Parent page: Schematic Objects
A pin is an electrical design primitive. Pins give a component (part) its electrical properties and define the connection points on the part for the incoming and outgoing signals.
Pins can only be placed in the Schematic Library Editor using one of the following methods:
After launching the command, the cursor will change to a cross-hair and you will enter pin placement mode. Placement is made by performing the following sequence of actions:
Additional actions that can be performed during placement – while the pin is still floating on the cursor, and before the electrical end of the pin is anchored – are:
Pins can also be added through the Component Pin Editor dialog, which is accessed by clicking the button on the Pins tab of the Properties panel in Component mode.
Click the Add button to add a new pin, then define the properties in the dialog. Note that multiple pins can be added and defined. You can also use Tab and Shift+Tab to step between the fields.
For many components there will be a series of pins that have numerical names and numbers. The Auto-Increment During Placement feature on the Schematic - General page of the Preferences dialog can be used to speed the placement of these pins. Auto-increment is invoked automatically if the pin properties are edited before placement (press Tab while the pin is floating on the cursor). The feature works for both the Designator and the Display Name - the pin Designator uses the Primary auto-increment field and the pin Display Name uses the Secondary auto-increment field. It supports ascending alpha and numeric values, and descending numeric values.
Note the increasing alpha pin name and decreasing numeric pin number.
To move a pin, click and hold - the cursor will jump to the electrical hotspot end of the pin - then move it to the new location, placing it with the electrical end away from the component body.
While dragging, the pin can be rotated (Spacebar/Shift+Spacebar) or mirrored (X or Y keys to mirror along the X-axis or Y-axis).
Properties page: Pin Properties
The properties of a Pin can be edited in the Properties panel, which allows editing of all item(s) currently selected in the workspace.
During placement, the panel can be accessed by pressing the Tab key.
To access the properties of a placed Pin :
The Properties panel supports editing multiple objects, where the property settings that are identical in all currently selected objects may be modified. When multiples of the same object type are selected manually, via the Find Similar Objects dialog or through a Filter or List panel, a Properties panel field entry that is not shown as an asterisk (
*) may be edited for all selected objects.
The location of the pin Display Name and pin Designator (number) is defined globally by the Pin Margin settings on the Schematic - General page of the Preferences dialog. This is an environment setting, meaning it applies for the PC where the setting is defined. The settings define a relative distance the text is away from the non-electrical end of the pin.
For pins, these system-level settings of position and font can be overridden. Controls for customization of the position and font for a pin's Designator and Name can be found in the Pin mode of the Properties panel.
Use the Custom Position option to change the default settings for the position to an overriding, customized position. For the Margin, enter a new value directly in the associated field. For the Orientation, use the drop-down to choose the angle (
90°) and the To reference (
Use the Custom Settings option to change from following the default system font to an overriding, customized font.
When representing a component in the schematic editing domain, each pin defined as part of that device's schematic symbol can have one or more symbols displayed. These are symbols displayed on the Inside, Inside Edge, Outside, or Outside Edge in relation to the main component symbol outline, as required. Examples might include a Clock symbol on the Inside Edge, or a Dot symbol on the Outside Edge. Such symbols greatly improve the readability of the design through visual indication of the purpose of the signal traversing a particular pin.
Use the Line Width setting in the Symbols region of the Properties panel to specify the width of the line used to draw these symbols. Choose from either Small or Smallest.
A List panel allows you to display design objects from one or more documents in tabular format, enabling quick inspection and modification of object attributes. Used in conjunction with appropriate filtering - by using the applicable Filter panel or the Find Similar Objects dialog - it enables the display of just those objects falling under the scope of the active filter – allowing you to target and edit multiple design objects with greater accuracy and efficiency.
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