Not Sure How to Calculate the # of Bars for a Histogram?

QI Macros add-in for Excel can calculate these for you!

Draw Histograms using QI Macros

  1. Select your data.
  2. Select Histogram on QI Macros menu.
  3. QI Macros will do the math and draw the graph for you.

Go Deeper: Here's How to Calculate the Number of Bars Manually

The simple answer is we round the square root of the number of data points. For example:

  • 25 data points = 5 bars
  • 100 data points = 10 bars

If there are too many bars (e.g., more than 50) to display nicely on the page, we limit the number of bars.

Juran's Quality Control Handbook provides these guidelines for the number of bars and states that they are not "rigid" and should be adjusted when necessary.

    Number of Data Points Number of Bars



    51-100 7
    101-200 8
    201-500 9
    501-1000 10
    1000+ 11-20

QI Macros prompts you for the number of bars you would like, however, you won't always get exactly the number you input. Why? Because we're trying to fit the graph to the page between varying specification limits within the constraints of Excel while still making it as readable as possible.

Compare QI Macros® histograms to Minitab® and you'll see they are similar:

QI Macros

qi macros histogram example


minitab histogram example

QI Macros histogram with normal curve in excel
minitab histogram example with normal curve
QI Macros histogram example skewed to the left
minitab histogram example skewed to the left
QI Macros histogram in excel
minitab histogram example

Other Histogram Information

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The histogram is just one of the tools included in QI Macros SPC Software for Excel.

Why Choose QI Macros to Perform Capability Analysis and Draw Histograms?

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