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plot

  • 2-D line plot

Description

Vector and Matrix Data

example

plot(X,Y) creates a 2-D line plot of the data in Y versus the corresponding values in X.

  • To plot a set of coordinates connected by line segments, specify X and Y as vectors of the same length.

  • To plot multiple sets of coordinates on the same set of axes, specify at least one of X or Y as a matrix.

plot(X,Y,LineSpec) creates the plot using the specified line style, marker, and color.

example

plot(X1,Y1,...,Xn,Yn) plots multiple pairs of x- and y-coordinates on the same set of axes. Use this syntax as an alternative to specifying coordinates as matrices.

example

plot(X1,Y1,LineSpec1,...,Xn,Yn,LineSpecn) assigns specific line styles, markers, and colors to each x-y pair. You can specify LineSpec for some x-y pairs and omit it for others. For example, plot(X1,Y1,"o",X2,Y2) specifies markers for the first x-y pair but not for the second pair.

example

plot(Y) plots Y against an implicit set of x-coordinates.

  • If Y is a vector, the x-coordinates range from 1 to length(Y).

  • If Y is a matrix, the plot contains one line for each column in Y. The x-coordinates range from 1 to the number of rows in Y.

If Y contains complex numbers, MATLAB® plots the imaginary part of Y versus the real part of Y. If you specify both X and Y, the imaginary part is ignored.

plot(Y,LineSpec) plots Y using implicit x-coordinates, and specifies the line style, marker, and color.

Table Data

plot(tbl,xvar,yvar) plots the variables xvar and yvar from the table tbl. To plot one data set, specify one variable for xvar and one variable for yvar. To plot multiple data sets, specify multiple variables for xvar, yvar, or both. If both arguments specify multiple variables, they must specify the same number of variables. (since R2022a)

example

plot(tbl,yvar) plots the specified variable from the table against the row indices of the table. If the table is a timetable, the specified variable is plotted against the row times of the timetable. (since R2022a)

Additional Options

example

plot(ax,___) displays the plot in the target axes. Specify the axes as the first argument in any of the previous syntaxes.

example

plot(___,Name,Value) specifies Line properties using one or more name-value arguments. The properties apply to all the plotted lines. Specify the name-value arguments after all the arguments in any of the previous syntaxes. For a list of properties, see Line Properties.

example

p = plot(___) returns a Line object or an array of Line objects. Use p to modify properties of the plot after creating it. For a list of properties, see Line Properties.

Examples

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Create x as a vector of linearly spaced values between 0 and 2π. Use an increment of π/100 between the values. Create y as sine values of x. Create a line plot of the data.

x = 0:pi/100:2*pi;
y = sin(x);
plot(x,y)

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains an object of type line.

Define x as 100 linearly spaced values between -2π and 2π. Define y1 and y2 as sine and cosine values of x. Create a line plot of both sets of data.

x = linspace(-2*pi,2*pi);
y1 = sin(x);
y2 = cos(x);

figure
plot(x,y1,x,y2)

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains 2 objects of type line.

Define Y as the 4-by-4 matrix returned by the magic function.

Y = magic(4)
Y = 4×4

    16     2     3    13
     5    11    10     8
     9     7     6    12
     4    14    15     1

Create a 2-D line plot of Y. MATLAB® plots each matrix column as a separate line.

figure
plot(Y)

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains 4 objects of type line.

Plot three sine curves with a small phase shift between each line. Use the default line style for the first line. Specify a dashed line style for the second line and a dotted line style for the third line.

x = 0:pi/100:2*pi;
y1 = sin(x);
y2 = sin(x-0.25);
y3 = sin(x-0.5);

figure
plot(x,y1,x,y2,'--',x,y3,':')

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains 3 objects of type line.

MATLAB® cycles the line color through the default color order.

Plot three sine curves with a small phase shift between each line. Use a green line with no markers for the first sine curve. Use a blue dashed line with circle markers for the second sine curve. Use only cyan star markers for the third sine curve.

x = 0:pi/10:2*pi;
y1 = sin(x);
y2 = sin(x-0.25);
y3 = sin(x-0.5);

figure
plot(x,y1,'g',x,y2,'b--o',x,y3,'c*')

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains 3 objects of type line.

Create a line plot and display markers at every fifth data point by specifying a marker symbol and setting the MarkerIndices property as a name-value pair.

x = linspace(0,10);
y = sin(x);
plot(x,y,'-o','MarkerIndices',1:5:length(y))

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains an object of type line.

Create a line plot and use the LineSpec option to specify a dashed green line with square markers. Use Name,Value pairs to specify the line width, marker size, and marker colors. Set the marker edge color to blue and set the marker face color using an RGB color value.

x = -pi:pi/10:pi;
y = tan(sin(x)) - sin(tan(x));

figure
plot(x,y,'--gs',...
    'LineWidth',2,...
    'MarkerSize',10,...
    'MarkerEdgeColor','b',...
    'MarkerFaceColor',[0.5,0.5,0.5])

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains an object of type line.

Use the linspace function to define x as a vector of 150 values between 0 and 10. Define y as cosine values of x.

x = linspace(0,10,150);
y = cos(5*x);

Create a 2-D line plot of the cosine curve. Change the line color to a shade of blue-green using an RGB color value. Add a title and axis labels to the graph using the title, xlabel, and ylabel functions.

figure
plot(x,y,'Color',[0,0.7,0.9])

title('2-D Line Plot')
xlabel('x')
ylabel('cos(5x)')

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object with title 2-D Line Plot contains an object of type line.

Define t as seven linearly spaced duration values between 0 and 3 minutes. Plot random data and specify the format of the duration tick marks using the 'DurationTickFormat' name-value pair argument.

t = 0:seconds(30):minutes(3);
y = rand(1,7);

plot(t,y,'DurationTickFormat','mm:ss')

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains an object of type line.

Since R2022a

A convenient way to plot data from a table is to pass the table to the plot function and specify the variables to plot.

Read weather.csv as a timetable tbl. Then display the first three rows of the table.

tbl = readtimetable("weather.csv");
tbl = sortrows(tbl);
head(tbl,3)
            Time            WindDirection    WindSpeed    Humidity    Temperature    RainInchesPerMinute    CumulativeRainfall    PressureHg    PowerLevel    LightIntensity
    ____________________    _____________    _________    ________    ___________    ___________________    __________________    __________    __________    ______________

    25-Oct-2021 00:00:09         46               1          84          49.2                 0                     0               29.96          4.14             0       
    25-Oct-2021 00:01:09         45             1.6          84          49.2                 0                     0               29.96         4.139             0       
    25-Oct-2021 00:02:09         36             2.2          84          49.2                 0                     0               29.96         4.138             0       

Plot the row times on the x-axis and the RainInchesPerMinute variable on the y-axis. When you plot data from a timetable, the row times are plotted on the x-axis by default. Thus, you do not need to specify the Time variable. Return the Line object as p. Notice that the axis labels match the variable names.

p = plot(tbl,"RainInchesPerMinute");

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains an object of type line.

To modify aspects of the line, set the LineStyle, Color, and Marker properties on the Line object. For example, change the line to a red dotted line with point markers.

p.LineStyle = ":";
p.Color = "red";
p.Marker = ".";

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains an object of type line.

Since R2022a

Read weather.csv as a timetable tbl, and display the first few rows of the table.

tbl = readtimetable("weather.csv");
head(tbl,3)
            Time            WindDirection    WindSpeed    Humidity    Temperature    RainInchesPerMinute    CumulativeRainfall    PressureHg    PowerLevel    LightIntensity
    ____________________    _____________    _________    ________    ___________    ___________________    __________________    __________    __________    ______________

    25-Oct-2021 00:00:09         46               1          84          49.2                 0                     0               29.96          4.14             0       
    25-Oct-2021 00:01:09         45             1.6          84          49.2                 0                     0               29.96         4.139             0       
    25-Oct-2021 00:02:09         36             2.2          84          49.2                 0                     0               29.96         4.138             0       

Plot the row times on the x-axis and the Temperature and PressureHg variables on the y-axis. When you plot data from a timetable, the row times are plotted on the x-axis by default. Thus, you do not need to specify the Time variable.

Add a legend. Notice that the legend labels match the variable names.

plot(tbl,["Temperature" "PressureHg"])
legend

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains 2 objects of type line.

Starting in R2019b, you can display a tiling of plots using the tiledlayout and nexttile functions. Call the tiledlayout function to create a 2-by-1 tiled chart layout. Call the nexttile function to create an axes object and return the object as ax1. Create the top plot by passing ax1 to the plot function. Add a title and y-axis label to the plot by passing the axes to the title and ylabel functions. Repeat the process to create the bottom plot.

% Create data and 2-by-1 tiled chart layout
x = linspace(0,3);
y1 = sin(5*x);
y2 = sin(15*x);
tiledlayout(2,1)

% Top plot
ax1 = nexttile;
plot(ax1,x,y1)
title(ax1,'Top Plot')
ylabel(ax1,'sin(5x)')

% Bottom plot
ax2 = nexttile;
plot(ax2,x,y2)
title(ax2,'Bottom Plot')
ylabel(ax2,'sin(15x)')

Figure contains 2 axes objects. Axes object 1 with title Top Plot contains an object of type line. Axes object 2 with title Bottom Plot contains an object of type line.

Define x as 100 linearly spaced values between -2π and 2π. Define y1 and y2 as sine and cosine values of x. Create a line plot of both sets of data and return the two chart lines in p.

x = linspace(-2*pi,2*pi);
y1 = sin(x);
y2 = cos(x);
p = plot(x,y1,x,y2);

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains 2 objects of type line.

Change the line width of the first line to 2. Add star markers to the second line. Use dot notation to set properties.

p(1).LineWidth = 2;
p(2).Marker = '*';

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains 2 objects of type line.

Plot a circle centered at the point (4,3) with a radius equal to 2. Use axis equal to use equal data units along each coordinate direction.

r = 2;
xc = 4;
yc = 3;

theta = linspace(0,2*pi);
x = r*cos(theta) + xc;
y = r*sin(theta) + yc;
plot(x,y)
axis equal

Figure contains an axes object. The axes object contains an object of type line.

Input Arguments

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x-coordinates, specified as a scalar, vector, or matrix. The size and shape of X depends on the shape of your data and the type of plot you want to create. This table describes the most common situations.

Type of PlotHow to Specify Coordinates
Single point

Specify X and Y as scalars and include a marker. For example:

plot(1,2,"o")

One set of points

Specify X and Y as any combination of row or column vectors of the same length. For example:

plot([1 2 3],[4; 5; 6])

Multiple sets of points
(using vectors)

Specify consecutive pairs of X and Y vectors. For example:

plot([1 2 3],[4 5 6],[1 2 3],[7 8 9])

Multiple sets of points
(using matrices)

If all the sets share the same x- or y-coordinates, specify the shared coordinates as a vector and the other coordinates as a matrix. The length of the vector must match one of the dimensions of the matrix. For example:

plot([1 2 3],[4 5 6; 7 8 9])
If the matrix is square, MATLAB plots one line for each column in the matrix.

Alternatively, specify X and Y as matrices of equal size. In this case, MATLAB plots each column of Y against the corresponding column of X. For example:

plot([1 2 3; 4 5 6],[7 8 9; 10 11 12])

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64 | categorical | datetime | duration

y-coordinates, specified as a scalar, vector, or matrix. The size and shape of Y depends on the shape of your data and the type of plot you want to create. This table describes the most common situations.

Type of PlotHow to Specify Coordinates
Single point

Specify X and Y as scalars and include a marker. For example:

plot(1,2,"o")

One set of points

Specify X and Y as any combination of row or column vectors of the same length. For example:

plot([1 2 3],[4; 5; 6])

Alternatively, specify just the y-coordinates. For example:

plot([4 5 6])

Multiple sets of points
(using vectors)

Specify consecutive pairs of X and Y vectors. For example:

plot([1 2 3],[4 5 6],[1 2 3],[7 8 9])

Multiple sets of points
(using matrices)

If all the sets share the same x- or y-coordinates, specify the shared coordinates as a vector and the other coordinates as a matrix. The length of the vector must match one of the dimensions of the matrix. For example:

plot([1 2 3],[4 5 6; 7 8 9])
If the matrix is square, MATLAB plots one line for each column in the matrix.

Alternatively, specify X and Y as matrices of equal size. In this case, MATLAB plots each column of Y against the corresponding column of X. For example:

plot([1 2 3; 4 5 6],[7 8 9; 10 11 12])

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64 | categorical | datetime | duration

Line style, marker, and color, specified as a string or character vector containing symbols. The symbols can appear in any order. You do not need to specify all three characteristics (line style, marker, and color). For example, if you omit the line style and specify the marker, then the plot shows only the marker and no line.

Example: "--or" is a red dashed line with circle markers

Line StyleDescriptionResulting Line
"-"Solid line

Sample of solid line

"--"Dashed line

Sample of dashed line

":"Dotted line

Sample of dotted line

"-."Dash-dotted line

Sample of dash-dotted line, with alternating dashes and dots

MarkerDescriptionResulting Marker
"o"Circle

Sample of circle marker

"+"Plus sign

Sample of plus sign marker

"*"Asterisk

Sample of asterisk marker

"."Point

Sample of point marker

"x"Cross

Sample of cross marker

"_"Horizontal line

Sample of horizontal line marker

"|"Vertical line

Sample of vertical line marker

"square"Square

Sample of square marker

"diamond"Diamond

Sample of diamond line marker

"^"Upward-pointing triangle

Sample of upward-pointing triangle marker

"v"Downward-pointing triangle

Sample of downward-pointing triangle marker

">"Right-pointing triangle

Sample of right-pointing triangle marker

"<"Left-pointing triangle

Sample of left-pointing triangle marker

"pentagram"Pentagram

Sample of pentagram marker

"hexagram"Hexagram

Sample of hexagram marker

Color NameShort NameRGB TripletAppearance
"red""r"[1 0 0]

Sample of the color red

"green""g"[0 1 0]

Sample of the color green

"blue""b"[0 0 1]

Sample of the color blue

"cyan" "c"[0 1 1]

Sample of the color cyan

"magenta""m"[1 0 1]

Sample of the color magenta

"yellow""y"[1 1 0]

Sample of the color yellow

"black""k"[0 0 0]

Sample of the color black

"white""w"[1 1 1]

Sample of the color white

Source table containing the data to plot, specified as a table or a timetable.

Table variables containing the x-coordinates, specified using one of the indexing schemes from the table.

Indexing SchemeExamples

Variable names:

  • A string, character vector, or cell array.

  • A pattern object.

  • "A" or 'A' — A variable called A

  • ["A","B"] or {'A','B'} — Two variables called A and B

  • "Var"+digitsPattern(1) — Variables named "Var" followed by a single digit

Variable index:

  • An index number that refers to the location of a variable in the table.

  • A vector of numbers.

  • A logical vector. Typically, this vector is the same length as the number of variables, but you can omit trailing 0 or false values.

  • 3 — The third variable from the table

  • [2 3] — The second and third variables from the table

  • [false false true] — The third variable

Variable type:

  • A vartype subscript that selects variables of a specified type.

  • vartype("categorical") — All the variables containing categorical values

The table variables you specify can contain numeric, categorical, datetime, or duration values. If xvar and yvar both specify multiple variables, the number of variables must be the same.

Example: plot(tbl,["x1","x2"],"y") specifies the table variables named x1 and x2 for the x-coordinates.

Example: plot(tbl,2,"y") specifies the second variable for the x-coordinates.

Example: plot(tbl,vartype("numeric"),"y") specifies all numeric variables for the x-coordinates.

Table variables containing the y-coordinates, specified using one of the indexing schemes from the table.

Indexing SchemeExamples

Variable names:

  • A string, character vector, or cell array.

  • A pattern object.

  • "A" or 'A' — A variable called A

  • ["A","B"] or {'A','B'} — Two variables called A and B

  • "Var"+digitsPattern(1) — Variables named "Var" followed by a single digit

Variable index:

  • An index number that refers to the location of a variable in the table.

  • A vector of numbers.

  • A logical vector. Typically, this vector is the same length as the number of variables, but you can omit trailing 0 or false values.

  • 3 — The third variable from the table

  • [2 3] — The second and third variables from the table

  • [false false true] — The third variable

Variable type:

  • A vartype subscript that selects variables of a specified type.

  • vartype("categorical") — All the variables containing categorical values

The table variables you specify can contain numeric, categorical, datetime, or duration values. If xvar and yvar both specify multiple variables, the number of variables must be the same.

Example: plot(tbl,"x",["y1","y2"]) specifies the table variables named y1 and y2 for the y-coordinates.

Example: plot(tbl,"x",2) specifies the second variable for the y-coordinates.

Example: plot(tbl,"x",vartype("numeric")) specifies all numeric variables for the y-coordinates.

Target axes, specified as an Axes object, a PolarAxes object, or a GeographicAxes object. If you do not specify the axes, MATLAB plots into the current axes or it creates an Axes object if one does not exist.

To create a polar plot or geographic plot, specify ax as a PolarAxes or GeographicAxes object. Alternatively, call the polarplot or geoplot function.

Name-Value Arguments

Specify optional pairs of arguments as Name1=Value1,...,NameN=ValueN, where Name is the argument name and Value is the corresponding value. Name-value arguments must appear after other arguments, but the order of the pairs does not matter.

Example: plot([0 1],[2 3],LineWidth=2)

Before R2021a, use commas to separate each name and value, and enclose Name in quotes.

Example: plot([0 1],[2 3],"LineWidth",2)

Note

The properties listed here are only a subset. For a complete list, see Line Properties.

Line color, specified as an RGB triplet, a hexadecimal color code, a color name, or a short name.

For a custom color, specify an RGB triplet or a hexadecimal color code.

  • An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1], for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7].

  • A hexadecimal color code is a character vector or a string scalar that starts with a hash symbol (#) followed by three or six hexadecimal digits, which can range from 0 to F. The values are not case sensitive. Therefore, the color codes "#FF8800", "#ff8800", "#F80", and "#f80" are equivalent.

Alternatively, you can specify some common colors by name. This table lists the named color options, the equivalent RGB triplets, and hexadecimal color codes.

Color NameShort NameRGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
"red""r"[1 0 0]"#FF0000"

Sample of the color red

"green""g"[0 1 0]"#00FF00"

Sample of the color green

"blue""b"[0 0 1]"#0000FF"

Sample of the color blue

"cyan" "c"[0 1 1]"#00FFFF"

Sample of the color cyan

"magenta""m"[1 0 1]"#FF00FF"

Sample of the color magenta

"yellow""y"[1 1 0]"#FFFF00"

Sample of the color yellow

"black""k"[0 0 0]"#000000"

Sample of the color black

"white""w"[1 1 1]"#FFFFFF"

Sample of the color white

"none"Not applicableNot applicableNot applicableNo color

Here are the RGB triplets and hexadecimal color codes for the default colors MATLAB uses in many types of plots.

RGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
[0 0.4470 0.7410]"#0072BD"

Sample of RGB triplet [0 0.4470 0.7410], which appears as dark blue

[0.8500 0.3250 0.0980]"#D95319"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.8500 0.3250 0.0980], which appears as dark orange

[0.9290 0.6940 0.1250]"#EDB120"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.9290 0.6940 0.1250], which appears as dark yellow

[0.4940 0.1840 0.5560]"#7E2F8E"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.4940 0.1840 0.5560], which appears as dark purple

[0.4660 0.6740 0.1880]"#77AC30"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.4660 0.6740 0.1880], which appears as medium green

[0.3010 0.7450 0.9330]"#4DBEEE"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.3010 0.7450 0.9330], which appears as light blue

[0.6350 0.0780 0.1840]"#A2142F"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.6350 0.0780 0.1840], which appears as dark red

Example: "blue"

Example: [0 0 1]

Example: "#0000FF"

Line style, specified as one of the options listed in this table.

Line StyleDescriptionResulting Line
"-"Solid line

Sample of solid line

"--"Dashed line

Sample of dashed line

":"Dotted line

Sample of dotted line

"-."Dash-dotted line

Sample of dash-dotted line, with alternating dashes and dots

"none"No lineNo line

Line width, specified as a positive value in points, where 1 point = 1/72 of an inch. If the line has markers, then the line width also affects the marker edges.

The line width cannot be thinner than the width of a pixel. If you set the line width to a value that is less than the width of a pixel on your system, the line displays as one pixel wide.

Marker symbol, specified as one of the values listed in this table. By default, the object does not display markers. Specifying a marker symbol adds markers at each data point or vertex.

MarkerDescriptionResulting Marker
"o"Circle

Sample of circle marker

"+"Plus sign

Sample of plus sign marker

"*"Asterisk

Sample of asterisk marker

"."Point

Sample of point marker

"x"Cross

Sample of cross marker

"_"Horizontal line

Sample of horizontal line marker

"|"Vertical line

Sample of vertical line marker

"square"Square

Sample of square marker

"diamond"Diamond

Sample of diamond line marker

"^"Upward-pointing triangle

Sample of upward-pointing triangle marker

"v"Downward-pointing triangle

Sample of downward-pointing triangle marker

">"Right-pointing triangle

Sample of right-pointing triangle marker

"<"Left-pointing triangle

Sample of left-pointing triangle marker

"pentagram"Pentagram

Sample of pentagram marker

"hexagram"Hexagram

Sample of hexagram marker

"none"No markersNot applicable

Indices of data points at which to display markers, specified as a vector of positive integers. If you do not specify the indices, then MATLAB displays a marker at every data point.

Note

To see the markers, you must also specify a marker symbol.

Example: plot(x,y,"-o","MarkerIndices",[1 5 10]) displays a circle marker at the first, fifth, and tenth data points.

Example: plot(x,y,"-x","MarkerIndices",1:3:length(y)) displays a cross marker every three data points.

Example: plot(x,y,"Marker","square","MarkerIndices",5) displays one square marker at the fifth data point.

Marker outline color, specified as "auto", an RGB triplet, a hexadecimal color code, a color name, or a short name. The default value of "auto" uses the same color as the Color property.

For a custom color, specify an RGB triplet or a hexadecimal color code.

  • An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1], for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7].

  • A hexadecimal color code is a character vector or a string scalar that starts with a hash symbol (#) followed by three or six hexadecimal digits, which can range from 0 to F. The values are not case sensitive. Therefore, the color codes "#FF8800", "#ff8800", "#F80", and "#f80" are equivalent.

Alternatively, you can specify some common colors by name. This table lists the named color options, the equivalent RGB triplets, and hexadecimal color codes.

Color NameShort NameRGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
"red""r"[1 0 0]"#FF0000"

Sample of the color red

"green""g"[0 1 0]"#00FF00"

Sample of the color green

"blue""b"[0 0 1]"#0000FF"

Sample of the color blue

"cyan" "c"[0 1 1]"#00FFFF"

Sample of the color cyan

"magenta""m"[1 0 1]"#FF00FF"

Sample of the color magenta

"yellow""y"[1 1 0]"#FFFF00"

Sample of the color yellow

"black""k"[0 0 0]"#000000"

Sample of the color black

"white""w"[1 1 1]"#FFFFFF"

Sample of the color white

"none"Not applicableNot applicableNot applicableNo color

Here are the RGB triplets and hexadecimal color codes for the default colors MATLAB uses in many types of plots.

RGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
[0 0.4470 0.7410]"#0072BD"

Sample of RGB triplet [0 0.4470 0.7410], which appears as dark blue

[0.8500 0.3250 0.0980]"#D95319"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.8500 0.3250 0.0980], which appears as dark orange

[0.9290 0.6940 0.1250]"#EDB120"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.9290 0.6940 0.1250], which appears as dark yellow

[0.4940 0.1840 0.5560]"#7E2F8E"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.4940 0.1840 0.5560], which appears as dark purple

[0.4660 0.6740 0.1880]"#77AC30"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.4660 0.6740 0.1880], which appears as medium green

[0.3010 0.7450 0.9330]"#4DBEEE"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.3010 0.7450 0.9330], which appears as light blue

[0.6350 0.0780 0.1840]"#A2142F"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.6350 0.0780 0.1840], which appears as dark red

Marker fill color, specified as "auto", an RGB triplet, a hexadecimal color code, a color name, or a short name. The "auto" option uses the same color as the Color property of the parent axes. If you specify "auto" and the axes plot box is invisible, the marker fill color is the color of the figure.

For a custom color, specify an RGB triplet or a hexadecimal color code.

  • An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1], for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7].

  • A hexadecimal color code is a character vector or a string scalar that starts with a hash symbol (#) followed by three or six hexadecimal digits, which can range from 0 to F. The values are not case sensitive. Therefore, the color codes "#FF8800", "#ff8800", "#F80", and "#f80" are equivalent.

Alternatively, you can specify some common colors by name. This table lists the named color options, the equivalent RGB triplets, and hexadecimal color codes.

Color NameShort NameRGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
"red""r"[1 0 0]"#FF0000"

Sample of the color red

"green""g"[0 1 0]"#00FF00"

Sample of the color green

"blue""b"[0 0 1]"#0000FF"

Sample of the color blue

"cyan" "c"[0 1 1]"#00FFFF"

Sample of the color cyan

"magenta""m"[1 0 1]"#FF00FF"

Sample of the color magenta

"yellow""y"[1 1 0]"#FFFF00"

Sample of the color yellow

"black""k"[0 0 0]"#000000"

Sample of the color black

"white""w"[1 1 1]"#FFFFFF"

Sample of the color white

"none"Not applicableNot applicableNot applicableNo color

Here are the RGB triplets and hexadecimal color codes for the default colors MATLAB uses in many types of plots.

RGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
[0 0.4470 0.7410]"#0072BD"

Sample of RGB triplet [0 0.4470 0.7410], which appears as dark blue

[0.8500 0.3250 0.0980]"#D95319"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.8500 0.3250 0.0980], which appears as dark orange

[0.9290 0.6940 0.1250]"#EDB120"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.9290 0.6940 0.1250], which appears as dark yellow

[0.4940 0.1840 0.5560]"#7E2F8E"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.4940 0.1840 0.5560], which appears as dark purple

[0.4660 0.6740 0.1880]"#77AC30"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.4660 0.6740 0.1880], which appears as medium green

[0.3010 0.7450 0.9330]"#4DBEEE"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.3010 0.7450 0.9330], which appears as light blue

[0.6350 0.0780 0.1840]"#A2142F"

Sample of RGB triplet [0.6350 0.0780 0.1840], which appears as dark red

Marker size, specified as a positive value in points, where 1 point = 1/72 of an inch.

Format for datetime tick labels, specified as the comma-separated pair consisting of "DatetimeTickFormat" and a character vector or string containing a date format. Use the letters A-Z and a-z to construct a custom format. These letters correspond to the Unicode® Locale Data Markup Language (LDML) standard for dates. You can include non-ASCII letter characters such as a hyphen, space, or colon to separate the fields.

If you do not specify a value for "DatetimeTickFormat", then plot automatically optimizes and updates the tick labels based on the axis limits.

Example: "DatetimeTickFormat","eeee, MMMM d, yyyy HH:mm:ss" displays a date and time such as Saturday, April 19, 2014 21:41:06.

The following table shows several common display formats and examples of the formatted output for the date, Saturday, April 19, 2014 at 9:41:06 PM in New York City.

Value of DatetimeTickFormatExample
"yyyy-MM-dd"2014-04-19
"dd/MM/yyyy"19/04/2014
"dd.MM.yyyy"19.04.2014
"yyyy年 MM月 dd日"2014年 04月 19日
"MMMM d, yyyy"April 19, 2014
"eeee, MMMM d, yyyy HH:mm:ss"Saturday, April 19, 2014 21:41:06
"MMMM d, yyyy HH:mm:ss Z"April 19, 2014 21:41:06 -0400

For a complete list of valid letter identifiers, see the Format property for datetime arrays.

DatetimeTickFormat is not a chart line property. You must set the tick format using the name-value pair argument when creating a plot. Alternatively, set the format using the xtickformat and ytickformat functions.

The TickLabelFormat property of the datetime ruler stores the format.

Format for duration tick labels, specified as the comma-separated pair consisting of "DurationTickFormat" and a character vector or string containing a duration format.

If you do not specify a value for "DurationTickFormat", then plot automatically optimizes and updates the tick labels based on the axis limits.

To display a duration as a single number that includes a fractional part, for example, 1.234 hours, specify one of the values in this table.

Value of DurationTickFormat Description
"y"Number of exact fixed-length years. A fixed-length year is equal to 365.2425 days.
"d"Number of exact fixed-length days. A fixed-length day is equal to 24 hours.
"h"Number of hours
"m"Number of minutes
"s"Number of seconds

Example: "DurationTickFormat","d" displays duration values in terms of fixed-length days.

To display a duration in the form of a digital timer, specify one of these values.

  • "dd:hh:mm:ss"

  • "hh:mm:ss"

  • "mm:ss"

  • "hh:mm"

In addition, you can display up to nine fractional second digits by appending up to nine S characters.

Example: "DurationTickFormat","hh:mm:ss.SSS" displays the milliseconds of a duration value to three digits.

DurationTickFormat is not a chart line property. You must set the tick format using the name-value pair argument when creating a plot. Alternatively, set the format using the xtickformat and ytickformat functions.

The TickLabelFormat property of the duration ruler stores the format.

Tips

  • Use NaN and Inf values to create breaks in the lines. For example, this code plots the first two elements, skips the third element, and draws another line using the last two elements:

    plot([1,2,NaN,4,5])

  • plot uses colors and line styles based on the ColorOrder and LineStyleOrder properties of the axes. plot cycles through the colors with the first line style. Then, it cycles through the colors again with each additional line style.

    You can change the colors and the line styles after plotting by setting the ColorOrder or LineStyleOrder properties on the axes. You can also call the colororder function to change the color order for all the axes in the figure. (since R2019b)

Extended Capabilities

Version History

Introduced before R2006a

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