What is 3D Reference in Excel?

What is 3D Reference in Excel?

3D reference is a new feature in Excel 2016 that allows you to create a relationship between multiple worksheets in the same workbook.

A simple example of this would be if you had two sheets with sales data and wanted to be able to view those sales data from both sheets at the same time. You could create a 3D reference between the two sheets so that when you change one sheet, it automatically changes the other sheet as well.

I mean, a 3D reference is a combination of row and column references that allow you to refer to a cell by name. For example, consider the formula =SUM(A1:B5). This formula adds the values in cells A1 through B5. It uses a 2D reference because it only knows about rows and columns.

To get more specific, we can add another dimension to this reference by adding an extra set of brackets after our first two sets of brackets: =SUM({1}:{2}). This form forces Excel to use only one set of square brackets when referring to the range A1:B5 — so no matter how many rows or columns are added, later on, we’ll always be able to use just one set of square brackets for this range (e.g., {1}:{2}).

What is 3D Reference in Excel?

Understanding 3D Reference in Excel

3D Reference is a feature in Excel that allows you to use multiple sheets as a single sheet.

The reference on the second sheet will change whenever you change the value on the first sheet.

To create 3D references, follow these steps:

1. Go to Sheet 2 and select any cell.

2. Click on the Home tab and click on Define Name (or press F3).

3. In the New Name box type =[Sheet 1]!$A$2 and click Enter.

Syntax and Rules of 3D References in Excel


3D references are the most common type of reference used in Excel. They are used to point to a cell or range of cells above, below, to the left or to the right of the reference.

The syntax and rules for creating a 3D reference are:


A 3D reference can be created by using any combination of these three dimensions. For example, [A1] is a 2D reference, [A1:C2] is a 2 x 2 array (2 columns x 2 rows), [A1:C3] is a 2 x 3 array (2 columns x 3 rows) etc.

The general rule for creating a valid 3D reference is that all three dimensions must be specified and that they must be separated by commas (but not spaces).

The syntax of 3D references in Excel is very similar to regular references. The only difference is that we need to use the dollar sign ($) as a prefix to our cell reference.

Formatting and Data Validation with 3D Cell Reference in Excel

3D referencing is a useful feature in Excel that gives you the ability to refer to cells above and below the active cell. This can be handy for creating formulas that use multiple ranges of data.

In this tutorial, I will show you how to use 3D cell referencing in Excel 2016 and above, as well as how to format and validate data using 3D references.

You can also use 3D cell referencing with named ranges, which are a great way to organize your workbooks and make them easier to navigate.

Using 3D Cell Reference in Excel Formulas

3D cell references are often useful, but they can be tricky to use. The main benefit of using them is to create formulas that refer to cells in more than one worksheet. For example, if you have a formula that calculates the cost savings from a price reduction, you may want the formula to calculate the new cost for several products on each worksheet.

Another common application for 3D cell references is when you want to use formulas that refer to cells in other workbooks or other sheets in the same workbook.

To display a 3D reference, precede the row letter with an extra set of square brackets: [ ]3D. You must include all three sets of brackets if you’re referring to a cell in another workbook or another sheet in the same workbook or it won’t work right!

It’s written in the form:


The 3D cell reference allows you to create formulas that refer to cells in multiple worksheets or workbooks.

In this article, we’ll show you how to use 3D cell references in Excel formulas and how to convert them into 2D references if necessary.

So, there you have it, if you are using Excel 2013, 2016 or Office 365, 3D reference will give a nice sheen to your charts. You can use this dynamic chart style like any other chart, apply data labels and 2D dynamic labels and all the plotting techniques available in Excel.

We have come to the end of our first post. We hope it helped you. You can read this article on the subject or you can read this article we found for you from another site.


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