Would you buy an Original NES/SNES controller converted to USB?

Discussion in 'General Off-Topic Chat' started by TwinRetro, Jul 20, 2012.

  1. TwinRetro

    TwinRetro Global Moderator

    Global Moderator
    Aug 29, 2008
    Hiatus Hell
    So...our friends over at retrousb is out of standalone NES/SNES USB controllers...

    So I thought I might take this opportunity to ask...

    If I started making these (plug and play NES and SNES controllers for PC Emulation) Would anyone be interested in buying these at all? This seems like a good way to improve my soldering skills and put a few bucks in my pocket at the same time.

    All units will be cleaned inside and out and tested before shipping. Since these are official USED controllers, I cannot guarantee the unit will be free of scratches or general wear and tear, but again, I guarantee the units will be 100% functional.

    I haven't nailed down the exact pricing yet, but expect a premium, since I have to buy the kits, and the OFFICIAL controllers separately.

    These kits will pretty much be for anyone who wants to play with the real thing instead of a cheap knockoff that looks like the real thing, but couldn't be farther from it when you actually get it in your hands.
  2. Clarky

    Clarky Don't you know who I think I am?

    Oct 4, 2007
    United States
    I personally wouldn't as i already have usb control adapters but i imagine old school players would go for it easily
  3. Tom Bombadildo

    Tom Bombadildo Honk!

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    Jul 11, 2009
    United States
    I forgot
    I might be interested in this. What if we ship our own controllers out to you? I have 3 that work just fine, so I can spare one as a USB controller.
  4. Hells Malice

    Hells Malice Are you a bully?

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    Apr 9, 2009
    It's a neat concept but I can't say i'd actually buy one. I got used to my 360 controller for oldschool games. An N64 controller would be nice though...I can't stand emulating N64 games.
  5. raystriker

    raystriker Alpha PC Builder

    Dec 28, 2011
    umm...... no one actually plays nes/snes games(i think) but at the same time, a n64 or Game Cube controller would be better(i think) as the controller can do almost all the functions a snes controller could(i think)


    I think a lot
  6. GameSoul

    GameSoul youtube.com/variantdevil

    Mar 21, 2008
    United States
    Personally I wouldn't buy one since I've gotten so used to using my PS3 controller but I like the idea.
  7. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip Reporter
    Nov 21, 2005
    United Kingdom
    Would you be opting for the http://learn.adafruit.com/usb-snes-gamepad/disassemble-the-snes-controller method or actually converting signals? I am just curious so assuming no real latency issues I have no preference either way other than I guess broken switches are ten times easier to fix than whatever custom shift register nonsense the SNES probably went in for.

    @raystriker "nobody plays nes/snes games"..... try again.

    N64 though... some of the arduino/teensy* devices have some pretty good analogue to digital conversion hardware and libraries.

    *teensy does a great line in appearing as a USB keyboard and mouse so for controller work I usually opt for this.

    As for buying I have my own soldering gear and most of my associates if they can not do their own will speak to one of us that can so I am probably not the best person to ask. It would either be harder (you convert customs signals to other custom signals), fiddly (you latch onto something*) or more expensive (you sacrifice a working controller) but what could be quite lucrative is if you managed to make adapters that allowed play using old controllers on consoles. As far as the wii goes there are already some libraries out there and i2c is not that bad either so you could stick stuff in the nunchuck/expansion port.

    *think the 360 mouse and keyboard adapters that require an original wired controller for initialisation.
  8. AlanJohn

    AlanJohn くたばれ

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  9. raulpica

    raulpica With your drill, thrust to the sky!

    Oct 23, 2007
    PowerLevel: 9001
    Feels like a waste of good, perfectly working controllers which are getting rarer and rarer.

    I remember thinking of doing one myself a bit ago, then I thought that they could be used with a REAL console, while keeping them intact.

    Oh well, my 2 cents ;)

    EDIT: This isn't an attack to you or the retroUSB guys (which are great! thank them for the Powerpak!), it's just towards the entire "let's convert old stuff in new stuff, even if we have new products which can do the same things, probably even better" attitude. I mean, WHY destroy a perfectly fine Zelda cartridge to stuff a 2.5" HD in it? (just another example) :(
    1 person likes this.
  10. spinal_cord

    spinal_cord Knows his stuff

    Jul 21, 2007
    I have a SNES USB controller that works on iOS, pc, mac, android etc. It supports iCade, Xperia play, normal keyboard and media remote controls. So far I have been unable to test it on android (Xperia play controls are untested but assumed working) as my phone doesn't have usb host capability, but if your phone supports usb keyboards, this will work just fine. Also the circuit fits inside the SNES controller with ease, and even works on a NES controller.
    I currently use it to play emulated games on MAC and PC as well as iCade compatible games on the iPad.

    The total cost is similar to that of the retro arcade kits.
  11. Eerpow

    Eerpow *swoosh*

    Sep 14, 2009
    I know I wouldn't sacrifice good working controllers and lose compatibility with my original systems :(
    I have console to PC adapters that I use instead.
    1 person likes this.
  12. Lilith Valentine

    Lilith Valentine GBATemp's Wolf-husky™ Panties

    Sep 13, 2009
    At the end of another lost highway
    I would be interested in buying one
  13. Shin Akuma

    Shin Akuma GBAtemp Regular

    Sep 29, 2006
    yes i would get a Snes one i think but im a bit babyman when it comes to scratches etc.

    oh i forgot... is it Us Snes style?or Eu too?
  14. Eerpow

    Eerpow *swoosh*

    Sep 14, 2009
    You know what would probably be very hard but also really nice?
    Making old controllers so that they plug into Wii remotes or the GC controller slots, the virtual console n64 emulator is really nice and in some cases much better than emulators on a PC, I would love to be able to play some of those games without needing to bust out my original N64.
  15. Pleng

    Pleng GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

    Sep 14, 2011
    Why not make convertes instead? That way the controllers can still be used with their original hardware too.

    Though I gues that involves buying up a bunch of broken SNES systems to get the female connectors...
  16. Foxi4

    Foxi4 On the hunt...

    pip Reporter
    Sep 13, 2009
    Gaming Grotto
    This, a thousand times. Adapters are the way to go, converting perfectly good controllers is not. If you want to do something like this, do it to your own controller, not controllers that are on the pre-owned market that someone may want to buy intact. Alternatively, make them on-demand and to order rather than stocking up in hopes that someone may buy them in the future.
    2 people like this.
  17. ZAFDeltaForce

    ZAFDeltaForce Specialist

    Sep 9, 2006
    If the price isn't too high, I wouldn't mind
  18. Cyan

    Cyan GBATemp's lurking knight

    Global Moderator
    Oct 27, 2002
    Engine room, learning
    If possible, you could use female controller plug (or make one yourself?) and make an Snes-USB adapter without breaking the official controller.

    I did N64 and Snes converter (though LPT1) few years ago.
    I used the Snes one a lot for Snes emulator (Zsnes had native support for LPT port), and N64 for PC games.
    N64 was working great with analog :)
    I didn't break the pad/cords, I made them by buying an extension cable and cutting one side.

    Though, new computers don't have LPT ports anymore :(

    I'm now using Gamecube controllers through Wii, through PadSend homebrew, through wifi, to use a controller on PC, and it works great :)

    I don't know if I would use a Snes controller again on PC, there's not enough buttons unless it's used for Snes emulation.

    You should post a picture of one of your finished product to see how good/bad it's done.
    1 person likes this.
  19. reshx

    reshx GBAtemp Regular

    Jul 20, 2012
    United States
    in my apartment
    a nes controller ? no , i already have a gamecube USB controller
  20. Zaertix

    Zaertix GBAtemp Advanced Fan

    Oct 20, 2009
    United States
    Don't know what you're thinking, but I know plenty of people that go back and play the games they enjoyed as childeren. Such as Earthbound. That hasn't been re-released and probably never will be. So it's one of those games you either emulate or you find rarely for cheap. I still pull out my NES to enjoy the Golden Tape Zelda, and I emulate Mother 1 on the NES emulator (Forgot the name of the one I use)