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    Choosing the right paper is vital for producing a report or presentation. Different Paper SizesBelow are some of the most common paper sizes and types.

    Common Paper Dimensions

    To see which paper types your printer has listed, go to the File menu and click Print. Look for the “properties” tab and you’ll see the paper presets included. Among the most common sizes are letter (8 ½ x 11”), A4 (210 x 297 mm), legal (8 ½ x 14”) and the envelope (4 1/8 x 9 ½”).

    The index card size is usually 8 x 10”. Your printer may have other envelope and index card sizes included in its list. Check the one you’re using and make sure it matches. Photo paper sizes come in at 4 x 6” or 10 x 15 cm. Other common sizes you’ll come across are the B4 257 x 364, the US C 17 x 22” and the A2 420 x 594 mm.

    If you’re going to use paper that isn’t included in the list, look for an option like “user defined” or “custom paper”. Click it and enter the dimensions of the paper you’re going to work with. The largest paper is AO and goes down to A8.

    What Size to Use

    The names of the papers suggest how they’re to be used. The 8 ½ x 11 is used for letters, while the 8 ½ x 14” is often used in legal documents. In most office work, the A4 paper size has become a standard. It is employed for reports, memos and letters.

    The A3 is often used for printing a presentation or graphic illustrations. The paper quality will affect the image being printed, as will the printer’s DPI resolution.

    The Paper Thickness and Weight

    Grams per square meter (gsm) are used to determine a paper’s weight or thickness. The higher the gsm, the thicker it will be. Most office papers weigh 80 gsm. Heavier types tip the scales at 100 gsm, while heavier ones can come in at 200 gsm.

    Check your printer manual for the thickest paper it can print on. Trying to print very thick paper sizes might cause paper jamming and damage the unit.

    Various Paper Types

    The paper you use must be compatible with the printer. There are specific papers meant for use on inkjets, laser printers and copiers. Printer companies also make special paper for their printer. These papers will ensure you get the best possible output.

    Multifunctional or everyday papers are inexpensive types ideal for daily use. There are also laser papers specifically designed for printing pictures. Glossy paper is also available in a variety of sizes.

    Photo matt and semi gloss are also good for pictures. Other types are prestige, colored and recycled. These are available in 8 ½ x 11, A4 and other common dimensions.

    After picking the right paper size, you just need to put it in the printer. You might need to perform some adjustments to make it fit. After that, you can print the document.

    2 comments
    1. James Harding

      December 12, 2011 at 5:35 am

      Where can I find 8.5″ by 14″ photo paper?

    2. James Harding

      December 12, 2011 at 10:08 am

      Where can I find 8.5″ by 14″ photo paper in the Metro New Orleans area?

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