Getting Quickshot V joystick to work properly on other system

By Foreigner

Supporter (3)

Foreigner's picture

26-01-2017, 00:02

Hello everybody.

Apologies for my intrusion on your forum but I really am in need of some advice so I decided to ask my question to the MSX community.

I bought a Quickshot V joystick and after doing some research on the internet I realised that it is a joystick designed for the MSX system. However, I plan to use it with a Zx spectrum 48K.( It kind works with some kempston interfaces but not with others.)

My main doubt is how it is supposed to work in the first place with the MSX, I mean precisely the fire buttons.
There are three triggers but two are red so I assume they are the same.
The red and yellow ones on the stick handle are diferrent and should work as manual fire buttons, right?
And what about the big red flat pad on the body? Is it supposed to work as an 'auto-fire' fire button, simulating various presses with only one? I ask this because I opened the joystick and saw some transistors and resistors that make a circuit but I didn't understand what it is supposed to do. This circuit requires the +5Volts of pin 5 of the MSX to work?
I have looked at the MSX Joystick port pinout and since it uses +5V on pin 5 does that mean it reads voltage drops from +5 to 0 to detect button presses?

Assuming I am right, would it be possible to use this joystick on a spectrum, even if looses the 2nd fire button (yellow) but keeping both manual and 'auto-fire' red fire buttons?
Must I change the wiring to match pin-out compatibility between systems?

Sorry for all these questions. I would very much appreciate any help.
Thanks in advance.

Login or register to post comments

By hamlet

Scribe (3073)

hamlet's picture

27-01-2017, 09:56

Welcome Foreigner!
Would´nt it be better to place this question in a ZX forum?
Before I owned a MSX machine back in the days I got a Sony MSX Joystick for my C64. The second fire button triggered a hardware reset on that computer. That was a awsome feature, when I was about to loose in a two player match, but painfull for my commodore.

By Wolverine_nl

Paragon (1098)

Wolverine_nl's picture

27-01-2017, 10:09

Hi Foreigner,
Might be worth it to check the pin schematic first, MSX joystick are like Atari's I believe, so this schematic is/might be different on a ZX Spectrum, you should look for a pin schematic for the ZX.

Good luck!

By bakoulis

Master (166)

bakoulis's picture

27-01-2017, 10:47

ZX spectrum +2/+3 joystick ports have different pinout than Atari/Commodore ports.
But Kempston interface for ZX 48, works with Atari joystick!
Atari joysticks have 1 fire button. MSX/CPC joysticks are identical with Atari joysticks, but have 2 separate fire buttons. Also a 2 buttons CPC joystick works well with MSX because is almost identical.
So, an MSX/CPC joystick must work well on Atari/Commodore and Kempston interface but must avoid to press the second fire button. An Atari/Commodore joystick works without problems on MSX/CPC but for 2 button games, must used the keyboard as second fire button. I hope it helps.
Smile

By rderooy

Paladin (683)

rderooy's picture

27-01-2017, 13:32

Here is some information about the MSX side of things:
https://www.msx.org/wiki/General_Purpose_port

As already mentioned the MSX Joystick is very similar to the Atari one, but the MSX supports two buttons while the Atari only has one. For this Pin 7 is used, which has no function on the Atari.

The pin configuration of the ZX Spectrum is completely different, and as such a MSX Joystick will not work without rewiring it completely.

By Foreigner

Supporter (3)

Foreigner's picture

27-01-2017, 20:10

Thanks everyone for the answers and information! Smile

Believe it or not but I didn't get much enthusiastic responses from people regarding this joystick on a spectrum.
I always admired the design and fell in love with it back in the day while reading spanish magazines where it was often advertised (and for use with the spectrum). Sadly, only now I managed to get one but in pretty good shape.

Well anyway, I did managed to get it to work by doing some rewiring of the connections. Fortunately, the wires inside have some sort of terminals which can be pushed or pulled allowing an easy change of track on the pcb.

So, I disconnected +5V and OUT, changed the ground track and fire 2 track while keeping the directions assigned to original tracks.

As pointed out, it works with kempston interface (one trigger) and with a programmable interface I even get the three fire buttons to work (albeit only two triggers, which is already rather good for the spectrum!).

However, I still find intriguing the circuit on the pcb and what would be its use.

I tried powering it with +5V but the triggers acted the same, so I suppose it will not work on the spectrum but never mind, it is good as it is now.

Nevertheless, should anyone have one of these joysticks and use it with a MSX I would be interested to hear how it is supposed to work in fully functional glory. :D

By Louthrax

Prophet (2270)

Louthrax's picture

27-01-2017, 21:02

Foreigner wrote:

Believe it or not but I didn't get much enthusiastic responses from people regarding this joystick on a spectrum.

So that's kind of surprising because I heard some depressing comments that the MSX scene was not so active compared to other "more popular" systems... when most of the questions here are getting lots of answers as you can see.

Foreigner wrote:

However, I still find intriguing the circuit on the pcb and what would be its use.

Maybe they just designed the PCB so that it could be re-used with small changes on different platforms? The resistors and transistors make no sense on MSX, that only uses on/off connections for all directions and buttons... Unless there's an extra auto-fire feature or something?

By Foreigner

Supporter (3)

Foreigner's picture

28-01-2017, 00:48

I don't know, maybe because this particular joystick is regarded as a MSX product some people don't like to talk about it on their forum or don't appreciate the idea of it being associated with the sinclair/spectrum experience. oO

I have to be honest with you, I missed all the MSX story and in my country spectrums were everywhere (and later on Commodore and Sega really took off). I don't think I can even remember a place where MSX were for sale along with other computer systems. But I do remember seeing the occasional MSX from big company names when my mother went out looking for kitchen appliances in stores! It felt odd and usually there was no information available, furthermore nobody at school knew or talked about it so it slipped unnoticed.
But nowadays, thanks to magazines like retrogamer, curiosity and interest on all those systems that I missed for various reasons, has gone up and I must say I have become impressed with the originality of the MSX hardware. For example, I don't even know if it is any good but I find the Sony JS-55 Joystick a piece of artwork. Hopefully I will get one sooner or later.

Louthrax wrote:
Foreigner wrote:

However, I still find intriguing the circuit on the pcb and what would be its use.

Maybe they just designed the PCB so that it could be re-used with small changes on different platforms? The resistors and transistors make no sense on MSX, that only uses on/off connections for all directions and buttons... Unless there's an extra auto-fire feature or something?

That is my suspicion based on the picture of the outer box found on the page dedicated to the Quickshot V, that reads the following:

I sure wish I could understand how to make it work but I have a low knowledge of electronics. :o

By sd_snatcher

Prophet (3270)

sd_snatcher's picture

28-01-2017, 20:37

@Foreigner

Be very welcome to the MSX community. Good thing you got your joystick working.

About the transistors/resistors/diode part of the circuit: without an schematic it will be very hard to find out what it really does. But my wild guess it that it tries to route the Vcc, GND and button-2 for the different platforms it support, since those pins are not standard between them.

BTW, it will be a really cool thing if you try the MSX platform after all those years. And it's nice to have new friends around here. Smile