pinpoint

noun
pin·​point | \ ˈpin-ˌpȯint How to pronounce pinpoint (audio) \

Definition of pinpoint

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : something that is extremely small or insignificant
2 : the point of a pin
3 : an extremely small or sharp point

pinpoint

adjective

Definition of pinpoint (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : extremely fine or precise
2 : located, fixed, or directed with extreme precision pinpoint targets
3 : small as a pinpoint

pinpoint

verb
pinpointed; pinpointing; pinpoints

Definition of pinpoint (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to locate or aim with great precision or accuracy pinpoint a source
2a : to fix, determine, or identify with precision pinpoint the cause
b : to cause to stand out conspicuously : highlight

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Synonyms & Antonyms for pinpoint

Synonyms: Adjective

accurate, close, delicate, exact, fine, hairline, mathematical, precise, refined, rigorous, spot-on

Synonyms: Verb

distinguish, finger, ID, identify, single (out)

Antonyms: Adjective

coarse, imprecise, inaccurate, inexact, rough

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Examples of pinpoint in a Sentence

Adjective

The pitcher showed pinpoint control of his fastball. the pinpoint measurement of brain tumors is critically important

Verb

They were finally able to pinpoint the cause of the fire. He pinpointed the city on the map. Rescuers were able to pinpoint where the lost girl was. The military uses computer imaging to pinpoint targets.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Jones completed all five off his passes and finished with a pinpoint 12-yard scoring pass to wide receiver Bennie Fowler. oregonlive.com, "Chicago Bears vs. New York Giants in NFL preseason: Time, score, TV channel, how to watch live stream online," 16 Aug. 2019 Iran is likely to continue its project of hollowing out Syria, and Israel appears likely to continue its pinpoint strikes against the outlying hardware of that project, without touching its core. Jonathan Spyer, WSJ, "Getting Iran Out of Syria Is No Easy Task," 9 July 2019 Dragonfly takes after its namesake—an agile flying insect that can soar, hover and perform pinpoint touchdowns. Shannon Stirone, Scientific American, "New NASA Mission Will Fly Titan’s Frigid Skies to Search for Life’s Beginnings," 27 June 2019 Simona Halep served with pinpoint accuracy, chased down every ball and played the match of her life to beat Serena Williams and win the Wimbledon title. Jon Wertheim, SI.com, "Simona Halep Plays Match of Her Life, Beats Serena Williams to Win Wimbledon," 13 July 2019 Leading the league in scoring at 85.5 points per game, the Washington offense was humming from the opening tip, with pinpoint passing leading to many open looks. Mike Cook, Twin Cities, "Lynx lose 79-71 to Washington Mystics in front of 17,934," 24 July 2019 The key to his success lately — since his 10-day break throwing bullpens in Single-A last month — has been getting back to the pinpoint command of his fastball that enhances the deceptive sameness of his change-up. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Padres notes: Rotation turns; Paddack’s first pitch advantage; Machado’s surge," 22 July 2019 Studies are testing algorithms to read x-rays, detect brain bleeds, pinpoint tumors, and more. Jennifer Couzin-frankel, Science | AAAS, "Artificial intelligence could revolutionize medical care. But don’t trust it to read your x-ray just yet," 17 June 2019 Rapinoe's replacement, Christen Press, opened the scoring in clinical style, heading Kelley O'Hara's pinpoint cross from the right powerfully into the top left corner after just 10 minutes. Jerome Pugmire, Houston Chronicle, "Megan Rapinoe hopes to be ready for final despite hamstring strain," 3 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Ice pick acne scars are small, narrow, pinpoint acne scars that penetrate deep into the skin, according to Gross. Audrey Noble, Harper's BAZAAR, "How To Get Rid of Acne Scars—Forever," 21 Jan. 2019 In some cities, like Houston and Dallas, utilities have already undertaken to upgrade their systems with new, digital equipment, allowing repair crews to more precisely pinpoint damage during storms. James Osborne, Houston Chronicle, "Energy lobbyists increase pressure on Congress to speed up permitting," 8 Feb. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

This pandemic’s Patient Zero is harder to pinpoint. Nick Paumgarten, The New Yorker, "The Message of Measles," 26 Aug. 2019 Even in the example of the lunch seating at Travelco, the actual insight is hard to pinpoint. Rose Eveleth, Scientific American, "Your Employer May Be Spying on You—and Wasting Its Time," 16 Aug. 2019 The oceans are vast, making reefs hard to pinpoint, and the water’s surface is difficult for satellite and airborne cameras to see through. Paul Tullis, New York Times, "To Map a Coral Reef, Peel Back the Seawater," 10 June 2019 Concerns about exercise trackers and other electronic devices came to a head in January in the wake of revelations that an interactive, online map was pinpointing troop locations, bases and other sensitive areas around the world. Lolita C. Baldor, The Seattle Times, "Pentagon restricts use of fitness trackers, other devices," 7 Aug. 2018 Concerns about exercise trackers and other electronic devices came to a head in January in the wake of revelations that an interactive, online map was pinpointing troop locations, bases and other sensitive areas around the world. Fox News, "Pentagon restricts use of fitness trackers, other devices," 6 Aug. 2018 O’Neill wrote, highlighting that his efforts since 2007 to pinpoint that ending have been dismissed and denied by an array of authorities. Fox News, "Another Manson murder? Debra Tate, victim's sister, fights to reopen probe into 1969 suspicious death," 31 July 2019 First, map out, either in print or online, how to find each new-home community pinpointed by geographic region. Cameron Sullivan, The Mercury News, "Sponsored: House hunting on vacation — Part 3," 19 July 2019 Since late 2017, the company has embarked on a monitoring and cleanup plan to pinpoint the extent of the contamination in Marinette. Lee Bergquist, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "DNR refers Johnson Controls case to state prosecutors over failing to report pollution," 7 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pinpoint.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of pinpoint

Noun

1670, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Adjective

1897, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1917, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Learn More about pinpoint

Statistics for pinpoint

Last Updated

11 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pinpoint

The first known use of pinpoint was in 1670

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More Definitions for pinpoint

pinpoint

noun

English Language Learners Definition of pinpoint

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a very small point or dot

pinpoint

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of pinpoint (Entry 2 of 3)

: very exact or precise

pinpoint

verb

English Language Learners Definition of pinpoint (Entry 3 of 3)

: to find out (something) with certainty
: to find or locate the exact position of (something)

pinpoint

verb
pin·​point | \ ˈpin-ˌpȯint How to pronounce pinpoint (audio) \
pinpointed; pinpointing

Kids Definition of pinpoint

: to locate or find out exactly Can you pinpoint the cause of the problem?

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More from Merriam-Webster on pinpoint

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pinpoint

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pinpoint

Spanish Central: Translation of pinpoint

Nglish: Translation of pinpoint for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pinpoint for Arabic Speakers

Comments on pinpoint

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