Complete Hori EX2 Makeover Project


Hello all, First of all I?d like to say how cool this website/forum is. I just found it out of luck looking for stick mods on YouTube! I?m a complete newbie to stick modding but have read/watched some basic stuff about it for the past 2 weeks or so. I used to be into fighting games a lot many moons ago (Street Fighter Alpha 3) but recently got the spark again when I picked up Super Street Fighter 4. I immediately got fed up with a pad and decided to buy a ?FightStick?, I was on a very tight budget (new baby) so picked up the Hori EX2.

Now here?s my idea ? I want to completely overhaul this thing with a new Sanwa Stick, artwork and Sanwa buttons. When it comes to the buttons however I want to add 2 more where the original 6 are:

This is my rough concept for the new layout, as you can see it now has 8 buttons instead of 6 which means that I?m going to have to move the LB and RB buttons from the top panel to the side of the other buttons. I?m going to make a custom steel panel to accommodate these extra two buttons and fill in the holes with resin where the LB and RB buttons were. With my limited electronic knowledge I?m not sure this is even possible in terms of how the PCB works.

As I understand the EX2 has a common ground PCB (I could be wrong on this) but I?m not sure about the top panel board. So here come the questions:
Please note I?m a compete newb at this so explain it like im a 5 year old lol.

  1. If the main PCB is common ground but the top PCB isn?t how would I wire the 2 new Sanwa Buttons? If everything is common ground, is it a case of simply wiring the PCB connections to the new buttons?

  2. I?m planning on buying the Sanwa JLW-UM-8 Joystick as it seems a more compact design than the other Sanwa Joysticks. How would I wire this Joystick up with the EX2?s PCB and will it work with this configuration?

Thanks for any help on this guys (I’m probably going to need it :rolleyes:)


Sadly, the photos are gone. The normal JLF can be used if mounted without a mounting plate. However, try to get the JLF-TM, not the JLF-TP, as the TP is for common ground setups, but the EX2 is not common ground

There’s also

For the JLW-UM (NOTE, JLW-UM can only use 45mm balltops or sanwa bat tops. To use regular 35mm balltops, get a JLW-TM), remove the old wires from the old microswitches on the joystick, and solder them to the new ones.

For non-common ground buttons, solder two wires where the old buttons were, and connect both sides to the new buttons. The entire EX2 PCB is not common ground.


Thank you Nerrage for the speedy and informative reply.

Some questions -

Is the JLW-TM as compact as the JLW-UM?

I’d like to confirm if the EX2’s PCB is common ground (hopefully you or somone can help with this) If it is then am i right in saying that wiring the new buttons and joystick will be the same as the old buttons and joystick - soldered directly to the PCB without a ground wire?


did you buy this new? cause there anywhere from 50-70, not to mention you want to throw 30 in parts not including art and the custom metal plate. which would have bought a te?

Best of luck on this, I recently opened mine in hopes to change the buttons and the solder on the main pcb and the wires going to the little board with the 4 buttons is a lot different than the solder on those 4 buttons, I couldnt get it off for a long time, I got the 2 buttons off the main pcb but could not desolder the wires coming from that to the little board. 2 of my wires split at the solder and with no way to desolder those I was stuck.


It is not common ground. However, just connect two wires to both sides of the button where the original two buttons were, and it works just fine. For joystick directions, take both wires from the original stick’s microswitches, clip or desolder them from the old stick, and solder or crimp them onto the new joystick microswitches. Connect one side to COM, the other side to N.O. The sides don’t matter. N.C. will not be used.

N.O. is normally Open, and it connects to the COM side when pressed down. N.C. is normally closed, and is always connected to the GND until you press its direction. It doesn’t really matter which side the two wires are connected in this case, because you’re not connecting the microswitches to each other (Because EX2 is not common ground)

JLW-TM is the same as UM, but it has a smaller shaft, so in a sense, is more compact.


I managed to get it new from Gamestation for £24.99 most of the physical modding i can do for almost nothing (plexi/steel/soldering ect) the olnly money spent will be for the buttons and stick. I also love to tinker with things anyway.


Are you saying i should keep the LB and RB buttons on the top panel and just solder wires to them to attach to the 2 new Sanwa buttons? if this is the case would that mean i have 2 LB buttons and 2 RB buttons?

If i did want to loose the LB and RB buttons from the top panel could i just solder the 2 new sanwa buttons to the PCB where the old LB and RB wires were?


No, you don’t have to keep them, I’m not recommending anything you wouldn’t want. Just solder two wires to where the LB and RB buttons are connected. Solder to both sides for both buttons. Connect these wires to your Sanwa buttons.

You could, too, solder the wires and not remove the buttons. Then the old buttons would work, and so would the new ones. That’s up to you if you want to remove them.


Ahhh man finally got my head around this PCB stuff! Nerrage thanks a lot for the advice man, I feel way better about the electrical side of this now!


Ok I’ve now ordered the buttons and and stick (JLW-TM-8) Came to £38 with delivery! I’ve also just finished the Artwork although i’m still open to ideas if there are any.

Ill try and update this thread as i go along

Thanks for the help so far… :rock: