Legend Positioning in Tiled Chart Layout

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Manuel Eichenlaub
Manuel Eichenlaub on 15 Feb 2020
Commented: Adam Danz on 20 Nov 2020
I have created 2 by 2 tiled chart and I want to position the legend centered above the figure. For some reason, MATLAB 2019b, which I am using, has locked the 'Position' property of the legend when usend in a tiled chart.
Firstly, why would they do this, and secondly does someone know a workaround?
Thanks,
Manuel
  1 Comment
Kyle Johnson
Kyle Johnson on 23 Sep 2020
I have the same problem. I have even tried specifying the legend position to none.

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Answers (2)

Adam Danz
Adam Danz on 23 Sep 2020
" MATLAB 2019b ... has locked the 'Position' property of the legend when usend in a tiled chart."
Yes, that's correct.
Starting in r2020b the legend placement is more flexible and supports changes to the position propery as well as setting "location" relative to the tiled layout.
x = magic(4);
figure()
tiledlayout(2,2)
ax(1) = nexttile;
plot(x,'.','MarkerSize', 20)
ax(2) = nexttile;
bar(x,'stacked')
ax(3) = nexttile;
plot(x,'-','LineWidth', 2)
ax(4) = nexttile;
contour(x,'LineWidth',2)
ax(4).Colormap = lines(256);
lh =legend(ax(1),'Location','NorthOutside','Orientation','Horizontal');
lh.Layout.Tile = 'North'; % <----- relative to tiledlayout
  6 Comments
Adam Danz
Adam Danz on 23 Sep 2020
In the past I've use tight_subplot from the file exchange to do what you're describing with regular subplots.

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Kyle Johnson
Kyle Johnson on 23 Sep 2020
So this is really annoying. This is the workaround I developed. You can just create a new axis over the entire tiled layout, plot some NaNs there, and then set that axis to invisible. You then have a floating legend to reposition.
I made some room for that legend by adjusting the inner position of the tiled layout.
axs is an array containing all of the axes handles. t is the handle to the tiled layout.
var1name = 'annoyance (metric ton)';
var2name = 'frustration (ounces)';
ylabel(axs(1),var1name)
ylabel(axs(2),['mean: ' var1name])
ylabel(axs(3),var2name)
ylabel(axs(4),['mean: ' var2name])
xlabel(axs(3),'coding hour (hr)');
xlabel(axs(4),'coding hour (hr)');
t.InnerPosition = [t.InnerPosition(1) .15 t.InnerPosition(3) (t.InnerPosition(4)+t.InnerPosition(1)-.15)];
tmp = axes(fh1);
plot(tmp,nan,nan,'.','color',c(1,:))
hold on
plot(tmp,nan,nan,'.','color',c(2,:))
l = legend(tmp,{'attempt1','attempt2'},'Orientation','horizontal');
l.Position(1:2) = [.5-l.Position(3)/2 .025];
l.Title.String = 'Attempts';
tmp.Visible = 'off';
  2 Comments
Adam Danz
Adam Danz on 20 Nov 2020
You must be using a version of Matlab prior to r2020b as my answer explains.
This answer applies changes to InnerPosition to axes that are independent to tiledLayout.

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