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Noah98

Competition Pro worth $65?

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I know it's only a matter of time before my 5200 controllers die. I'd love a Sega Genesis/2600 controller adapter, but they aren't available anymore. Is the Competition Pro worth $65 and provide a worthy experience? I hate spending that much when I only paid $70 for the system!

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Also, is the Wico a better option. The stick looks weird and not very ergonomic. I won't comment on how other people describe its shape!

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It's a good controller, but be aware it's not a full replacement for the standard controller. It works in conjunction with the CX52, with the the standard controller providing the keypad, Start/Pause/Reset, and centering for the joystick. Also note that the Comp Pro is digital so it won't work with the analog only games like Missile Command. As for price, 65 seems a bit high... Perhaps around 45 seems more like what I've seen on Ebay last I checked.

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As for the Wico, I like it quite a bit... It's been my main controller since picking one up. It's analog, so it works with all games, unlike the Comp Pro. But it self-centers, unlike the CX52.

 

Unlike the Comp Pro, it needs a separate Y-cable to conjoin it with a CX52. That cable should be included, but it isn't always. There's a great keypad that goes with it that removes the needs for both the Y-cable and the CX52 but it's somewhat rare.

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I picked up a competition pro for $30 a couple of weeks ago. Its nice, but as sdamon said, it doesn't work with all games. I'm still on the lookout for a cheapish wico.

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I know it's only a matter of time before my 5200 controllers die.

 

Search youtube. There's several videos on how to repair them for literally nothing. A few slivers of tin foil and they'll last forever. The Comp Pro sticks are cool and certainly better on some games. $65 bucks is a *little* pricey, but the only part of the 5200 sticks that go bad is the membrane where the fire button (and, sometimes the start/pause/reset) makes contact. If you take your time and do it right they'll last a really long time.

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Thanks for the feedback everyone! I think I'll just be patient. If I see either one for $30 or less then I'll pick one up.

 

How well does the Wico work with digital style games?

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The funny thing about the Competition Pro and Wico joysticks is how people view them as a godsend to the 5200, yet they don't solve the real problem with most 5200 controllers: the keypad. You still need a working 5200 controller keypad to at least start the game (or Wico keypad).

Another interesting thing is how everybody talks about the 5200 joystick being non-centering. It *does* center...mostly. The rubber boot is a kind of haphazard way of doing it, but it's not like the stick will just stay in whatever far-out position you leave it in, like the TRS-80 Color Computer joystick. Maybe "quasi-centering" is a better term for the 5200 joystick.

(I was just watching Gamester81's review of the Atari 5200 and he's playing around with the stick and talking about how the stick doesn't center...as it springs back to near-center.)

Anyway, the Comp Pro and Wico joysticks are both very good, but I prefer to go the tin-foil repair route and use the stock 5200 controllers instead. A lot of the 5200's personality comes from its controller. The Wico is pretty nice since it's still analog, but it feels like something you'd use with an Apple II (Wico probably even made this exact same stick for the Apple). With the Comp Pro, you might as well be playing an Atari 800.

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The 5200 is sort of a redundant console for me because I already own an XEGS and an 800XL. I'm starting to feel like part of the unique part of owning the 5200 is using the unconventional controllers!

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The 5200 is sort of a redundant console for me because I already own an XEGS and an 800XL. I'm starting to feel like part of the unique part of owning the 5200 is using the unconventional controllers!

I wouldn't call the 5200 redundant exactly, but I agree. Although some 5200 games *look* similar to their 400/800 counterparts (if not identical), they play and feel different, and the 5200 controller (and the fact the 5200 system was designed for it) is a big reason for that. Sometimes it's just a "feel" thing; Star Raiders is natural for analog control. Sometimes gameplay is impacted; Defender is vastly more playable due to having all keys on one controller instead of having to reach for the keyboard to use Smart Bombs and Hyperspace. Space Dungeon (a 5200 exclusive, BTW) with a pair of joysticks and a coupler is an experience the 400/800 can't touch.

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The 5200 is sort of a redundant console for me because I already own an XEGS and an 800XL. I'm starting to feel like part of the unique part of owning the 5200 is using the unconventional controllers!

 

Not just the sticks either. There's no other trackball like the 5200 version. And Robotron (as well as Space Dungeon, which afaik is not available on any other home system), with the coupler is worlds better than the 7800 and 800 version(s).

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Bump because Im routing through vendor stuff at the Replay FX. I found 2 boxed and unused competition pro 5000 controllers, the seller thinks they are worth over $100 each. I am not familiar with these, and I found this older thread. How much are these worth each? For 5200 that is.

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Bump again - any opinions?

 

There are lots of inexpensive Chinese parts on eBay one can purchase to make a really nice HOMEBREW joystick if they are so inclined.

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Thanks, but I was really curious abiut these specific sticks that I saw at the show today. I thought someone might be familiar with these. I'm not buying them regardless though, but I did pick up a Wico 5200 stick, he had several.

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(I was just watching Gamester81's review of the Atari 5200 and he's playing around with the stick and talking about how the stick doesn't center...as it springs back to near-center.)

 

yea I have seen that as well, I cant believe with his meat fists its too daunting to move back to center, its a game not driving on a las vegas highway self centering has never even been a thought of mine until hearing about the 5200 controller on this site (mind you I owned a 5200 for a decade before joining this site)

 

I do see it as a feature on thumbsticks as those things (to me) are as accurate as trying to drive a lawnmower chasing behind it with a pole taped to the wheel ... but I always have sucked at thumbsticks lol

Edited by Osgeld

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Typically, they go for around $50. Sure, a seller might get lucky once in a while and get more, but over the years, Id say thats about the usual price.

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I got a competition pro off ebay years ago. It never worked right.

 

That would depend on the game, right? For Pac-Man, Joust, or Defender, a digital Competition Pro joystick should work fine. For Centipede or Missile Command, you need an analog controller, like the stock controllers, the trakball, or the Wico joystick.

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I found a 5200 4-port system with no switchbox, a Competition Pro, and a few games for $15 in 1997 at a thrift store. I bought it, knowing the reputation of 5200 controllers. I had a 5200 4 port, so I tested the main console sold it, and made a little money and got the rest for free.

 

4 notes about it:

 

1 It's dsigned to be right handed with the "main button" on the left and the "Aux button" on the right. I have some left handed friends who mightbe interested ina "button swapper" 5200 adapter, assuming it's as simple as wiring pins to pins.

 

2) It's an all or nothing joystick. You're either centered or at one of 4 cadrdinal extremes or one of 8 diagonal extremes.

 

3) There are a couple digital games which take advantage of the circular restrictor of the CX-52 to assume if it's 80% or more in one cardinal direction, it cannot be considered more than 60% actuated in a perpendicular direction, hence a peripheral enforced 4-way stick. Some coders to advantage of that because it's easier to say ( I know this isn't proper 5200 code. I'm talking to humans here, not 5200 coding machines. So don't make me go all all Captcha on you bots :P) "If x>+80%"... than it is to say "If X>+80% and ABS(Y)<60%" (but also takes less bits, and when you're given only 32 KB, every bit counts.) so why waste bits on a redundant line. The problems come when a diagonal is actuated becuase it's X= +/- 100 AND Y= +/- 100% simultaneously. LLine pairs which should be mutually excvlusive are no longer mutually exclusive, so there would be some funny run-time errors. I never tried it. I heard Popeye is one of those 4 way games. When I get the 5200 Sticks fixed, maybe I'll try it.

 

4) Also games with analog speed like Dreadnaught factor can make you faster when dodging diagonally at 141% of the cardinal speed, so it might have to be a separate category for Twin Galaxies World Records (analog control vs digital control record).

 

One final thing about the centering. The lack of centering force makes games like Super Breakout, Kaboom, and Star Wars with their absolute position instead of relative direction work buttery smooth without the self centering.

 

Also if someone thinks auto-centering is such a good idea that is should be automatic, and it's dumb to have a stay-put joystick, they should try Warlords for the Xbox One in Absolute mode. Even if you hav a 1 ms ping monitor, you'll be fighting centering resistance trying to dial a posiiton exactly, sometimes working with the resitance, sometimes against, and painful to keep still and painful to dial an exact position other than maximum in as little as a tenth of a second.

 

Real 2600 paddles should be an option on Atari Flashback for PS4 and Xbox One. Otherwise their only worth is online games.

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best solution is to get a wico and comp pro and plug the wico into the comp pro, then you have better controls for games that should be digital and better analog

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Wise fwom youw gwave , forum.

 

I would get a Wico except for most digital games, especially all 8-way games, the Competition Pro works. And in those analog games, don’t like the self centering of the WIco. It’d be easier to accurately dial a position in missile command, Super Breakout, and Star Wars, than to home in on one position and fight resistance. It feels proportional.

 

As for the fire and keypad buttons working, I suggest you go gold, and get 2 Best-Electronics-ca.com 5200 Gold Mods. and use those for anlaog games, 4-way games that have trouble with the Competition Pro, and Robotron and Space Dungeon, and use a Comptition pro fordigital games that don’t err in 4-way play.

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Also, is the Wico a better option. The stick looks weird and not very ergonomic. I won't comment on how other people describe its shape!

In my opinion, the short answer is no. Refer to this older post of mine as I relate my experience with the Wico Command Controller Joystick (Jokestick!). Even if you locate one that does function, you will probably have to pay a hefty price for it. You also won't know how many miles its got left in it. To my knowledge, nobody has been able to find a suitable replacement for the short-lived pots (proprietary and no longer available) once they're worn out.

 

http://atariage.com/forums/topic/279537-miner-2049er-cheat-code-quandary/

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no its not properly designed they just took one of their standard sticks which are intended to be ambi but when used as a 2 button stick how can you rapidly press button one and button 2 its just not ergo also using the 5200 controller as the trim controls it was just a thrown together stop gap

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