Standard resistor values In 1952 the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) decided to define the resistance and tolerance values into a norm, to ease the mass manufacturing of resistors. These are referred to as preferred values or E-series, and they are published in standard IEC 60063:1963. These standard values are also valid for other components like capacitors, inductors and Zener diodes. The preferred values for resistors were established in 1952, but the concept of the geometric series was already introduced by army engineer Renard in the 1870s. The standardization of resistor values serves several important purposes. When manufacturers produce resistors with different resistance values, these end up approximately equally spaced on a logarithmic scale. This helps the supplier to limit the number of different values that have to be produced or kept in stock. By using standard values, resistors of different manufacturers are compatible for the same design, which is favorable for the electrical engineer. Aside from the preferred values, many other standards related to resistors exist. An example is standard sizes for resistors, or the marking of resistors with color codes or numerical codes. Power ratings of resistors are not defined in a norm, therefore often is deviated from the above described series. Preferred values or E-series As basis the E12 has been developed. E12 means that every decade (0.1-1, 1-10, 10-100 etc) is divided in 12 steps. The size of every step is equal to: One could also say every value is 21% or 1.21 times higher than the last, rounded to whole numbers. Because of this, all resistors with a tolerance of 10% overlap. The series looks as follows: 1– 1.2 – 1.5 – 1.8 – 2.2 – 2.7 – 3.3 – 3.9 – 4.7 – 5.6 – 6.8 – 8.2 – 10 etc. All these values [… read more]