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This tutorial shows how you can make any arcade stick into a PS4 arcade stick by pad hacking a Hori FC4 Controller.

Please Note:

  • You must understand the basics of soldering, which can be learned easily on You Tube.
  • This tutorial goes over the basics of the hack since every stick type will have variations on installing the PCB from the Hori Pad.
  • Opening either piece of hardware voids warranty.
  • This tutorial goes over making the stick PS4 only, and removes what ever current system it works on.

Supplies/Tools Needed

  • Soldering Iron
  • Solder
  • Heat shrink tubing 1/4"-1/8"
  • Heat shrink tubing 1/16"
  • Heat Gun
  • Precision Phillips head screw driver (PH00)
  • Wire Stripper
  • Wire Crimpers
  • Female Quick Disconnects .110 x .020 - Ebay is a good place to search
  • 26 gauge wire or thinner
  • Hori FC4 Playstation 4 Controller - Amazon has it with free shipping
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Razer Blade

Step 1: Preface - General Arcade Stick Knowlege

In case this is your first time working on an arcade stick, here is a brief run down on how they work.

  • The inside of the stick has a PCB board, on that board are ground points and signal points. Each signal point has it's own action. For example each button you press has it's own signal point on the board.

  • Each button has two contact points that stick out of the bottom. One is for a ground contact, and the other is for a signal contact. It doesn't matter which you choose to be ground and which you chose to be the signal.

  • Most boards are "Common Ground" which means that you can have one ground wire daisy chained to each button and the joystick's ground, and then connect it to any ground point on the board. Its a simple way to keep things clean. I have a tutorial on making a daily chain HERE. It also shows you how to crimp on your quick disconnects.

  • Many sticks have separate "Control Boards" these are the boards that usually have the "Home" button or other buttons directly on them. You can still use these buttons when adding your own PCB board by finding the wire that corresponds to the button and connecting it to your new PCB, although you will also have to connect a ground wire from the control panel to the new PCB.

Step 2: Taking Apart the Hori Controller

1. Figure A - Unscrew the back of the controller with the Precision Phillips head screw driver. (Tip: These screws are pretty soft and strip easily so try to take your time. If a few do strip you can still pull the controller open easily, assuming you don't plan on ever using the shell again.)

2. Figure B - Unscrew the two screws on the board, then pull the board out, which is attached to the D-Pad and trigger buttons.

Figure C shows what you should have out of the pad.

3. Figure D - Remove the D-Pad. (Tip: If you tug on the wires you might rip them out, try prying with a precision flat head.)

4. Figure E - Remove the glue covering the trigger's points on the board, it usually comes right off. Then de solder the points. (Tips: It's best to remove each wire individually by tugging on it while heating the opposite side with the soldering iron.

5. Figure F&G - Remove just the tip of the wire band that attached to the D-Pad. (Tip: You can remove the whole band, but I found that its easier to spice your directional wires from your Joystick into this wire band then to solder them underneath. Either method works.

Figure H shows what the board should look like at this point.

Step 3: Prepping the Board

Signal Points - The attached picture shows all of the signal points in Red. It's a map that shows you were every button wire should attach to.

Note: I like to use the Ground point from the directionals as my main Ground.

1. Figure I - Use a razor blade to gently scratch the black stuff off of the copper on the signals. The solder won't bind if you done scrape enough off. Tip: I find it easy to use an xacto blade and scratch left to right.

2. Figure J - Add solder to all the signal points.

3. Figure K - Strip and add solder to the directional wires, also slide heat shrink onto the wires. (Later you will use the tubing to cover the exposed wires.

4. Figure L - Cut the USB cord if needed (depending on the type of stick you are modding) Strip off the outer black, then all of the wires inside, apply solder. Make sure to leave enough room for heat shrink tubing on each wire, as well as sliding the larger heat shrink over the usb cord before splicing the wires together.

4. Make your ground daisy chain (Link to my Daisy Chain Tutorial) connecting all the buttons and the ground from the Joystick, then splice it into the ground directionals wire on the board.

5. Make wires with a quick disconnect at one end, and strip the other end then add solder to it.

6. Solder the wires to the signals on the board, then connect them to the corresponding buttons.

7. Splice in your existing USB cable. (Depending on the stick type you are modding)

Control Panels

If your stick has a control panel with a certain button that you need, then you will have to find the points for it by doing a google search on the pcb. Once you find the points you can connect them to your ps4 pcb. The control board will also need to have one of it's ground points connected to a ground point on your ps4 pcb.

Universal Button Layout - This will help you to know which signal goes to which button.

Step 4: Plan B Points

On the back of the board are corresponding points for all of the signals as well. If you'd like to you can use these instead of the front, or save them in case a mishap occurs with the front points.

I call these plan B points because if you mess one of these tiny points up, you can no longer use the points in the front of the board. I've once had the little copper circle fall right out while adding solder to it.

Step 5: Testing and Gluing

PC Testing

You can test the ps4 board on a PC by going to "Set up USB Game Controllers" on the PC.

A fast way is to go to your search programs bar and type it in.

From there it should bring up a list of connected controllers, select the PS4 arcade stick and it will bring up a menu showing a space for directional inputs, and numbers for each button.

The Universal Button Layout picture in the tutorial shows which number should correspond to each button.

Gluing

Once you know that the wires are all in the correct places you may want to use hot glue to make them more stable. NEVER glue over the solder point, you always want to glue the wire to a spot on the board where it will not damage the points, in case you ever need to change anything.

About This Instructable

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Bio: This is Anomaly Arcade Sticks. I make custom wooden arcade sticks, as well as sell custom accessories, and modding services. www.AnomalyArcadeSticks.com
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