What weight is considered good quality paper

A4 preprints: How to choose the optimal paper weight

More is not always better: This also applies to the paper weight of A4 forms. Whether you should have your company letterhead or your invoice forms printed on 80, 90, 100 or even 120g / m2 does not only depend on the look and feel.


At first glance, the matter seems clear: Given the minimal price differences (especially between 80 and 90 g / m2), the thicker stationery definitely seems to be the better choice. Looks better right now, doesn't it? Sure - but the extra weight can also have undesirable side effects. We therefore took a closer look at the advantages and disadvantages of the common grammages:

80g / m2: The standard - for good reasons

A basis weight of 80g / m2 is the standard for copy paper, and it is also gladly accepted for preprinted letterhead. As uncoated paper, it is still stiff enough despite its low weight to run smoothly through the office printer and not show through. However - such paper does not look particularly noble or high quality, but “only” clean and solid. But it has one not inconsiderable advantage: it weighs just under 5 g per A4 sheet, so that a letter can contain up to three sheets and weighs less than 20 g - including the DIN long envelope. And it is precisely these 20 g that are the weight limit for a so-called standard letter in Germany and Austria. At 90 g / m2 (5.6 g / sheet) it can get tight - and the domestic postage in Germany climbs from 0.70 to 0.85 cents (in Austria even from 0.68 cents to 1 euro).

So anyone who often sends multi-page invoices or letters is well served with 80 g paper. Those who use large quantities also appreciate the savings in storage space and when filling the office printer.

90g / m2: The affordable middle class

If postage limits are not a big issue - for example in Switzerland, where every letter up to 100 g costs the same - letter paper with 90 g / m2 is the better choice. It looks a bit higher quality and costs, if at all, only slightly more than the 80 g version. The higher opacity is particularly noticeable when the paper is printed with an inkjet device. However, you will not really attract the attention of the recipient with a 90 g letter.

100g / m2: Noticeably better

At 100g the effect is already stronger: laypeople will also feel the higher weight, letters look more noble and personal. However, the additional costs are already noticeable for larger quantities, since this grammage is used less often and the production quantities are lower. The 100 g paper is therefore a good choice for medium-sized and smaller companies as well as for freelancers and law firms who want to stand out from the crowd.

120g / m2: The beginning of the premium class

The grammage of 120 g / m2 is at the upper end of the scale for letterhead on offset paper. Despite its high rigidity, it still runs smoothly through printers and through folding and inserting machines. 120 g paper may be a bit excessive for simple invoices and mass mailings. However, it is ideally suited, for example, for lawyers or management consultants who present their expertise or their fee notes on it - and for everyone who wants their correspondence to appear particularly high-quality. The thick paper is also useful for two-dimensionally printed backs, as the thin types are more likely to be worn through. In terms of price, the 120 g paper is about twice as high as the 80 g version - so it is still affordable.

Fine papers: pure luxury

Beyond the 120 g offset paper, there is still plenty of room for improvement. It is less about weight and more about special structures, surfaces or colors: If you prefer an even more exclusive look and don't have to keep to tight budget limits, you can choose so-called fine papers instead of conventional offset papers. The variety in this segment is huge, but so is the extra charge. Popular are z. B. Papers with a linen or felt structure or types of watercolor paper. If you want to know more about this, it is best to seek personal advice - e. B. at prinux on 0800 100 2280 (free of charge from Germany and Austria) or 0800 100 228 (free of charge from Switzerland).

By the way, two rules apply to all papers:

  1. A high grammage alone does not guarantee high quality. A good, bright white 80 g paper can appear stiffer and cleaner than a wavy, dull white sheet of a higher weight class.
  2. How a piece of paper comes into its own is better judged on the basis of a letter printed (with your own printer).


Would you like to have letterhead printed for your company? Request a free sample now

Get an idea for yourself - with the free prinux sample set for companies, organizations and freelancers. You will receive 1 sample letterhead each in DIN A4 format, printed on uncoated offset paper with 80, 90, 100 and 120 g / m2, which you can also send as a test using your own printer.

Simply send an email with the subject “Stationery sample” and your company address to [email protected] (Please understand that we can only offer this service to companies, organizations and freelancers.)