Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Quickjoy footpedal stash...

On January 6, in RCR podcast Episode #42, Carrington Vanston (@carrington) recommended the QuickJoy Foot Pedal SV-129 as a Retro Computing Gift Idea.  He found one over in the U.K. at 8 Bit Heaven Retro Gaming. 

Carrington has a long history of researching and reviewing game controllers for both quality and playability, so I trust his opinion.  The quality of the micro-switches and configuration flexibility were two strengths cited on the SV-129.  

For me, I was looking for alternatives to traditional GUI mouse input in Wheels (GEOS 4.4) on the Commodore 128.  I live in San Francisco, and my physical space is extremely limited.  I simply can not come up with a Man-Cave arrangement that allows room for a 1351 mouse.  Instead, I use a Suncom ICONtroller, but its button is starting to become really flaky.  To replace it with another used unit would probably run $40 + shipping, but I really like the tactile quality of micro-switches. 

The QuickJoy Foot Pedal SV-129 is a digital joystick for various systems. This foot pedal can take over 3 functions of a joystick. Each pedal on the controller is micro-switched. Two footrests can be folded under.

How It Works

The foot pedal has two cables coming out of the back of it. One of the cables connects to the joystick port on the computer and the other is for plugging your joystick into. There is a bank of five switches that let you select which function of the joystick the individual pedals take over (up, down, left, right or fire). For example, if you game uses forward and backwards for accelerate and brake and the fire but to change gear you can set the switches to allow one pedal for accelerate, one pedal for brake and one for changing gear. Just like driving a car. You would then just use the joystick to steer left and right. Each pedal can be assigned any of the joysticks functions so you can set them up how it would suit you the best. You can assign none, one, two or all of the pedals. So again you could use the joystick for movement but assign one of the pedals to the fire button for kicking a ball in a football game.

Compatible with Commodore 64/128, Commodore Amiga, Atari ST, Atari 2600, Amstrad CPC, Sinclair Spectrum (requires interface), plus many others.

Rather than order from the U.K., I found a source in Florida on eBay that has (>10) more than ten NOS units for sale and offers free shipping.  They say that the boxes have been sitting in a warehouses for over 25 years so they are not mint, but the controller is new and has never been used before.  I took a chance and ordered one for myself and I really like it.  I would recommend this seller to others as well if you are interested.

I have additional gadget-related material over on my web site: http://www.geocities.ws/cbm

Are you interested in computer history? Join the irregular regulars Earl Evans, David Greelish, and Carrington Vanston, plus surprise guests, in the show where everything old is news again. Gather 'round a virtual table where today's talk is about yesterday's computers. Get the skinny from the world of vintage computer hobbyists, collectors, enthusiasts, and old school geeks. They cover modern day vintage tech events, new developments for old hardware, the revival of retro tech, the best of 8 bit culture, and take many strolls down memory lane. Head on over to http://rcrpodcast.com and explore podcasts, review show notes and be informed of upcoming episodes. You'll be glad you did! 

1 comment:

  1. What are some of the other best controllers to look for aside from the stock Atari 2600 joysticks? What are your experiences?