3-in-1 Wireless Stick via...HDMI?

Hello. I have been searching these forums, and others, for a couple months now trying to research a somewhat unorthodox stick configuration. I didnt want to just post my crazy idea with zero research and ask the basic noob questions only to find out that the idea was dumb and wont work. I also didnt want to post this into the padhack thread as I dont really provide any useful information and that thread is crowded enough as it is. But, now that Ive done some digging around, Im a bit more comfortable that the idea has merit. I finally decided to get a SRK account and ask for some input.

Im aiming for an all in one, all wireless (except for Wiimote) Wii / 360 / PS3 stick. I didnt realize how crazy this idea was until I saw this thread. Now I have hard-modded some consoles in my day, but Ive never messed with transistors, resistors, and diodes before, so I felt a little WAY out of my league. But then I got an idea when I saw how multi console sticks could be made using separate controller modules and dsub connectors, which would eliminate the problem of needing all the complicated (for a noob like me) circuitry. Aside from the bit of a problem with common grounds among all three controllers, I also wanted to see if I could figure out a way to not have to manually switch the modules from one controller to another, making it an extra tricky problem.

The solution I have tentatively come up with usesHDMI.

I have/will get the following:

[]PS3 Sixaxis w/ Axisadapter (non-common ground)
]Wii Classic Controller (common ground)
[]Wireless Xbox 360 Controller (common ground version, will get)
]Sanwa JLF-TP-8YT (best if used with common ground boards)
[]Sanwa OBSN-30 x 8
]Sanwa OBSN-24 x 3 (for back / minus / select, start / plus, and guide / home)
[]2 HDMI Cables
]3 Port Smart HDMI Switch (will get)

Here is the basic idea. HDMI cables have 20 useable wires. With the Xbox 360 and Wii Classic I will need 1 wire for common ground, 4 for the direction switches, 8 for main buttons (a, b, x, y, L /LB, R/RB, Lz/LT, Rz/RT), and 3 for select/minus, start/plus, and guide/home. This totals only 16 wires needed. For the PS3, I need 18, counting the same buttons, directions, and ground, plus 2 extra commons.

If I split the 2 HDMI cables in half, I get 4 cables with and HDMI connector on one end and 20 exposed wires on the other (technically, 19 wires and an addition wire Ill have to soldered to the shields). So I can connect all the arcade parts to one HDMI cable, and wire each of the 3 controllers to HDMI cables. I will get to how I am handling the ground differences in just a bit. At this point, I can use a HDMI female-to-female coupler to have a modular setup the equivalent of using the d-sub connectors. Ive already tested this with the PS3 / Axisadapter, HDMI cables, the coupler, and a single button as a proof of concept and it worked (specifically, my multimeter could read it as a completed circuit). But as I mentioned, I am trying to figure out a method that would allow me to not have to open the box to switch. Here is where the HDMI switch comes into play.

I was looking for a manual, 3 port HDMI switch that can be either battery operated or work off of the pin 18 +5V (DC, I believe). It might also be powered off the pin 19 hotplug detect, as that is also a +5V, but I dont think thats likely. While I could not find any no manual switch devices I did come across one which does not require an external power source, has a push button switch, and is relatively cheap (as you can tell by now, this is not a cheap project). The switch supports autoswitching channels, but I assume there is no possible way that would work without some sort of modification/voodoo magic as youd have to push the guide / PS / home button to turn the controller on to power the HDMI switch, but the circuit wont even be complete until the switch is on.

So, before I get really far ahead of myself, here is the basic plan. The lines represent the HDMI cables which connect at the switch with the HDMI connectors and connect at the buttons / modules with soldered wire or QC.

To solve the switch power issue, I am assuming that the switch is powered over the HDMI pin 18 +5V. I dont know if it would be powered by one of the three inputs or the output, but if I can determine which I could rig a battery pack to output 5V with a on/off toggle switch that would be rigged to power the switch through which ever line it is. I could easily attach this through one of the (at least) 2 free HDMI cable wires. Im hoping it will be powered from the output, otherwise, I suspect I will have problems with the smart switching mechanism. I think that the smart switching is handled through the hotplug detect pin though, and once the switch is powered, I will be able to use the manual button to switch channels (or controllers in this case). Worst case scenario, I just have to ditch the autoswitch and use the female-to-female HDMI connector.

Now, finally, the ground problem. If I was just making a Wii Classic / Xbox 360 wireless controller, there wouldnt be much of an issue as they both have a single common ground. But the PS3 has a ground and 2 commons, so there is no way I could wire the HDMI cable going from the arcade parts to the switch / coupler so that it would work both ways. So what I decided to do is to wire the arcade parts specifically for the PS3 / Axidapter commons and for the 360 / Wii module cables, Ill connect the ground wires together on the controller module cable side, thus reestablishing a common ground. I can whip up a diagram to explain this better if anyone needs.

Thats the plan. I haven’t ordered the HDMI switch or 360 pad yet because Im guessing Ive overlooked so obvious nonstarter problem. Thats why I was hoping that some of you veterans could give me some feedback.

BTW, I know Ill need this weird thing for the Wii Classic L and R buttons.

I believe there are a few people on this forum that have done something like this but using a d25 switch instead of a hdmi switch. This might be the better than the d25 switch since I assume those things (d25 switch) are relatively larger than a hdmi switch would be.

good luck with your project!

interesting, wheres the popcorn, cause i like this idea :slight_smile: so essentially the hdmi switch will have the correct connectors to each system?

The switch acts as a bridge between the arcade parts and the controller modules, effectively creating 3 controller ‘channels’ which hopefully can be selected from the switch channel selector button. This is assuming I can power the switch without hooking it up to a TV and that it properly feeds all the signals through for each channel. The switch is the part that I really am reluctant about working, but if it does, it will be super cool and way easier than most of the other dual wireless mods I’ve seen.

hey weird,I was just thinking about using an hdmi connector instead of db25 or rj mods…i’ll keep an eye on this thread for sure

I don’t really have anything to offer, but damn this sounds interesting! Best of luck with it, and post some pictures of it if you ever finish it!

I just finished building my box. It’s my first box, so it’s literally just a simple box. It a little big (11"x13"x3) because it has to fit all 3 controller PBCs, the HDMI cables and potentially a switch. I can post some pics of the build if anyone is interested.

I’ll begin the HDMI wiring with the PS3 parts either today or tomorrow and post some pics if all goes well.

Not too satisfied with my box, but it will work. Since I’m using QCs instead of soldering, it shouldn’t be to hard to ‘transplant’ all the innards to a nice once eventually.

I have the HDMI cable connected to the arcade parts now. When connecting the arcade parts HDMI cable into the coupler and then hooking up the other spliced HDMI cable, I am able to test the buttons with my multimeter and they work, that is to say, I can measure a resistance, though it takes about a second for it to register. This could just be due to me using a digital multimeter. Hopefully, there will be no delay in the finished product. I should be able to find out tonight.

Another point of interest is that I took one of the spliced HDMI cables and hooked it up to my TV and tested the end to try and find the lines that have voltage. I changed the channel to the proper HDMI input, clipped the black alligator clip form the multimeter to the wire weave shield around the cable, and then touched the other end against each wire that I thought might be current, while in DC volts mode. This is promising enough that I think I will buy the HDMI switch now.

The HDMI cable has 4 sets of three twisted wires which carry the picture information. Then there are 5 or 6 individual cables for stuff like clock speed, DDC (or whatever it’s called), hotplug detect, +5V, and an unused one. I found two of these 6 cable that were twisted together and to my surprise, they measured about 3.3 volts, which I though was weird since there was supposed to be a 5 volt line. The were colored yellow and orange. I could not find a standard color code for HDMI. I did find some pinouts, but none matched the colors my cables had. I may buy an extra cable to take it apart to see for sure which cable does what.

Anyway, I’m ready to start phase 3 of 5, wiring the HDMI cable to the axisdapter (phase 1 being building the box, 2 being wiring the arcade parts) But I still need to heat shrink tube the cables seeing as how the HDMI cable has like 6 bare wires in it.

If I can find my webcam, I’ll take some pics of what I got so far.

I’ve been trying to figure out if this will work, can you explain a little further about your re-common grounding on the PCB side?

Here is a diagram. I did not bother drawing the signal lines as they would only convolute the image. I also did not include the Wii Classic controller, as it would work exactly the same as the Xbox 360 wireless controller.


Click here for the full size image

Yep, this would work much like the DB-25 “project box” sticks we’ve been seeing every once in a while. Might want to search the forums a bit for some info, almost all of it applies to your setup as well.

So HDMI has 20 usable pinouts? The cables aren’t that thick, just how tiny are these wires? Are you sure you’ll be able to sort which wire goes to which pin? Seems like it’d be a huge hassle to sort it all out with a multimeter.

The wires are pretty damn small, but they are color coded, so sorting through it all is no problem. I have a wire stripper, but the smallest hole is still just a bit too big, though if I pull the cable at an angle, it works, but if I pull too hard, it will snap the cable right at the joint, so I have to be careful. I also have to wad up the stripped wire into a ball to crimp it into the quick connect heads, meaning I have to strip a bit extra.

I have all the arcade parts hooked up already and I’ll be connecting my sixaxis tomorrow. I’m still not looking forward to wiring the 360 pads. Anyone wanna make a quick buck?