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Origin - Axis Breaks

  Enlarged illustration of a broken axis scale

Skip data quickly and easily by adding an axis break.

Adding an axis break to a graph lets you skip a specified range of the selected axis, thereby skipping the display of any data that falls within the specified range. This allows you to display one region of the plotting area using one scale space, and the other using an entirely different scale space. A "break" symbol is used to illustrate where these two regions meet.

A broken axis or scale break is useful when you would like to:

  • See all your data points in one plot rather than splitting them up into two different graphs
  • Clearly and effectively show data from the same column on the same graph, even data of markedly different ranges
  • Account for data that varies greatly in magnitude
  • Reduce the effect that one or two large values is having on the rest of a data plot
  • Skip data that is of no consequence to your results/research

Origin Axis Dialog Box - note the IRIG Time Format
Origin's Axis dialog box, Break Tab - note the ability
to set the scale type after the axis break to Log10

Example Graphs Showing Broken Axes

The example graph on the left shows a floating column plot with a break in the Y axis, while the second graph shows multiple X axis breaks. The figure above represents an enlarged portion of the second graph.


Click on either graph to view a larger version of it in the Graph Gallery.


Editable Axis Break Properties:

Enable/disable axis break (one per axis)

Set break region

Set break position (in percent of axis length)
or manually drag and drop break position once the break has been created

Define minor tick and scale increments before and after the axis break

Use Log10 scale after the axis break to display data that varies greatly in magntide


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