Understand Bitcoin Address Types


3 min

Bitcoin addresses are alphanumeric identifiers used to conduct transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain. There are several types of Bitcoin addresses – each with its own unique format and characteristics – that correspond to different types of Bitcoin transactions.

This guide will help you identify different Bitcoin address types and determine which address to use depending on the transaction type.

Types of Bitcoin Addresses

The most commonly used Bitcoin address types are:

Legacy Addresses

  • The original Bitcoin address type that is compatible with all Bitcoin wallets and exchanges

  • Start with the number “1”

  • Offer a high level of compatibility, though they do take up more space on the blockchain

Segregated Witness Addresses (SegWit)

  • Start with the characters “3”

  • Supported by most modern Bitcoin wallets and exchanges

  • Offer improved efficiency compared to legacy addresses

Native SegWit Addresses (Bech32)

  • Start with the characters “bc1q”

  • Supported by some Bitcoin wallets like Leather

Stacks Addresses

  • Start with the letter “S”

  • Supported by Stacks wallets like Leather and can be employed for Stacked-based transactions

Taproot Addresses

  • Start with the characters “bc1p”

  • Supported by certain Bitcoin wallets like Leather and are frequently used for transactions involving assets that make use of Taproot, such as Ordinals and BRC-20 tokens

How to Find Bitcoin Address Types in Leather

Leather automatically generates Bitcoin addresses for you when you create your wallet. You can view all address types associated with your wallet by clicking the “Receive” button on your wallet home screen.

You’ll find each type of Bitcoin address listed with the corresponding asset type it’s intended for (eg. your Taproot address for Ordinals). Therefore, the “Receive” page serves as a dependable reference for identifying the address types to use for various transactions, whether you’re looking to buy, send, receive, or swap a token or collectible.

This article was updated on 25/3/24

This article was updated on 25/3/24