Binary To Hexadecimal

What Does Binary To Hexadecimal Mean?

Binary to hexadecimal (B2X) is a conversion process involving the two aforementioned number systems. The original number is in binary format, base 2, and is converted to hexadecimal format, base 16.

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The conversion can be done by converting each group of 4 binary bits into its decimal counterpart, and the hexadecimal equivalent of that decimal value is the hexadecimal equivalent of those 4 bits. For example, the binary value 1010 is 10 in decimal and subsequently "A" in hexadecimal.

Techopedia Explains Binary To Hexadecimal

Binary is the language used by computers, but it is often too long and confusing to display, so it is often presented to the user as hexadecimal values. Hexadecimal is often used to shorten binary values because each hexadecimal value is equivalent to four binary values or bits. There are 16 values in hexadecimal: 0 to 9 and A to F, or 0 to 15 in decimal, while there are only two values for binary: 1 and 0. Binary is often arranged in groups of 4 bits, which totals 15 when the place values of 8, 4, 2 and 1 are added.

To convert a binary value to hexadecimal, the decimal equivalent of each 4-bit group must be taken by adding the place values where 1s appear. In a 4-bit binary code, we add all the place values with a 1 on it, or multiply 8421 with its aligned value. So the binary code 1010 is equal to 8 + 0 + 2 + 0, which is decimal "10" or hexadecimal "A".

For example, the binary value "1100 0101 1110 0110" is converted to hexadecimal:

    1100 = 8 + 4 + 0 + 0 = 12 = [C] 0101 = 0 + 4 + 0 + 1 = 5 = [5] 1110 = 8 + 4 + 2 + 0 = 14 = [E] 0110 = 0 + 4 + 2 + 0 = 6 = [6] 1100 0101 1110 0110 = C5E6

Hexadecimal is significantly shorter than binary, so binary values which are the actual language used by computers are often presented to the user as hexadecimal values.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.