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Vectrex Trackball : Anyone Made This?

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If it's not analoug then doesn't that defeat the purpose? Why can't it be modded to offer analoug? The PS1 joystick works that way so it's possible.

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I remember seeing a video of someone playing Patriots with a modded trackball. I've done the spinner mod but this looked really involved.

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On 10/1/2020 at 3:21 AM, BinaryStar said:

You can use an unmodified Atari CX-80 or CX-22 in true trackball mode with my modified versions of Star Hawk and Patriots.

 

Star Hawk [Trackball Edition] can be found here : https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/203123344865

 

and Patriots Deluxe is available from Packrat http://www.packratvg.com/vpatriots.html

 

How have you modified the code?  I mean, how is the trak-ball read (analog joystick pins, button pins) and are you converting gray code to something the Vectrex can use or doing something else?

 

I've always wondered why nobody ever made a "real" trak-ball for the Vectrex, and I've always wondered if the Atari 5200 approach - convert trak-ball output into analog joystick output - would be the best option since people wouldn't need to change the games, only the controller.

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My code reads the trackball DIR/CLK signals for each axis and updates the crosshair coordinates. Analog joystick emulation would certainly make it more compatible with games but it wouldn't be true trackball control which was the point of my hacks (and the CX-80 /CX-22 does not require any hardware hacks or adapters).

 

I have more trackball compatible projects coming in the future, such as this one.

 

Edited by BinaryStar
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On 10/4/2020 at 8:25 AM, BinaryStar said:

My code reads the trackball DIR/CLK signals for each axis and updates the crosshair coordinates. Analog joystick emulation would certainly make it more compatible with games but it wouldn't be true trackball control which was the point of my hacks (and the CX-80 /CX-22 does not require any hardware hacks or adapters).

 

I have more trackball compatible projects coming in the future, such as this one.

 

 

Sweet!

 

So you're treating the trak-ball controller like a true trak-ball controller, not a joystick (directions only), correct?  What pins are being read, then?  I mean, are you sacrificing 2 button inputs and bypassing the joystick inputs?  There is a spinner controller out there that does the same thing.  I was wondering about somehow feeding the trak-ball through the joystick inputs so that the 4 buttons could still be used, which is why I mentioned the Atari 5200 solution.

 

As an aside, I don't consider that Atari 5200 trak-ball/analog joystick emulation an issue because that sort of seems, to me, to simply be having the trak-ball convert the signals internally into something that the Vectrex is used to (analog joystick with direction and speed) vs. having the Vectrex convert the signals (through I assume a couple button inputs) from the trak-ball into what amounts to the same thing.  So either the trak-ball does it and hands it off to the Vectrex or the Vectrex does it.  I'm not saying the signals are the same, just the treatment of the data would have to be in order to have analog (direction + speed) movement vs. a digital joystick.

 

I'm sure there's much I'm not understanding here so I guess what I'm asking is how do you use the DIR/CLK signals?  Could you give an example of what those signals typically look like and how you use that to update the crosshair coordinates compared to how the joystick does (essentially) the same thing?

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