Java Tip of the Day: StandardCharsets


It is important to look at other people’s code. It often gives us insight into undiscovered content and ideas that we can put into our own toolbox of code.

We do a lot of the same coding over and over on different projects. Often because we don’t have a common framework to share between projects, or we don’t want to include a framework into a project just to use one, or two classes from it. It is often better to find code which is part of Java itself, or a must have framework that is included in our projects, e.g. Apache Commons XXX.

Yesterday, I was looking at a unit test and saw the following:;

I paused and asked myself what is that? When I opened it in NetBeans, I realized that I had missed a piece of code from Java 7 that could make my life easier.

I often find that I am using a String to set the value for “UTF-8”, or setting the Charset and wrapping it to catch any exceptions. Some


This StandardCharsets class is in the JRE starting with Java 7 and as noted in the Javadoc:

Constant definitions for the standard Charsets. These charsets are guaranteed to be available on every implementation of the Java platform.

Now you can skip having to create your own code and use the standard Java class which is guaranteed to exist.

$ jshell | Welcome to JShell – Version 10.0.2 | For an introduction type: /help intro

jshell> import java.nio.charset.StandardCharsets;

jshell> System.out.println(;



Though this may not bring about world peace, or even get you a cup of coffee, it is a nice little piece of code when you need it in a pinch.

try (ByteArrayOutputStream baos = ...) { System.out.println(baos.toString(;