to determine each paper size from a sheet of A0 paper by checking the dimensions first and folding it into two. For example, upon folding A1 into 2 the result standard size is A2 and the A2 height ratio is equal to the width of A1. 

FormatSize in MillimetersSize in Inches
A0841*1189 mm33.1*46.8 in
A1594*841 mm23.4*33.1 in
A2420*594 mm16.5*23.4 in
A3297*420 mm11.7*16.5 in
A4210*297 mm8.3*11.7 in
A5148*210 mm5.8*8.3 in
A6105*148 mm4.1*5.8 in
A774*105 mm2.9*4.1 in
A852*74 mm2.0*2.9 in
A937*52 mm1.5*2.0 in
A1026*37 mm1.0*1.5 in

B Series

The paper industry is huge and we introduce the B series which is a larger sheet compared to A series. It has a higher scale but is less small in comparison with C series which is used for envelope. For example, B4 is in the middle of A3 and A4 sheet 

 The B paper sizes are a bit larger than their A series counterparts and are based on the geometric mean of two consecutive A series sheets. For example, B4 is between A3 and A4 in size, and B5 is between A4 and A5.

FormatSize in MillimetersSize in Inches
B01000*1414 mm39.4*55.7 in
B1707*1000 mm27.8*39.4 in
B2500*707 mm19.7*27.8 in
B3353*500 mm13.9*19.7 in
B4250*353 mm9.8*13.9 in
B5176*250 mm6.9*9.8 in
B6125*176 mm4.9*6.9 in
B788*125 mm3.5*4.9 in
B862*88 mm2.4*3.5 in
B944*62 mm1.7*2.4 in
B1031*44 mm1.2*1.7 in

C Series

It is the envelope format series. The C series came into being to help create an envelope to be used for an A series sheet. All A-series sheets fit in C series according to the respective numbering. For example, A4 fits into C4 envelope, A3 into C3 envelope, and more. C sizes are in the middle of A and B. The smaller the number expect a wider range of paper sizes.   

FormatSize in MillimetersSize in Inches
C0917*1297 mm36.1*51.1 in
C1648*917 mm25.5*36.1 in
C2458*648 mm18.0*25.5 in
C3324*458 mm12.8*18.0 in
C4229*324 mm9.0*12.8 in
C5162*229 mm6.4*9.0 in
C6114*162 mm4.5*6.4in
C781*114mm3.2*4.5 in
C857*81 mm2.2*3.2 in
C940*57 mm1.6*2.2 in
C1028*40 mm1.1*1.6 in


Conclusion. 

In this paper size guide, we have looked at the different type of paper one can use. It will be useful to you when purchasing print papers from American paper vendors. We have taken into consideration the office applications and researched the actual millimeter dimensions. Government agencies have their own format according to American National Standard ANSI/ASME Y14.1.

If you enjoyed reading this size guide don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!

Picture in this post by Kate Macate on Unsplash

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