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)
Step 1: MOTIVATION
As I didn't have a multimeter so I tried to understand the logic behind the codes.
Which I will be telling you.
Step 2: THE RESISTOR
For those of you who don't know what is a resistor, it is device that resists the flow of current.
The colour code is just, the resistance in the forms of coloured strips.
The colours include-
Now, the first two strips of the resistor represent the digit and the third is the multipier band .
And the fourth band gives the tolerance.
The image is from --http://www.doctronics.co.uk/resistor.htm
Step 3: CALCULATING RESISTANCE
Now, if the first strip is brown in colour then it indicates that the fist number is 1. 1
Again, if the second strip is black then the second digit is 0. 10
The third strip is orange,as orange is third in the table,there will be 3 zeroes. 10 X 1000
TOTAL RESISTANCE 10,000 Ohms
Example, like in the picture FIRST BAND= YELLOW 5
SECOND BAND= VIOLET 57
THIRD BAND= RED 57x100
TOTAL RESISTANCE 57,000 Ohm
Now comes the tolerance. well it is the variation inresistance.
If it is +5% then the resistance can be 5% more.
EXAMPLE- Like if it is golden in the picture the resistance can be _+5% of the resistance.
57000 X 5/100
= 2850 ohm
The resistance hence can be 57,000 +5%= 59,850 Ohm
57,000-5% = 54150 Ohm
The images are from --http://www.doctronics.co.uk/resistor.htm
Step 4: THE FIVE BAND RESISTOR
Foe Example- A 100 Ohm reistor will be code as BROWN BLACK BROWN in four band resistor.
Whereas it will be coded as BROWN BLACK BLACK BLACK in five band coding.
The image is taken from - lgreen1661.blogspot.com
Step 5: FAQ'S
Q1) What is a resistor?
Ans)Resistors are small electronic devices that resist the flow of electrical current. A resistor obeys Ohm's Law, which states that the voltage (or potential) across a resistor is proportional to the current flow through the resistor. In formula form, V=IR, where V is the voltage across the resistor, R is the value of the resistor in ohms, and I is the current flow through the resistor in amperes (amps).
Q2)What are the types of resistor?
Ans) There are basically five types of resistor-
a. Fixed value resistor
b. Variable resistor
c. Potentiometer (adjustable resistor)
d. Thermistor (temperature variable resistor)
e. Photo resistor
Q3)Which side of the resistor do I read from?
Ans)The Gold or Silver band is always set to the right, then you read from left to right. Sometimes there will be no tolerance band -- Simply find the side that has a band closest to a lead and make that the first band.
Q4) Sometimes the colors are hard to make out. How do I make certain what the value of the resistor really is?
Ans)Occasionally the colors are jumbled or burnt off. The only way to read it then is with a multi-meter across the leads
Q5) How do I remember this sequence of colors?
Ans)Remember the color codes with this sentence:
Big - BLACK
Brown - BROWN
Rabbits - RED
Often - ORANGE
Yield - YELLOW
Great - GREEN
Big - BLUE
Vocal - VIOLET
Groans - GREY
When - WHITE
Gingerly - GOLD
Slapped. - SILVER
Step 6: CALCULATING CAPACITANCE
Like, if it says 103 then it means it is 10 uF X 10 -3.
Like in the picture the code says 154. So, it means 15 uF X 10-4 = 0.0015 uF .
I have also uploaded a conversion table so that you can convert the units from one to another.
The image for the ceramic capacitor is from- electro-tech-online.com
The conversion table is from - mechatrotutor.blogspot.com