Trimmer Resistors

What are trimmer potentiometers?


Trimmer potentiometers, sometimes referred to as trim pots or trimmer resistors are a type of adjustable potentiometer (variable resistor). They are used to calibrate and fine-tune circuits. Trimmer potentiometers are typically constructed from cermet or have a carbon composition. They can be mounted directly onto PCBs (printed circuit boards).


Trimmer potentiometers are not adjusted very frequently. You can think of them as a ’set and forget’ component. Trim pots let you set (or trim) the resistance to obtain a very precise current, output voltage or gain. Once the value has been set, it is unlikely that you’ll need to adjust the trimmer again unless you need to recalibrate the circuit.


Can I replace a normal potentiometer with a trimmer potentiometer?


Yes, you can. However, trimmer potentiometers are typically more expensive than standard potentiometers with a fixed resistance rating. It is also worth bearing in mind the difference in lifespan too. Many potentiometers have a lifespan that allows for hundreds of thousands of cycles. Trimmer potentiometers typically have a lifespan of a few hundred cycles (at best). Trim pots also tend to take up more space on a PCB than a standard potentiometer.


Do I need a single turn or multiturn trim pot?


This completely depends on the intended application of the trim pot. Multiturn trimmer pots tend to have a higher resolution than single turn models. A single turn trimmer potentiometer is ideal for applications where a resolution of one turn is enough.


Adjustment types


Trimmer potentiometers are normally adjusted by hand (you can turn the adjustment knob with your fingers), with a screwdriver or with a specialised adjustment tool designed for use with a particular model or series.


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Description Price Maximum Resistance Mounting Type Number of Turns Orientation Power Rating Series Termination Style Length Tolerance Depth Temperature Coefficient Height Dimensions Maximum Voltage Rating
RS Stock No. 521-9704
Mfr. Part No.3296W-1-202LF
BrandBourns
£1.87
Each
Units
2kΩ Through Hole 25 Top Adjust 0.5W 3296 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 167-9960
Mfr. Part No.T93YB103KT20
BrandVishay
£0.846
Each (In a Tube of 50)
Units
10kΩ Through Hole 21 (Electrical) Turns, 23 (Mechanical) Turns Top Adjust 0.5W T93 Pin 9.7mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 154-2555
Mfr. Part No.M63M104KB30T607
BrandVishay
£2.95
Each
Units
100kΩ Through Hole 1 Finger Adjust 1/2W 63M-T607 Pin 9.52mm ±10% 9.52mm ±100ppm/°C 10.41mm 9.52 x 9.52 x 10.41mm -
RS Stock No. 167-9650
Mfr. Part No.M63M104KB30T607
BrandVishay
£1.482
Each (In a Box of 400)
Units
100kΩ Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.5W 63M Pin 9.52mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 522-2457
Mfr. Part No.3386F-1-504LF
BrandBourns
£1.30
Each
Units
500kΩ Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.5W 3386 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 788-5114
Mfr. Part No.T93YB103KT20
BrandVishay
£1.11
Each (In a Pack of 5)
Units
10kΩ Through Hole 21 (Electrical) Turns, 23 (Mechanical) Turns Top Adjust 0.5W T93 Pin 9.7mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 167-3465
Mfr. Part No.3386F-1-504LF
BrandBourns
£0.774
Each (In a Tube of 50)
Units
500kΩ Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.5W 3386 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 522-0215
Mfr. Part No.3296Y-1-502LF
BrandBourns
£1.87
Each
Units
5kΩ Through Hole 25 Top Adjust 0.5W 3296 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 167-3504
Mfr. Part No.3296Y-1-502LF
BrandBourns
£1.215
Each (In a Tube of 50)
Units
5kΩ Through Hole 25 Top Adjust 0.5W 3296 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 167-3469
Mfr. Part No.3386P-1-102LF
BrandBourns
£0.774
Each (In a Tube of 50)
Units
1kΩ Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.5W 3386 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 522-2687
Mfr. Part No.3386P-1-102LF
BrandBourns
£1.30
Each
Units
1kΩ Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.5W 3386 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 850-9643
Mfr. Part No.T73YE103KT20
BrandVishay
£1.00
Each
Units
10kΩ Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.5W T73 PC Pin 6.6mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 169-3069
Mfr. Part No.M64W203KB40
BrandVishay
£1.112
Each (In a Box of 200)
Units
20kΩ Through Hole 19 (Electrical), 22 (Mechanical) Top Adjust 0.5W 64W Pin 9.7mm ±10% - - - - -
RS Stock No. 169-3101
Mfr. Part No.M64Y102KB40
BrandVishay
£1.121
Each (In a Box of 200)
Units
1kΩ Through Hole 19 (Electrical), 22 (Mechanical) Top Adjust 0.5W 64Y Pin 9.7mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 521-9085
Mfr. Part No.3006P-1-202LF
BrandBourns
£1.68
Each
Units
2kΩ Through Hole 15 Side Adjust 0.75W 3006 Pin 20.57mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 154-2022
Mfr. Part No.M64W102KB40
BrandVishay
£2.04
Each
Units
1kΩ Through Hole 19 (Electrical), 22 (Mechanical) Top Adjust 1/2W 64W Pin 9.7mm ±10% 5mm ±100ppm/°C 11.1mm 9.7 x 5 x 11.1mm -
RS Stock No. 169-3076
Mfr. Part No.M64W102KB40
BrandVishay
£1.121
Each (In a Box of 200)
Units
1kΩ Through Hole 19 (Electrical), 22 (Mechanical) Top Adjust 0.5W 64W Pin 9.7mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 167-3239
Mfr. Part No.3006P-1-202LF
BrandBourns
£1.147
Each (In a Tube of 25)
Units
2kΩ Through Hole 15 Side Adjust 0.75W 3006 Pin 20.57mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 167-3357
Mfr. Part No.3266W-1-502LF
BrandBourns
£2.009
Each (In a Tube of 50)
Units
5kΩ Through Hole 12 Top Adjust 0.25W 3266 Pin 6.71mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS Stock No. 521-9287
Mfr. Part No.3266W-1-502LF
BrandBourns
£3.21
Each
Units
5kΩ Through Hole 12 Top Adjust 0.25W 3266 Pin 6.71mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
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