Sunday, September 24, 2017

Padhacking a Terrible Genesis 6-button Controller

I recently got a model 1 Sega Genesis and an Everdrive MD and have been playing a lot of the great shmups and arcade ports. The standard 3-button pads are not great, period, but they're especially crummy for those sorts of games (Street Fighter is basically impossible), so I figured I'd seek out some 6-button pads.

Legit 6-button pads from Sega are quite nice, but they're getting more expensive these days (like everything retro, amirite?), so I decided to check out some of the cheap knockoffs. The cheapest ones I could find were going for $8 for 2 pads on eBay and, while I expected them to be shitty, they're worse than I ever imagined:
The Fighting Putt 6B packaging. Both pads I received looked as if they'd been sat upon.
The buttons are so loose I was worried they would fall right out of the cheap plastic casing. The controllers themselves weigh almost nothing and their cord is a measly 3 feet long. The funniest quirk, IMO, is that they only used 4 screws to connect the housing instead of the 5 Sega used, but they put in a fake plastic screw just to keep up appearances:
Very clever, guys. Nobody suspects a thing.
Between the laughably short cord and the awful buttons, I decided to check out the PCB to see if it might be worth putting into an arcade stick (I already have a PS360+ multi-console board, which covers every console I care about except the Genesis/MD, so this would be useful). It turns out that the PCB is actually really great for this purpose, with a common-ground design and nice, big soldering pads for each input:
Here's a shot with wires soldered onto the pads:
And here's one with the solder joints smothered in hot glue for long-term stability:
I hooked it into an existing stick I had lying around and everything works perfectly. After the price of an extension cable, I'm still looking at sub-$10, so not too bad. I wouldn't recommend the Fighting Putt 6Bs for general use, but they're great for padhacking.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dude, this has nothing to do with the article but I just discovered your blog yesterday, and is amazing! I love the shaders posts. Is just impressive.

Greetings from Mexico.

Hunter K. said...

eyyy, glad to hear from you, and I'm glad you like the blog :D

Anonymous said...

Is there someway to get a pack with all shaders that you posted previously or some link with everything? Like the LCD Shader, "New NTSC Shaders" post and all. I'm a little bit lost with all this stuff, also which shader format is better/more compatible with emulators?

Thanks!

Hunter K. said...

Pretty much all of them are available on github in the libretro organization's glsl-shaders, slang-shaders and common-shaders repos. I also have quite a few in hizzlekizzle/quark-shaders on github.

The quark shaders work with byuu's higan suite of emulators, while the others work with RetroArch.

Anonymous said...

Oh now I understand... I think. I'll try'em. By the way, your blog is great, totally useful. A lot of shaders that I didn't even know of their existence.

Unknown said...

Hey Hunter, how well you think this'd work with some of those crappy SNES clone pads?

Hunter K. said...

That's a good question. You never know until you crack one open! Did you have a particular crappy one in mind? If you're thinking of the crappy ones I wrote about a while back, I'll be happy to take a look.

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