You all must have had a problem while make your projects and searching old pieces of circuits for a particular resistor or a capacitor.

Well , using a multimeter is a good option but  it may not be available to most of us, and using it is a bit complicated and I will be posting it in  my next instructable on it.

Presently, I will tell you the criterion for calculating the resistance and capacitance.(Only in ceramic capacitors as it is mentioned on electrolytic capacitors)


I was making a school project and I needed some resistors and capacitors, as the local electronics shop is about 20km from my house saw I started to look in the old circuit boards I have.

As I didn't have a multimeter so I tried to understand the logic behind the codes.

Which I will be telling you.

Hack_Bird6 months ago

Im confused, is this conversion 154 == 0.0015uF the same as the trick they learn here: http://www.wikihow.com/Read-a-Capacitor

=because they also teach the letter encoding

one call7 months ago

I know this is an old thread, but the color code information given here is incorrect. The order of the colors are correct, but black = 0, brown =1, and on down the list in order. White=9 and the resistor color code has no ten. Just setting the record straight.

Lorddrake2 years ago
just trying to understand ... I think there are a few discrepancies

under calculating resistance .. is the first band color supposed to be green instead of yellow?

is it a supposed to be red band to get 5700 or an orange band to get 57000?
waldosan2 years ago
funny story: i once spent an entire night looking through my resisters to find a few 10k ohm resistors, I started at 9 pm and it wasn't until 2 that i realized i was reading the code backwards!
Aha!Thats why I use my multimeter instead of decoding.
raikut2 years ago
Well the picture that you have given in Step one. Is that a circuit board that you have made. If yes i would like to see its schematics.
pranjal12 (author)  raikut2 years ago
Well I took it from google just to explain you.
You can find it on google images.
Zakery2 years ago
Thanks a ton, This will come in handy for me.
samaddon2 years ago
i got 1 question to ask can you please tell me what this ceramic capacitor does?
i've got a ceramic capacitor it's blue in color in front 471 and 2KV is written what is the meaning of 2KV??
pranjal12 (author)  samaddon2 years ago
Well ceramic capacitors like other capacitors store energy.. The only difference is that it uses ceramic material as a dielectric.
The 2KV is the voltage rating it means 2000 Volts.
For information refer to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceramic_capacitor
samaddon2 years ago
Very good i also have some problem calculating the capacitance of a ceramic capacitor but it really solves my problem i am not well known to electronics cause i am only 15 yrs old! Sooraj Bhaiya!