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Jaybug

Using USB Controllers with Atari800Win

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This thread is about how I went about getting controllers to work with the Atari800Win emulator. My first problem is that three of my four notebooks have broken down (after repeated repairs, both professional and DIY) and therefore I'm running my emulator on an HP Mini, a small notebook computer.

 

This presents some various obstacles, of which I will explain. Like most people who first begin to use emulators, I had no controllers to use with the emulator and was therefore using the keyboard to play the games. The first problem I encountered was that being that I was using a mini laptop and did not have a full sized keyboard. With no number pad or NumLock key this was a drawback. Needless to say, I quickly had a desire to use a real controller rather than arrow keys, etc. for my gameplay.

 

I did my research and read up on how to use a joystick/controller with Atari800Win. The results were disappointing. It seemed, from what I'd read, that I needed special controllers or adapters, designed to be plugged into either the printer port or the game port, neither of which I had on my laptop. Darn!

 

Frustrated, I decided to hold off on playing the Atari800 games and wanted to revisit some of my old Super Nintendo favorites. So I downloaded and installed ZSNES and a few roms. It quickly became apparent that my lack of a controller was now even more detrimental to gameplay because of the many more buttons on the SNES controller versus the original Atari controller.

 

Since the only available place my computer had to plug in a controller was a USB port, logically I began to read up about use of USB controllers with emulators. After looking at the various classic USB gaming controllers available on Ebay, and watching some reviews on YouTube, I settled on the SNES USB Controller made by Tomee. I went ahead and ordered two of them. They were very well made, the price was quite reasonable. The convenience of Plug and Play made using them with the ZSNES emulator quite easy. I simply went to the emulator's menu and clicked Config>Input>Input Device #1, and began to assign the D-Pad and buttons. It worked perfectly!

 

Then I went back and tried to get these controllers to work on the Atari800Win emulator. Not quite as easy initially but I did get it figured out. Do the following steps:

 

Step 1) Plug in one or both USB retro gaming controllers. NOTE: My laptop computer has two USB ports on one side and one on the other. When I had both controllers plugged in on the right hand side the emulator would NOT recognize both controllers. When I moved one to the left side (i.e. one plugged in on the left and one on the right) then it DID recognize them both.

 

Step 2) Click the following: Input>Joysticks, the Joystick Options dialog box will popup. For Joystick 1 select "2Axes 11Keys Game Pad". If a second controller is desired, then for Joystick 2 Select the other 2Axes 11Keys Game Pad (there should be two) from the drop down menu. Remember, if the two controllers are plugged in next to each other then the emulator may not "see" them both. If using a desktop computer perhaps plug one on the front USB port and one in the rear etc.

 

Step 3) Recommended: In the Joystick Options dialog box click Advanced. The "Advanced Options" dialog box will popup. Then make sure "Do not toggle options using joystick buttons" is checked. This will allow full use of the controller's D-Pad and ANY other button on the controller may be used as the fire button.

 

Step 4) Play!

 

I hope that this will be of some help for people who are having difficulty getting their controllers to work for the Atari800Win emulator.

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May I suggest you to download Altirra 2.0 emulator instead of Atari800Win ? My USB joystick works champs and it is Retro SNES Joystick with SNES USB adapter and it is works fine in Altirra emulator or another emulators as well on Window 7 64 bits.

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Not had any problems with my cheapo PS2 to USB converters with either A8 Win or Altirra, they even worked with the Mad Catz wireless pad i got for a fiver the other day.

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What I would do...

 

-Buy the cheapest USB game pad you can find that works on your system.

-Connect some wires to the direction keys (or stick) and at least 1 fire button.

-Use a 9-pin Sub-D in which an Atari joystick will fit and connect it to the other end of the wires.

-Done.

 

If the game pad is a little more advanced and also happens to have separate analog controls you can even connect paddles to it but this takes a little bit more effort due to the difference in pot-meter resistance.

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