Byte conversion is a simple tool that helps you quickly convert between units of digital information. This calculator converts over 20 units, starting with very common megabytes or bites and including also rare units such as exbibytes or tebibits.
Byte conversion is often used in estimating file size — make sure to check out our video file size calculator!
Most common conversions
The most basic unit of digital data measurement is a bit, 8 of which equals a byte. Byte-based values are commonly used when describing the capacity of drives, storage spaces, or the sizes of files. Data unit conversion is very simple when using bytes, as you simply add/remove a specific number of zeros to get the correct value.
While a byte is very tiny, a kilobyte equals 1000 bytes, and a megabyte (1 MB) is the same as 1,000,000 bytes (or 8,000,000 bits). A gigabyte (1 GB) is equal to a further 1,000 MBs, while 1 TB is 1,000 GB. These conversions use the decimal prefix system, which is how this calculator is set up by default.
The other approach is the binary system, where a kibibyte is 1024 bytes, a mebibyte is 1,048,576 bytes, etc.
💡 To calculate the conversion using the binary system, change the units in the calculator from kilobytes (KB) to kibibytes (KiB) for one variable and megabytes (MB) to mebibytes (MiB) for another variable, etc.
What is a byte?
A byte is the most common unit of digital information used in modern computing. A byte corresponds to 8 bits and is capable of storing
256 different combinations. Bytes are the basis of digital computing: even though your computer works with bits, you can't manipulate anything smaller than a byte. By the way, every single character in this answer is encoded by a byte, as everything else on your device!
What is the difference between bit and byte?
A bit is the basic unit of digital information, capable of storing a single binary value,
1. Think of a bit as an object with only two possible states,
false). By combining bits, you can create increasingly complex combinations of those states. Two bits store four possible combinations:
11. This number grows, and with 8 bits, you can create
256 words: this is enough to store letters, numbers, and symbols, leaving room to spare, and scientists eventually adopted this as standard.
Are byte multiples binary or decimal?
Byte multiples can be both binary and decimal, depending on the scope of the applications. We differentiate them with specific prefixes:
- The decimal multiples are identified by the prefixes
- The binary multiples are identified by the prefixes
The difference in values depends on the powers used:
- For the decimal multiples, we use the kilobyte as the base and proceed from there: 1000² (megabyte), 1000³ (gigabyte), and so on.
- For the binary multiples, we use 210 = 1024 (the kibibyte) as the base, with multiples 1024², 1024³...
How many kilobytes is 1000 bytes?
1000 bytes are exactly 1 kilobyte. The kilobyte is a decimal multiple of the byte: don't mistake it with the kibibyte, the binary multiple, that corresponds to 1024 bytes. Kilobyte and kibibyte differ only by 2.4% in size, but this difference grows exponentially with the orders of magnitude of memory, causing many difficulties and misunderstandings when talking about computer memories!