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Joystick Recommendation For Altirra & Windows 10 Without A Driver Install

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Can some recommend some joysticks that work well with Altirra on Windows 10 using the built-in drivers? I wanted to use a PS3/PS4 controller but I'm not keen on adding 3rd party drivers.

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Xbox One controller works great! No drivers needed. Just make sure you get one of the newer controllers with built in Bluetooth.

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2600-daptor without a doubt. It allows you to use original 9-pin controllers with emulators on Windows. No drivers needed.

 

http://www.2600-daptor.com/2600-daptor%20D9.htm

I second the 2600-Daptor! It works with paddles, driving controllers and track balls. No drivers needed. You will have to configure the paddles in Altirra once, but its easy. Use your original CX-40 joysticks and CX-30 paddles!

 

Also, they don't make these anymore, but you might find one on eBay. It lets you hook up two CX-40 joysticks (no paddles) with no drivers needed.

41gUuEeOuOL._SY400_.jpg

Edited by ACML
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The Xbox 360 controller will work out of the box over USB but the D-pad is notoriously bad -- not recommended unless you mod it. If you do fix the D-pad, it's a good controller.

 

PS3 controllers require third party software, but a PS4 controller will work out of the box as long as it is connected via USB.

 

You'll likely have troubles getting the controllers working wirelessly. I've never gotten PS4 to work paired over Bluetooth, and IIRC the Xbox 360 wireless adapter for PC is only for charging.

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post-1863-0-48235000-1544385065.jpg

 

Do not get one of these. I had one briefly and it introduced huge amounts of lag. It was terrible; I dumped it quickly and bought a 2600-daptor instead.

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Thanks for this info. I already have a 2600-Daptor but I was looking for something to use in addition that's more modern. I tried the PS4 controller but I am having difficulty calibrating it in Windows. The Z axis calibrations is the right stick, left and right. The X axis and Y axis calibration do not match up with anything on the controller. What's with those?

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Thanks for this info. I already have a 2600-Daptor but I was looking for something to use in addition that's more modern. I tried the PS4 controller but I am having difficulty calibrating it in Windows. The Z axis calibrations is the right stick, left and right. The X axis and Y axis calibration do not match up with anything on the controller. What's with those?

 

This is because DirectInput in Windows comes from a time when game controllers looked like this:

 

post-16457-0-41786500-1544392030.jpg

 

Gamepads then have to map their axes to weird inputs like "rudder Z." This doesn't matter in games and emulators that remap axes, it's only an issue for ones that hardcode the assignments.

 

I don't recommend using the built-in Windows calibration for modern gamepads. It's more meant from the old school days where controllers needed center calibration because they could vary (think 5200 style). For a console gamepad, just use the dead zone setting in Altirra under Input, Input Setup.

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The dead zone is the region of stick movement that the program should consider as being in the center and producing no movement. The right setting varies by controller design and even specific controllers, since it varies by the accuracy of the hardware, how much wiggle room is in the physical stick, etc.

 

In Altirra's Input Setup dialog, you'll see something like this when moving the stick (example from Xbox 360 left stick):

post-16457-0-43111000-1544393840.png

 

The cross is the current input value from the stick, what the controller is sending. When the stick is in the center, it'll probably not be in exactly the center of this grid, which is why a dead zone is needed -- so you don't get drift in your game. The gray disc is the dead zone for analog inputs, like when emulating paddles or a 5200 controller. Typically you will want this as small as possible without getting drift so the control is as smooth as possible. Wiggle the stick around or brush the triggers lightly to get an idea of how big the analog dead zone should be. The little dot indicates what is actually used after the applying the dead zone, so when you aren't trying to move the stick, that dot should be right in the center and the cross within the dead zone.

 

You'll also notice the red circle and arrow. These are the dead zone (threshold) and detected movements for digital (on/off) controls, such as the CX-40 Joystick. Altirra uses separate thresholds for these since you don't usually want the emulated joystick to signal up/down/left/right as soon as you push the stick a little bit, you want to have to push a bit more than that. Adjust the threshold setting until the detected directional movements are responsive but not too twitchy.

 

There is also a stiffness setting for analog inputs. This controls the curve between how far you push the stick and what kind of response you get. The reason for this setting is to get better precision, so it's easier to do fine movements by not pushing the stick as far. Missile Command with a trackball or 5200 controller is an example of a game that can benefit from this.

 

The last thing to note is the way the dead zone is computed. In Altirra, when the stick just begins to leave the dead zone, the response just starts to rise above zero, so you get a smooth response right around the dead zone. Additionally, the dead zone is treated as a circle. Two janky things I've seen some games do are (a) just force the dead zone to zero without adjusting the range, which causes a 'pop' when you leave the dead zone, and (b) apply the dead zone to X/Y axes individually, which distorts directions my making the analog input sticky along the 4-way directions. Long story short, dead zones aren't done the same way in all programs, so the needed settings will differ too.

 

 

 

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Thanks for that explanation. Understanding exactly what this means makes it a lot easier. The Dead Zone has been adjusted but I am having difficulty with games that use joystick 2 for one player...Wizard Of Wor for example. There is a mapping "Gamepad -> Joystick (port 1) Unit 1. How do I create the same mapping for port 2? 5200 mapping is a problem also. How do I create a mapping where I use the Keyboard and the Gamepad?

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Thanks for that explanation. Understanding exactly what this means makes it a lot easier. The Dead Zone has been adjusted but I am having difficulty with games that use joystick 2 for one player...Wizard Of Wor for example. There is a mapping "Gamepad -> Joystick (port 1) Unit 1. How do I create the same mapping for port 2? 5200 mapping is a problem also. How do I create a mapping where I use the Keyboard and the Gamepad?

 

An input map has the controllers to emulate, with mappings on the controller to connect input sources to targets on the controller. To set up the keyboard to drive a joystick, you add a joystick controller and set up mappings to bind its targets to keyboard inputs. Fastest way to do this to add the controller and then use the Rebind feature. You can then edit the controller within the input map to use port 2 instead of port 1. To drive two joysticks from the same input map, simply add two joystick controllers, one for each port, and then bind them to separate inputs. There's no restriction on which inputs you use, you can freely mix keyboard and gamepad on different controllers or even the same controller, as well as double-bind a target if you want more than one key or button to do the same thing.

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I've got a Y cable that takes PS1 (and PS2?) controllers to USB at the PC end - if you can still get them, they operate the normal and dual-shock controllers without any driver.

 

Another alternative I have - I bought a wireless PS3 controller and the dongle allows switching between PS3 and PC mode, no extra drivers needed.

 

But personally, I feel that gamepads aren't very good for the old style games with single pixel collision death. A traditional type of digital joystick is way more desirable. In fact, I usually just use the keyboard, the inverted T cursor controls are even better than a stick for some games.

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This is because DirectInput in Windows comes from a time when game controllers looked like this:

 

attachicon.gifjoystick.jpg

 

Gamepads then have to map their axes to weird inputs like "rudder Z." This doesn't matter in games and emulators that remap axes, it's only an issue for ones that hardcode the assignments.

 

I don't recommend using the built-in Windows calibration for modern gamepads. It's more meant from the old school days where controllers needed center calibration because they could vary (think 5200 style). For a console gamepad, just use the dead zone setting in Altirra under Input, Input Setup.

 

Best joystick of the type ever. It's such a shame that Mad Catz is no more.

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Can the 2600-daptor be used to have two joysticks at once for two-player games?

 

Can two 2600-daptors be used together at the same time?

 

-Eric

 

Yes, you can use two 2600-daptors for two player games. Or even more... there is no limitation in the adapter itself but might be a limit in the operating system or emulator.

 

Tom

http://2600-daptor.com/

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Yes, you can use two 2600-daptors for two player games. Or even more... there is no limitation in the adapter itself but might be a limit in the operating system or emulator.

 

Tom

http://2600-daptor.com/

Ok great.

 

I have two 2600-daptors.

 

In Altirra I have a mapping working fine for Stick(port1) and also for PaddlesA&B(port1).

 

Can you explain how I go about adding another mapping in Altirra for a second joystick, Stick(port2), using a second 2600-daptor?

 

I want to be able to use two joysticks at the same time for two-player games utilizing two separate 2600-daptors in Altirra.

 

Thanks!

-Eric

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Ok great.

 

I have two 2600-daptors.

 

In Altirra I have a mapping working fine for Stick(port1) and also for PaddlesA&B(port1).

 

Can you explain how I go about adding another mapping in Altirra for a second joystick, Stick(port2), using a second 2600-daptor?

 

I want to be able to use two joysticks at the same time for two-player games utilizing two separate 2600-daptors in Altirra.

 

Thanks!

-Eric

 

Have you tried creating the mapping but set Port 2?

http://2600-daptor.com/Altirra%20mapping.JPG

 

Tom

http://2600-daptor.com/

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Have you tried creating the mapping but set Port 2?

http://2600-daptor.com/Altirra%20mapping.JPG

 

Tom

http://2600-daptor.com/

Yes, I tried to do that for a Stick on port 2, but the problem was that when I tried to bind each mapping for Stick(port2) it would not recognize the 2nd 2600-daptor which I had plugged into a separate USB port.

 

So I have one 2600-daptor plugged into a USB port and it mapped fine for Stick(port1) by binding the mappings to the joystick movements plugged into the first 2600-daptor.

 

I plugged a second 2600-daptor into a separate USB port and tried to map it to Stick(port2) but when I try to bind the mappings by moving the 2nd joystick attached to this second 2600-daptor it isn't recognized.

Edited by erichenneke

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Yes, I tried to do that for a Stick on port 2, but the problem was that when I tried to bind each mapping for Stick(port2) it would not recognize the 2nd 2600-daptor which I had plugged into a separate USB port.

 

So I have one 2600-daptor plugged into a USB port and it mapped fine for Stick(port1) by binding the mappings to the joystick movements plugged into the first 2600-daptor.

 

I plugged a second 2600-daptor into a separate USB port and tried to map it to Stick(port2) but when I try to bind the mappings by moving the 2nd joystick attached to this second 2600-daptor it isn't recognized.

 

Sounds like you have run into an emulator bug. I take you have confirmed the 2nd adapter is working in another emulator or better with a joystick/gamepad test program like windows joy.cpl. I'll try it here later. Note the adapter is seen as just another USB joystick/gamepad and is nothing special as far as the computer/operating system is concerned.

 

Tom

http://2600-daptor.com/

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You could try one of these........ :)

 

 

capcom10.jpg

 

 

Seriously, that is a Steel Batallion controller for the XBOX (original) although it probably is USB based along the lines :)

 

No driver tho :) (that I know of)

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Yes, I tried to do that for a Stick on port 2, but the problem was that when I tried to bind each mapping for Stick(port2) it would not recognize the 2nd 2600-daptor which I had plugged into a separate USB port.

 

So I have one 2600-daptor plugged into a USB port and it mapped fine for Stick(port1) by binding the mappings to the joystick movements plugged into the first 2600-daptor.

 

I plugged a second 2600-daptor into a separate USB port and tried to map it to Stick(port2) but when I try to bind the mappings by moving the 2nd joystick attached to this second 2600-daptor it isn't recognized.

 

Just tried here, with two 2600-daptors, and it is accepting binding from both. This is with an older Altirra version 2.3, on XP. What version and win are you running?

 

EDIT: Also tried latest Altirra 3.10 on Win 10, and also worked - accepting binding from both 2600-daptors.

Edited by dualcam

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I'm having difficulty setting up the 5200 controls in Altirra. Even without using a controller, I cannot get Wizard Of Wor to work with the keyboard. Is there a way I can import mappings from someone who has this working?

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