Famulator Controller to NES help please! Need DB-9 pinout
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Author:  SatoshiMatrix [ Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Famulator Controller to NES help please! Need DB-9 pinout

Hey all, my favorite Famiclone the Famulator went kaput recently but I'd like to reuse its Famiclone controllers on the NES by replacing the DB-9 cord with an NES 7pin cord. The problem is that I have no idea how to go about getting it to actually work.

Does anyone here happen to know where I may possibly find Famicom DB-9 controller pinouts? 

Looking around, time and again I find the common dendy one, like the one shown on the right of this image

The problem is that the Famulator does NOT use this pinout. I've hacked apart the DB-9 cord to try and learn its secrets, and this is what I discovered.

Rather than look like this:

1 \ x o o o x / 5
\ o x o x /
6 `"""' 9

it instead looks like this:

1 \ x o o o x / 5
\ o x x o /
6 `"""' 9

the signals are for this pinout the top middle three and the bottom outer two.

Because I hacked apart the controller edge, I know what color wires each pin corresponds to


but even knowing all this still doesn't yield any results. Soldering an NES cord to each of the five wires and then plugging it in to my nes and running the nintendo joypad test via the powerpak yeilds no results, so I know for certain that the pinout for the dandy Famiclones is not correct. I've tried many different sequences and they all come out as bad.

So i need help finding a pinout that will work. If it'll help, I'll gladly post a pic of the controller PCB, though as its a gloptop I'm not sure how much help that would be.

I'm sure I had read something about Famiclone pinouts on the nesdev wiki in the past
all I can find is the tutorial that I wrote myself ... er_for_Wii

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Author:  3gengames [ Mon Dec 19, 2011 8:39 pm ]
Post subject: 

You need more details. That connector on the left is an NES controller one, not the actual console one which uses all the pins. Maybe use the wiki, that may help. ... ort_pinout

And try out this and see if this is accurate: ... hp?t=15877

Author:  SatoshiMatrix [ Mon Dec 19, 2011 8:41 pm ]
Post subject: 

thanks, but neither help. Its DB-9. I know the NES 7pin pinout and the DB-15 pinout. That's not what I need to know. I need to know the pinout of this unusual DB-9 Famiclone controller.

Author:  3gengames [ Mon Dec 19, 2011 8:45 pm ]
Post subject: 

Why would you want to use it? It's a controller right? I doubt it works differently than that. If it has 9 pins and uses them odds are you'll either have to use the DB-15 or hook it up to your EXP port along with the controller port.

Author:  infiniteneslives [ Mon Dec 19, 2011 9:39 pm ]
Post subject: 

Do you have a multi meter? I assume you don't have an oscope, if you did it would make it easy. Also does the controller have a glob top or an actual IC chip? I assume glob top, but if not you could just figure it out from the shift register pin out.

You could use a multimeter to figure things out, most all wires should have ~0Vdc between them. When you find +3-5 Vdc the red test lead should be on Vcc. No guarantee the black lead is on ground though.

If you find Vcc and ground then you've only got 9 combinations on the other 3 signals to solve which one is which. Just don't get Ground confused with one of the data signals though. Once you get Vcc and Gnd figured out you could use a original NES controller and hook up some test wires to keep trying configurations until you find it. What ever you do don't connect a controller with Vcc and Ground reversed. Not much of an issue if you get Gnd confused with one of the 3 signals but it won't work obviously.

Author:  Shiru [ Mon Dec 19, 2011 9:59 pm ]
Post subject: 

DB-9 is common for Famiclones, but there are at least two different pinouts, maybe more. Here is one of them (DB-15 on the left, DB-9 on the right).

Author:  bsittler [ Sun Sep 17, 2017 2:54 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Famulator Controller to NES help please! Need DB-9 pinou

Arise, zombie thread! I was interested in using the Famulator controllers (branded Cyber Gadget) with a USB Retro Freak controller adapter (also branded Cyber Gadget.) After some trial and error with a multimeter, a butchered NES controller extension cord, and a re-used 9-pin socket from an old, dead PC peripheral I verified the following correspondences for connecting a Famulator controller to the NES/New Famicom controller port. I don't know how or whether the Famulator connects to light guns, Arkanoid paddles or other non-standard controllers, unfortunately.

I apologize for any non-standard pin numberings and signal names here. I've seen quite a few conflicting numberings and names and decided it was better to explain clearly with a diagram than to assume you and I were using the same numbering/naming scheme.

Famulator, looking at the console/host socket: (I didn't open the controller so I don't know the wire colors used in the Famulator; likewise I didn't open the console so I don't know whether there are canonical pin numbers)

\ 1 2 3 4 5 /
 \ 6 7 8 9 /

1 - N/C
2 - Data 1
3 - RST/Latch
4 - CLK
5 - N/C
6 - VCC (+5V)
7 - N/C
8 - N/C (possibly a second GND on the host side, but not wired in the controller cable)
9 - GND

NES/New Famicom, looking at the console/host socket:

|1 \
|2 5|
|3 6|
|4 7|

1 - GND (brown conductor in NES controller cable)
2 - CLK (red conductor in NES controller cable)
3 - RST/Latch (orange conductor in NES controller cable)
4 - Data 1 (yellow conductor in NES controller cable)
5 - VCC (+5V; white conductor in NES controller cable)
6 - N/C
7 - N/C

edit: also, the Famulator controllers signal "button not pressed" for additonal data read past the end of the NES/Famicom controller data stream, so they work OK as North American Super NES/Japanese Super Famicom controllers (missing A, X, L and R though.)

edit 2: to actually use it with the Retro Freak you need to instead connect it to the Famicom expansion port controller socket because the NES/New Famicom port only works with datastreams terminated the other way ("button pressed")

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