Sometimes there is need to change an integer to text. I often use the following way:

"" + myNumber

But there is alternative way:


Which one is better (performance, readability, safety)? Or are those equal?


3 Answers 3


I would recommend


This allows you to to change myNumber to another primitive type - or a Number - later.

"" + myNumber

should be avoided since :

  • it produces clutter bytecode (instanciating a new StringBuffer)
  • it does not convey what you wanted to do with myNumber

Integer.toString(myNumber) is the safer way because it throws a malformed exception.

Do not worry about performance at this level. There is an expression: Premature Optimization.

EDIT after comment

"3000000000" > Integer.MAX_VALUE throw an Exception
"-2900000000" < Integer.MIN_VALUE throw an Exception
"OO12345" throw an exception, because it begins with two O letters, not zero.

You can also manage radix :

String intS = "010101";
System.out.format("Parsing %s gives %d, fail with \"010102\"%n",
    intS,(Integer.parseInt(intS, 2)));
intS = "10CAFE8";
System.out.format("Parsing %s gives %d, fail with \"10CAGE8\"%n",
    intS,(Integer.parseInt(intS, 16)));

Output :

Parsing 010101 gives 21, fail with "010102"
Parsing 10CAFE8 gives 17608680, fail with "10CAGE8"

EDIT after comment 2

Look in Effective Java and search for StringBuilder() to understant how to replace '+' usage.

At execution time, a '+' create something like this code :

StringBuilder sb = new StringBuilder();

This code is better :

final int a = 123;

Look at Java code of Integer.toString(a);
In Eclipse : CTRL+rightClick on toString() print the Java code . Give the src.zip path in SDK directory if it not already done.
And compare with StringBuilder.append(int);

  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ How can an integer be malformed? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 18, 2012 at 16:35
  • \$\begingroup\$ @FelixDombek I've edited my post to give samples. \$\endgroup\$
    – cl-r
    Commented Jul 19, 2012 at 9:57
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ Your examples are about String to Int, but the question is about Int to String. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 19, 2012 at 13:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ @FelixDombek Exact, I compelte my post. Sorry not to be a good english reader. \$\endgroup\$
    – cl-r
    Commented Jul 20, 2012 at 6:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ @FelixDombek Effective Java is a reference to write good code, Is the response you needed? Many other things to know are also inside this book. \$\endgroup\$
    – cl-r
    Commented Jul 21, 2012 at 15:50

I would say they were equally as good. I prefer to use


as I find it explains the transition better

  • \$\begingroup\$ haha my mistake @palacsint \$\endgroup\$
    – IronSpoon
    Commented Jul 20, 2012 at 8:54

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