I'm currently designing a pcb in EAGLE (v7.4) for a school project and I've included a potentiometer for gain control. However, I will not be placing the potentiometer directly on the board. I want to connect it with a wire to board 1x3 molex connector. This is my current schematic:

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I would like to replace my molex connector symbol with a potentiometer symbol. Is there a way to place virtual components (and replace them with my connector)? This would make my schematic more readable.



1 Answer 1


You should not do that.

The part that will be placed on the board is a connector.

If you gave the connector a potentiometer symbol, the layout designer would be surprised to find a connector footprint at that location. The people who build the board would be very confused when the part that arrived to be placed in that location turned out to be a connector. People debugging the board would be confused to find a connector there instead of a potentiometer, etc.

If you want the schematic to be clear, you should add the value of the pot to the text where you currently have "Off board potentiometer". If you really want a visible clue about the connections of the potentiometer, you could add a symbol, purely using drawing elements showing which pins connect to the ends and the wiper.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I always assumed my eagle schematic should be the same as the schematic I drew on paper (and later I would just change the footprint of the component). Thanks for clearing this up. \$\endgroup\$
    – Aether
    Nov 7, 2015 at 15:53
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ While it's helpful to make the schematic clearly show the circuit operation for debugging, when you enter a schematic into a CAD tool (like Eagle) the main purpose is usually to communicate the design to the layout designer, so it is not a good idea to obscure the details that are important to them. \$\endgroup\$
    – The Photon
    Nov 7, 2015 at 15:56

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