Question Gamecube Port PCB

vikMKW

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Background
I'd like to make a PCB for the gamecube ports. Measured the pin pitch and connector spacing as best I could. I believe I got within an acceptable margin. Printing the layout onto paper before manufacturing the PCB saves time and money! I've attached a PDF file with my dimensions for anyone that may need to reference it.
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Questions
This isn't anything new, but I've seen people that have made their own boards omit these components:
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  1. What's the component labeled FIL30?
  2. Do the PTH0808 regulators output stable enough voltages (5V, 3v3) that I can forego what I presume to be filtering passives?
  3. How much is the data (pin 3) signal integrity affected if the diodes and FIL are unused?
 

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jefflongo

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On my Wii micro, which I've used extensively for close to a year, I used a trimmed down version of the ports than cut off all the filtering components. I haven't had any issues. The PTH regs certainly output stable enough voltages. FYI, 5V is only used for rumble, so it's not necessary unless you care about rumble. Another thought I'd throw out there is that the GameCube ports from a GameCube take up considerably less space, but the PCB would need to be vertical instead of horizontal, which presents some challenges with how you would mount it in your case. I have the dimensions (and Eagle library) for that footprint if you want it.
 

vikMKW

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On my Wii micro, which I've used extensively for close to a year, I used a trimmed down version of the ports than cut off all the filtering components. I haven't had any issues. The PTH regs certainly output stable enough voltages. FYI, 5V is only used for rumble, so it's not necessary unless you care about rumble. Another thought I'd throw out there is that the GameCube ports from a GameCube take up considerably less space, but the PCB would need to be vertical instead of horizontal, which presents some challenges with how you would mount it in your case. I have the dimensions (and Eagle library) for that footprint if you want it.
Thanks for responding! I had your build in mind when making the post. All valid points you mention. I was considering ditching rumble, but mario party is more enjoyable with it, and some people play melee with rumble. Fortunately for me, I've got a lot of real estate to work with because I'm going with a laptop form factor.

I'll be etching single sided copper clad. I want to get the design right the first time because desoldering all 4 connectors at once was tricky.
 

jefflongo

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Thanks for responding! I had your build in mind when making the post. All valid points you mention. I was considering ditching rumble, but mario party is more enjoyable with it, and some people play melee with rumble. Fortunately for me, I've got a lot of real estate to work with because I'm going with a laptop form factor.

I'll be etching single sided copper clad. I want to get the design right the first time because desoldering all 4 connectors at once was tricky.
What you could do is cut out the piece of the Wii PCB with the ports then they should come out fairly easily with hot air or solder wick. It's kind of hard if you do it on the Wii motherboard because the ground plane will sink a lot of heat. That said it should be easier to remove them from your own board you when you make it. In that case the design you've suggested makes sense.
 

vikMKW

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What you could do is cut out the piece of the Wii PCB with the ports then they should come out fairly easily with hot air or solder wick. It's kind of hard if you do it on the Wii motherboard because the ground plane will sink a lot of heat.
In hindsight, this is the right answer. I quickly realized that when SMD parts beneath the board were falling off before the GC ports :facepalm: (after removing as much as I could with wick). It required some gymnastics, as I pushed down one port at a time before they all fell out.

On the topic of the board you made, are the schematics public? I won't be implementing controller detection, but I appreciate all circuit design.
 

jefflongo

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I could probably post a schematic later, but essentially the way the circuit is implemented is that there is a small resistor in series with the p1 3.3v supply (I used 20 ohms I believe). This causes a small voltage drop, to around 3.25v, still enough for the controller to work, when it's plugged in. This is connected to one input of an op-amp comparator. The other input is connected to a reference voltage of 3.27v set by a voltage divider. The op-amp will output 1 or 0 based on whether the controller is detected. This is used as the select to a mux which selects the external or internal controller data line to the Wii's data line.
 
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I have EAGLE Premium, Altium Pro, and a lot of other software I've been gifted and collected. If it's ok with you Jeff, I want the footprint too, I need it for my project too :D
 
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