When I destroyed all resonators on an enemy portal, I have various options to place the resonators.

I can either

  • set the highest resonators right away or
  • start with lower resonators and gradually replace them with higher ones.

By default (Button "Deploy Resonator") Ingress seems to set lower resonators first, so I would have to replace them with higher ones later.

What is the way to gain the most AP when deploying resonators on a portal..?

I would like answers on two cases:

a) ..when I am alone.
b) ..when I am with a friend.

Usually when I am with a friend we start with the lowest resonator level and replace each others resos with a reso of one level higher, because we think that replacing a foreign resonator gives you AP while replacing your own does not. I am not sure about this though.

PS: When answering please focus on AP gain and ignore the following factors:

  • amount of Resonators used
  • amount of XM used
  • resonator location
  • other strategic considerations (bait resonators, ...)
  • I have added new detailed answer. Take a look :)
    – Qwerty
    Commented Jan 6, 2014 at 3:49

4 Answers 4


When you are alone put the highest resonators available right away.

Placing a resonator gives you 125 AP, while upgrading one gives you 65, but only if you're not the owner of the resonator. Upgrading your own resonators will give you exactly nothing, zero, nil. This means that with a friend you'll get more AP by starting with low-level resonators and gradually upgrading them.

Also you have to remember the limits on resonators' deployment that depends on your level.

Anyway you can always check how many AP you get by looking at the log in your scanner.

  • 3
    Also you should keep in mind that limitations for resonators are only applied when your resonators are still on portal. That means if you deploy 4 L3 resonators and your friend upgrades them, you can add L3 resonators again.
    – Bomberlt
    Commented Jun 11, 2013 at 7:58

Focus on deployment quality (portal durability)

Try to deploy resonators at maximum range 40 m, your scanner circle has exactly 40 m.
*XMP8 falloff range is 35m.
If possible, deploy strongest resonators to inaccessible places, such as buildings, river, etc.

Best tactical deployment

Always deploy two strongest resonators opposite of each other. If you are alone, but you expect an upgrade soon, place your strongest resonators opposite of each other, but shift the second one 1 slot. This way, you will leave still relatively resistant portal.
*note: If you are not yet level 8, substitute those levels with your highest available resonators.

alone     with        alone
          1 friend    but you expect an upgrade

  6       6 7 6         . 6       7 6 6         6 .
8 - 7     8 - 8       8 - .   >>  8 - 8    OR   8 - 7
  6       6 7 6         6 7       6 6 7           . 6

Focus on AP

AP table
125 AP deploy
65  AP upgrade
+500 AP capture (first resonator)
+250 AP fully deployed (last resonator)
  • With a friend
    max AP gain: up to 4740 AP (if you are level 8)
    = 500+8*125+250 = 1750 AP + 46*65 = 1750 + 2990 = 4740 AP
    max AP gain
    *This is the most AP you can get of it and you will use the same amount of each level's resonators.
    The maximums of resonators per agent are:
    8xR1 -> 8xR2 -> 4xR3 -> 4xR4 -> 2xR5 -> 2xR6 -> 1xR7 -> 1xR8

  • Alone
    max AP gain: 1750 AP = 500+8*125+250
    Normally deploy your max lvl resonators, you won't get AP for upgrading your own Rs!

You will get additional 125 AP for deploying a portal mod. Max two mods per 1 agent.

Focus on XM

There was a time in Ingress history, where there were no powercubes yet...

Whenever you increase portal's level, it will produce new XM within a minute or two.
1. Deploy a portal so it stays lvl 1 - (1xR8 or any other resonator*).
2. Wait two minutes.
3. Collect XM and raise the level by deploying additional resonators.
for example: 8 -> 7,6 -> 6 -> 5 -> 5,4,4
4. repeat from step 2
*note that you don't need to fully deploy a portal for it to produce new XM.

  • The Focus on XM approach was especially important in early phases of Ingress, when there were no powercubes.
    – Qwerty
    Commented Jun 3, 2014 at 21:31

How @Kappei says When you're are alone, just go to "upgrade" and then deploy the highest ones you can deploy. (try to put the highest ones in the point where are more difficult to attack).

Upgrades only give points when you upgrade resonators that aren't yours.

The player who "actives" (first reso) has a plus of points, and the last one (who puts the last reso) has a plus of points to.


@Qwerty's method is only suitable for remote portals or area where population spread in a rather wide distribution. When time is tight or lots of players in a small area, you simply can't calculate that much, as long as you deploy your resonators, people around can hide themselves behind a tree or in a storey above you to bomband your deployments. Usually, our practice is to deploy as fast as possible, from 8 down to 3 or 4. Only when we have spare time, we can return to reinforce by mods.

  • 1
    I'm not agree with your answer. The @Qwerty is the best way to do it right now. It doesn't deppend on the population of the players... But it depends a lot on your time you want to "waste". If you have no time, you deploy as best you can. If you have time you may do the best deploy you can. A different situation is if you are in "battle" for a portal/s, obviously you have to deploy the highest resos you can and going down. 8-->1 to make the other player waste more material..
    – Shudy
    Commented May 21, 2015 at 10:13

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