What kind of resistors should I get?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by epic_newb, Apr 15, 2011.

  1. epic_newb

    Thread Starter Member

    Apr 10, 2011
    Currently I only have 100 ohm and 420 ohm resistors that came with my leds and I don't want to be buying resisors as I need them so I am going to buy a large order of resistors from either amazon or ebay.

    What kind of resistors should I get? 1/4w, 1/2w? E12, E24, E48?

    Thank you :)
  2. SgtWookie


    Jul 17, 2007
    It will be tough to make recommendations without knowing what your voltage supply will be, whether it will be well-regulated or unregulated, what your LED Vf @ current rating is, and how many you might want to operate in series.
  3. epic_newb

    Thread Starter Member

    Apr 10, 2011
    The resistors will be used for diy project mainly. votages will probably range from 12 to 24. I intend on usng regulated voltage sources for the most part but I intend to use these resistors for general purposes.
  4. tracecom

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 16, 2010
    Most of the resistors that I use are 1/4watt, but fairly often, I need some 1/2watt, and occasionally even larger. Resistors are fairly cheap, but ordering a few at a time can become expensive due to things like minimum order quantities, shipping, and handling charges.

    A good start might be to order an assortment of resistors like this one: https://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10001_10001_10720_-1. Of course, you are also going to need some capacitors, and some diodes, etc., etc., so the list can grow quite large. In addition, you will find that prices for components can vary quite a bit from one supplier to another. In my opinion, there is no single low cost supplier, so it becomes a "juggling act" to order what you need at the lowest total cost possible. In addition, to Jameco, I also order from Digikey (just a few hours north of your location), Mouser, plus several other smaller suppliers. Good luck.
  5. Jaguarjoe

    Active Member

    Apr 7, 2010
    Metal film resistors are only a few pennies more than carbon film resistors but are a lot less noisy and are more stable. The E24 series will be very adequate for the average experimenter. I buy 1/2 watt units because I'm old and they are easier to handle. You can get these at Digikey, Mouser, Newark, and Allied Radio and others.
    Electronix Express has an experimenters component kit for $50. It contains a wide variety of common parts to get you going. You could duplicate the parts in this kit and order them from the same place you buy your resistors to save on shipping.
    All Electronics, BGMicro, Hosfelt, and MP Jones have many cheap parts but not as broad of a selection as the big guys I mentioned above.
  6. someonesdad

    Senior Member

    Jul 7, 2009
    You can find resistor assortments at Radio Shack -- I'd recommend a 1/4 watt assortment. When you buy stuff at Radio Shack (especially components), you'll pay 2 to 10 times as much as you will somewhere else. However, remember that there won't be a shipping charge (it's already in the price) and you can get instant delivery if the part's in stock.

    While Radio Shack isn't what it used to be for the hobbyist, I do try to give them my business when possible because I appreciate having a local store. However, they are doing their absolute best at driving me away from them completely for components. Their website is horrible if you want to get simple specs on a component to decide whether it is suitable for your project. Granted, components aren't where their big revenue is, but it's something that can draw people in who might make other purchases. I even went to the trouble of writing them a letter about it, but I don't expect any big changes... :p
  7. Wendy


    Mar 24, 2008
    I tend to stick with ¼W 5% resistors.

    I have a very cheap source (retail only) for 2¢ each in quantities of a 100 or more.

    There will be a few cases where you will need ½W, but they will be rare.

    Project: Resistor Parts Storage
  8. epic_newb

    Thread Starter Member

    Apr 10, 2011
    Allright, so it looks like the general consensus is 1/4W 5% resistors which is great because I saw loads of those on the net. I will definitely look into the distributors listed above but for now I have to get to class so that will have to wait. Thanks guys :)