How-To : Make a NES to SNES Adapter




This is a quick instructable showing you how to make an adapter or rewire a NES controller to work with SNES or visa versa. 

Some people enjoy the feel of the SNES controller and would like it to work with their NES system so they can play Super Mario Bros 3.

Other people, like me, want to make THIS  to work with my emulator

This guide will help you :)

Step 1: What You Need.

Depending on if you want to convert NES to SNES or SNES to NES or make the adapter like i did will make a difference in what you need to have, but it wont change the basic wiring that needs to be done.

you'll need SNES controller, NES controller, NES console, SNES console. Again it depends on what kind of conversion you want to make.

Step 2: How You Do It.

The reason i made an adapter was because i wanted to use my NES table with the emulator on the computer which is hooked up to my tv or projecter. I needed a way to connect a NES controller to the SNES/USB adaptor i have (shown in the first picture).  This will also work the opposite way.

I took a broken SNES controller and cut off a portion of the wire (will very depending on how long you want the adapter). I also took out the controller port from a broken NES console.

I then needed to figure out which wire went to which wire, and it wasnt as simple as matching colours or pins, so i've included a chart.

All you need to do is simply wire Pin to Pin shown in the chart NOT colour to colour.
just in case the chart is confusing you need to wire.


pin 1 to pin 5
pin 2 to pin 2
pin 3 to pin 3
pin 4 to pin 4
pin 7 to pin 1

Normally i would have used shrink tube over everything to give it a much cleaner look, but i needed/wanted the adapter right away and didn't have and shrink tube at the time. So i jsut used electrical tape.

This will also work by taking the controller port from an SNES and wiring it to a piece of NES cord to make a SNES to NES adapter.

one thing that i was unsure of at first was the fact that the controller cords had 5 wires in them but the ports have 7 pins. After a little research i found out that the 2 extra pins are from add-ons like the Zapper and what-not.

Step 3: SNES Controller to NES

Now, if youre wanting to make an SNES controller to work with a NES you can use the same chart.

I wouldn't make an adapter for this mod, i would just cut a chunk off of the NES cord and splice it into the SNES cord. that way you have 1 controller with the option of using it for both SNES and NES!

If you haven't seen my NES table check it out here



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    16 Discussions


    6 years ago on Introduction

    I know this is an old instructable, but I did the same using the exact same SNES adapter, but I have a problem, windows 7 always shows 4 buttons as pressed when I connect my NES controller, any ideas as to why ?

    I am attaching an image to show you


    3 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    Old computers had their "controller" built in to the machine, all the
    gamepad is is a button matrix with wires and a funny shaped plug, and
    the SNES to USB adapter is basically the fancy electronic stuff that's
    normally inside a SNES. In other words what you've made as far as your
    computer is concerned is a SNES pad with missing buttons.


    Reply 5 years ago

    Did you fixed that? I have the same problem right now :(


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    I got the same problem too : ( at least with the emulator on the wii in homebrew I can fix it...


    3 years ago

    I did this mod to play emulators on my Wii. I have a GameCube to NES adapter already and spliced together extension cables so my SNES controller can be used in the same GCtoNES adapter. It works for NES, but for SNES I don't get all the buttons. Basically I just get the buttons you would have for the NES. Any idea why? There aren't any wires that didn't get hooked up so I can't figure out why the extra buttons won't map in the emulator...


    5 years ago

    I really don't want to cut my cords.Can i use a NES and SNES extension cord wires and make a adapter? If that will work I could have a NES to SNES & SNES to NES adapter without cutting my good controllers up. For $7


    6 years ago on Introduction

    I have done this with the same equipment but solderd the nes connecter directly on the board and made a new case but when i try it in a emulator it automaticly recognise a cirtain button to be pressed the whole time. Do you know what the problem is? (when connecting a snes pad it works fine)


    6 years ago on Introduction

    oops I guess I forgot the screenshot :) here is it

    Screen shot 2012-10-28 at 1.49.30 AM.png

    8 years ago on Introduction

    I have some Famicom (NES Clone) and I can't find the right pinout.
    The hardware is made by Nikita, model name: Galaxy.
    It has 9 pin connectors for the controllers.

    (the case looks like a SEGA Mega Drive 2)

    3 replies

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Sorry im pretty unfamiliar with Famicom. The only help i can really give depends on what you are trying to do. If you are making an adaptor (which im assuming you are since your on this instructable) I think it would just be trial and error for the last 4 or 5 wires, thats saying you have all the other wires found and connected.

    maybe if i had a little bit better of an understanding on what you're trying to do i could be more help :)


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    I have found what I was looking for + lots of extra information:

    i have an adapter that does the opposite it lets you use the snes controller on an nes