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April 1, 2017

Some Mnemonic phrases for remembering Color Codes of Resistor in Electronics.

Identifying Resistors:

The electronic color code is used to indicate the values or ratings of electronic components, usually for resistors, but also for capacitors, inductors, diodes and others. A separate code, the 25-pair color code, is used to identify wires in some telecommunications cables.

Most axial resistors use a pattern of colored stripes to indicate resistance. SMT ones follow a numerical pattern. Cases are usually brown, blue, or green, though other colors are occasionally found like dark red or dark gray.

Resistor Color Codeing: 

Black, Brown, Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Violet, Gray, White (Gold Silver).

Mnemonic phrases for remembering color codes of resistor:

There are many mnemonic phrases used to remember the order of the colors. They are, but are not limited to, and variations of: 
  • Bad Boys Ravish Our Young Girls But Violet Gives Willingly.
  • Bad Beer Rots Our Young Guts, But Vodka Goes Well. Get Some Now!  
  • B.B. ROY of Great Britain had a Very Good Wife.
  • Buffalo Bill Roamed Over Yellow Grass Because Vistas Grand Were God's Sanctuary. 
  • Bully Brown Ran Over a Yodeling Goat, Because Violet's Granny Was Gone Snorkeling.
  • Buy Better Resistance Or Your Grid Bias May Go Wrong.
  • Bill Brown Realized Only Yesterday Good Boys Value Good Work.
  • Better Be Ready Or Your Great Big Plan Goes Wrong.
  • Better Be Ready Or Your Great Big Venture Goes West.
  • Black Bananas Really Offend Your Girlfriend But Violets Get Welcomed.
  • Black Birds Run Over Your Biting Visible Gray Worms.
  • Big Boys Race Our Young Girls But Violet Generally Wins.
  • Black Boys Rape Our Young Girls Behind Victory Garden Walls.
  • Black Boys Rape Our Young Girls But Virgins GWithout.


To remember the color bands on resistors in order of increasing magnitude.
  • Numerically the value (0-9) of a resistor via the color-coded bands: Black (0), Brown (1), Red (2), Orange (3), Yellow (4), Green (5), Blue (6), Violet (purple, 7), Gray (8), and White (9).
  • Also, note that the red through violet are the colors of the rainbow (in order). Although the ROY G. BIV mnemonic for rainbow colors includes indigo between blue and violet.

Figure 1: A diagram of a resistor, with four color bands A, B, C, D from left to right.

Figure 2: A diagram of a 2.7 Mega Ω color coded resistor. 

To distinguish left from right there is a gap between the C and D bands.

  • Band A is the first significant figure of component value (left side)
  • Band B is the second significant figure (some precision resistors have a third significant figure, and thus five bands).
  • Band C is the decimal multiplier
  • Band D if present, indicates tolerance of value in percent (no band means 20%)
For example, a resistor with bands of yellow, violet, red, and gold has first digit 4, second digit 7 (violet), followed by 2 (red) zeros: 4,700 ohms. Gold signifies that the tolerance is ±5%, so the real resistance could lie anywhere between 4,465 and 4,935 ohms.
Figure 3: 4.7 Kilo Ω resistor with ±5% tolerance.

All coded components have at least two value bands and a multiplier; other bands are optional.

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