I have something a little interesting to post about at the moment. These two things stem from issues customers of mine have had. Neither issue is caused by my product in the least, but it’s things that may come about while owning a 360 TE and it might be interesting to know a workaround to these issues.

First up is a dead button or joystick signal, and by dead I mean acts as though it’s constantly pressed. I had a customer tell me that LEFT was always active, and I couldn’t explain why until I had him take some voltage readings. It turns out the 360 PCB’s LEFT circuitry was damaged or dying, because the voltage on that signal alone was less than the others. This can be caused by a few things, but in the case of a simple game controller, it’s more than likely the MCU internal pull up acting up.

His readings were something akin to this:

Without the TEasy Strike connected :: All other pins = ~3.66v, LEFT = ~1.32v

With the TEasy Strike connected :: All other pins = ~3.66v, LEFT = 1.48v

I took those readings as a confirmation, the LEFT pull up on the 360 side was damaged in a way that it wasn’t drawing the voltage on the line up enough, and when connected to my board, the added pull up increased the voltage a little bit, but not enough. As a matter of fact, it drew the voltage up enough to behave normally on the 360 side, but the PS3 side didn’t like the lower voltage. So I needed to come up with something he could do to draw it up enough for both sides to be happy.

I scratched my head over a way to fix this in a way that wouldn’t require soldering. He had purchased TEasy Strike, and wasn’t comfortable with soldering at all. Then it hit me, I remembered seeing that people used to be ok with shoving bare wires into the connectors and do a ghetto solderless connection.

So I sent him the information, and told him to go to Radio Shack or Fry’s and grab a 10k Ohm resistor. He was going to shove one end into the LEFT position of the joystick connector, and the other in the closest access to the VCC line available.

Ignore the band color of the resistor, it’s a 220 Ohm and was only used as an example, if you try this DO NOT USE A 220 Ohm. At any rate, this worked, and it was able to bring the voltage up to a level that both the PCBs were happy with. The 10k was still too high, so eventually he used a 4.7k Ohm, but the fact remains that this might be a good fix if you find that one of your buttons or directional signals is magically “dying.”  The reason this works is because the internal resistors on MCU’s are generally very high in resistance (100k or greater at times, otherwise known as “weak pull ups”), so the lower resistance added in parallel allows for a stronger current pull, which in turn brings the voltage level up.


The second thing is something a little strange, but might be very helpful for some people. I had a customer who blew out the PCB of his SSF4 stick, and unfortunately when he was able to attain another one from Madcatz, they sent him the wrong version. They sent him the PCB for a Round 1/2 stick, which lacks certain things such as the added KGND (assuming it means Kill Ground), which adds the lockout option to the Start and Select lines, as well as the HOME.

Now, round 1/2 PCBs are MUCH easier to come by these days than the Super versions, so I used this opportunity to see if I could retrofit the TE-S stick to work with these older PCBs. Eventually, all I really had to do was connect the KGND and GND on both the control panel and the quick disconnect terminal section. Other than that, it was a matter of cutting off the shrouding of the headers on the PCB in the sections where Microsoft extended it by 1 pin for the KGND signal.

Now the grounds are connected entirely, and the cables go where they originally went. They just hang off the shrouded headers by 1 spot, but since that spot is GND/KGND it doesn’t matter as they’re already hacked together in other places.

The ONLY downside to this hack is that you will no longer have the lockout functionality. However, if you’re hard pressed for a PCB and have no way of attaining a replacement for your TE-S this might be something you want to explore. All it takes is a few solder joints and a few snips of wire cutters and you’re done.


Hope this helps some people out there! 🙂