Snes Controller Mod (Well really, just stuffing a bunch of S&%# into a SNES controller.
Wednesday, January 2, 2013 at 08:51PM
Damage

I wanted to write a quick post about a fun and easy project I did back before I started this website.  Apologies for not documenting the full process, but this post is more about the idea, as there isn't much to the process itself.  This should be fairly easy for anyone comfortable with basic soldering and doesn't mind working with a dremil tool

I like the idea of being able to run emulated games but still being able to use the original controller.  Retrozone sells a nice board that you can drop into your favorite controller and do just that.  However I wanted to take it a step further by including a way to store the emulator files with the gamepad.  This is what I have come up with...

 

To connect multiple USB devices to the same port, We need to use a hub, since I wanted this to be all in one.  At first I looked into designing a small USB hub, but then I found these small "squid" style cheapo hubs from china, so why re-invent the wheel? The ones I found were only a few dollars a piece, so the price was right.  Pick up a few incase you botch one and to justify the shipping costs.  Also, get a 4 port hub, not more.  The 4 port hubs will usually have a smaller circuit board.  Search around, any hub will do so long as it is "self powered" (doesn't use an external power brick) and you can get it to fit.  Here is a picture of the one I used...

 

Being as the components only pull a few 100mA's of current, power should not be an issue.  I took apart the hub and a 16G thumbdrive and removed all the casing and extra plastic bits so I could save precious space.  I then wired all of the connections point to point.  If you attempt this, you will likely need to mill some of the plastic bits inside the controller to get it to fit.  Once I got it screwed back together, you would never know it had all this stuff in it aside from the USB plug on the end of the wire.

The end result... You plug in the controller, it shows up in windows as a "plug and play" gamepad, and the drive pops up with all the files needed to run the emu.  This all means less fuss searching for where you put the files and more focus on what's important,  gaming.  Plus, since everything is on the controller, you can move it to a different PC and not lose your saves.  Eventually I want to do the same with other systems.

 

Article originally appeared on Damage Designs Custom Electronics (http://damage-designs.com/).
See website for complete article licensing information.