We ❤ Power BI so much we created a custom visual

About a year ago (March 2020) We needed a line chart that can do the following:

  • Allow the viewer of the report to change the Y axis scale on the fly
  • Allow the X axis to be placed near the top of the chart
  • Have the ability to invert the Y axis*

When we started, we didn’t want to reinvent the wheel, so we searched first but couldn’t find a chart on the App Source marketplace that could do all of these thing I listed above*. So we started creating our first custom Power BI Chart Visual: CHARTURO

*The inverted X Axis option was added to the default line chart in Power BI at some point since we started working on this project, and since this was a side project that we worked on intermittently, we kept working on it anyway knowing that all these features might end up in the built-in visual at some point, and it proved to be a fun learning experience.

The first goal was to give the end user the ability to switch axis scale from linear to log on the fly, here’s an embedded Power BI sample to showcase how you can do that:

We kept the controls on the surface of the chart simple and unobtrusive, we used text boxes instead of buttons and icons, and tucked them away in the top right corner of the chart, the label in blue is the option you can click on to change the scale, in the example below, the current scale is linear, and the word log is in blue to indicate it is clickable:

We also wanted to add the ability to invert a Y axis to the chart, and to allow the X axis to be placed on top which makes more sense when looking at something like drilling depth vs. days chart. Here’s a side by side comparison showing the same chart with the Y axis normal and inverted:

You can get the visual from the Power BI AppSource MarketPlace here.

You can also add it directly to your report inside the Power BI Desktop Application by using the Get More Visuals option.