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What is the Maximum Number on a 26-bit Card

Proximity cards contain chips that store data. Format refers to how this data is organized. The format and eventually the credential number depend on how many ones and zeros are there and how they’re arranged.  A 26-bit proximity card, commonly known as an H10301 card, is the most widely used proximity card format. You can get this card from several proximity card suppliers, but it is always important to make sure that you purchase it from a credible supplier. 

How is a 26-Bit Card?

Understanding how a 26-bit card works is essential for effectively managing access control systems. These cards, often used in security and identification systems, encode information in a binary format that readers can interpret to grant or deny access. Here’s a detailed look at the structure and functionality of 26-bit cards.

Structure of a 26-bit Card

A 26-bit card follows the Wiegand format, which is a standard in the access control industry. This format divides the 26 bits into different sections, each serving a specific purpose. The typical structure is as follows:

  • Bit 1: Start bit (always 1)
  • Bits 2-9: Facility code (8 bits)
  • Bits 10-25: Card number (16 bits)
  • Bit 26: End bit (always 0)
  1. Start and End Bits

The start bit and end bit are fixed values (1 and 0, respectively) that signal the beginning and end of the data transmission. They help the card reader correctly interpret the data by providing clear markers.

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  1. Facility Code

The facility code, occupying bits 2 to 9, is an 8-bit number that identifies the specific site or organization. With 8 bits, the facility code can range from 0 to 255, allowing for 256 unique facility codes. This feature enables multiple sites to use the same card numbering system without conflicts, as each site can have a unique facility code.

  1. Card Number

The card number, using bits 10 to 25, is a 16-bit number that uniquely identifies each card within a facility. This number can range from 0 to 65,535, providing a large pool of unique identifiers for cardholders.

The Maximum Facility Code

The facility code is 8 bits long. Each bit can be either 0 or 1, giving us 282^828 possible combinations. Therefore, the maximum facility code is:

28=2562^8 = 25628=256

This means the facility code can range from 0 to 255, providing 256 unique codes.

The Maximum Card Number

The card number is 16 bits long. Similarly, each bit can be either 0 or 1, giving us 2162^{16}216 possible combinations. Therefore, the maximum card number is:

216=65,5362^{16} = 65,536216=65,536

Thus, the card number can range from 0 to 65,535, providing 65,536 unique numbers for each facility code.

Maximum Number on a 26-Bit Card

To determine the maximum number on a 26-bit card, we consider the maximum values of both the facility code and the card number. The maximum card number is 65,535. However, it is essential to remember that the maximum number for a 26-bit card format does not combine the facility code and card number into a single decimal number. Instead, it considers the highest possible value within the allocated bits for each section.

How 26-bit Cards are Used? 

  1. Enrollment

When a new card is issued, it is programmed with a unique facility code and card number. This information is encoded into the 26-bit format and stored on the card’s integrated circuit.

  1. Presentation and Reading

To use the card, the cardholder presents it to a card reader. The reader generates an electromagnetic field that powers the card’s microchip, allowing it to transmit its 26-bit data.

  1. Data Transmission

As the card comes within range of the reader, it transmits the 26-bit binary data. The reader receives this data and processes it to extract the facility code and card number.

  1. Interpretation and Access Decision

Once the reader extracts the facility code and card number, it sends this information to the access control system’s central database. The system then verifies the data against its stored records to determine if the cardholder is authorized to access the area.

  • If Authorized: If the facility code and card number match a valid entry in the database, the system sends a signal to unlock the door or gate, granting access.
  • If Unauthorized: If the data does not match, access is denied, and the system may log the attempt for security purposes. 

Benefits of 26-bit Cards 

The 26-bit card format, widely used in access control systems, offers several advantages that make it a popular choice for businesses of various sizes. Here are some of the key benefits:

  1. Standardization

The 26-bit Wiegand format is an extensively recognized and adopted standard in the access control industry. This widespread use guarantees compatibility with a broad range of:

  • Access control systems
  • Readers
  • Software

Hence, you can easily integrate 26-bit HID proxcard 2 into your existing security infrastructure without the need for specialized equipment or extensive customization.

  1. Simplicity and Ease of Use

The structure of 26 bit proximity cards is straightforward, making them easy to program, issue, and manage. This simplicity reduces the likelihood of errors during card issuance and determines that the access control system operates smoothly.

  1. Scalability

The facility code can range from 0 to 255, providing 256 unique codes, while the card number can range from 0 to 65,535. This scalability ensures that even large companies with multiple locations can efficiently manage access control by assigning unique identifiers to each site and individual.

  1. Reliability

26-bit cards are known for their reliability and durability. The Wiegand format, used in these cards, has been tested and proven over decades of use in the access control industry. Due to their robust designs, the cards perform consistently in various environmental conditions.

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  1. Ease of Replacement and Maintenance

Given their standardization and widespread use, replacing or updating 26-bit cards and readers is relatively simple. You can effortlessly find replacement cards and compatible readers from various manufacturers to minimize downtime and disruption to access control operations. This ease of replacement contributes to the overall proficiency and reliability of the system.


The maximum number on a 26-bit card, specifically within the 16-bit card number section, is 65,535. Combined with the 8-bit facility code, this format provides a robust and reliable method for managing access control. 

Looking for a reputable proximity card supplier to get prox card II HID? End your research and get in touch with our professionals at Bristol ID Technologies! From 26 bit proximity cards to other types of formats, we cater to a variety of needs and provide the best solutions. 

Uneeb Khan
Uneeb Khan
Uneeb Khan CEO at blogili.com. Have 4 years of experience in the websites field. Uneeb Khan is the premier and most trustworthy informer for technology, telecom, business, auto news, games review in World.

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