Dividing out RGB to HEX codes

How HEX codes work with RGB and math

By brunsdesign, March 23, 2024

Recently, I stumbled upon a video from a graphic designer that introduced the relationship how HEX codes work with RGB and math. It got me thinking about the significance of these codes in digital design and how they contribute to the colorful world of creativity. HEX codes, also known as hexadecimal codes, serve as alphanumeric representations of colors, extensively used in web design, graphic design, and various digital applications. Understanding the mechanics behind HEX codes, their connection with RGB values, and the underlying math involved can significantly enhance a designer’s ability to craft visually appealing and consistent color schemes across different platforms.

So, what exactly are HEX codes? These codes are comprised of a hash symbol (#) followed by a six-character code, with each pair of characters representing the intensity of red, green, and blue (RGB) in a color. For example, #FF0000 signifies pure red, #00FF00 represents pure green, and #0000FF denotes pure blue.

The relationship between HEX codes and RGB values is pivotal in digital design. RGB values, which are another common method of representing colors digitally, involve mixing varying intensities of red, green, and blue light. Each color channel in the RGB model can range from 0 to 255. HEX codes provide a more concise and user-friendly way to represent these RGB values in a hexadecimal format.

Understanding the math behind HEX codes is essential for designers to effectively manipulate colors and maintain consistency in their designs. The hexadecimal numbering system, which operates on a base-16 scale, allows each digit to have 16 possible values (0-9 and A-F). When converting RGB values to HEX codes or vice versa, designers perform simple mathematical calculations. For instance, to convert an RGB value to its corresponding HEX code, each color channel value (0-255) is divided by 16 to determine the first digit, and the remainder gives the second digit. This process is repeated for each color channel to obtain the complete six-character HEX code.

This image demonstrates how to find HEX codes from RGB values using division with remainders.

This image demonstrates how to find HEX codes from RGB values using division with remainders.

To illustrate, let’s take the example of the color blue represented by RGB values of 35, 167, and 224. First, we divide each RGB value by 16: 35 ÷ 16 = 2 with a remainder of 3, 167 ÷ 16 = 10 with a remainder of 7, and 224 ÷ 16 = 14 with no remainder. Then, we convert the quotient and remainder into hexadecimal notation: 3 in decimal is represented as ‘3’ in hexadecimal, 10 as ‘A’ followed by its remainder of 7, and 14 as ‘E’ with a remainder of 0. Therefore, the HEX code for the color blue is #23A7E0, where ’23’ represents the intensity of red, ‘A7’ represents green, and ‘E0’ represents blue. This process allows designers to precisely translate between RGB and HEX color formats, facilitating seamless color manipulation and ensuring visual consistency in design projects.

In conclusion, mastering HEX codes and understanding their connection with RGB values and mathematics is crucial for designers working in digital media. By delving into the intricacies of these color representations, designers can unleash their creativity with confidence and precision, crafting visually stunning designs that captivate audiences across the digital landscape. As designers, embracing the power of HEX codes allows us to navigate the colorful world of digital design with ease and finesse, ensuring that our creations stand out in the ever-evolving digital landscape.