I have a state psi as an ndarray of shape (2 ** 3,) s.t.

psi[0]= amplitude of 000

psi[1] = amplitude of 001.

So my qubit ordering is reversed w.r.t. qiskit's. To initialize the circuit correctly and apply the IQFT on the first 2 qubits from the left I tried the following code:

import qiskit as qt
from qiskit.aqua.circuits import FourierTransformCircuits as QFT

    circuit = qt.QuantumCircuit(3)
    circuit.initialize( psi, [i for i in reversed(circuit.qubits)])

    QFT.construct_circuit(circuit=circuit, qubits=circuit.qubits[:2], inverse=True)

    backend = qt.Aer.get_backend('statevector_simulator')
    final_state = qt.execute(circuit, backend, shots=1).result().get_statevector()

From the tests I've run, final_state is not what I expected: defining

exact = np.kron(IQFT_matrix(2),np.eye(2)).dot(state) with IQFT_matrix(2)= IQFT_matrix for 2 qubits.

np.testing.assert_array_almost_equal(final_state, exact)

fails. Can you please help me find the problem?

  • $\begingroup$ Bits order is reversed on IBM Q. The most significant bit is on the right. $\endgroup$ Mar 13, 2020 at 14:50
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I know, that's why I initialized using reversed(circuit.qubits). Am I converting this the wrong way? I do not want to remap the state directly, since in future implementation the state will be many dimensional and I do not want to occupy tons of memory or perform a lot of operations on it. $\endgroup$
    – simone
    Mar 13, 2020 at 14:53

2 Answers 2


There is the parameter do_swaps when you construct the fourier transform circuit.

do_swaps (bool): Boolean flag to specify if swaps should be included to align
                 the qubit order of input and output. The output qubits would
                 be in reversed order without the swaps.
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for your help. I've tried using this flag but it does not solve the problem: 'final_state' differs from what I expected not only for index mapping, but for values too. $\endgroup$
    – simone
    Mar 13, 2020 at 15:33

To change the endianness of a circuit in Qiskit you can use the reverse_bits method of the QuantumCircuit. To do so for the QFT you can pick the QFT from the circuit library, reverse it, and add it to your circuit:

from qiskit import QuantumCircuit
from qiskit.circuit.library import QFT

iqft = QFT(3, inverse=True)  # get the IQFT
reversed_bits_QFT = iqft.reverse_bits()  # reverse bit order

circuit = QuantumCircuit(3)
circuit.compose(reversed_bits_QFT, inplace=True)  # append your QFT 

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