How to Use OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

This guide will discuss how to use the OCT2HEX function in Google Sheets.

When we need to convert an octal number to a hexadecimal number, we can easily do this using the OCT2HEX function in Google Sheets.

The rules for using the OCT2HEX function in Google Sheets are the following:

  • Only the digits 0-7 are valid with any octal value. Thus, any digits outside of 0-7 will cause the OCT2HEX function to return a #NUM! error. 
  •  The most significant bit of the signed_octal_number argument is the sign bit. 
  • If the number of digits required is greater than the specified significant_digits, the function will return a #NUM! error. 
  • If the significant_digits value is greater than the number of significant digits in the result, the result is left-padded with zeros until the total number of digits reaches the same significant_digits value. 
  • The function will ignore the significant_digits argument if the most significant bit of the signed_octal_number is 1.  

Google Sheets offers various built-in functions that enable us to perform difficult tasks easily. This includes functions we can utilize to work with different number systems. 

One of these is the OCT2HEX function, which we can use to convert a signed octal number (base 8) to a signed hexadecimal format (based 16). 

In this guide, we will provide a step-by-step tutorial on how to use the OCT2HEX function in Google Sheets. Additionally, we will explore the syntax and a real example of using the function.

Great! Let’s dive right in.

The Anatomy of the OCT2HEX Function

The syntax or the way we write the OCT2HEX function is as follows:

=OCT2HEX(signed_octal_number,[significant_digits])

  • = the equal sign is how we start any function in Google Sheets.
  • OCT2HEX() refers to our OCT2HEX function. This function converts a signed octal number (base 8) to a signed hexadecimal format (base 16).
  • signed_octal_number is the only required argument. This refers to the signed 30-bit value we want to convert to signed hexadecimal. Additionally, this value is provided as a string. The value must be between -4000000000 and 3777777777.
  • significant_digits is an optional argument. This refers to the number of significant digits we want to ensure in the result. If omitted, the function will use the minimum number of digits necessary to represent the number.

Common Mistakes in Using OCT2HEX Function

The OCT2HEX function is generally easy to use, however, there might be some situations where it won’t work as expected. Therefore, it is important to take note of these things;

Firstly, we may have used a different number of arguments. The OCT2HEX function only has 1 required argument and 1 optional argument. Make sure to use the appropriate arguments for the function to work.

Secondly, we may have inputted an invalid number format. This error occurs when the value provided in the argument is not a valid octal number. The OCT2HEX function only works with octal numbers. Hence, we cannot input decimal or binary numbers.

Also, remember that octal numbers only use the digits 0-7.

Thirdly, we may have placed an inaccurate significant_digits argument. We must ensure that our significant_digits argument is large enough to accurately represent the octal number. If the given value is too small, the function will return an incorrect conversion.

Lastly, check for any syntax errors or typos in the formula. Ensure that we are using the correct function name and argument structure.

A Real Example of Using OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

Let’s say we have a data set containing octal numbers. We want to convert the signed octal numbers to the signed hexadecimal format. Our initial data set would look like this:

Initial dataset

The number system with a base of 8 is called the octal number system. It uses digits from 0 to 7, which is called octal numbers. On the other hand, the hexadecimal number system has a base value equal to 16. 

Hexadecimal numbers are represented by only 16 symbols which are 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, A, B, C, D, E, and F. Each digit represents a decimal value.

In this example, we want to convert the octal numbers in the data set to hexadecimal numbers. We can easily perform this task using the OCT2HEX function. 

We will utilize the formula below to complete our task:

=OCT2HEX(A2,4)

OCT2HEX formula

The first part of the formula refers to the required signed_octal_number argument. We simply selected the cell containing the octal number we want to convert. In this case, we selected the cell A2.

The next part of the formula is the optional significant_digits argument. In this case, we want the results to have 4 significant digits. 

This argument allows us to control the precision of the resulting hexadecimal number, ensuring that important data is not lost during conversion. 

Our final data set would look like this:

Final dataset

You can make your own copy of the spreadsheet above using the link below. 

Amazing! Now we can dive into the steps of using the OCT2HEX function in Google Sheets.

How to Use OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

1. First, we will create a new column in the data set to display the converted hexadecimal numbers.

OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

2. We will select the first empty row to type in our formula. To begin, we will type in an equal sign and the function name. This will make our formula “=OCT2HEX(“.

OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

3. Then, we will select the cell containing the octal number we want to convert. In this case, our formula would be “=OCT2HEX(A2”.

OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

4. Next, we will decide the significant numbers we want the resulting hexadecimal numbers to have. In this case, we will input “4” as our significant_digits argument. Thus, our final formula would be “=OCT2HEX(A2,4)”.

OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

5. Finally, we will press the Enter key to return the result.

OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

6. Then, we will drag down the Fill Handle tool to copy the formula and apply it to the rest of the cells. 

OCT2HEX Function in Google Sheets

And tada! We have successfully used the OCT2HEX function in Google Sheets.

You can apply this guide whenever you need to convert signed octal numbers to signed hexadecimal format. You can now use the OCT2HEX function and the various other Google Sheets formulas available to create great worksheets that work for you.

FAQs

1. When do we need to convert signed octal numbers to signed hexadecimal numbers?

We often need to convert octal numbers to hexadecimal numbers in engineering calculations, computer programming, or digital electronics. It is particularly useful when working with different number systems.

2. What are other functions related to the OCT2HEX function?

We use the OCT2HEX function when working with octal numbers. If we want to convert a decimal or binary number to a hexadecimal number and vice versa, we can utilize the HEX2DEC function or BIN2HEX function, respectively. 

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