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AWARD-WINNING POTENTIOMETER TUNING KNOBS FOR MENU-DRIVEN ELECTRONICS

Award-winning CONTROL-KNOBS with optional LED illuminination

ONE POTENTIOMETER TO RULE THEM ALL…

With the huge growth in demand for touchscreens, it’s easy to forget the central role that advanced potentiometers continue to play. Menu-driven electronics put rotary potentiometers at the very heart of the operating system.

Click-to-confirm potentiometers enable users to control virtually everything in a system with a single knob…rotate to choose the menu function…then push to select it. These menu-driven systems can be found everywhere from entertainment systems to prestige cars. They are beautifully simple and intuitive. Forget the instruction manual – just turn the knob and click ‘OK’.

The tuning knobs for these potentiometers must be as elegant, sophisticated and robust as the systems they control. If that one tuning knob controls everything then it’ll be the one that users handle most. So it must be something special, both aesthetically and ergonomically.

 

CONTROL-KNOBS modern potentiometer tuning knobs

CONTROL-KNOBS: OKW’S AWARD-WINNING TUNING KNOBS FOR MENU-DRIVEN ELECTRONICS

OKW already offers smart, modern potentiometer knobs for menu-driven electronics. They’ve proved to be extremely popular and continue to be in demand. And now CONTROL-KNOBs are building on that success by offering you greater choice. They’ve just won an iF Design Award 2022, adding another of these prestigious trophies to our burgeoning collection. Here’s an insight into the design ethos that made CONTROL-KNOBS a winner…

Like enclosures, standard tuning knobs must be very discreet in their design. No designer wants to see ‘their’ standard knobs appearing on a rival product. It’s as disappointing as discovering that the door handles of your classic James Bond Lotus Esprit are the same as those used on a humble Morris Marina.

And if anything, knobs face an even greater challenge than enclosures when it comes to discretion because they’re likely to be even more prolific; one knob may be used on any number of different enclosures. That means the knobs must enhance the aesthetics and match the design language of every enclosure they’re used on. They can never be too recognisable in their styling (though our highly distinctive TOP-KNOBs also won an iF award – proving that you can push the boundaries of convention if you do so by offering a wide choice of options).

CONTROL-KNOBs underline their aesthetic credentials by being visibly comfortable to operate: they look good because they look as if they’ll feel good. How? The secret is in the combination of plastics in these two-part knobs.

The inner is moulded from reassuringly tough polycarbonate, known for its strength and rigidity in applications such as car body parts, ski clamp components and anti-vandal glazing. On the outer is soft-touch TPE that we know is popular because we’ve used it on a number of our handheld enclosures. The addition of functional grooves around the edge further enhances the look and feel.

 

CONTROL-KNOBS - Optional LED illumination

ELEGANT FUNCTIONALITY THAT’S ILLUMINATING

CONTROL-KNOBs are available either with or without energy-saving SMD LED (5 V) illumination. RGB LEDs allow individual illumination and colours – lighting up the discreet translucent optic ring on the top and the optional pointer line on the side. The smaller knobs have eight LEDs; the larger ones now have 12 (an improvement on the original eight).

Positioning the illumination on the top makes it more visible. It also adds a modern design touch, differentiating the range from knobs with illumination around the base. This added functionality will increase the popularity of CONTROL-KNOBS in sectors that operate around the clock – such as healthcare, building control and Smart Factory operations. Lighting up your CONTROL-KNOBs means specifying the LED illumination kit and also a base – both of which are available as accessories.

 

CONTROL-KNOBS collet fixing system

COLLET FIXTURE SYSTEM FOR ADDED SECURITY

A collet is the most secure way to fit a knob to a potentiometer. Yes, we offer push-on and lateral-screw knobs but a model like CONTROL-KNOBs demands a collet fixing. They are tamperproof and less fiddly to fit than a lateral-screw knob. The collet fixing on each CONTROL-KNOB uses a concealed round nut that sits under the top cover. These nuts are available as accessories in sizes M7 x 0.75, M10 x 0.75 and 3/8”-32G, along with a box spanner.

 

Specifying CONTROL-KNOBS or STAR-KNOBS

WHICH KNOBS FOR MY MENU-DRIVEN ELECTRONICS? CONTROL-KNOBS OR STAR-KNOBS?

OKW now offers two ranges of potentiometer knobs for menu-driven electronics: CONTROL-KNOBs and STAR-KNOBs. So which is best for your project? What are the technical differences? Compare the two models here:

  • Mounting – both CONTROL-KNOBs and STAR-KNOBs can be specified for surface-mount applications; STAR-KNOBs also offer a flush-mount option.
  • Illumination – both knobs feature SMD LED technology (5 V) with RGB backlight for individual colours. CONTROL-KNOBs have an illuminated top and pointer; STAR-KNOBs offer an illuminated base ring (3 mm high) for surface mounting or an illuminated top for flush mounting.
  • Finger Grip – all CONTROL-KNOBs have easy-grip grooves. STAR-KNOBs offer the option of a cover with a finger recess for fine adjustments. This is recommended when STAR-KNOBs are specified for flush-fit applications.
  • Pointer Line – CONTROL-KNOBs have a pointer line; STAR-KNOBs do not.
  • Fixings – both CONTROL-KNOBs and STAR-KNOBs use the tried-and-trusted collet fixing system.
  • Sizes – CONTROL-KNOBs are available in two sizes (ø 36 mm and ø 46 mm); STAR-KNOBs (ø 33 mm and ø 41 mm).

View CONTROL-KNOBS range here >>

FURTHER READING

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT TUNING KNOBS

OKW is a specialist enclosures and potentiometer knobs manufacturer with decades of experience in innovation. Contact us to discuss your next project. Ask us about a sample.