My Xbox360 console sticks and ideas on button placement


I’ve not been on this forum very much, but I know you guys appreciate a decent arcade stick.
So here’s the two I’ve built so far

The one on the left is my latest stick. Works on the PS3/PS2/PC. Yes this means that I have an Xbox 360 plugged into my PS3 :smiley:
The one on the right I built a year ago and works on the XBox 360. I posted photos of it in the “Check Out My New Arcade Stick” thread.

Both are built out of the case from dead Xbox 360s.
The power button on the 360 stick works as the Xbox Guide button. Yes I can turn on my XBox 360 with the power button on my 360 stick :smiley:
Unfortunately the PS3 board that I bought did not have a Home button so I could not do the same for the PS3.

You’ll notice that the PS3 stick has Xbox 360 colour buttons. My next plan is to add an Xbox 360 board inside and have a switch so that it works on both Xbox 360 and PS3.

I’ll be posting a full worklog and photos of the PS3 stick soon (It’s 4am here in Australia).
First stick photos and worklog were posted on another forum (Although I don’t think they appreciated it as much as I’d hoped). Take note that those photos are hosted on my website which expires on July 16th. I’m going to find a new place to host the photos.

Now my question. There’s 6 face buttons, the joystick and Start and Select (located underneath the Hard Drive cover <-- this photo is from my first stick, not my new one although placement is the same). I’d like to add L1 and L2 but I’m not sure where to put them.
I was careful about button placement so that they didn’t interfere with the words “Xbox 360” or “Microsoft” on the side of the case. I’m tempted to put them under the hard drive cover with the Start and Select buttons, but I was hoping someone would have a better idea.

Other thing is that I’ll need to work out how to switch the stick between Xbox 360 and PS3 when I get around to doing that mod. Wondering on ideas on what kind of switch and how to mount it.

Many thanks to Dreamcazman for his help on getting the powerbutton mod to work on my first stick. His Akuma Stick is immaculate and inspired me to build better sticks.

As I said I’ll post more photos and a worklog soon.
Comments and ideas most welcome.


Good stuff! Great work on the sticks, I really like them. :clapdos:

No probs helping you out with the power button mod, I do what I can. :tup:

Xbox 360 arcade stick - for the PS3

I finally got around to writing up how I built the thing.
Click on the thumbnail to see the larger image.

A year ago I built my first arcade stick out of a dead Xbox 360 Arcade console. This was for my Xbox 360. I posted a picture in one of the threads for showing off custom sticks.

Now I’ve taken another dead Xbox 360 and made an arcade stick. This time for the PS3.
That’s right I have an Xbox 360 plugged into my PS3.

The Parts
I was better prepared this time after building the last stick. In the photo you can see

  • Drill + 3mm, 4mm + 5mm drill bits.
  • 30mm holesaw + 22mm holesaw
  • Soldering iron, solder, solder sucker, heatshrink
  • cutting knife
  • my trusty console toolkit with Xbox 360 case opening tool
  • 3mm screws
  • PCB case feet
  • 6x 30mm Seimitsu clear-top screw-in buttons in appropriate colours (I’ll explain my choice)
  • 1x Sanwa JLF-TP-8YT joystick with mounting plate, joystick wire harness and Seimitsu clear bubble top
  • 2x Sanwa 20mm SDM-20 snap-in button
  • PS3/PS2/PC board already pre-wired (no longer available unfortunately)
  • Dead Xbox 360
  • 8mm diameter magnets
  • hot glue gun
  • wire strippers/cutters
  • Tin snips

PCB, PCB case feet joystick and buttons from in2amusements in Perth, Western Australia.
Tools from Jaycar Electronics & Bunnings.

Preparing the case
First step is to remove the faceplate. Next is to remove the grey plastic top and bottom.
There are 6 points, 3 on each side, that hold the plastic piece in place. Sticking a thin screw driver into key points will help undo them. They are between the filled in holes on the sides

Once they are done, it’s time to take the base off (base when the console is in a horizontal orientation). Underneath the faceplate are 3 points that clip together. Undo them.
On the back are 7 points that all need to be pressed in. You can use a very small flathead screwdriver, but my toolkit came with a took for this purpose

Case comes apart. The top is screwed into the metal frame. You’ll need a T8H bit to remove them. There are 6 in total that hold the metal frame to the top

The guts of the machine are now exposed. Take out the DVD drive. Remove the PCB on the front of the unit. This controls the power button and the 4 LEDs that give the RRoD. There are 3 screws that hold it in place. Off the top of my head they need a T6H bit.

Now remove the fan and any other screws holding the motherboard in place. You’ll be left with an empty metal case

The top will have a thin flimsy piece of metal attached to the plastic. Rip it off and discard.

You have your case.

Buttons and Joystick

Using the screw rings from the buttons and the mountplate from the joystick mark the placement of each component. I sat the top part of the case on top of the metal frame so that the case was level. I favour the offset left side buttons while other people prefer the straight alignment. Either way mark the position of each button. I was careful about preserving the words XBOX 360 and MICROSOFT on the case.
I used the joystick hole and the 4 screw holes on the mountplate to work out placement of the joystick. I didn’t mount my joystick with the mountplate, I just used it to mark the position.

Mark the centre of each of the button holes. 30mm holesaw does a perfect job for the buttons while the 22mm holesaw is perfect for the joystick hole and 5mm drillbit for the screw holes around the joystick.
Flip the case over and you’ll see that there’s plastic bits that will get in the way of the joystick and buttons

Scrape away at these with the cutting knife and a file until each button hole is clear. Do the same with the joystick.
Remove the mountplate from the joystick, but keep the screws. Mount it directly to the case. The dust cover for the joystick will cover up the screws.

Screw in the 30mm buttons. For my convenience I marked what each button was and what colour wire would go to each button. I’m aware that the colours of the buttons are not the PS3 colours. I will explain this at the end of the post.

Now to mount the start and select buttons. I chose to put them underneath the HDD cover so that they are out of the way and aren’t visible keeping as much of the Xbox 360 look as possible.
Careful placement means that parts of the plastic cover won’t get in the way of the buttons

Now before I get too far, I screwed up the placement. The cover doesn’t get in the way, but I made the button holes too far apart. It meant that they didn’t fit into the metal case. I had a spare top part though.
Also I will need to get a 20mm holesaw since the 22mm one is too big for the 20mm buttons. They still hold in place, but they can fall out

Of course the metal frame needs to be cut to accomodate the buttons. Out came the tin snips.

The controller

Now for the heart of the machine. Rather than gut a wired controller, I managed to find one that was pre-wired for the PS2/PS3/PC. All wires except for the joystick also had .110 quick disconnects on the end to make it easier to hook up to the buttons.

First things first I needed to mount it to the case. This is what the case feet are for. There was one hole in the middle of the PCB which I screwed the PCB to the case foot and I used a second foot to help distribute the weight

Wires to the buttons were already sorted, but to the joystick was just bare wires. Sanwa JLF-H Wire harness comes in handy. Now with a joystick the switch on the left is actually for the right direction and vice versa. The switch at the top is for the down direction and vice versa. Think about it :wink:
I worked out the colours on both the harness and the ones on the PCB, tinned the ends and joined them, covering them with heatshrink

To make sure that the soldering iron didn’t move around too much and that the cable didn’t get in the way, I used a bulldog clip to keep the cable in place.

Now a big problem. I wanted the cable to the console to come out via the power cable hole. Last stick this wasn’t an issue since it was just USB. But this one has a PS2 plug as well as USB. None of the holes were big enough to feed it through so this meant cutting.
First the metal frame.

Next the plastic. This was a little tricker since part of what I cut is used to hold the top and bottom of the case together

At this point you can test the stick to make sure that it’s all working right.
I sat the top part on the metal frame and hooked up the buttons and joystick

You can see that it’s plugged into my PS3.

Cables through, PCB in place and buttons and joystick mounted and working. The basics are in place. Time to put it together.

Putting it together

Wire up the buttons. Earlier I marked what colour wires should go up to each button. Each button will have two wires - the colours I marked and a ground wire. The board I used has a common ground, so it’s one wire with many connects on it. Joystick connects via the harness that I joined the wires to earlier. I made sure the start and select wires were sticking out through the hole I cut for the buttons, as well as the ground wire too.

There were 6 screws that held the top to the metal frame. After mounting the buttons only 5 of those points are left. Screw them back in, but make sure not to over tighten them. Easy to do. Grey plastic base just pushes back in place on the right hand side (if you look at the Xbox 360 in a horizontal orientation). The grey plastic has the start and select buttons. Put the buttons in and hook up the wires. I put tape around the edges of the hole I cut in the frame to stop any chance of the wires becoming severed.

Fit it back in place and put on the face plate.
Fully functional stick. But there is something missing

The faceplate from the DVD drive.

I cut off the excess bit off plastic from the eject button and put a hole in both the eject button and the faceplate, connecting both with a 3mm screw, keeping both parts together.
The plan was to hold it in place with magnets. There’s a tiny sliver of the metal frame visible on the right hand side of the hole. The left hand side has plenty of plastic to put a metal piece for a magnet to stick to.

3mm screw in the case where the eject button sits.
Hot glue gun kept the magnets in place The magnet in the eject button sits just inside. The one that sticks to the frame is stuck to the back of the faceplate.

Put it all together and you get the finished stick.

Why are the buttons in the colour of an Xbox 360 controller when it’s for the PS3?

  • I couldn’t get a clear-top pink button.
  • My plan for the future is to make it a PS3/Xbox 360 stick. 360 colours, but with PS3 labels. Makes it clear what button is what just by looking at it.

Which brings me to the very final touch. The inside of each button is just over 20mm in diameter. Photoshop + printer = cheap button labels. To stop them rotating inside a friend suggeted a bit of blutack to hold the labels in place. For now I just used my black laser printer. Later I’ll make the labels coloured.

That’s my stick.

Where do I go from here?

One thing I wanted to do was map the PS3 HOME button to the power button on the case. I discovered that the board I bought has no HOME button. I was disappointed to find this and will keep it in mind with the next board I get.
The first stick I built has this working already. Power = Guide button.

I still want to find a suitable place to put the L1 and L2 buttons. I can’t think of a fighting game that needs more than 6 buttons (excluding start and select) so I don’t want to mount them with the others. I’m going to look into mounting them with the start and select ones so that they are out of the way.

My next stick will be a PS3/Xbox 360 combo stick from another dead Xbox 360 case. I’m still trying to find the best place to mount a switch so that it doesn’t take away from the look of the case. Speaking with a friend (dreamcazman) I’m going to get a terminal block to help keep the wiring neat.
I also plan to make it so that it only uses a single USB cable (Not so hard since PS3 and Xbox 360 use a USB cable).
I want the power button to be the Xbox 360 Guide/PS3 HOME button. I’d love to get the LEDs to indicate which player I am too. I got the guide button to work on my first stick, but the LEDs are quite difficult to solder to since they are very small points.

Been a joy to build and I get a lot of compliments from people that see and use it.
More photos have been uploaded

You mean there are two more… oh wait one was already posted before. So the count is at 7? or was it 8 now?

Sorry I’m confused?

This is my second arcade stick that I’ve built.
The picture in the first post has both sticks that I’ve built.

Naw, simply keeping track of all 360 sticks made. Yours, kreeee’s, the one Infiltration brought to EVO, and a couple of others I think.

Fixed. Infiltration is Korean.

I’m really interested in how you got the power button on the 360 to act as the Guide button. I may be making one of these myself for a friend, and thought of the exact same idea. Great minds think alike!

Also, have you given thought to putting L1/L2 on the opposite side of the case from the hard drive cover? I mean, at the base if you were to set it vertically? Methinks if you put them in the same spot as the Start/Select buttons, you’re going to have an awful lot of fumbling around to get to the right button.

Glad to see a worklog of these, I was thinking, “Man, I wish there was a worklog for a 360 cased stick.” Wish granted.

You missed my edits.

Ahh I see now. I haven’t been following these forums in a while now.

As for the guide button - I’ll reupload the photos soon and write up how I did it on my old stick soon.
I had it up before, but I lost the photo hosting.

The next plan was to make the LEDs around the power button light up to indicate which player you are, but I found the solder points too small for my fat fingers to work with. Maybe later.

I considered having it on the other side, but I’m thinking against it. I’m trying to keep the look of the Xbox 360 as much as possible (aside from the joystick and 6 buttons). That’s why I put the Start and Select underneath the HDD cover - they can be covered up out of sight. Added advantage is that it prevents them from accidentally being pressed.

Here you go.

These are photos from my other stick - the one for my Xbox 360.

Wiring up the guide button
I wanted a clever way to access the guide button and I couldn’t think of a better way than wiring it up to the power button on the front of the case.

At first I tried soldering it to the button on the front, but anytime I touched the wires to any two of the 4 legs of the button, it would activate the button. I had a short somewhere.
So I cut the traces around each of the legs of the button thanks to the suggestion from dreamcazman.

Next problem is making sure that the wires aren’t cut by the case.
A notch was cut in both the case, and the plastic piece that covers the LEDs and button.

As you can see in the photo, the wires were already squashed by the case.

The other end of course was soldered to the Guide button (grey wires in the centre of the pad)

By making the power button work as the guide button, it means that when the stick is plugged into the Xbox 360, holding the power button on the stick will turn the console on and off!

Where to go from here?
You can see the LEDs around the guide button on the pad, and you an see the LEDs around the power button too.
I’ve already tried soldering wires to the ones around the power button, but they are too small and I’m not that good with a soldering iron.
I’ve also worked out to do so, I’d have to remove the LEDs from the control pad, otherwise neither LEDs light up. I’ve already tested this.

Hopefully after some practice I’ll be able to make this part of the mod work.

Player LEDs

Hey ebil,

Did you ever figure out how to hook up the lights on the front of the 360 to correspond to the current player? I can’t figure it out myself and was wondering if you’d ever taken the time to put your’s together, or have instructions for doing so? Thanks.

I am unsure of how the board looks for the power section of the xbox, but I think you have to cut the traces around the leds and then solder directly each negative and positive end from your ring of light on your controller to the ring of light on the xbox power button.

you’d need some decent soldering skills, a really thin iron tip and patience