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. 161-7017
Mfr. Part No.3386X-1-152LF
BrandBourns
R 11.972
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
1.5 kΩ Through Hole 1 Side Adjust 0.5W 3386 Solder Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 167-3416
Mfr. Part No.3296Y-1-503LF
BrandBourns
R 27.739
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
50 kΩ Through Hole 25 Top Adjust 0.5W 3296 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 162-237
Mfr. Part No.M43P103KB40
BrandVishay
R 41.35
Each
units
10 kΩ Through Hole 20 Side Adjust 1/2W 43P Pin 20.57mm ±10% 4.83mm ±100ppm/°C 6.35mm 20.57 x 4.83 x 6.35mm -
RS stock no. 167-3547
Mfr. Part No.3214W-1-503E
BrandBourns
R 32.169
Each (On a Reel of 250)
units
50 kΩ Surface Mount 5 Top Adjust 0.25W 3214 J-Hook 4.8mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 166-9925
Mfr. Part No.3224J-1-200E
BrandBourns
R 45.548
Each (On a Reel of 500)
units
20 Ω Surface Mount 12 Side Adjust 0.25W 3224 J-Hook 4.8mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 763-7160
Mfr. Part No.Y40532K00000J0L
R 522.87
Each
units
2 kΩ Through Hole 21 Top Adjust 0.25W 1240 Solder Pin 6.35mm ±5% - ±10ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 167-5408
Mfr. Part No.3306F-1-103
BrandBourns
R 5.704
Each (In a Bag of 200)
units
10 kΩ Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.2W 3306 Pin 6.81mm ±25% - ±250ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 167-5231
Mfr. Part No.3299W-1-105LF
BrandBourns
R 34.584
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
1 MΩ Through Hole 25 Top Adjust 0.5W 3299 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 173-2997
Mfr. Part No.Y4053500R000J0L
R 530.369
Each (In a Box of 25)
units
500 Ω Through Hole 21 Top Adjust 0.25W 1240 Solder Pin 6.35mm ±5% - ±10ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 169-3075
Mfr. Part No.M64W501KB40
BrandVishay
R 27.915
Each (In a Box of 200)
units
500 Ω Through Hole 19 (Electrical), 22 (Mechanical) Top Adjust 0.5W 64W Pin 9.7mm ±10% - - - - -
RS stock no. 183-1221
Mfr. Part No.M63M503KB30T607
BrandVishay
R 64.17
Each
units
50 kΩ 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. 167-0115
Mfr. Part No.3224X-1-502E
BrandBourns
R 55.519
Each (On a Reel of 200)
units
5 kΩ Surface Mount 12 Top Adjust 0.25W 3224 Gull Wing 4.8mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 521-9552
Mfr. Part No.3296P-1-204LF
BrandBourns
R 51.59
Each
units
200 kΩ Through Hole 25 Side Adjust 0.5W 3296 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 788-5091
Mfr. Part No.T93YA105KT20
BrandVishay
R 28.172
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
1 MΩ Through Hole 21 Top Adjust 0.06W T93 Pin 9.7mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 167-9953
Mfr. Part No.T93YA105KT20
BrandVishay
R 20.542
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
1 MΩ Through Hole 21 Top Adjust 0.06W T93 Pin 9.7mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 521-9221
Mfr. Part No.3266W-1-201LF
BrandBourns
R 81.61
Each
units
200 Ω Through Hole 12 Top Adjust 0.25W 3266 Pin 6.71mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 785-9543
Mfr. Part No.3386P-1-500LF
BrandBourns
R 28.76
Each
units
50 Ω Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.5W 3386 Solder Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 167-9351
Mfr. Part No.TSM4YL103KB25
BrandVishay
R 57.943
Each (In a Box of 50)
units
10 kΩ Surface Mount 11 Top Adjust 0.25W TSM4 Gull Wing 4.8mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 167-5296
Mfr. Part No.3386P-1-500LF
BrandBourns
R 20.022
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
50 Ω Through Hole 1 Top Adjust 0.5W 3386 Solder Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -
RS stock no. 167-3360
Mfr. Part No.3296P-1-204LF
BrandBourns
R 39.309
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
200 kΩ Through Hole 25 Side Adjust 0.5W 3296 Pin 9.53mm ±10% - ±100ppm/°C - - -