Step 7: Creating Working NES Ports
For the NES Ports we need our RetroKit from RetroUSB. These are actually designed for placement inside of a NES Controller, however, i feel bad enough about ripping about a NES Console, i will keep my controllers unmodified. So what we do here is simply pull up the wiring diagram of the RetroKit from the manufacter's website. Now break out that soldering iron.
First thing we want to do is remove the USB cable from the chips. It comes pre-soldered and we just want the chips for this first part. Once you have the chips you will need to solder the NES port wires onto chip per the manufacture's instructions (they also have a nice video for those new to soldering like me). There will be extra wires cause not all the wires are actually used for this.
Note: If you noticed there are 2 diagrams, one for NES and one for SNES controllers that is very important for our accessory creation later on. That is how we can use a SNES controller with our original NES ports.
Now that the chip is installed into the ports, we still need to connect it to our PC. Now I actually simply took the wire from the 4-port USB header and wired both chips into this so that both chips would be connected via the motherboard. However with a future expansion I added I had to reverse that so I will give you a "lesson learned" way to install these chips.
Simply shorten the USB cords that you removed from the chips to about 6" or so and re-attach them to the chips. Now cut the USB header in half so you have (2x) 2-usb headers. Install one into the motherboard and superglue (or hotglue) it to the case below the motherboard if possible. You now how 2 internal usb ports, one of the chips can be plugged into this, the other you plug a USB hub into and plug the other controller into the hub.
Now you have 2 working NES ports in the front of your system. Plus, one of the best aspects of this is that the NES controllers can be unplugged and plugged back in while the system is still running. So if you need to swap between SNES and NES controllers you can do so without any problems.