ConnectCADPlacing specialized devices

Concept: Specialized device type and prefix

In ConnectCAD, specialized devices represent sockets or pairs of sockets on connector panels. An actual physical panel is a piece of sheet metal that has a number of connectors on it. In a schematic drawing, connectors from the same panel may be placed at various locations all over the drawing. Each physical panel has several schematic devices, one for each socket (terminal panel/term panel) or socket pair (jackfield/jack).

A term panel (terminal panel or demarc panel) is an array of connectors of the same type, typically mounted on a panel on the back of an equipment rack. These connector arrays join wiring within equipment racks to longer cables running in ducts or under floors to various other parts of a building. During installation, the rack wiring can take place off-site in a clean area if needed. During the lifetime of the system, the mounting location on a rack allows cabling between rooms to be easily re-purposed as technology changes.

A jackfield (or jack) is an array of connector pairs of the same type on a panel. Jackfields are normally mounted in up/down pairs on the front of equipment racks. Outputs from equipment are conventionally connected to the top row and inputs are on the bottom row. Jackfields allow a system’s signal processing chain to be monitored, tested, or adapted to temporary needs; jackfields are, in fact, a primitive form of signal routing. Any output can be connected to an input by plugging a short cable (patch cord) into the corresponding ports. Normalized or linked jack pairs provide a connection between up and down ports when no patch cord is present, while allowing a user to override this connection by inserting a patch cord. This provides a convenient interface for engineers working on a system to access signals without having to disturb the rack wiring.

A DIN rail is a standardized type of terminal block array used for low-voltage electrics.

A connector panel represents custom-made panels with connectors of different types; these are typically found in theaters and similar venues. Permanent wiring is terminated on custom panels at facilities boxes throughout the building to provide cables routes for productions to use. The Connector Panel tool places special devices that can be associated with an equipment item object on the Rack Elevation layer. See Creating connector panel layouts.

Specific device name prefixes indicate the device’s panel type. The Check Drawing command recognizes the panel prefixes, and excludes panel devices from the duplicate device name check. This prevents unnecessary duplicate device warnings for panels.

Device type

Device Name Prefix

Terminal panel


(the first letter indicates Video, Audio, Data, or Optical)



(the first letter indicates Video, Audio, Data, or Optical)

DIN rail


Connector panel


Specialized devices can be placed on the drawing, or placed “in line” on a circuit, dividing the circuit where they are placed. Terminal panels have a special socket that can accept connections from either side.

If an existing jackfield (jack) or terminal panel device is already selected when placing a new device, the new device is sequentially numbered.

Panels, including jackfields, terminal panels, and connector panels, can be split into individual panel devices with a single connector, and individual panels can be combined into a single device, depending on the requirements of the schematic drawing.

Placing jackfields and linked jackfields

Placing terminal panels

Placing connector panels

Placing distribution amplifiers

Combining and splitting panels


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