Are all converters really that bad?

I have 2 fightsticks( mk fight stick and a hori) for Xbox 360, but everybody at the arcade I go to for casuals only plays ps3. My question is do I really have to get my sticks dual modded or is there any half decent converter on the market? I really don’t wanna spend $80( the estimate they gave me at the arcade, which seems about right from what i’ve read elsewhere) apiece if I decide to get both sticks dual modded.

  1. I’ve only heard bad, but I don’t know of any conclusive tests. Note that I’m talking about 360-PS3 converters, others are usually pretty good. For example, many people build sticks with a PS2 board and use converters for just about everything else.

  2. Unless you’re paying someone to do it for you, $80 is an overstatement. The main PCB out there is the PS360+, which costs about $60. Luckily, since you have 360 compatible sticks, there’s almost no reason to buy one. The Chimp SMD, PC/PS3 Cthulhu (, and Cerberus ( will allow you to dual-mod your sticks for about $30-35 each. This will likely require soldering, but there are tons of guides and it’s not that hard if you are careful.

it all depends on your stick tho… MK fightstick is not common ground so you would have to get two pcb’s 360 / ps3 to mod… not really worth it imo… and some older hori models are also not easily modded… but Sal is right… you will have to solder for a dual mod…
and yes… the converters are REALLY that bad… not worth it if you are really trying to up your game…

The only converters that are worth getting convert from PS2 to next gen consoles.
Its fun to build your own converter

I have cheap ps2>360 and ps2>ps3 converters that work fine with no discernible lag. What makes 360 <-> ps3 converters so much worse?

Translating one set of USB protocols to another.

This isn’t the exact theory more like some layman’s terms, but basically most older consoles most use a very similar schemes to communicate between the gamepad and the system.
With the exception for the Plug and a few more addresses the NES and SNES game pads are identical, if you swap out the the plug a SNES controller is usable on the NES (no use of the X, Y, L or R buttons).
That a 3 button Sega Genesis pad will work with no modification on an Atari 2600 but only the d-pad and B button works.

There like 7 to 9 wires in these older game console controllers, each with a different task, data, power , ground, latch or sense line, clock (to make sure the pad is with in time with the system) are the most common. They all work at a low level directly with the hardware. Here is a pin out of a NES controller and how it works.
To let you know how simple a NES pad really is, the chip inside the pad is not a encoder, its a shift register (think of it as really old fashioned ram). Newer system controllers like the PS2 have more advanced encoders that not just send the right addresses out but also allow signals to come in in the form of force feedback or blinking LEDs. Closing different contacts will send back different values which translate to what button been pressed creating the particular action in a game. With some few exceptions older gamepads directly affect the hardware of a system. Converters for older systems just merely make sure the right addresses are sent.

Atari 2600 joystick have NO to real PCB to speak off, just enough for the contacts on the joystick and its 1 fire button. Neo Geo controllers function in a similar way way, each wire went to a different button, and directly access the system.

Now USB is a different beast, it works at a high level, it interacts with software not hardware. There is more done at the system or host side to decrypt what is being sent and received.
Now the PS3 wired controllers function as Generic Plug and play HID class interface devices, they are basically driverless or use generic drivers thats used in most modern OS.
The Xbox 360, with MS wanting it to be special (as in secure) has its own drivers and its own protocols that different that generic HID devices,

In a matter of speaking the PS3 and Xbox 360 controllers speak different languages. And it takes time to translate for the 2 to "talk to each other"
This time is why PS3 <-> Xbox 360 converters have so many issues.

Thanks guys. Looks like have to get them modded anyway.