What is MHz

MHz stands for Megahertz. Megahertz is an enhancement of hertz only. The term hertz was named on Heinrich Rudolf Hertz (contributed to study of electromagnetism). The abbreviations are written as Hz and MHz (i.e. mentioned in capitals) for the terms hertz and megahertz.

The term megahertz itself can be broken into two terms i.e. ‘mega’ and ‘hertz’ which mean ‘million’ and ‘cycles’ respectively. Hertz is basically a unit which is used to measure frequency when a person is using the International System of Units. While the term megahertz acts an extension to the term hertz only, actually megahertz means (or is equal to) 1 million hertz where hertz were considered as cycles. So the term megahertz means 1 million cycles per second.

1 megahertz = 1,000,000 hertz per second or 1,000,000 cycles per second

The term Hertz was called as cycle only until the late 1960’s but was changed to honor a great pioneer. Hertz or cycles term is also used in context with alternating current used in day to day life in the homes. One hertz or one cycle is when the electric current starts at a zero voltage base line, increases to peak (can be maximum voltage) and then decreases to zero volts and then increases in the negative direction to a maximum negative voltage. Then increases back to zero voltage and hence, thereafter, the cycle is repeated again and again. 1 megahertz (MHz) is the standard which is used for amplitude modulation (AM) radio broadcast band and 100 MHz is the standard frequency modulation for FM radio broadcast band.

The term MHz is also used in computers too. MHz is used to describe the measurements of speed for a CPU (Central Processing Unit) in a computer. MHz is also used to measure the clock speeds (or number of cycles per second) for other components such as a video card (can be placed in the CPU) in computer.

For minimizing the confusion made by using the terms such as million hertz or million cycles ranges for communications (such as the signals sent to the radios and T.V.’s i.e. radio waves) the term megahertz was brought into the limelight and is now very frequently used in each and every field (the fields with which the term megahertz is related to) and that too very frequently.

Higher the number of MHz, higher is the speed of a CPU or other components of a CPU and better the performance it will provide to the end users.

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