Giving two Saturn pads a new lease on life

First, I’d like to say this is my first post on Shoryuken after absorbing as much knowledge as I could without making a nusance of myself. However, I’ve come across an issue in which I would like to ask for some opinions/advice. Please forgive me if this is repeated elsewhere- I did as much research as I could this afternoon.

I acquired a pair of saturn pads recently from a garage sale 25 cents bin; both controllers had their cables chewed off by god knows what. So, for all intent and purposes they are useless as actual saturn controllers since I have no replacement ends for them. However I have heard of USB conversion for saturn pads, so I would consider this the best option.

What is the best way to go about this? I’ve heard of Retrozone USB modding; but their chipset causes the dpad to act as button presses at the same time, not to mention they dont use the lowest numerical value for button presses… making it useless for PS3. I know I can padhack a PS3 and make a project box out of it, but then I wouldn’t be able to use them with my x64 OS. The Cuthulu board interests me… but $80 is a bit more than I want to pay for anything besides using them in a pair of custom fightsticks. (which I plan to build sometime this summer.)

I need a cost effective solution to turn these two pads into USB controllers that will work with both PS3 and any PC I plug them into. These can be as technical as they have to be; I’ve been a computer repairman for 15 years and know how to handle just about any tool necessary for the job.

Make it a PS2 pad and then get an InPin or other PS2-USB adapter. Should work fine for both of your scenarios.


Thanks for the suggestion, I hadn’t thought of that. Will it still work with firmware 2.70 on the PS3? I suppose drivers exist that allow PS2 on PC, I’ll have to find some and make sure. Those are the two questions that kept me from pursuing that line of thought; and I do not own a X360.

Cthulhu boards will only run you $20 apiece (plus whatever your usb cables cost) if you go with the unassembled kit. It won’t include screw terminals or a USB jack, but it sounds like you know what you’re doing enough to not need either of those.

I’d honestly not go with the PS2 + converter path with all that talk about certain converters not working with the PS3’s newest firmware.

I’m not trying to counter the Cthulhu suggestion since it’s perfectly valid. But just FYI only the TAC and Sumoto converters were affected by 2.7. The rest of them are working fine.

Either way he can use the majority of the info from that thread. Just use the Cthulhu in place of the host pad in the tutorial and you’re all set.

So Cthulhu boards are only $20 barebones? I was only able to see prices at for 39.99 for PS3/PC only support and 49.99 for everything else. Forgive me, I can’t remember the name of the creator of the chips… I believe he is responsible for the UPCB as well? I would rather not go through the hassle of programming PICs if I can avoid it- which is why I shy away from Retrozone’s USB kits- $40 seems much more reasonable to me to get two controllers up and running.

The unassembled kits have the programmed PIC with them:

Nareg carries them in his store for $20: You can also get them directly from Toodles.

Thank you for all the assistance with this issue, I really appreciate the effort put into answering my questions. I’ve gutted both Saturn pads down to the bare pcb and placing an order for a pair of Cthulhu chips. EDIT: Nevermind about fitting inside of a case, the board is gigantic. Looks like the best I can do for it is a project box.