Altium Designer Documentation

Symbol Wizard

Created: September 1, 2016 | Updated: June 19, 2017

The Symbol Wizard dialogThe Symbol Wizard dialog

Summary

The Symbol Wizard dialog is used to create component symbols. The dialog features automatic symbol graphic generation, grid pin tables and smart data paste capabilities.

Access

The Symbol Wizard dialog is accessed by selecting Tools » Symbol Wizard from the toolbar in a Schematic Library document. 

The Symbol Wizard dialog can only be accessed, provided the Schematic symbol generation tool extension is installed as part of your Altium Designer installation. This extension is installed by default when installing the software, but in case of inadvertent uninstall, can be found back on the Purchased tab of the Extensions & Updates page (DXP » Extensions and Updates).

Options/Controls

The dialog is sectioned into three main regions:

  • Settings - this region is used to determine the basic configuration for the symbol, including its layout style and number of pins.
  • Preview - this region contains a view of the symbol graphic that dynamically represents the current settings and pin data.
  • Pin data - provides an advanced table editor for pin data, which features multi-cell editing and column mapping and smart paste capabilities.

Settings

  • Pin Number - use the drop down to select the pin number for which you want to change symbols.
  • Pin layout style - choose from a set of predefined symbol patterns where the pin positioning is automatically assigned. Use the drop down menu to select the preferred arrangement – the results will be visible in the Preview image and the Side column settings in the Pin data table. Selections in the drop down include:
    • Dual in-line
    • Quad side 
    • Connector zig-zag 
    • Connector 
    • Single in-line 
    • Manual
      The Manual configuration denotes that pin positions are not automatically assigned. The layout style will revert to this setting when the pin positioning of a standard style (Quad side, Connector zig-zag, Single in-line) has been edited.
  • Split into groups - check this option to separate pins assigned to a common Group setting in the Pin data table. This configuration is useful for large (or multi-part) components where pins can be combined into functional groups or interfaces. Grouped pins are collected in a collapsible tree arrangement in the pin table.

Preview

This region contains a view of the symbol graphic, which dynamically represents the current settings and pin data.

  •  - use to zoom in on the graphic.
  •  - use to zoom out on the graphic.

Pin data

  • Position – the reference position index of a symbol pin. This data is not editable.
  • Group – a manually entered string used to define a collective group of pins.
  • Display name – the component pin’s display name attribute string.
  • Designator – the pin’s designator attribute string. This will automatically match the pin Position by default.
  • Description – the pin’s description string attribute.
  • Side – use the drop-down menu to select the position of the symbol. Select from Left, Bottom, Right, and Top. When this region has been changed, the Pin layout style setting changes to Manual.
  • Electrical Type – use the drop-down to select the electrical type for the pin. Selections include: Input, I/O, Output, Open Collector, Passive, HiZ, Open Emitter, and Power).
Click on a column heading to order the table data by that column – click again to toggle the order between ascending and descending.
Within the table, standard copy and paste techniques can be used to populate data from one group of cells to another. For example, by select three cells in a column, copying the data (right-click – Copy), then selecting three target cells to paste to (right-click – Paste). The same technique can be used to copy a data selection from an external source, such as a spreadsheet, text or PDF file.
Pin data cells can be manually edited on a single or multiple basis – use standard Ctrl + click and Shift + click techniques for the latter. To edit multiple cells in columns that feature drop-down menus, select the desired cell range then make the new menu selection on one of the selected cells.

Right-click Menu

  • Move Up - use to move the selected data up one row.
  • Move Down - use to move the selected data down one row.
  • Copy - use to copy the selected data to the clipboard.
  • Paste - use to paste the most recent data that was copied to the clipboard to the cursor position.
  • Smart Paste - use to open the Pin Data Smart Paste dialog to copy several columns of external source data into matching columns in the Pin data table. Use the dialog to configure the column data and delimiters, then click Paste.
  • Clear - use to delete the pin data.

Additional Controls

  • Continue editing after placement - if checked, the Symbol Wizard dialog will remain active (allowing further editing) once the component has been placed.
  • Place - use to place the completed symbol and pin data.
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