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Topic: Small or mini potentiometers??? (Read 2836 times) previous topic - next topic


Hello Everyone!

I am searching for some SMALL potentiometers (size-wise) for use in some Atmega328-based devices. I have small plastic enclosures (maybe 3x5) and I want to include some dimming capabilities for the LCD, etc.    I ordered some 10K pots labeled as "small" which came with the corresponding knobs, but when they arrived yesterday they are HUGE. The knobs, themselves, are about an inch high by an inch wide. That is FAR too big to be used on a small plastic case.

I have seen Youtube videos of people using very small potentiometers with knobs (maybe 1/4" inch in height/width, or slightly larger)... I have seen pictures in the past within this forum... etc.    Can anyone provide any sources of SMALL potentiometers that come WITH SMALL KNOBS?? I want the finished product to be functional as well as proportional with regard to the components on it. I have checked Mouser, Digikey, etc., and while they do have the pots, most do not come with knobs. I know a while back Sparkfun had some, but have since been removed from their website. Ebay doesn't offer an assortment either (which is where I purchased these "small" pots that just arrived).

Any websites, sources, etc., would be appreciated. Also, is my selection of a 10K pot the correct value for an application such as dimming the backlight of the LCD displays, etc.?  I believe it is - just checking while I have some open ears.     :-)

Thank you all!!



You can get trimpots with a small "knob", really just a knurled extension to the part you normally put the screwdriver.

I'll try to find a part number.

Rob Gray aka the GRAYnomad www.robgray.com


Hi Rob - thank you for the information and willingness to look for a part number.

I have seen the long shaft styles (textured and smooth) and I was really hoping to go with a miniature knob - it looks more refined/professional. I know they're out there, I just can't seem to find them.  Very frustrating.


Rob Gray aka the GRAYnomad www.robgray.com


If it was black that would be a PERFECT size.....
I wonder how a coat of spraypaint would affect it.


The data sheet doesn't mention colour so I guess it's any colour you like as long as it's blue.

You could email them and ask.

Rob Gray aka the GRAYnomad www.robgray.com


The one at sparkfun is type 3386. If you want it even smaller (most come without the knob, turn with a screw driver, but some do have knobs), search for 3362 potentiometers. That's the smallest I use. Smaller ones do exist though but this type is plenty on the net for low price.
Serial LCD keypad panel,phi_prompt user interface library,SDI-12 USB Adapter



Be careful about using trimming pots to dim LCD backlights. These small pots are not good for more than a couple of hundred turns. They are made to be adjusted and then left alone. That's one reason why they often do not have knobs.

If you want a user dimming control, you may want something longer lasting (for example, 10,000 turns). And more accurate.

Of course, that depends on your application. Maybe you have already taken that into account.


Apr 05, 2012, 11:36 pm Last Edit: Apr 05, 2012, 11:38 pm by dean8020 Reason: 1
They have a selection of pots with 1/4" shafts
and a selection with 1/8" shafts such as:

And a selection of 1/4" and 1/8" Knobs to go with them..

Though a lot of the knobs don't have pics, just descriptions.

Edit: the knobs do have pictures, just not in the search results, when you click on the actual item there are pics

Personally I buy most components from RS, they are mainly priced for bulk mass production but anyone can order, and they post everything out recorded delivery (in the UK at least) and stock just about everything.


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