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ave1

Got the X-Arcade Tankstick and PC mice/PC trackballs working with the 2600

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Today I've got something interesting to share in the 2600 controller department.  There is now an Ebay adapter that you can obtain pretty cheaply (made by Atariage member, Ikonsgr) that gets a PC USB mouse/trackball working on the 2600.

 

The catch is that:

#1) only USB mice and trackballs that have PS/2 compatibility will work (and those that have PS/2 plugs need to be adapted to USB with a cheap little green PS/2 to USB adapter).

#2) This only works with the digital games (not the paddle games).

 

The really great news is that #1 can be remedied by buying an Aten KVM switch that converts USB (non-PS/2) mice and trackballs into PS/2 compatible devices.  These are not cheap (over $50), but can open up possibilities of playing your 5200 with some quite interesting controllers, including the X-Arcade Tankstick which has a trackball (shown in the picture below) and this as well: https://www.ign.com/articles/2006/02/03/x-arcade-trackball-review

 

The video below starts with using the 2600 to play Mines of Minos, Cosmic Swarm, Centipede, and Off the Wall, and then goes on to the 7800.  I start the explanation about the X-Arcade Tankstick trackball around 16 and a half minutes in (showing it work with 7800 Centipede) so you'll probably want to not miss that part.  Also there's 5200 compatibility with an additional adapter so that might interest you as well.  Hope this is beneficial to some of you :)

 

 

 

The products:

 

Here's the link to the PC USB mouse/trackball to 9 pin Atari adapter (sometimes the Ebay product goes out of stock, and then gets restocked, so definitely keep checking back if it's not available):

https://www.ebay.com/itm/USB-Mouse-Adapter-For-Atari-ST-Amiga-Amstrad-Commodore-9pin-DB9-Joystick-Port/274204936054

 

Here are two links for the PS/2 to USB mini green adapter (1st one may not be based in the U.S. & is cheaper):
https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00UMX89XA#Ask


https://www.amazon.com/dp/B009GUV4UK/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_awdb_t1_MOoDEb7Y5HZVV

 

The Aten KVM Switch (Model CS82U) is necessary to get non-PS/2 mice and trackballs working on your Atari systems and is found here: 

 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004QOBZXM/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_awdb_t1_ZgpDEbQPRJ199

Edited by ave1

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I have now learned- thanks to Atariage member Swami- that there's a way to get the 7800 two-button games working (as opposed to merely one button games).  It's done by placing a Sega Master System Rapid Fire adapter in between the Ikonsgr74 mouse adapter and the Seagull78 adapter. 

 

Now 7800 games like Alien Brigade,  Commando, Crack'd, and Planet Smashers can be successfully played with a PC-compatible mouse/trackball.

Edited by ave1

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I saw your post in the 5200 forums and, as an X-Arcade Tankstick owner, I'm very very intrigued!  I haven't had a chance to watch the videos while at work, so apologies if it is mentioned - but could you link to Ikonsgr's listing on eBay or the relevant AA thread about his adapters?  Thanks for sharing this!

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Here are the product links:  

 

The PC USB mouse/trackball to 9 pin Atari adapter: https://www.ebay.com/itm/USB-Mouse-Adapter-For-Atari-ST-Amiga-Amstrad-Commodore-9pin-DB9-Joystick-Port/274204936054

 

The Atari 5200 adapter for 9 pin controller compatibility (2600 and Sega Genesis controllers): https://ebay.us/st9QHv

 

Here are two links for the PS/2 to USB mini green adapter (1st one may not be based in the U.S. & is cheaper):

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00UMX89XA#Ask

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B009GUV4UK/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_awdb_t1_MOoDEb7Y5HZVV

 

The Aten KVM Switch (Model CS82U) is necessary to get non-PS/2 mice and trackballs working on your Atari systems and is found here:

 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004QOBZXM/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_awdb_t1_ZgpDEbQPRJ199

 

The Aten device needs a 5V positive center polarity power supply (mine's got 1 Amp) in order to work with this, and you'll have to buy that separately.

 

Here's one relevant Atariage thread that has much to do with using adapters to get PC mice working on the 5200 (but it doesn't discuss the Ikonsgr74 Ebay mouse adapter, just other ones). Ikonsgr gave me his version (which requires your USB mouse or trackball to have PS/2 compatibility) so I could review it on Wired-Up Retro, and that took place after this thread came to an end:  

 

Edited by ave1

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