This DensityHistogram doesn't display very well. Some bins are shown much larger than others and, oddly, empty bins appear to be drawn smaller than occupied bins.

DensityHistogram[RandomVariate[BinormalDistribution[.5], 50000], {100, 100}]

enter image description here

In ArrayPlot, similar problems are solved with PixelConstrained. How can PixelConstrained be emulated with DensityHistogram?

  • $\begingroup$ I don't understand: what parts of this graphic display "empty bins"? And how are we to tell that bin sizes differ? (Unfortunately your example is not reproducible because you haven't specified a seed--and it takes a bit of time to compute, anyway. Could you offer a simple example of the problem?) I wonder whether you're not just noting aliasing at this resolution. $\endgroup$ – whuber Mar 8 '13 at 19:51
  • $\begingroup$ @whuber No, I could reproduce it — the pixel sizes indeed are different (try exporting it as a pdf — it's more obvious there). The empty bins that he's talking about are the "white" parts. $\endgroup$ – rm -rf Mar 8 '13 at 20:17
  • $\begingroup$ @rm-rf I cannot reproduce this behavior even using the command as given (MMA 8.0). When I make the histogram large enough to be able to inspect the "empty bins," I find them to be of the correct sizes. Even when I make it very small, to the degree I can discern any details, I still do not see uneven sizes. (Exporting to PDF adds an unnecessary complication--if the result appears wrong, it could be a problem with the export or with the PDF rendering itself, so I didn't bother to look at that.) $\endgroup$ – whuber Mar 8 '13 at 20:41
  • $\begingroup$ @whuber Here's a screenshot from my session. Please zoom in well into the region I've marked. You'll see that the squares are all of different sizes. $\endgroup$ – rm -rf Mar 8 '13 at 21:03
  • $\begingroup$ @rm-rf I really don't see it, nor is it visible in the underlying code. Try Cases[DensityHistogram[ RandomVariate[BinormalDistribution[.5], 50000], {100, 100}], RectangleBox[a___] :> EuclideanDistance@a, Infinity] // Union to see what the kinds of rectangle sizes are present in the plot. They are all virtually the same. I must assume what you see is some kind of aliasing with the pixel raster of your screen. $\endgroup$ – Sjoerd C. de Vries Mar 8 '13 at 21:35

I don't quite think you can emulate this with DensityHistogram, but since all it does is computing the 2D histogram and plotting it, we could do those steps ourselves and use ArrayPlot with its nice PixelConstrained option.

Here's a proof of concept:

data = RandomVariate[BinormalDistribution[.5], 50000];
{bins, counts} = HistogramList[data, {100, 100}];

ArrayPlot[counts, DataReversed -> True, 
    DataRange -> (Through[{Min, Max}@#] & /@ bins), 
    FrameTicks -> {True, True, False, False}, ImageSize -> 500,
    ColorFunction -> "LakeColors", ColorRules -> {0 -> White}, 
    PixelConstrained -> True, Frame -> True, PlotRange -> {{-4, 4}, {-4, 4}}

Note that you still need to get the data reversal right and the ticks going the right way to mimic DensityHistogram exactly, but that's a minor detail and I'll leave that to you.


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