The MAX function in Excel are used to find the highest values in a list of values. This is especially useful when you have a data set of a few thousand values and don’t have the time to go through each value separately in order to determine which one is the highest.

To use the MAX function, we use the following syntax:

…where both number1 and number2 are either numbers or references to cells containing numbers.

### How to use it

We can find the maximum value between two numbers like this:

To find the maximum value of a list of numbers is just as easy:

We can also find the maximum value between the values in two cells:

This will produce an answer of 10.

When you want to find the maximum value of a list of cells, insert a cell range, like this:

This will return 14.

You can combine all the above into one function, using both cell references and real numbers:

This, of course, will produce an answer of 20.

**Easiest way to use it**

To have Excel automatically find the maximum value of a list of cells, select the cell underneath the list. Then click on the AutoSum dropdown list on the Formulas bar, and select Max.

Excel is smart enough to select the correct range of cells, and returns an answer of 14.