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Use Your Xbox Controller with Your Mac


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#1 Lucian

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Posted 17 May 2003 - 08:01 PM

You'll need this $13 Xbox to USB adapter.  Then you'll need to download the Xbox HID driver.

I'm in.  If anyone else decides to do partake in this experiment, please post your experiences here.
I live in Mexifornia.

#2 Tetsuya

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Posted 17 May 2003 - 10:03 PM

uhh.. no thanks.  the X-box controller is the worst designed PoS out there.  Why id want to inflict it on myself, i dont know.  

Now if i could use my Dual-Shock 2, thatd be nice.

#3 Tycho Celchu

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Posted 17 May 2003 - 10:50 PM

My friend had the USB adapter, and I borrowed that and his Xbox controller. Seemed to work fine for me, although I hate the Xbox controller. Me thinks this thread will turn into a flame war about who likes or dislikes the controller....

Edit: Guess who just got legendary!!!!!!!
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#4 ThE OutsiDer

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 12:30 AM

Great way to get RSI, cramps and sore thumbs...

#5 Greg Grant

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 12:48 AM

I sometimes think I'm the only Mac user who likes the Xbox controller. Each to his own I guess.
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#6 Lucian

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 01:51 AM

I like the Controller S too.  I don't have an Xbox, but I bought one to use with my neighbor's Xbox.  Now that I'm moving out soon, I can actually take it with me and make good use of it!
I live in Mexifornia.

#7 XxtraLarGe

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 03:38 AM

Quote

uhh.. no thanks.  the X-box controller is the worst designed PoS out there.  Why id want to inflict it on myself, i dont know.  

Now if i could use my Dual-Shock 2, thatd be nice.

Yeah, I like the DS2 over all the other controllers, especially my Dreamcast controllers. That's what the XBox controller reminds me of.

Now, if I had unlimited wealth, I'd definitely buy an XBox...

#8 Mayhem

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 03:52 AM

I actually bought a bunch of those adapters a while ago intending to get around to driver development myself, now I guess I won't need to. Time to try it out...
Down with the Sickness

#9 maccer

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 04:40 AM

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...Now if i could use my Dual-Shock 2, thatd be nice.

You know, you actually CAN use your Dual Shock 2 in Mac OS 9 and X. Take a look at the second page of the "USB adapter for PlayStation controllers?" thread

#10 Mayhem

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 05:44 AM

So far my tests with SNES9X (latest Custom build) and WingNuts have shown a bunch of problems.

With the standard controller neither the face-buttons nor triggers works properly, the analog sticks I haven't been able to test. The Controller S doesn't work at all. Maybe it's my European controllers which are somehow different, but I don't think so. Since all the digital parts (start/back, d-pad, thumbstick buttons) works fine on the standard controller I am assuming the driver just adds the proper HID report descriptor ut sends the raw data intact, resulting in tons of problems with games that doesn't like analog buttons (that'd be most).

Definitly needs more development. If the original author won't, I'll look into it myself after the next batch of exams...
Down with the Sickness

#11 Lucian

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 12:13 PM

You could also send bug reports to him in hopes that he has time to fix it.
I live in Mexifornia.

#12 Mayhem

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Posted 18 May 2003 - 12:50 PM

Quote

You could also send bug reports to him in hopes that he has time to fix it.

Trust me, I will ;)
Down with the Sickness

#13 hambone

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Posted 19 May 2003 - 08:55 AM

i tried looking up the Kernel Joyport adapter but they seem to have gone out of business (kernel.com is now up for sale). does anyone know if they ever managed to make an OSX compatible USB version?

#14 deckels

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Posted 19 May 2003 - 10:43 AM

hmmm.  I hope this works.  It's a cool concept.  I like the xbox controller, though I think it's best suited for firt person shooters.  Too bad I prefer a mouse and keyboard for FPSs.  Well, if I ever get a driving game, I think I'll use an xbox controller if the analog sticks work well.

#15 Augster

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Posted 19 May 2003 - 10:48 AM

Last I talked to Kernel Production last year on the phone, they mentioned that they would need to redesign the chip in the converter to work under OS X.

Apparently, they never got a production version out the door before they closed shop :(

#16 wally

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Posted 19 May 2003 - 02:51 PM

Hello everyone. It's me, Darrell, the developer. I'm pleased to see interest in this project - to be honest I never expected such a huge response - this is really cool.

I'd like to comment on a few problems that have been reported.

- Xbox Controller S

These don't work because the driver doesn't match the product id. I don't have one of these to test with, but I have found the product id (0x285) so expect full support in the next release. In the meantime, the driver's property list can be hacked to support it.

- Button problems

The Xbox  "face" buttons - A, B, X, Y, white, black - are all pressure-sensitive and return values from 0 (unpressed) to 255 (fully depressed). This will confuse games that expect the value to be either 0 or 1. If I ever get around to writing a system prefs panel I'll probably add an option to  return 1 for any value greater than 0 (or maybe this should be the default since it's more compatible...thoughts?).


What's planned for the next release (sometime this week I hope):

- DVD Remote Control Support

I'm currently adding the necessary code to support the DVD IR receiver. It may be possible to control Apple's DVD Player software with the Xbox remote - but probably only features that have keyboard shortcuts (using Gamepad Companion, for example).

The biggest problem will be plugging in the IR receiver - no vendors seem to sell an adapter (for the large male connector) so you'll have to hack something together on your own.

- Better 3rd-party controller support

As a fallback, when the vendor id and product id are not known by the driver, I'll be able to identify 3rd-party devices as the right type of device (controller, wheel, IR, whatever), rather than ignoring the device as the current version does.

#17 Greg Grant

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Posted 19 May 2003 - 03:00 PM

Quote

Last I talked to Kernel Production last year on the phone, they mentioned that they would need to redesign the chip in the converter to work under OS X.

Apparently, they never got a production version out the door before they closed shop :(

I still stand by the Joyport USB was the best USB dongle I've ever bought
the IMG audio guy...

#18 dac

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Posted 19 May 2003 - 03:01 PM

Quote

(or maybe this should be the default since it's more compatible...thoughts?).

First of all, allow me to say thanks for doing this brilliant project.  Speaking as one of those bizarre, mutant types that actually likes the original Xbox controller I'm extremely grateful for the opportunity to use it for my Mac games.  My USB/Xbox adaptor widget is winging it's way to me from Hong Kong as we speak.

Secondly, I think that until you do sthe system prefs pane, you should indeed have the A, B, X and Y buttons return values of 0 and 1 as the default option - as you say, it does seem to be the most compatible solution.  I do, howver, think you should keep the L and R triggers returning analog values.

Good luck on the project and thanks for all the hard work!

#19 Mayhem

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Posted 19 May 2003 - 03:50 PM

Quote

- Button problems

The Xbox  "face" buttons - A, B, X, Y, white, black - are all pressure-sensitive and return values from 0 (unpressed) to 255 (fully depressed). This will confuse games that expect the value to be either 0 or 1. If I ever get around to writing a system prefs panel I'll probably add an option to  return 1 for any value greater than 0 (or maybe this should be the default since it's more compatible...thoughts?).

Better to make the threshold halfway through (127/128), otherwise just breathing would almost trigger a response. Disguising the L and R buttons as digital would also be a good idea, not many games supports rotational axes and something I was specifically looking to use my Controller S with is SNES emulation. And yes I do belive this would be a better default, though that prefpane sounds even better.

Thanks a lot for the work you're doing on this project. Once school's over I might try lending you a hand...
Down with the Sickness

#20 wally

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Posted 19 May 2003 - 04:45 PM

[quote name='"Mayhem"'][quote]- Button problems

Better to make the threshold halfway through (127/128), otherwise just breathing would almost trigger a response. Disguising the L and R buttons as digital would also be a good idea, not many games supports rotational axes and something I was specifically looking to use my Controller S with is SNES emulation. And yes I do belive this would be a better default, though that prefpane sounds even better.[/quote]

My impression from using the controller is that "hair trigger" issues shouldn't be a problem. It takes quite a bit of force to get the button to move from its resting position - even shaking the controller violently, lightly tapping the buttons, or leaving the full weight of your thumb resting on the button has no effect whatsoever.

Of course, broken and severely abused controllers may have a problem like this - I'll consider making user-configurable thresholds an option.