In this article, we are going to talk about operators in C#, how to use them and what are the differences between each of them.

For the complete navigation of this series check out: C# Back to Basics.

In this article, we are going to cover:

Type of Operators

The most used operators in C# are:

Operators in C# Table

Arithmetic Operators

Arithmetic operators are defined for all the numeric data types. Operators +, -, *, / represent the basic binary arithmetic operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division). Operator % is the remainder after division. The important thing to notice is that the + operator behaves differently with the number and string types. With the numbers, the result of expression 5 + 5 is 10. But with the strings, the result of expression „5“ + „5“ is „55“. So with the number type, it is an addition operator but with the string type, it is a concatenation operator.

Relational Operators

All the relational operators return a true or false result. They are used to compare expressions or variables from both sides of the relational operator. These operators have a lower priority than arithmetic ones. So in the following example: x*a-8*b>y+5*z; the left side of the greater than operator has calculated first then the right side and then they are compared.

For the value type variables and the strings, the == (equality) operator will return true only if they are the same, otherwise, it will return false. But if variables are reference types then the == operator will return true only if those two variables point to the same memory location, otherwise, it will return false.

So let’s see this through an example:

Equality Operators in C#

We see that a and b are the equal as well as the s1 and s2. But the student1 and student2 are not equal because they point to different memory locations. But if we create another variable of type Student and assign the value of student1 variable to it, the == operator will return true:

Equality ref Operators in C#

Logical Operators

The logical operators && (and) and || (or) serve to connect logical values. Expression <expression1>&&<expression2> is true only if both expressions are true. Expression <expression1>||<expression2> is false only if both expressions are false, otherwise, it is true.

The ! (negation) operator negates logical value it is applied on. It has the highest priority of all the operators mentioned. So the expression !logicalValue will be false only if logicalValue is true and vice verse.

Let’s see this with an example:

Increment and Decrement Operators

In the C# language, we can use operators that increments and decrements the variable value by 1. Those operators are ++ and --, and they are very useful in many cases. So, the better way of writing this code:

Would be to write it like this:

The same applies for the -- operator.

These two operators have the prefix notations: –variable, ++variable and the suffix notations: variable–, variable++ . Even though both notations will change the value by 1, the result will be different. This is easier to explain through an example:

Decrement Operatorc in C#

What we can notice is that the prefix notation decrements the value of "a" variable first and then assigns that value to the "b" variable. But the expression with suffix notation is different. The value of the "c" variable is assigned to the "d" variable first and then decremented by 1.

The same applies for the increment operator:

Increment Operators in C#


Excellent. Now we have more knowledge about operators in C#. In a next part, we are going to talk about the type-conversions in C#.

In the next post, we are going to talk about type conversions in C#.

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