### Author Topic: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?  (Read 1626 times)

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#### GeorgeOfTheJungle

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #25 on: February 23, 2018, 08:28:49 pm »
It's the one which goes
0 = ***
1 = bastards
2 = ***
3 = ***
4 = ***
5 = ***
6 = but
7 = ***
8 = ***
9 = without.

Oh come on, we want to know!

#### grumpydoc

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #26 on: February 23, 2018, 08:40:36 pm »
It's the one which goes
0 = ***
1 = bastards
2 = ***
3 = ***
4 = ***
5 = ***
6 = but
7 = ***
8 = ***
9 = without.

Oh come on, we want to know!
Google is your friend (Wikipedia is your friend as well).

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#### AndyC_772

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #27 on: February 23, 2018, 08:47:15 pm »
I'm surprised it's posted anywhere; it already had shock value even when I heard it in the early '90s.

#### grumpydoc

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #28 on: February 23, 2018, 08:51:00 pm »
I'm surprised it's posted anywhere; it already had shock value even when I heard it in the early '90s.
No, it's there in all its "glory" on the Wikipedia page.

Of course the fact that it has some shock value probably helps one remember it - many offensive or ribald mnemonics exist for this reason - oh and the fac that it's usually college students who come up with them

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#### ikrase

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #29 on: February 23, 2018, 09:05:56 pm »
On a related note, does anybody notice that integrated circuit labels have gotten *impossible* to read in the last 10-15 years? Even for large DIP/PLCC/TQFP/BGA parts where there is plenty of room to print the label in large size?

In the old days, it was common for the part number to be printed in highly visible white paint (esp. on some LM-numbered linear ICs). Today, it seems like you need both a microscope and very careful application of high intensity raking light to see the vague printing against a shimmering plastic background.

#### GeorgeOfTheJungle

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #30 on: February 23, 2018, 09:11:22 pm »

#### Seekonk

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #31 on: February 23, 2018, 11:24:50 pm »
On a related note, does anybody notice that integrated circuit labels have gotten *impossible* to read in the last 10-15 years? Even for large DIP/PLCC/TQFP/BGA parts where there is plenty of room to print the label in large size?

In the old days, it was common for the part number to be printed in highly visible white paint (esp. on some LM-numbered linear ICs). Today, it seems like you need both a microscope and very careful application of high intensity raking light to see the vague printing against a shimmering plastic background.

A USB scope is always at hand these days for laser etch plastic. I swear they are now even turning down the laser to save electricity.

#### LeoTech

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #32 on: February 23, 2018, 11:45:20 pm »
Well, I might as well ad my two cents............

I am most likely the youngest person in this thread and I have most likely the best eyevision - no offense. But to be honest, i have a very hard time reading the color codes as well.

When I started with electronics I tried to memorize the color codes and to read instead of measure the resistance, but I quickly gave up on that, as it proved to be fatale more than once.

Even with good sight, only slightly color blind, I still can't read the color bands on metal film resistors (blue background) with 100% accuracy, so I do not trust myself when it comes to those. But when it comes to carbon resistors (light colored background) I have an accuracy of almost 100%.

As most of my resistors are metal film ones I use my DMM when in doubt, but most of the time I just reach into the bag/rack for the given value and pick one.

Leo
High School student with a passion and interest in electronics, both analog and digital!

#### Howardlong

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #33 on: February 23, 2018, 11:55:52 pm »
It's always brown-red or red-orange that gives me the most problem, much more if it's old fading part. Some use better, easily discernible paint than others. Some use certain shade of base paint that exacerbate things.

My other problem is with 1% resistors. I always not sure if it's read one way or the other way around.

Both of these, although mine is more to do with brown-orange.

Keep in mind for us oldies that parts are smaller nowadays and five band codes are way more common, that might have an affect on ease of recognition.

For example, I keep a selection of a couple of hundred resistors in the E3 series ready for solderless breadboarding from 1 ohm to 10M ohm in a transparent ziplock bag, some are four band and some five band. Some are 1/4W and some are 1/8W size. The four band I have no problem at all recognising just by glance, it’s the five banders, in both sizes, that I seem to have a slight recognition dyslexia with, I have to think a bit unlike the four banders.

The only thing I struggle with memory-wise is the gold and silver multiplier, I mix thise up, that’s the only time I find myself resorting to a meter.

I learned the rainbow based way when I was a kid, figuring that out by myself. Just like riding a bicycle, I found that you don’t forget. The resistor colour codes were also often used in ribbon cables back in the 80s but I haven’t seem this as much recently. On wiring jobs in the microprocessor era I tended to follow bus signal numbers with the resistor colour code when wiring up stuff off the board.

The EIA96 SMD resistor codes on 0603 and larger that don’t follow the rainbow code I have little clue about and have to refer to the datasheets on the odd occasion I need to figure out a value: often a meter is faster in that instance especially out of circuit.

#### Brumby

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #34 on: February 24, 2018, 12:25:27 am »
As a slightly off-topic tangent, I once worked at a company that went through a major "Filing System" change.  As well as new racking and folders, there were file trolleys, project boxes and ..... colour coded stickers.

The colours for the alphabetic ones didn't seem logical - but they didn't bother me too much.  It was the numeric ones that had me crying on the inside.  A perfectly good numeric colour coding system that had been in widespread use for several decades, completely ignored.

This is a sample of what was used:

ARRRRGHHH!!!!

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#### tooki

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #35 on: February 24, 2018, 02:25:17 am »
I wonder if a factor might be poorer CRI (colour rendering index) of LED lighting ?
Not much red, so this may make it harder to distinguish resistor colours
I suspect it's the combination of LED and CFL lighting with poor CRI; poorer quality paints for the color bands; those darned blue resistor bodies providing a poor background for said cheap paints; and the bands getting smaller thanks to smaller components and higher tolerances requiring extra bands.

#### dmills

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##### Re: Can you tell the value of a resistor from the color bands?
« Reply #36 on: February 24, 2018, 03:29:27 am »
Mine started "Bad boys..."
That **was** the PC version!

The real question is "Gives Willingly" or "Goes Without"...

But yea, it is harder then it once was, and not just colour codes, the modern chip makings are more or less illegible a lot of the time, which is fine for the SMT shooter, rather less so for building prototypes. Silkscreen beats laser marking for readability on chip packages.

Regards, Dan.

Smf