PCB Reference Designation

March 9, 2011

While trying to fix my daughter’s Nintendo DS (which wasn’t a complete success, I managed to replace the slot1, it powers up and plays games, but now won’t charge 🙁 ). I wanted to know what component “F1” may be. While Googling I came across a cached web page from pcbwizards.com which was down, but seems back now. So this useful info doesn’t get lost, I’m reposting the cached info here.

Reference Designation – Reference Designations are letter and number codes assigned to items that are part of an assembly. This ‘shorthand’ code allows components in a printed circuit board to be found easily while working on a board assembly or locating them and their complete descriptions in a Bill of Material or parts list.

Standard Reference Designations for Electrical Equipment can be found published in ANSI Y32.2 1975/IEEE STD 315. Below is a partial list of the reference designations used in electronics.

A Assembly

AR Amplifier

AT Attenuator; Isolator

B Blower, Motor

BR Bridge Rectifier

BT Battery

C Capacitor

CB Circuit Breaker

CP Coupler

CR Crystal Rectifier (Diode)

D Diode; Thyristor; Varacter

DC Directional Coupler

DP Diplexer

DL Delay Line

DS Display; LED Lamp

E Terminal

F Fuse

FB Ferrite Bead

FD Fiducial

FL Filter

G Generator, Oscillator

HW Hardware

HY Circulator

J Jack Connector (Least Movable)

JP Programming Jumper

K Relay
L Coil; Inductor
LS Loud Speaker/Buzzer

M Measuring equipment, Meter

MH Mounting Hole

MK Microphone

P Plug Type Connector (Most Moveable)

PS Power Supply

Q Transistor

R Resistor, or Potentiometer

RN Resistor Network

RT Thermistor

S Switch

T Transformer

TB Terminal Block

TC Thermocouple

TP Test Point

U Integrated Circuit or inseparable assembly

V Electron Tube, Photoelectric Cell

VR Voltage Regulator

W Cable Transmission or Wire Jumper or Busbar

X Socket

Y Crystal, Oscillator