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Resistor Color Codes

Antique Electronic Supply - based in Tempe, AZ.

How to Read a Resistor

Most resistors are color coded with multiple bands to identify the resistance value and the tolerance. While actually measuring the resistance before using it is a good idea, it's also a good idea to know what the resistance is supposed to be. Resistors (especially carbon composition) can drift in their actual resistance. Keep a stock of fresh resistors on hand. Use the following Standard EIA color code tables to identify resistors, or you can calculate the values on your your resistors using our handy resistance calculator. Click here to calculate the value of your 4-band resistors, or here for your 5-band resistors.

4 Band Resistors

4 band resistor
Color 1st Band
(1st Figure)
2nd Band
(2nd Figure)
3rd Band
(Multiplier)
4th Band
(Tolerance)
Black   0 100  
Brown 1 1 101 ±1%
Red 2 2 102 ±2%
Orange 3 3 103  
Yellow 4 4 104  
Green 5 5 105 ±0.5%
Blue 6 6 106 ±0.25%
Violet 7 7 107 ±0.1%
Grey 8 8 108 ±0.05%
White 9 9 109  
Gold     10-1 ±5%
Silver     10-2 ±10%

5 Band Resistors

5 band resistor
Color 1st Band
(1st Figure)
2nd Band
(2nd Figure)
3rd Band
(Multiplier)
4th Band
(Tolerance)
5th Band
(Tolerance)
Black   0 0 100  
Brown 1 1 1 101 ±1%
Red 2 2 2 102 ±2%
Orange 3 3 3 103  
Yellow 4 4 4 104  
Green 5 5 5 105 ±0.5%
Blue 6 6 6 106 ±0.25%
Violet 7 7 7 107 ±0.1%
Grey 8 8 8 108 ±0.05%
White 9 9 9 109  
Gold       10-1 ±5%
Silver       10-2 ±10%
By Kurt Prange (BSEE), Sales Engineer for Antique Electronic Supply - based in Tempe, AZ. Kurt began playing guitar at the age of nine in Kalamazoo, Michigan. He is a guitar DIY'er and tube amplifier designer who enjoys helping other musicians along in the endless pursuit of tone.