How can I set the transparency of LINE objects in MATLAB 7.14 (R2012a)?

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I would like to set the transparency of LINE objects in my figures. I use the ALPHA command to set the transparency of objects in my figure. However, LINE objects do not respect ALPHA values even though I am using the OPENGL renderer.

Accepted Answer

MathWorks Support Team
MathWorks Support Team on 25 Jun 2012
Line series objects do not support transparency (alpha) values. The following workaround can be used to overcome this limitation:
1. Please refer to the following MATLAB Central link:
2. The above function can be used to introduce transparency in LINE objects as follows:
EXAMPLE 1:
n = 10;
xs = rand(n,1);
ys = rand(n,1);
zs = rand(n,1)*3;
plot3(xs,ys,zs,'r.')
xlabel('x');ylabel('y');zlabel('z');
p = patchline(xs,ys,zs,'linestyle','--','edgecolor','g','linewidth',3,'edgealpha',0.2);
EXAMPLE 2:
t = 0:pi/64:4*pi;
p(1) = patchline(t,sin(t),'edgecolor','b','linewidth',2,'edgealpha',0.5);
p(2) = patchline(t,cos(t),'edgecolor','r','linewidth',2,'edgealpha',0.5);
l = legend('sine(t)','cosine(t)');
tmp = sort(findobj(l,'type','patch'));
for ii = 1:numel(tmp)
set(tmp(ii),'facecolor',get(p(ii),'edgecolor'),'facealpha',get(p(ii),'edgealpha'),'edgecolor','none')
end
  2 Comments
Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson on 6 Nov 2019
The question is specifically about R2012a, at which time the functionality described by Fabian did not exist.

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More Answers (1)

Fabian
Fabian on 31 Jul 2015
you could try setting a four-element vector for the color property of the line. works for me in 2014 b.
lh.Color=[0,0,0,0.5]
with lh handle to the line, producing a black line with transparency 0.5
  6 Comments
DGM
DGM on 3 Aug 2022
I can't test anything beyond R2019b, but undocumented features are subject to change without notice; after all, if there's no documentation, the changes aren't documented either.
Star Strider
Star Strider on 3 Aug 2022
The 4-element colour vector seems to work in R2022a
x = 0:0.01:2*pi;
y = sin(x);
figure
plot(x, y, '-', 'Color',[0.2 0.5 0.9 0.8], 'LineWidth',2.5) % Alpha = 0.8
hold on
plot(x, y+0.25, '-', 'Color',[0.2 0.5 0.9 0.2], 'LineWidth',2.5) % Alpha = 0.2
hold off
.

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