GOST 2.301-68 Unified system of design documentation (ESKD). Formats (with Changes N 1, 2, 3) from May 28, 1968 –

What you should pay attention to when choosing

When choosing a paper format, you need to take into account the standard standards for the products on which you plan to use it. So, if a small-circulation brochure is being produced, which is planned to be reproduced on a printer or copier, then it is worth choosing the A5 and A6 formats.

If you plan to print a poster, then you will definitely need a device for large format printing. You can take a large format after first checking the technical characteristics and tolerances of your printer. Thus, the choice of sheet format must be made taking into account the technical tolerances of the existing printer, as well as taking into account which sheet will print best for specific purposes.

In addition to the format, the following paper parameters are important for the printer:

  • density (best – 80-90g/m2);
  • opacity (especially important when performing duplex printing);
  • humidity (the best is 4.5%, but small deviations are acceptable);
  • thickness (the thicker the sheet, the stiffer it is);
  • smoothness (affects the final image quality);
  • trimming (edges must remain smooth, without burrs);
  • electrification (strong leads to paper sticking and feeding failures).

Why you shouldn’t save on paper

Skimping on paper quality leads to rapid wear and tear of printers. And repairing them is already much more expensive than the prudent purchase of good paper that will save your equipment. So it is much more profitable to buy clean and high-quality sheets with optimal density. And of course, you need to choose the right format for your future image.

ISO 216 series c. dimensions of envelopes in glued (folded) form.

Each format in the C series is the geometric mean between formats A and B with the same number. This allows the A4 sheet to fit freely into the C4 envelope.

The tolerance is ±1.5mm for values ​​up to 150mm, ±2mm for values ​​from 150mm to 600mm, and ±3mm

for values ​​over 600mm.

ISO 7810:

The standard defines the dimensions of identification cards.

In our country, instead of ID-1, the 90 x 50 mm format is used (less often 90 x 55 or 60 mm).

ISO 838:

The standard specifies holes in sheets for hemming. Two holes with a diameter of 6±0.5mm. The centers of the holes are at a distance of 80±0.5mm from each other and at a distance of 12±1mm to the edge of the sheet.

The holes are located symmetrically relative to the axis of the sheet.


The standard ISO standard office paper size is A4. Its size is 210×297 mm, that is, the aspect ratio is √2 (mathematics!).

The aspect ratio is what makes the format so great. Naturally, this is not a coincidence. Smart people thought about and designed these dimensions. They have become standard because of their superiority. The “magical” property of A4 is that it consists of two sheets of A5.

In turn, two A4 sheets are folded into a larger A3 format. This, for example, makes it easier to produce A5 booklets by folding A4 pages in half. Conversely, it is convenient to make copies of A5 booklets in a spread; they exactly correspond to the A4 format in the photocopier. You can’t do this with US Letter paper, you’ll end up with white margins around the edges of the paper!

US letter

US Letter size assumes a paper size of 216 x 279 mm (8.5 x 11 inches) and an aspect ratio of 1.291666666666667.

(I’ll explain why the ratio is important in the math part below!).

The justification for the size is rather vague. No one knows this exactly anymore.

Most sources (and Wikipedia) say:

The length of 11 inches of standard paper is about one-quarter the “average maximum arm span of an experienced worker.”

In general, US Letter is a standard because… well, because it is. Don’t question it, just accept it.

Where different paper sizes are used

The most common format to which all printers are adapted is A4. It is used for printing:

  • books;
  • documents;
  • contracts;
  • invoices and much more.

Some office printers support printing in A3 format. This is the size of standard newspapers. A0 and A1 are used for printing:

  • posters;
  • posters;
  • wall tables;
  • diagrams.

Small A5 and A6 formats are used for production:

  • pocket books;
  • notepads;
  • notebooks.

GOST 2.301-68 unified system of design documentation (ESKD). formats (with changes n 1, 2, 3) from May 28, 1968 –

GOST 2.301-68

Group T52

Unified system of design documentation


Unified system for design documentation. Formats

MKS 01.100.01     

Date of introduction 1971-01-01

APPROVED by Resolution of the Committee of Standards, Measures and Measuring Instruments under the Council of Ministers of the USSR dated May 28, 1968 N 751


Change N 3
adopted by the Interstate Council for Standardization, Metrology and Certification by correspondence (protocol No. 23 of February 28, 2006)

The national standardization bodies of the following states voted to accept the change: AZ, AM, BY, KZ, KG, MD, RU, TJ, TM, UZ, UA [alpha-2 codes according to MK (ISO 3166 ) 004

EDITION (August 2007) with Changes N 1, 2, 3
, approved in December 1980, March 1989, June 2006 (IUS 3-81, 7-89, 9-2006).

1. This standard establishes the formats of sheets of drawings and other documents made in electronic and (or) paper form, provided for by the standards for design documentation of all industries and construction.

   (Changed edition, Amendment No. 2, 3).

2. Sheet formats are determined by the dimensions of the outer frame (made with a thin line) of originals, originals, duplicates, copies (Figure 1).

When outputting a document in electronic form onto paper with the dimensions of the sheet sides coinciding with those indicated in Table 1, the outer frame of the format may be omitted. If the dimensions of the sheet sides are larger than those indicated in Table 1, then the outer frame of the format must be reproduced.

(Changed edition, Amendment No. 3).

3. A format with side dimensions of 1189×841 mm, the area of ​​which is 1 m, and other formats obtained by sequentially dividing it into two equal parts parallel to the smaller side of the corresponding format are accepted as the main ones.

4. Designations and dimensions of the sides of the main formats must correspond to those indicated in Table 1.

Table 1

Drawing 1

If necessary, it is allowed to use A5 format with side dimensions of 148×210 mm.

5. It is allowed to use additional formats formed by increasing the short sides of the main formats by an amount that is a multiple of their sizes.

The sizes of derived formats, as a rule, should be selected according to Table 2.

The designation of the derivative format is made up of the designation of the main format and its multiplicity according to Table 2, for example, A0x2, A4x8, etc.

Table 2

6. Maximum deviations of the sides of the formats – according to Table 3.

Table 3

4-6. (Changed edition, Amendment No. 1).

7, 8. (Excluded, Amendment No. 1).

9. Documents in electronic form in their requisites must contain a designation of the paper sheet format, when output to which the display scale will correspond to the specified one.

   (Introduced additionally, Amendment No. 3).

Electronic text of the document

prepared by Kodeks JSC and verified against:     

official publication     

Unified system of design documentation:

Sat. G OSTov. – M.: Standartinform, 2007          

Two standards

Yes, this post is about paper. It has absolutely nothing to do with programming, but it contains an entertaining piece of mathematics.

There are two main paper sizes in the world. The most popular is ISO-216, better known as A-type formats like A4. This system is used almost everywhere in the world, with the exception of the USA and Canada and a few others. The United States uses its own standard, US Letter.

Fractional formats constructed as a fraction of ISO 216 formats:

Typically, these dimensions are acquired by a cut or folded sheet, as well as a specially made sheet (for example, cards, invitations).

Aspect Ratio Mathematics

How does this work mathematically? The magic lies in the fact that 2/√2=√2. Imagine we have a piece of paper with long side A and short side B. If we fold it along the long side and create a new paper size with sides B and C, what is the aspect ratio?

 A/B = √2 (original ratio)
C = A/2 (new short side: A in two)

What is the new B/C ratio?

B/C = B/(A/2)

B/(A/2) = 2/(A/B)

2/(A/B) = 2/√2

2/√2 = √2! 

Starting with an aspect ratio of √2, the result of folding the sheet in half will be √2 again. You can continue again and again.

Take paper of the largest size A0: 841×1189 mm. What happens when folded in two? So: 841 becomes the long side, and 1189/2=594.5 becomes the short side. This is the paper size A1 (594×841 mm). It retains the magic proportion √2.

International implementation and use of sheet format

A paper sizes are now widely used throughout the world except the United States, Canada and parts of Mexico. A4 has become the standard size for business letters in English-speaking countries such as Australia, New Zealand and the UK, which are accustomed to using the imperial number system everywhere.

The main sizes of paper sheets produced at all factories in the country are:

  • A1 (594841 mm.):
    Used in professional layout and design;
  • A2 (420594 mm.):
    A professional option for artistic works by masters from different fields of art. It is most often used in printing houses for printing banners, by students for diploma and term papers. DPI lovers will also like this format: it is quite extensive and will fit harmoniously into the surroundings;
  • A3 (297420 mm):
    A4 sheet format increased by 2 times; optimal for professional student work assigned in educational institutions. Paintings, floristry, decorative panels, collages made in this size look elegant, miniature, and are a universal holiday gift
  • A4 (210297 mm.):
    a universal option for creative people, especially children starting to learn to draw. The A4 sheet format is suitable for small sketches with ink, felt-tip pens, pencils, gel pen, as well as for printed materials. Widely and often used in printing houses.

In accordance with ISO standards, which are international, paper is divided into a number of series (A, B, C). Below is a table with these series, format and sizes.

Low resolution

Format 72 PPI 96 PPI 150 PPI 300 PPI
A0 2384 × 3370 3179 × 4494 4967 × 7022 9933 × 14043
A1 1684 × 2384 2245 × 3179 3508 × 4967 7016 × 9933
A2 1191 × 1684 1587 × 2245 2480 × 3508 4960 × 7016
A3 842 × 1191 1123 × 1587 1754 × 2480 3508 × 4960
A4 595 × 842 794 × 1123 1240 × 1754 2480 × 3508
A5 420 × 595 559 × 794 874 × 1240 1748 × 2480
A6 298 × 420 397 × 559 620 × 874 1240 × 1748
A7 210 × 298 280 × 397 437 × 620 874 × 1240
A8 147 × 210 197 × 280 307 × 437 614 × 874
A9 105 × 147 140 × 197 219 × 307 437 × 614
A10 74 × 105 98 × 140 154 × 219 307 × 437

Using different paper sizes

Each printer paper size has its own area of ​​application. Here is a short list of types of printing products that are usually printed in one format or another:

  • A0, A1: drawings, posters, posters;
  • A2, A3: drawings, presentation materials (diagrams, tables);
  • A4: office documentation, magazines, catalogues;
  • A5: notepads, notebooks, advertising booklets;
  • A6: flyers, postcards, leaflets.

Of course, this is a rather arbitrary division, but it is dictated by many years of experience, taking into account ease of use. In particular, an A4 format magazine allows you to print text information in a font with a comfortable-to-read size and provide it with visual illustrations.

Thus, if you print mainly office documents, an A4 printer will be enough for your company. However, if you have specific needs—for example, frequent presentations—it’s worth purchasing a device that supports large paper sizes for printing.

Continuing to reduce the size

If we continue to fold the sheets in half, then from the A4 size we will get the following paper formats (the aspect ratios change slightly due to rounding to the nearest whole number of millimeters).

 A4 210 × 297 mm, ratio: 1.414
A5 148 × 210 mm, ratio: 1.419
A6 105 × 148 mm, ratio: 1.409
A7 74 × 105 mm, ratio: 1.418
A8 52×74mm, ratio: 1.423
A9 37 × 52 mm, ratio: 1.405
A10 26 × 37 mm, ratio: 1.423 

What happens if you fold US Letter sheets?

 216 x 279 mm, ratio: 1.291
139 x 216 mm, ratio: 1.554 <- What?
108 x 139 mm, ratio: 1.287 <- Damn.
69 x 108 mm, ratio: 1.565 <- Yes!?
54 x 69 mm, ratio: 1.278
34 x 54 mm, ratio: 1.588
27 x 34 mm, ratio: 1.259 <- Oh my god. 

Changing the aspect ratio results in a lot of unused space on the sheets, wasting ink and paper. And it just looks disgusting! If you want to scale something from A5 to A4, it will automatically fit, but if you scale from US Letter… you’ll need to trim something and leave some extra paper.

So US Letter is bad for the environment.

US Letter should be banned, in the name of mathematics!

Size a0

Now that we can explain the aspect ratio, it is still unclear where the specific dimensions 210×297 came from. It is derived from the dimensions of paper A0, which has a ratio of √2 and an area of ​​1 square meter.

That’s all you need to know: √2 and a square meter.

 A*B = 1 m^2 (our paper size)
A/B = √2 (our aspect ratio)

A/B = √2:
A = B * √2

So the area is B * B * √2 = 1 m^2
B^2 = 1 / √2

And finally, calculate the result:

B = 1/√(√2) ≅ 840.89 mm

A = B × √2 ≅ 1189.20 mm 

We started with two simple values: √2 and square meter, and calculated the paper size A0: 841×1189 mm! To calculate the remaining formats A, simply halve them:

 A' = B / 2
B' = A 

Paper Size Sizes

Paper sizes of all formats of the “A” system in various units of measurement are summarized in the table. In addition to millimeters and inches, the value in pixels is also given: it is convenient to know this for printing images. When converting physical dimensions to pixels, you need to take into account the number of dots per inch, or print resolution. Here are the values ​​for a resolution of 300 dpi, which allows you to get a good quality picture.

System “A




Paper size A0




Paper size A1




Paper size A2




Paper size A3




Paper size A4




Paper size A5




Paper size A6




It is not necessary to memorize the parameters. On paper packages, in addition to coding, the paper size in cm or mm must be indicated.

Russian standard publication formats according to GOST 5773-90

Note. These sizes do not apply

for the formats of albums, atlases, toy books, booklets,

facsimile, bibliophile, music editions, calendars, publications,

produced for export, publications printed abroad, as well as

miniature, unique and experimental publications.

The format of publications is conventionally designated by the size of the sheet for printing

in centimeters and leaf shares.

The shape of the publication in millimeters is determined: for a publication with a cover – its

dimensions after trimming on three sides, for binding edition

cover – the size of a block cut on three sides,

in this case, the first digit indicates the width, and the second – the height


Maximum formats are preferred for application. Allowed

reducing the publication format to the minimum height and (or)

width when printing the publication on machines of outdated designs,

imported equipment, as well as taking into account technological

production features.

Maximum deviations of publication formats from those established for

of this edition should not be more than 1 mm in width

and block height.

Medium resolution

Format 600 PPI 720 PPI 1200 PPI
A0 19866 × 28087 23839 × 33704 39732 × 56173
A1 14043 × 19866 16838 × 23839 28066 × 39732
A2 9933 × 14043 11906 × 16838 19842 × 28066
A3 7016 × 9933 8419 × 11906 14032 × 19842
A4 4960 × 7016 5953 × 8419 9921 × 14032
A5 3508 × 4960 4195 × 5953 6992 × 9921
A6 2480 × 3508 2976 × 4195 4961 × 6992
A7 1748 × 2480 2098 × 2976 3496 × 4961
A8 1228 × 1748 1474 × 2098 2456 × 3496
A9 874 × 1228 1049 × 1474 1748 × 2456
A10 614 × 874 737 × 1049 1229 × 1748

Size a paper size tolerances and errors

      ISO 216 allows production tolerances for A-size paper up to the following:
  • ± 1.5 mm (0.06 in) for sizes up to 150 mm (5.9 in)
  • ±2 mm (0.08 in) for sizes ranging from 150 to 600 mm (5.9 to 23.6 in)
  • ± 3 mm (0.12 in) for any dimension above 600 mm (23.6 in)

sra3 format and other sra formats

SRA3 format paper, size 450×320 mm. The ISO system defines the RA and SRA series of formats for raw paper. These formats are only slightly larger than the corresponding A-series formats. Sheets of these formats are trimmed at the edges to the required format.

The sheet area of ​​the ISO RA0 format is 1.05 sq.m, and the ISO SRA0 format is 1.15 sq.m. These formats also follow the rules of the square root of two and half the area, but the sizes of the starting formats are rounded to whole centimeters. The formats of uncut sheets of paper that are used in printing houses are shown in the table:

Formats RA Series Formats SRA Series RA0 860 x 1220 SRA0 900 x 1280 RA1 610 x 860 SRA1 640 x 900 RA2 430 x 610 SRA2 450 x 640 RA3 305 x 430 SRA3 320 x 450 RA4 21 5 x 305 SRA4 225 x 320

sra3 format as standard for digital printing

For most large-sized MFPs, as well as plotters, the maximum print format is SRA3 (320×450 mm). In fact, this is also the “A” system format, but with the addition of Supplementary Raw – that is, “raw”, before trimming. It was introduced because many users need to print on A3 without borders, have extra space for bleed marks or to place the sheet in a frame, etc.

On sheet SRA3 you can place:

  • 1 sheet A3;
  • 2 sheets of A4;
  • 4 sheets A5;
  • 8 sheets A6;
  • 24 business cards 90×50 mm.

Format in centimeters and inches


37 × 52

3.7 × 5.2

1.5 × 2.0


26 × 37

2.6 × 3.7

1.0 × 1.5

Format Size (width × height)
mm cm inches
A0 841 × 1189 84.1 × 118.9 33.1 × 46.8
A1 594 × 841 95.4 × 84.1 23.4 × 33.1
A2 420 × 594 42.0 × 59.4 16.5 × 23.4
A3 297 × 420 29.7 × 42.0 11.7 × 16.5
A4 210 × 297 21.0 × 29.7 8.3 × 11.7
A5 148 × 210 14.8 × 21.0 5.8 × 8.3
A6 105 × 148 10.5 × 14.8 4.1 × 5.8
A7 74 × 105 7.4 × 10.5 2.9 × 4.1
A8 52 × 74

5.2 × 7.4 2.0 × 2.9

The ISO 216 standard defines the following requirements for format A:

The height to width ratio is 1.4142 (√2); The size of the A0 sheet is equal to the area of ​​1 square. m; Each size A(n) is half of A(n-1); The height and width of each size are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Paper size and dimensions

Paper sizes ISO 216



A width x length,




width x length

in (mm.)



size (mm.)

A0 841х1189 B0 1000×1414





B1 707×1000 C1 917×648






    • A3
    • 297×420
    • B3
    • 353×500














    Standard Newspaper Size:

    A4 – 210×297 mm.

    Berliner format – 470 x 315 mm.
    A3 – 297×420 mm. A2 – 594×420 mm.

    Standard Envelope Sizes:

    C4 format envelope – 324×229 mm.

    C5 format envelope – 229×162 mm.

    C6 format envelope – 114×162 mm. — basic mail format

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfbUHSfFntM Standard business card size:

    Standard of Russia and Ukraine – 90×50 mm.

    Euro business card 85×55 mm.

Photo format and dimensions

photo format Linear dimensions for digital printing Photo size in pixels

(for printing 300 dpi)
9×13 89×127 1051×1500
10×15 102×152 1205×1795
13×18 127×178 1500х2102
15×20 152×203 1795х2398
15×21 152×216 1795х2551
20×30 203х305 2398×3602