DataLogic 2 of 5

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DataLogic 2 of 5

DataLogic 2 of 5 is part of the larger 2 of 5 family of symbol encodation. The name is derived from the use of five characters  — two of which are wide and three of which are narrow — to encode information. DataLogic 2 of 5 differs from standard 2 of 5 symbology for its use of both spaces and bars to encode information. It was developed in the late 1960s by the Datalogic corporation as a higher-density alternative to standard 2 of 5 symbologies, but is no longer widely used.


The DataLogic 2 of 5 format consists of six key elements:

  • A Leading Quiet Zone
  • One Start Character
  • All Data Characters
  • One Optional Check Digit
  • One Stop Character
  • A Trailing Quiet Zone 

DataLogic 2 of 5 can only encode numeric digits 0-9; it can be produced with bars and spaces only or with human-readable text below. While this symbology does feature high information density, it is prone to potential errors since both the bars and spaces carry information and the code contains no self-checking. If widths or encodation is inaccurate, the code will simply fail to read.

Common Use Cases

The DataLogic 2 of 5 barcode variant is rarely used, despite its potential for high density information encoding. Its primary application is the processing and sorting of mail for the Chinese Postal Service — as a result, this format is sometimes called the China Post code. 

Postal Barcode