Adventures in Machine Learning

Crunching Numbers: Understanding NumPy Integers and Python 3 Integers

NumPy Integer Handling: Understanding Data Types and Maximum Sizes

Have you ever encountered an overflow error while working with integers in NumPy? If so, you are not alone.

NumPy is a widely-used Python library for scientific computing, and its handling of integers can sometimes be tricky. In this article, we will explore the different types of integer variables in NumPy, their maximum sizes, and how to avoid common errors.

Types of Integer Variables

In NumPy, there are several types of integer variables that you can use. The most common are int, int64, long int, and arbitrary-precision integers.

Depending on your application, you may prefer one type over another. The int variable is the most basic type of integer in NumPy. It is a fixed-size integer that can range from -2147483648 to 2147483647.

The int64 variable is a 64-bit integer that can store much larger values, up to 9223372036854775807. The long int variable is a Python object that can handle arbitrarily large integers.

Finally, the arbitrary-precision integer variable allows you to store integers of any size, but at the expense of performance.

Maximum Integer Size

Knowing the maximum size of each integer variable is important to avoid overflow errors. If you try to store a value that exceeds the maximum size of a variable, you will get an OverflowError.

Here are the maximum sizes of each variable:

– int: -2147483648 to 2147483647

– int64: -9223372036854775808 to 9223372036854775807

– long int: unlimited

– arbitrary-precision integer: unlimited, but performance may suffer for large values

Note that the maximum size of the int variable is platform-dependent. On a 32-bit Python program running on Windows, for example, the maximum size of int is 2147483647.

On a 64-bit Python program, the maximum size of int is the same as int64.

Solution for Windows Users

If you are using NumPy on Windows, you may encounter overflow errors when working with large integers. To avoid this, you can use the dtype parameter to specify the int64 variable instead of int.

Here is an example:

import numpy as np

a = np.array([9223372036854775807], dtype=np.int64)

b = np.array([1], dtype=np.int64)

c = a + b


In this example, we create two arrays, a and b, with the int64 data type. We then add them together and print the result.

This will avoid any overflow errors that may occur when working with int variables on a 32-bit Python program.


In conclusion, understanding the different types of integer variables in NumPy and their maximum sizes is crucial to avoid overflow errors. By using int64 instead of int and specifying the data type with the dtype parameter, you can safely work with large integers on Windows.

With these tips, you can confidently handle integers in NumPy and take advantage of its powerful features in scientific computing. NumPy Int Type in Comparison to Python 3 Int: A Deep Dive

In scientific computing, NumPy is a go-to library for performing complex mathematical operations.

Handling integers in NumPy is an essential aspect of its utility. NumPy has its implementation of int, but how does it compare to Python 3’s int?

In this article, we will explore the implementation of int in Python 2 and 3, the limitations of NumPy’s int type, and how Python 3 int capabilities make programming with super big numbers a breeze.

Python 2 and 3 Integer Implementation

In Python 2, integers are implemented using the C programming language ‘long’ integer type, which can handle integer values of arbitrary size. However, in Python 2, there is also an int type, which is equivalent to a C long int.

This type is limited and cant handle arbitrarily large integer values, making it unsuitable for scientific applications. In Python 3, int implementation is unified.

The variable can store integer values of an arbitrary size, and it is equivalent to Python 2’s long integer type. This capability makes Python 3 also suitable for scientific computing.

Limitation of NumPy Int Type

NumPys int implementation is different from Python’s int. NumPy implements int using the C programming language’s ‘long’ integer type, which has a fixed size that depends on the platform it is running on.

This size limitation means that the maximum value of NumPy int is 2147483647 for 32-bit implementations and 9223372036854775807 for 64-bit implementations. However, Python 3 int can handle values beyond these limits, making it a more versatile variable type for scientific programming.

The limitation of NumPys int type is partially offset by its int64 variable type. The int64 variable type can hold integer values up to 9223372036854775807, making it suitable for many scientific computing applications.

Python 3 Int Capabilities

With Python 3 int data type, you can work with integers of super big sizes. Unlike NumPy, Python 3s int type is not limited to 32-bit or 64-bit ranges.

Instead, Python 3 int is an implementation of arbitrary-precision integers. This means you can execute calculations with integer values of any size, provided you have the appropriate memory and CPU resources.

One significant benefit of Python 3’s int implementation is that there is no performance penalty for using super big number calculations. This feature makes Python 3 int suitable for cryptographic applications that require big integer calculations.

Maximum Allowed Integer Size

The maximum allowed integer size depends on the platform you are running the program on. System constants such as Sys.maxsize, obscure this complexity, making it easier for developers to write platform-independent code.

On a 32-bit implementation, Sys.maxsize is equal to 2,147,483,647 while on a 64-bit implementation, it is equal to 9,223,372,036,854,775,807.

The Limitation of NumPy Int64 Type

Even NumPy’s int64 type can’t handle arbitrarily large integer values. NumPys int64 type is equivalent to Pythons native long int type.

However, the limitation of NumPy int64 is that it is affected by the platform’s limitations and is not suitable for executing super-big integer calculations.


In conclusion, understanding the nuances of int implementation in NumPy and Python 3 is important for scientific programming. Python 2 int is limited compared to NumPy and Python 3 int, while NumPy offers integer support up to 64-bit size.

Python 3’s int capabilities make it suitable for super big integer calculations, making it popular in cryptographic applications. While NumPys int64 type is equivalent to Pythons long int type, its limitation means developers using it must understand the maximum integer size limitations on their platform.

With this knowledge, developers can choose the right implementation of int for their scientific computing applications. In summary, understanding the differences between NumPy’s int implementation and Python 3 int is crucial for scientific computing.

Python 2 int is limited compared to NumPy and Python 3 int, while NumPy’s int64 type is equivalent to Python’s long int type. Python 3 int capabilities make it suitable for super big integer calculations, while NumPy’s int is affected by platform limitations.

System constants such as Sys.maxsize obscure platform complexity, making it easier to code independent applications, and choosing the right implementation depends on your processing needs. Scientific computing will benefit from the knowledge shared in this article, and programmers must weigh the benefits and limitations of each implementation when building applications.