MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

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Rekrul
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MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

Postby Rekrul » Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:52 pm

I posted this on the DescentBB site, but since it hasn't been approved yet and because I'm impatient, I thought I'd ask here as well.

I recently bought a used Microsoft Precision Pro joystick from Goodwill. It is the model that comes with a simple USB adapter when bought new. This one didn't come with the adapter, but it was simple enough to make my own using the information in the DescentBB forum. I plugged it in, Windows recognized it and all the functions work. However...

When moving the stick or the throttle, the Z-axis (handle twist) flutters. I could understand inadvertently twisting it while moving the stick around, but even if I don't touch the stick and just move the throttle, the Z-axis flutters somewhat.

I opened the base thinking there would be a potentiometer I could clean, but it appears to be all digital.

Moving the throttle also makes the X/Y axises flutter a tiny amount, but it's barely perceptible, the Z-axis flutter is quite pronounced.

I double-checked my adapter and couldn't find any mistakes.

Note that moving the stick or twisting it doesn't seem to affect the throttle control reading at all.

Is this normal behavior for these joysticks, or did I get a defective one?
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Re: MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

Postby karx11erx » Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:10 am

I only have two Sidewinder 3D pro sticks, and I cannot remember ever having observed anything like that with them (using Grendel's adapter with them).
Rekrul
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Re: MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

Postby Rekrul » Sat Aug 30, 2014 4:05 am

karx11erx wrote:I only have two Sidewinder 3D pro sticks, and I cannot remember ever having observed anything like that with them (using Grendel's adapter with them).


The adapter with electronics or the one with just four wires from the USB plug to the gameport connector, plus two of the gameport pins tied together? My joystick is the one that uses the no-electronics adapter.
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Re: MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

Postby karx11erx » Sat Aug 30, 2014 9:28 am

Grendel's adapter uses electronics, afaik.

You may want to ask or google for Grendel's solution and try to build that, if you can.
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Re: MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

Postby Rekrul » Sun Aug 31, 2014 1:51 am

karx11erx wrote:Grendel's adapter uses electronics, afaik.

You may want to ask or google for Grendel's solution and try to build that, if you can.


There are two different versions of the Sidewinder joystick, which look identical.

Models starting with a product ID of "97462" are designed to only work with a gameport. To connect one of these to a USB port, you need one of Grendel's more complicated adapters, which use electronics.

Models starting with a product ID of "85791" were designed to be natively USB compatible. Microsoft includes a simple, non-electronic adapter in the box with them. This adapter simply connects four of the gameport pins to the USB plug, and then two of the gameport pins are tied together. When plugged into this adapter and then plugged into a USB port, the joystick senses that it should be in USB mode. This is the model I have.

Grendel himself posted the wiring connections for the MS adapter in this thread (see the post by Foil for the information about the different models);

http://www.descentbb.net/viewtopic.php?t=14791

This is the adapter I built.

Also, this is the exact same adapter that Logitech included with their Wingman Extreme joystick. I also bought one of those used and it works fine when plugged into the adapter (other than the fact that the pots need to be cleaned and one of the stick buttons is jammed in).

At one point, there used a site called WingmanTeam, which featured files and information from the designers of Logitech's joysticks. There was an image file on there showing the wiring for their USB adapter and it was the same as the information Grendel posted in that thread I linked to.

In any case, a user named Krom replied on there and said that he owns five of the Precision Pro joysticks which are natively USB compatible and they all have twitchy Z-axises.
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Re: MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

Postby karx11erx » Sun Aug 31, 2014 9:49 am

Well, so you are having your answer, right? :)
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Re: MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

Postby Rekrul » Sun Aug 31, 2014 3:19 pm

karx11erx wrote:Well, so you are having your answer, right? :)


Apparently.
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Re: MS Sidewinder Precision Pro question

Postby Sirius » Sun Aug 31, 2014 4:16 pm

I used to have a Precision Pro about 15 years ago, but I don't clearly remember what the twist was like. I was able to use it fine, at least while it lasted.

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