It’s been a while since SLS Sega Saturn USB Control Pads were available …

foonessfooness Joined: Posts: 7
edited March 5 in Tech Talk
Dear shoryuken community,

I’ve been reading a lot of threads here for the last two days and had an eye on like ebay for at least three weeks now.

As the genuine SLS Sega Saturn USB Pads are almost impossible to purchase, and if then what I’ve seen not below $150, I wondered if some of you had lately—not back in 2014 or when—experiences with PCB-swapping, for example putting the Play Sega PCB into an genuine Sega Saturn Control Pad (non-USB) or e.g. this Retrolink clone (I think these two are the most appropriate clones, from what I read here).

Also I read about soldering some USB wire directly to the non-USB Control Pads, but that looked to me very very complex if you’re not into electronics.

So, could you please give me some advice? I doubt there will be some awesome e.g. 8bitdo Sega Saturn Control Pads, so I wonder if I should buy some of those Play Sega or Retrolink ones, if I should just stay with them or if I should swap there PCB into some non-USB original Control Pad … (I also remember there were some inconsistencies with e.g. the should pads? That’s a pity …)

Thank you very very much for your advice!
Post edited by fooness on

Comments

  • bigbadboazbigbadboaz Joined: Posts: 56
    As you mention, there were some differences in the shoulder contact design between pad versions. I'm not aware offhand which, if any, would directly swap with a clone PCB.

    There was a USB PCB swap kit available from Japan long before the actual USB pads appeared. You could do some searching around but too much time has probably passed on that too.

    If you are willing to mess with clone PCBs, is it that much of a stretch to use an adapter? I would just go that route since it sounds like you have original pads. The old Mayflash adapters, for example, were quite good.

    FWIW, I have some of the SLS pads and even they aren't quite as good as the originals. They're good, but between the two I would still pick the actual SS pads. You can pick up changes in the shell texturing, rubber contact pads, and D-Pad material. So yeah, for you, maybe just get a converter at this point.
  • foonessfooness Joined: Posts: 7
    Thank you for your answer!

    Searching for that USB PCB swap kit sounds interesting! I did not find anything yet, but I’ll keep on searching. If someone here knows anything …

    Well to be honest, I don’t own any Saturn control pad myself, yet. I’ll just consider very precisely, what to buy, as it’s a lot of money for some students’ budget.

    So you think the SLS USB control pad is not as good as the original Sega one … that’s good to know.

    Maybe I should really use some adapter then, if I don’t find any way (or anyone) to mod the original control pad. I’ve read a lot about this 4play bliss-blox, that looks really good.
  • bashirkashmiribashirkashmiri Joined: Posts: 55
    I think the demand for USB 'real' SS pads would be pretty damn high tbh. Madcatz, Sony and Microsoft havent come close to what some pad fighters want in a nice floating d-pad
  • bk2099bk2099 Joined: Posts: 99
    edited March 6
    I have a MK-80116 pad with an SLS USB PCB that I use almost everyday.
    I love that little thing. I replaced the shoulder switches on the SLS PCB with the original SEGA ones.

    5zi83c.jpgs6sy9x.jpg
    Post edited by bk2099 on
  • foonessfooness Joined: Posts: 7
    Would love such one, too.
  • DarksakulDarksakul Your lack of faith disturbs me Joined: Posts: 22,416
    Finding the Genuine SLS Sega Saturn USB Pads is like finding a Unicorn.
    "You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance."
  • bigbadboazbigbadboaz Joined: Posts: 56
    http://kirkkosinski.com/2013/11/usb-compatible-saturn-controllers/

    This guy talks about the Japanese PCB kit. Actually, this was only back in 2013. I didn't get much farther since any further links were in full Japanese.

    As far as budgeting issues... the Buffalo USB pads are as good as advertised for the money.

    https://www.amazon.com/Buffalo-Classic-USB-Gamepad-PC/dp/B002B9XB0E/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1488852819&sr=8-1&keywords=buffalo+usb+controller
  • foonessfooness Joined: Posts: 7
    Thank you! So it seems those PCB boards are around 17 EUR … though I have no idea on how compatible they are. Pretty sure they’re not part of retroarch’s autoconfig set.

    Here’s a translated version of their website.

    8bitdo will probably release something “concerned with Sega” in the first half of this year, but I don’t know more about this. Maybe I should just wait and while doing so, use a Play Sega controller and have an eye on ebay and my Want-to-buy posting here.
  • bigbadboazbigbadboaz Joined: Posts: 56
    Did 8bitdo actually make that comment?
  • Feargus001100Feargus001100 Joined: Posts: 989
    bigbadboaz wrote: »
    Did 8bitdo actually make that comment?

    Hardly a ringing endorsement but they didn't say no:

    http://forum.8bitdo.com/thread-830-1-1.html
    #MAS_Preservation_Society
  • bashirkashmiribashirkashmiri Joined: Posts: 55
    I think a half decent quality Bluetooth SS controller would melt the internet . . . Or some of the fgc at least
  • foonessfooness Joined: Posts: 7
    edited March 8
    bigbadboaz wrote: »
    Did 8bitdo actually make that comment?

    I wrote them an email three days ago and that’s what they answered … and by “that” I mean what I wrote in quotation marks in my post above.
  • bigbadboazbigbadboaz Joined: Posts: 56
    That's great to hear.. they probably have paid attention to all the wishes and have something in the pipeline. I'll be looking out for it.

    That said, I like the SNES controllers but don't think they're as good as the hype. And the N64 controller didn't get as nice of a reception. So I'm prepared to be disappointed.
  • C-SwordC-Sword Joined: Posts: 736
    There's this USB controller coming out, it's missing the shoulder buttons tho

    BltHYuT.png


  • Feargus001100Feargus001100 Joined: Posts: 989
    C-Sword wrote: »
    There's this USB controller coming out, it's missing the shoulder buttons tho

    BltHYuT.png

    Who's making this!!!???!!!???

    I just need that HELLA TINY mode button on the top right side!!!
    #MAS_Preservation_Society
  • C-SwordC-Sword Joined: Posts: 736
    C-Sword wrote: »
    There's this USB controller coming out, it's missing the shoulder buttons tho

    BltHYuT.png

    Who's making this!!!???!!!???

    I just need that HELLA TINY mode button on the top right side!!!

    Retro-Bit, it's the same controller that came with the Generations console, the console sucked, but people said that the controller was great.

  • bashirkashmiribashirkashmiri Joined: Posts: 55
    Looks more like the old genesis 6 button pad
  • bigbadboazbigbadboaz Joined: Posts: 56
    There is already a USB Genesis controller from Hyperkin. That board swaps directly into an official US 6-button and works perfectly.
  • RiderkickerRiderkicker Joined: Posts: 144
    edited March 10
    I bought the Mayflash SS adapter and it's pretty odd. On the USB 2.0 ports I'm missing button inputs, but on the 3.0 port, it works great. Does anybody know if this particular one need more energy than a usual adapter? I've also read that there is some incompatibility with the Raspberry Pi 3.
    I think I will purchase this $9 controller and swap the pcbs: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Black-Sega-Saturn-Style-USB-Classic-Controller-Gamepad-JoyPad-for-PC-MAC-Compu-/152443477003
  • BaphomaybeBaphomaybe Joined: Posts: 2
    I successfully transplanted a Play Sega controller PCB into an official Saturn controller housing. It has it's ups and downs. The shoulder buttons don't quite match up, so you'll find yourself having to use the shoulder buttons from the Play Sega controller. Other than that, the PCB isn't the best. I find that I have issues at times with the D-Pad not always accepting input when holding "right".

    I would advise that it's not really worth it, as someone who has done it themselves.
  • bigbadboazbigbadboaz Joined: Posts: 56
    I bought the Mayflash SS adapter and it's pretty odd.

    I know that the old Mayflash 3-in-1 PC JoyBox (Saturn, PS2, Xbox) was great. Based on that, I expect the current 3-in-1 (rectangular purple housing) to work well. I've gotten nothing but quality from them - sorry to hear about that one.
  • tom2004tom2004 Joined: Posts: 2
    just wait for the below to be back in stock and use real pads...
    http://www.raphnet-tech.com/products/saturn_usb_adapter/
  • DarksakulDarksakul Your lack of faith disturbs me Joined: Posts: 22,416
    tom2004 wrote: »
    just wait for the below to be back in stock and use real pads...
    http://www.raphnet-tech.com/products/saturn_usb_adapter/

    Ralphnet is one of the better sources of adapter available right now
    "You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance."
  • ParryAllParryAll Dangerous Posts Joined: Posts: 3,311
    edited March 15
    C-Sword wrote: »
    There's this USB controller coming out, it's missing the shoulder buttons tho

    BltHYuT.png

    I can tell just by looking the D-pad on this sucks.

    They just can't get the dpads right on these...

    The SLS Saturn pad is still the top tier. It is a touch different from the real Sega saturn pads, but it's improved. The D-pad is even tighter and the shoulder buttons are "harder" as well. It's higher quality IMO and I grew up with the Saturn importing stuff like Xmen vs Street Fighter, Vampire Savior and Alpha 3.

    Haven't tried the crappy ones you see on eBay nowadays. They look like shit, I can smell and taste the bad quality and cheap plastic through the screen when I look at them online. At 10$ I'll buy one to test it in fact I need to. Even if it's trash it's still way better than say, a Super Nintendo controller yuck.

    The SLS pads are worth 150$, if and when you can actually find them.
    tom2004 wrote: »
    just wait for the below to be back in stock and use real pads...
    http://www.raphnet-tech.com/products/saturn_usb_adapter/

    Yeah but is this going to lag?
    "Third Strike just has that flow which somehow alienates you from your surroundings and really plugs your brain into the match your playing and your able to comprehend so many different situations and mind games and mixups in such a limited amount of time and all this without even thinking" - Nubilous

    "[3rd Strike] makes you feel like the character is an extension of yourself when you get good enough." - AzureWolf

    "Street Fighter is now like The Simpsons. It's been bad longer than it's been good." -ParryAll
  • ParryAllParryAll Dangerous Posts Joined: Posts: 3,311
    edited March 15
    Btw thank you guys this thread was excellent and super helpful.
    "Third Strike just has that flow which somehow alienates you from your surroundings and really plugs your brain into the match your playing and your able to comprehend so many different situations and mind games and mixups in such a limited amount of time and all this without even thinking" - Nubilous

    "[3rd Strike] makes you feel like the character is an extension of yourself when you get good enough." - AzureWolf

    "Street Fighter is now like The Simpsons. It's been bad longer than it's been good." -ParryAll
  • DarksakulDarksakul Your lack of faith disturbs me Joined: Posts: 22,416
    Even the new stock authorized Sega USB pads now are cheap knock off fakes.
    Like the PLAY SEGA USB pads.

    I am sure the new Street Fighter II Pads are no exception.
    "You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance."
  • C-SwordC-Sword Joined: Posts: 736
    edited March 15
    The lag is going to be minimal and unnoticeable. Raphnet makes the best adapters for retro-controllers.

    Btw, finding Sega Saturn controllers in new condition is getting hard, they're quite expensive as well. The Cool Pad edition seems to be the easiest to find.

  • bashirkashmiribashirkashmiri Joined: Posts: 55
    I havent seen Raphnet have SS USB adapters in stock for a while. I would have thought more people would be tearing his arm off for some. Theres also the USB Retropad adapter which does quite a few consoles with the right cables http://www.brunofreitas.com/node/41

    Has anyone tried just gutting a saturn controller and converting it to USB? From the chatter in this thread I imagine there'd be a few customers for someone with the know how to make a 10-20 batch.
  • DarksakulDarksakul Your lack of faith disturbs me Joined: Posts: 22,416
    I havent seen Raphnet have SS USB adapters in stock for a while. I would have thought more people would be tearing his arm off for some. Theres also the USB Retropad adapter which does quite a few consoles with the right cables http://www.brunofreitas.com/node/41

    Has anyone tried just gutting a saturn controller and converting it to USB? From the chatter in this thread I imagine there'd be a few customers for someone with the know how to make a 10-20 batch.

    I just use the official PS2 Sega Saturn pad with a Brooks Adapter
    "You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance."
  • LittleJimmy1983LittleJimmy1983 Darksakul for mod 2018 Joined: Posts: 923
    C-Sword wrote: »
    The lag is going to be minimal and unnoticeable. Raphnet makes the best adapters for retro-controllers.

    Btw, finding Sega Saturn controllers in new condition is getting hard, they're quite expensive as well. The Cool Pad edition seems to be the easiest to find.

    New is definitely getting needle in a haystack hard to find. I recently bought a used Japanese pad on Amazon for 30 that was in great shape.
    End of one nightmare, prelude to the another.
  • RiderkickerRiderkicker Joined: Posts: 144
    So I attempted to put the White Controller Retrolink PCB into the Sega Saturn controller, it doesn't fit perfect and it's quite tight, like the hole is a millimeter to the side. You definitely need to desolder the microswitches and resolder them to the USB.
  • foonessfooness Joined: Posts: 7
    Probably you’ve already seen this ebay auction
  • ParryAllParryAll Dangerous Posts Joined: Posts: 3,311
    edited May 8
    I just got one of those retrolink Saturn pads, here's my review:

    I'm really surprised by this. Right off the bat, it's the identical Sega Saturn mold which I didn't expect.

    The buttons feel cheap, which I did expect, but not as bad as I expected if that makes sense.

    The triggers are super weird. On the original saturn pads they had a very light touch, on the SLS remake they had a deeper push and click, these are super deep and clicky. It... sucks, but they're shoulders who cares.

    The d-pad is mush central. At least it's the same mold as the real deal, which is IMO the most perfect sized and best D-pad ever, but don't expect Saturn perfection when pressing the buttons or near perfection with the SLS. It's mushy and raised, but it's also not as bad as say, a Mad-Catz pad, it's just not the Saturn Tight TM that you'd get out of an OG or SLS.

    But dude, for 10$,this is pretty damned good and way better than I expected, dare I say I'm impressed.

    Oh and now I see what people meant by modding these with original Saturn parts. Oh my god, that would be incredibly simple and easy right? It's like paying 10$ for the PCB and USB cord, giving you a better than SLS level pad!

    -edit- OMG HAHAHA wow the C-button just collapsed! lmao. What a piece of shit. Still, 10$ is worth it for the PCB which I'm assuming you could just stick in an OG saturn pad and be done.
    "Third Strike just has that flow which somehow alienates you from your surroundings and really plugs your brain into the match your playing and your able to comprehend so many different situations and mind games and mixups in such a limited amount of time and all this without even thinking" - Nubilous

    "[3rd Strike] makes you feel like the character is an extension of yourself when you get good enough." - AzureWolf

    "Street Fighter is now like The Simpsons. It's been bad longer than it's been good." -ParryAll
  • ParryAllParryAll Dangerous Posts Joined: Posts: 3,311
    So I attempted to put the White Controller Retrolink PCB into the Sega Saturn controller, it doesn't fit perfect and it's quite tight, like the hole is a millimeter to the side. You definitely need to desolder the microswitches and resolder them to the USB.
    So I attempted to put the White Controller Retrolink PCB into the Sega Saturn controller, it doesn't fit perfect and it's quite tight, like the hole is a millimeter to the side. You definitely need to desolder the microswitches and resolder them to the USB.

    Hmm well what about just taking the real Saturn front plate + buttons and just screwing it onto the retrolink bottom?
    "Third Strike just has that flow which somehow alienates you from your surroundings and really plugs your brain into the match your playing and your able to comprehend so many different situations and mind games and mixups in such a limited amount of time and all this without even thinking" - Nubilous

    "[3rd Strike] makes you feel like the character is an extension of yourself when you get good enough." - AzureWolf

    "Street Fighter is now like The Simpsons. It's been bad longer than it's been good." -ParryAll
  • chapelchapel Joined: Posts: 24
    TIL I'm not the only one looking for a modern Saturn JP controller...
  • ParryAllParryAll Dangerous Posts Joined: Posts: 3,311
    edited May 8
    chapel wrote: »
    TIL I'm not the only one looking for a modern Saturn JP controller...

    I don't know what you consider modern but, you can find NOS new old stock Japanese Saturn pads, brand new never opened on ebay.

    -edit- ok maybe Ebay Japan lol, not seeing anything atm.. but still even used Japanese stuff is nice, Japan actually took care of their systems and games unlike Americans.
    "Third Strike just has that flow which somehow alienates you from your surroundings and really plugs your brain into the match your playing and your able to comprehend so many different situations and mind games and mixups in such a limited amount of time and all this without even thinking" - Nubilous

    "[3rd Strike] makes you feel like the character is an extension of yourself when you get good enough." - AzureWolf

    "Street Fighter is now like The Simpsons. It's been bad longer than it's been good." -ParryAll
  • LittleJimmy1983LittleJimmy1983 Darksakul for mod 2018 Joined: Posts: 923
    [quote="ParryAl[/quote] but still even used Japanese stuff is nice, Japan actually took care of their systems and games unlike Americans.[/quote]
    A few months ago I got a used Japanese sega saturn pad on amazon that was like new for 30.
    End of one nightmare, prelude to the another.
  • bk2099bk2099 Joined: Posts: 99
    I did the Gamelink Saturn USB PCB in a Saturn HSS-0101 pad mod a couple of weeks ago.

    It turned out alright. I had to move the crystal to the topside of the PCB in order for the pad to shut properly.
    I also changed the shoulder switches for ones found on X360 pads.

    In the end, it's a really good pad and I would recommend the mod to anyone looking for a cheap Saturn USB pad.

    a299ub.jpg
  • bashirkashmiribashirkashmiri Joined: Posts: 55
    Pardon my ignorance but what do you mean by "crystal"?
  • bk2099bk2099 Joined: Posts: 99
    edited May 10
    The crystal is the tin can looking component in the middle of the PCB. :D

    quarzo-universale.jpg

  • TortaTorta A piece of Cake Joined: Posts: 707
    It's a Crystal Oscilator, used for the cpu to have a constant clock (tick-tock), some integrated circuits have their own but this pad doesn't (?)
    VAMOS
    MCCthulhu >> all

    KOFXIII: Ash/King/Vice
  • DarksakulDarksakul Your lack of faith disturbs me Joined: Posts: 22,416
    Torta wrote: »
    It's a Crystal Oscilator, used for the cpu to have a constant clock (tick-tock), some integrated circuits have their own but this pad doesn't (?)

    Its common to see a standalone crystal on many PCBs. Depending on the encoder chip under that epoxy blob, it actually not surprising that it lacks a Crystal Oscillator.
    You can still find a quartz crystal oscillator on modern motherboards as the quartz can only get so small and there not enough room on the CPU. On modern motherboards the Oscillator is part of the front side bus, and a multiplier increases the cycles for the CPU clock.
    The Crystal Oscillator is usually quartz crystal, hence why you see time pieces claim quarts movement as quartz have a very steady and regular oscillation which makes it good for clocks and for CPUs to keep their clock cycles.
    "You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance."
  • ParryAllParryAll Dangerous Posts Joined: Posts: 3,311
    I got a retrolink Saturn pad

    Guess what? It's already broken lol

    How do I mod this into a normal Saturn pad? Is it as easy as switching PCB's?
    "Third Strike just has that flow which somehow alienates you from your surroundings and really plugs your brain into the match your playing and your able to comprehend so many different situations and mind games and mixups in such a limited amount of time and all this without even thinking" - Nubilous

    "[3rd Strike] makes you feel like the character is an extension of yourself when you get good enough." - AzureWolf

    "Street Fighter is now like The Simpsons. It's been bad longer than it's been good." -ParryAll
  • ParryAllParryAll Dangerous Posts Joined: Posts: 3,311
    The right plastic tab broke off. To press right on the pad. I've had the pad 1 week.

    So I took an old Fuse, snapped off the metal prongs, then used black tape to tape it to the cross, and IT WORKED hahaha. Wow.

    Anyways... is this PCB not the right size for a stick Saturn pad? It looks like it is...
    "Third Strike just has that flow which somehow alienates you from your surroundings and really plugs your brain into the match your playing and your able to comprehend so many different situations and mind games and mixups in such a limited amount of time and all this without even thinking" - Nubilous

    "[3rd Strike] makes you feel like the character is an extension of yourself when you get good enough." - AzureWolf

    "Street Fighter is now like The Simpsons. It's been bad longer than it's been good." -ParryAll
  • DarksakulDarksakul Your lack of faith disturbs me Joined: Posts: 22,416
    ParryAll wrote: »
    I got a retrolink Saturn pad

    Guess what? It's already broken lol

    How do I mod this into a normal Saturn pad? Is it as easy as switching PCB's?

    Thats why I avoid Retrolink
    "You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance."
  • ParryAllParryAll Dangerous Posts Joined: Posts: 3,311
    edited May 22
    Darksakul wrote: »
    ParryAll wrote: »
    I got a retrolink Saturn pad

    Guess what? It's already broken lol

    How do I mod this into a normal Saturn pad? Is it as easy as switching PCB's?

    Thats why I avoid Retrolink

    Don't. Get them! You're paying 10$ for a PCB. It swaps right into a real, 100% legit Saturn pad with no trouble.

    Well, unless you care about the shoulders, those are the only things that don't work. I don't care, I never needed or used them. I'm sure there is a way to mod those to work with a little tinkering maybe.

    As far as I'm concerned, the SLS is officially obsolete and unnecessary as again, you can take a retrolink PCB And stick it right into a normal, official Saturn US pad and it works, minus shoulders. BOOM a USB official Sega Saturn pad!
    "Third Strike just has that flow which somehow alienates you from your surroundings and really plugs your brain into the match your playing and your able to comprehend so many different situations and mind games and mixups in such a limited amount of time and all this without even thinking" - Nubilous

    "[3rd Strike] makes you feel like the character is an extension of yourself when you get good enough." - AzureWolf

    "Street Fighter is now like The Simpsons. It's been bad longer than it's been good." -ParryAll
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