Explore using Hexadecimal values to express RGB colors.

**Author:** Geetesh Bajaj

**Product/Version:** PowerPoint

While we learned the basics about RGB colors, that constitute portions of Red, Blue, and Green—what we need to know is that there is so much more to learn about them. Did you know that there are two ways in which individual RGB color values are expressed? The most common way is using decimals, and that’s something we already explored in our Color Models: RGB page.

But have you run into color values such as FF0000 or 006699? These six digit values that combine number and alphabet characters are hexadecimals. Now hexadecimals express the same values as decimals—but unlike decimals that need 9 characters to describe the three colors, R, G, and B, hexadecimals need only 6 characters. Let’s understand this concept better.

We all know that the decimal system uses 10 number characters from 0 to 9. Using these 10 numerical characters, the largest numbers can be expressed in a way that the human mind can easily understand. But what if there were 16 numerical characters rather than 10? Well, there’s already a numerical value system in place called the hexadecimal system, which is often shortened and called the hex system. This system uses the ten decimal numerical characters from 0 to 9, and then it also uses the first 6 alphabet characters, A to F. This means that while numbers 0 to 9 are similar in both decimal and hexadecimal systems, the next 6 numbers are unique to the latter system. Look at this table:

Decimal | Hexadecimal |

0 | 0 |

1 | 1 |

2 | 2 |

3 | 3 |

4 | 4 |

5 | 5 |

6 | 6 |

7 | 7 |

8 | 8 |

9 | 9 |

10 | A |

11 | B |

12 | C |

13 | D |

14 | E |

15 | F |

What does this mean for your RGB colors? Each R, G, and B value can possess one of 256 numbers, from 0 to 255. In hexadecimal terms, 0 to 255 will show up as 00 to FF. That’s because one hexadecimal digit can possess 16 different values (which correspond to 0 to 15 in decimals). Also, as you may have realized, two hexadecimal digits together, often called a byte, can constitute 16×16, that results in 256 different values of color. Incidentally, that’s exactly what the RGB system needs!

Let’s now play with these hexadecimal digits to represent RGB colors. To begin with, we will start with pure Red, which has an RGB value of 255,0,0. In hexadecimal digits, this same Red would be FF0000 because 255 equates to FF, and 0 equates to 00.

In the following table, you can find both decimal and hexadecimal digits that represent popular colors:

Decimal | Hexadecimal | Swatch | |
---|---|---|---|

Color | |||

Red | 255, 0, 0 | FF0000 | |

Green | 0, 255, 0 | 00FF00 | |

Blue | 0, 0, 255 | 0000FF | |

Yellow | 255, 255, 0 | FFFF00 | |

Cyan | 0, 255, 255 | 00FFFF | |

Magenta | 255, 0, 255 | FF00FF | |

Orange | 255, 125, 0 | FF7D00 | |

Yellow-Green | 125, 255, 0 | 7DFF00 | |

Cyan-Green | 0, 255, 125 | 00FF7D | |

Cyan-Blue | 0, 125, 255 | 007DFF | |

Blue-Magenta | 125, 0, 255 | 7D00FF | |

Red-Magenta | 255, 0, 125 | FF007D |

Here are hexadecimal (H columns) equivalents of all decimal (D columns) values that you will need to represent RGB colors.

D | H | D | H | D | H | D | H |

0 | 00 | 64 | 40 | 128 | 80 | 192 | C0 |

1 | 01 | 65 | 41 | 129 | 81 | 193 | C1 |

2 | 02 | 66 | 42 | 130 | 82 | 194 | C2 |

3 | 03 | 67 | 43 | 131 | 83 | 195 | C3 |

4 | 04 | 68 | 44 | 132 | 84 | 196 | C4 |

5 | 05 | 69 | 45 | 133 | 85 | 197 | C5 |

6 | 06 | 70 | 43 | 134 | 86 | 198 | C6 |

7 | 07 | 71 | 47 | 135 | 87 | 199 | C7 |

8 | 08 | 72 | 48 | 136 | 88 | 200 | C8 |

9 | 09 | 73 | 49 | 137 | 89 | 201 | C9 |

10 | 0A | 74 | 4A | 138 | 8A | 202 | CA |

11 | 0B | 75 | 4B | 139 | 8B | 203 | CB |

12 | 0C | 76 | 4C | 140 | 8C | 204 | CC |

13 | 0D | 77 | 4D | 141 | 8D | 205 | CD |

14 | 0E | 78 | 4E | 142 | 8E | 206 | CE |

15 | 0F | 79 | 4F | 143 | 8F | 207 | CF |

16 | 10 | 80 | 50 | 144 | 90 | 208 | D0 |

17 | 11 | 81 | 51 | 145 | 91 | 209 | D1 |

18 | 12 | 82 | 52 | 146 | 92 | 210 | D2 |

19 | 13 | 83 | 53 | 147 | 93 | 211 | D3 |

20 | 14 | 84 | 54 | 148 | 94 | 212 | D4 |

21 | 15 | 85 | 55 | 149 | 95 | 213 | D5 |

22 | 16 | 86 | 56 | 150 | 96 | 214 | D6 |

23 | 17 | 87 | 57 | 151 | 97 | 215 | D7 |

24 | 18 | 88 | 58 | 152 | 98 | 216 | D8 |

25 | 19 | 89 | 59 | 153 | 99 | 217 | D9 |

26 | 1A | 90 | 5A | 154 | 9A | 218 | DA |

27 | 1B | 91 | 5B | 155 | 9B | 219 | DB |

28 | 1C | 92 | 5C | 156 | 9C | 220 | DC |

29 | 1D | 93 | 5D | 157 | 9D | 221 | DD |

30 | 1E | 94 | 5E | 158 | 9E | 222 | DE |

31 | 1F | 95 | 5F | 159 | 9F | 223 | DF |

32 | 20 | 96 | 60 | 160 | A0 | 224 | E0 |

33 | 21 | 97 | 61 | 161 | A1 | 225 | E1 |

34 | 22 | 98 | 62 | 162 | A2 | 226 | E2 |

35 | 23 | 99 | 63 | 163 | A3 | 227 | E3 |

36 | 24 | 100 | 64 | 164 | A4 | 228 | E4 |

37 | 25 | 101 | 65 | 165 | A5 | 229 | E5 |

38 | 26 | 102 | 66 | 166 | A6 | 230 | E6 |

39 | 27 | 103 | 67 | 167 | A7 | 231 | E7 |

40 | 28 | 104 | 68 | 168 | A8 | 232 | E8 |

41 | 29 | 105 | 69 | 169 | A9 | 233 | E9 |

42 | 2A | 106 | 6A | 170 | AA | 234 | EA |

43 | 2B | 107 | 6B | 171 | AB | 235 | EB |

44 | 2C | 108 | 6C | 172 | AC | 236 | EC |

45 | 2D | 109 | 6D | 173 | AD | 237 | ED |

46 | 2E | 110 | 6E | 174 | AE | 238 | EE |

47 | 2F | 111 | 6F | 175 | AF | 239 | EF |

48 | 30 | 112 | 70 | 176 | B0 | 240 | F0 |

49 | 31 | 113 | 71 | 177 | B1 | 241 | F1 |

50 | 32 | 114 | 72 | 178 | B2 | 242 | F2 |

51 | 33 | 115 | 73 | 179 | B3 | 243 | F3 |

52 | 34 | 116 | 74 | 180 | B4 | 244 | F4 |

53 | 35 | 117 | 75 | 181 | B5 | 245 | F5 |

54 | 36 | 118 | 76 | 182 | B6 | 246 | F6 |

55 | 37 | 119 | 77 | 183 | B7 | 247 | F7 |

56 | 38 | 120 | 78 | 184 | B8 | 248 | F8 |

57 | 39 | 121 | 79 | 185 | B9 | 249 | F9 |

58 | 3A | 122 | 7A | 186 | BA | 250 | FA |

59 | 3B | 123 | 7B | 187 | BB | 251 | FB |

60 | 3C | 124 | 7C | 188 | BC | 252 | FC |

61 | 3D | 125 | 7D | 189 | BD | 253 | FD |

62 | 3E | 126 | 7E | 190 | BE | 254 | FE |

63 | 3F | 127 | 7F | 191 | BF | 255 | FF |

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