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Histogram Plots


Origin's histogram plot graphically summarizes the distribution of a single variable dataset, allowing you see its:

  • center (i.e., the location),
  • spread (i.e., the scale) of the data,
  • skewness of the data,
  • presence of outliers, and
  • presence of multiple modes in the data.

These features provide strong indications of the proper distributional model for the data.

Histogram Graph Options

Stacked Histogram Example

Origin's histogram chart can be created from 2D or 3D (matrix) data. When matrix data is used as input, the whole matrix is viewed as a single variable dataset.

To obtain a histogram, the range of the input data is splitted into equal-sized bins (automatically or by user specification). Then for each bin, the number of points from the dataset that fall into each bin are counted. The result is a plot of Frequency (i.e. counts for each bin) on the vertical axis vs. response variable on the horizontal axis.

In addition to the option of specifying the bin size, the user has the option of specifying the bin minimum and bin maximum.

A Curve overlay option is provided as well. Choose from Normal, Lognormal, Poisson, Exponential, Laplace, or Lorentz. Or, use the "Bin" worksheet and fit the data to any model you desire using Origin's Nonlinear Fitting capabilities.

A Stacked Histograms plot template is also provided (see figure), allowing you to view the distribution for one or more variables or one or more instances of the same variable in one convenient display.

Histogram Plots Stacked

  Example plots from our Graph Gallery
[click on the image to see original graph]

Histogram Uses


The histogram can be used to answer the following questions:

  • What kind of population distribution do the data come from, or what is the most common system response?
  • What distribution (center, variation and shape) does the data have?
  • Are the data symmetric or skewed?
  • Are there outliers in the data

Basic Data Plot Properties


All of the basic data plot properties of a Column/Bar plot can be updated for Origin's Histogram chart. This includes:

  • Border Properties: style, width, and color
  • Fill Properties: color, pattern
  • Pattern Properties: border style, width, and color; pattern width and color
  • Spacing: between each column/bar
  • Learn more...*

When a curve overlay is included, additional options are provided to edit the Line plot. Learn more...*

* Javascript must be enabled and pop-up windows must be allowed in order to view the details of a specific graph type.

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