Calculating x,y coordinates returns imprecise values

01-07-2014 10:14 AM
New Contributor
I am using Calculate Geometry to populate attribute fields for a point feature with x,y coordinates in decimal degrees and the values that I am getting do not seem to be very precise, in some cases having only 3 digits to the right of the decimal (e.g. 43.358).  But, when I select the point using the Identify tool, the location coordinates shown are slightly different, and show all 6 digits to the right of the decimal.  I have tried using both the coordinate system for the data frame and the feature (both NAD_1983_UTM_19N). 

Why doesn't the calculate geometry function return the same values as the Identify tool? 

This is true of even the values that include 6 digits to the right of the decimal.

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1 Reply
Frequent Contributor
The calculated coordinates are the accurate once. Usually when you do an identify, you don't hit the points at the exact point where it is located, so there is a little buffer area around them that still makes you able to select them. Depending where you click within that buffer area the location will use this as your coordinates and not the actual coordinates of your point feature.

Also what type of field are you using? Double? If you right click the header of the field in the attribute table you should be able to click on "Properties..." and then click the "..." next to Numeric to enable more decimal points, under "Rounding", number of decimal places.
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