Deciding on a SRK standard for DB15

How many of us are using projects boxes with external encoders now? Quite a few I’ve gathered, and I believe that the numbers are just going to go up.

For any that don’t know what this issue is about, external encoders are the same PCBs from your Dual Shock or S-Type that we’ve been using, but shoved in a plastic box and wired to a serial port. You then wire an arcade stick to a serail port, with the mirrioed pinout of course, and now that unit functioins with the console supported by the PCB in the box. Make three different sticks and three project boxes for three different consoles and you have nine different combinations. It is true universatility <- made up word

Being that we design for and sell to each other, I submit that it would be prudent to decide on a standard pinout for the D-sub connectors that most, if not all, of us have been using to hook out PCBs up to our hardware.

This way, you could buy a custom unit for one SRKer, and an encoder box from another, and know that they would be compatible. We can set the standard.

Firstly we need to agree on a D-sub size. Personally I am sold on two row DB15, but it is one pin short to do everything we want and handle a 5v for optical joysticks. A move to a DB20 or 25 might be prudent.

Next is the pinout itself, which is a mere formality if we choose a D-sub size large enough. I understand that several are using a Neo Geo pinout (somebody post it) because you can connect directly to a Neo Geo or supergun with no encoder. Personally I have always viewed the Neo pinout as chaotic, and nearly any pinout can be adapted to this standard with a small project box.

So I want to hear everyone’s opinions on this. Let’s get Shin Ace and Toodles in here; maybe Arm will come back. Let’s have experienced perspectives as well as novice. We need to understand our collective needs before we can address them with a standard.

I’ll kick it off with my preferences.

One thing I prefer that will differ from the majority is that I only want six gameplay buttons - ever. I cannot stand units with eight buttons on the face, so I’d like to cut buttons 7-8 out entirely.

With those buttons removed, I’d take a two row DB15 and run my four directions, six gameplay buttons, start button, select\back button, two grounds, and a 5v.

Arbitrarily layed out it would go something like this.

  1. Down
  2. Right
  3. Up
  4. Left
  5. Ground
  6. 5v
  7. Start
  8. Select
  9. Button 1
  10. Button 2
  11. Button 3
  12. Button 4
  13. Button 5
  14. Button 6
  15. Ground

The order is off the cuff, but I really like this content. It allows me to have a 5v at the ready whenever I need it (I only have one P360 and Flash each, so I’ll rig my voltage stepping circuits to the unit containing the optical stick) and it also allows me to keep a seperate ground for both joystick and button rows, if for no other reason than internal neatness.

I’ll admit that this DB15 has a flaw in that DB15 cables that actually have all 15 pins instead of 14 are might be rare. (does thisa only apply to 3 row VGA DB15?) However, I plant to mount the encoder box right on the stick, no cable for me. Plus I could place the second ground on what would be the dropped pin, since it is the least important, and plan the cable needing unit for one ground only.

Of course, even if we do decide on a standard here, there’s nothing preventing anyone from doing something different for a personal project. I believe that I will keep the above example as my personal standard for a while, for example. However, if I agreed to do work for someone, and they requested SRK DB standard to function with their existing hardware, I’d know what they were asking for and honor that.

Get to posting.

That is correct, the 8/7 DB15 doesn’t have that problem.

I say stick with the standard neo pinout & add in the extra stuff.

I like your proposition and it would be a great thing to expand upon. A standard everyone can agree one so that we can either build or acquire a project box that will allow you to use any other console and then be able to use any other stick is actually a very, very smart idea. This would greatly remove the problem that currently exists with converters and the possibility of lag, like is often found in the Xbox. It also fairly streamlines the process of stick building for a lot of people, since there’s no more need to gut a PCB – just wire the stick ready for a project box and you’re set.

Using DB15 I can not use 8 buttons?

no you cannot use 8 buttons.

we should use the standard for the MAS Supergun - made for street fighter. I don’t know the exact pinout, someone with a supergun should know.

Refresh me, the NG pinout is set to what DB size? I’m gathering larger than 15?

Well you can, because it’s not like you need a 5v and an extra ground in every application. It’s just that I loathe eight button setups, so in a DB15 situation, I’ll gladly drop 7-8 and gain an extra ground and 5v for comfort.

To go eight buttons, we would have to go to a DB20 or DB25 connector not only is that ugly, but I’ll have 5 to ten pins I won’t use and likely never use. If the shoryuken standard did go this way I would give it a miss.

Are the majority of you fella’s using 3 row DB15’s?? all of mine are 2 rows, for cables I use pc joystick extender cable there availble from most good pc stores male on end female on the other (all my sticks have male and boxes female) all 15 pins are connected on these cables.

That brings up another point we need to agree on a gender for the connectors, I vote for the stick to be male cos “beating your stick” is a manly task.

Isn’t this sort of a moot point?

I mean, all of us builders just sort of do whatever the Hell we feel like when it comes to designing, wiring, and everything in-between. And none of the prolific builders that actually sell sticks commonly even use anything but hacked pads located in the stick proper anyway.

I dunno. Doesn’t seem practical to me, is all I’m saying. And yeah, that’s without even taking into account that there are two different shaped 15-pin D-subs available (one with two rows and one with three rows).

I think it was made pretty clear that we’d be using the 2-row 15-pin connector.

We don’t have a standard yet so two row gets my vote.

It’s the way of the future. If we want our sticks to be future-proof, and without input lag, guaranteed, this is the way to go. With the advent of consoles allowing for wireless input only, this is seeming like a better and better idea.

I agree, i was looking for someone to solder up some DB15s for me anyway, if there was a standard everyone could just keep the stick and get a lag free pad for whatever system without having to resolder the whole thing every year. BTW if anyone has any extra pads setup let me know.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying I’d prefer to use adaptors. Almost every stick I have ever made, going back to last year when I stumbled upon this scene, have all used DB15 and project-box set-ups. I agree that it’s a great way of doing things, allowing for the most flexibility overall.

I just don’t see why the need for a standard in a hobby that is mostly all about personal customization. I mean, if someone needs a certain pin-layout, they could always just specify (providing they find someone willing to wire them one up), and it can be easily adapted. And for the rest of us who can do this ourselves, no worries anyway.

I don’t know though. I mean, it would be nice if everyone did manage to jump on the bandwagon because then you could just make a project box with three hacked pads all wired together, a la the Shin Ace method, sharing that same pin-out and not even need multiple project boxes lying around. I was thinking about doing this myself. Have a USB, PS1, and DC project box with an area dremeled out for the VMU card, too. But then I got lazy and just made a smaller PS1 box for now since I already have adaptors from back in the day.

Ah, well. Anyway, I use the three row DB15 pin-outs, myself. I dunno.

i think its a great idea. but i rekon simple people like me will always rather just hack a pad and plug it directly into the console. i find the external boxes an eyesore!

but that isn’t a veiled insult, i do think you should establish a standard because if you play multiple consoles, it seems the wya to go.

Myself and a couple of other arcade control builders already use a ‘standard’ set-up for interfacing that is built out of cat5. Of course, the cat5 standard isn’t SF specific, as it allows for homebuilt DDR hardpads, and if you need more than 16 wires, you just add another cat5 cable. You can also wire up a connector for JAMMA and the Ipac keyboard hack in addition to your connector for console pcbs.

I think I already discussed it here:

Of course, that ‘standard’ takes into account the fact that not everyone uses arcade controls for 2d fighters, and we all know that SF players think the video game world revolves around them, and no other arcade games exist.

The standard that we use ( and i assume most many others) use the two row db 15. I believe it is standard with mas superguns, and was used at last years evo.
I’ll try to find out what the pinout is.

you have a supergun at your house.

Because that adds a ton of needless time and energy. I look at people’s sticks and like their boxes, their art, their construction, but i never go ‘damn I like the way you soldered everything together so I have to redo it 6 months from now’. A hobby is something done primarily for pleasure outside of your job, i can’t remember the last time i gained pleasure rewiring a joystick for no reason other than short sighted planning.

I also challenge the idea of how easy it is to ‘just’ get someone to solder up some pads to a specific requirement. I posted a request in the trading forum for some pads wired to a DB-15 and got no response at all, luckily someone said they could do it but i still don’t know when that’s happening. Had I been asking for something that everyone was used to building already, this would have been solved in a day or even minutes.

We should just be able to say, ok pick whatever stick you want without worrying that it won’t work later, and just get the adaptors for whatever console you want and bam, lag free 100% working joystick, and when the next gen systems come out, theres less of a issue about convertors and such, cause everyone just gets the new cable.

Can somebody please post some pics of how you wire the db15, the “inside” of the stick I mean? Can somebody do that?