Roland and Caroline's Home Page
Playstation to PC

This is the interface I built to connect a Playstation controller to a PC. This was more for testing custom Playstation controllers than for any real wish to play PC games with them. In fact my actual goal was to build a flight stick for the Playstation.

The design was based very heavily on the one found at:

NOTE: This adaptor plugs into the parallel/printer port of a PC. It is not suitable to work with a modern PC which does not have a traditional parallel port.

The above link also refers to the software drivers needed to use this interface. I installed the one suitable for Windows 95 and found its calibration screen very useful for button testing. Alternatively the following test programs also work well:

I purchased a cheap Playstation extension cable to provide the controller socket.


This is similar to the extension cable I used. I have seen better quality versions with much nicer cable and fittings - but as it needs to be cut up - there is no point spending more money than necessary.

As this adaptor plugs into the parallel/printer port of the PC I also picked up an old PC parallel cable for free at a car boot sale. Despite being free it was a good quality fully wired one with removable hoods making it ideal for this sort of project.

For the actual construction I decided to use a ‘bread board’. This term is now usually applied to solderless patch boards like the one below:

Solderless patchboard - often known as Breadboard

However traditionally it was actually a piece of wood (if not actually a board for cutting bread on) so for strength I used a piece of chipboard and some ‘chocolate block’ screw terminal strips:

PSX to PC interface built onto chipboard

Its not pretty - but it worked first time!  The main difference from the original plan was that it has its own power supply (instead of taking 5V from the parallel port).  The power is approximately 3v7 as this is closer to the real Playstation supply than 5V. Also the 9V specified for the dualshock motors should actually be 7v6 - although this is optional and  I didn’t wire it up as I don’t need the motors for my application.

The 3v7 was originally obtained from an unregulated 4v5 300ma supply fed through 2 diodes. I wired an LED in parallel to give on ON/OFF light also. I arrived at this more by luck than judgement - so no guarantees it will work as well for you.

Circuit diagram for 3v6 from 4v5 unregulated PSU

I  have now replaced the 4v5 unregulated supply with a 9V supply regulated with a 7805 to provide 5V. This can then be used for additional circuitry as well as being stepped down with a diode or 2 to provide the 3v7 the controller wants.

7805 based 5V power regulater


All text and images Copyright © 2000-2011 Roland Givan, unless otherwise stated. All Rights Reserved. Game artwork copyright their respective publishers.

[Home Page] [Playstation to PC] [Controller Internals] [Atari 9 Pin Interface] [2nd Atari 9 Pin Interface] [Button Box] [Basic PS Flight stick] [Interfacing ideas]