Joystick Port

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By sd_snatcher

Prophet (3594)

sd_snatcher's picture

24-08-2022, 20:12

gdx wrote:

PS: We are not saying that we have to connect to the GND but that it is possible. It's not a bad solution to make a joystick compatible with a few other machines (FM-towns, etc). And, we're not saying your method is bad either. It's the way you presented it that's bad.

"The way it was presented" was already discussed and the misunderstandings were supposedly clarified. Before this becomes groundhog day, I would recommend to read the thread again.

A few things are easier to do than pointing fingers to others. Very few learn that they must first point it to themselves.

But since this thread is all about pointing fingers, it must be said that a big part of the controversy comes from wanting to enforce the FM-Towns joystick port compatibility down the throat of everyone.

Truth must be said: If a fully compliant MSX joypad like the Panasonic JS-220 doesn't work on with all FM-Towns software because the default state of the pin-8 is HIGH, then Fujitsu clearly lied about their "MSX compatibility" claim. It was just a marketing ploy.

And, if you're going to abide by your own rules, then the manly thing to do would be to remove all those false claims about FM-Towns joypad compatibility from the MSX-Wiki, and place big warning on top of their articles warning that they're not part of the MSX standard and don't behave like a normal MSX joystick under all conditions. Claiming full MSX compatibility is misleading and dishonest.

Because what clearly seems to be happening here is not a problem with the MSX standard or and algorithm to detect MSX devices, your second intentions of trying to disguise the FM-Towns like part of the MSX, when it never was, just to mask the incompatibilities that it has with the MSX standard joystick wired in the correct way. Plus some people with short temper being influenced by this theater and ganging up on the trolling.

TL;DR: If someone is trying to make something that's not part of the standard look as official, that person isn't me. But it's a known politics tactic to blame others of your own hidden intentions, in order to diverge the attention of the crowd.

By mars2000you

Enlighted (6346)

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24-08-2022, 20:20

Maybe these tables will help to clarify things .... the only main difference is pin 8 on connector, pins 8 and 9 on joystick:

The note about pins 1/2 of FM-TOWNS : "The SELECT button is a simultaneous output of pins 1 and 2."

The note about pins 3/4 of FM-TOWNS : "RUN button is a simultaneous output on pins 3 and 4."

By sd_snatcher

Prophet (3594)

sd_snatcher's picture

24-08-2022, 20:46

mars2000you wrote:

Maybe this table will help to clarify things .... the only difference is pin 8 ....

This table omits the base cause of the FM-Towns incompatibility with standard MSX joysticks: the default state of the pin-8 is HIGH. Because of this, many FM-Towns software can't read MSX joysticks without modification either on the joystick, or the sw. If that doesn't classify as a lack of compatibility, then probably we should coin some euphemism to classify that.

Because of this incompatibility, we have this scam going on that tries to disguise the FM-Towns and its joypads as part of the MSX standard, to convince people that joysticks should have its common pin wired to the pin-9 instead of the pin-8, so they can achieve their real intention of using those on their FM-Towns without modification.

And to make things more explicit: I'm not making money out of MSX-HID, but there's a joypad adapter being sold that claims both MSX an FM-Towns compatibility, and it obviously conflicts with the MSX-HID detection (*1). So it becoming clear that all the bashing just comes down to hidden intentions and dishonesty.

*1: But I even tried to reach a compromise and found a way to implement an "MSX-style" hold-a-button-when-the-device-is plugged (*2) compatibility feature, but it seems that this isn't enough. They want to impose that the FM-Towns must be the default, probably because otherwise that joypad adapter could lose sales.
*2: The MSX-Mouse implements that kind of feature. Hold the left button while plugging it enables a joystick compatibility mode.

By mars2000you

Enlighted (6346)

mars2000you's picture

24-08-2022, 20:46

There are 2 sides when we talk about compatibiity.

You have exposed the problem with FM-TOWNS software used with MSX joysticks but what about the contrary, that is more interesting for a MSX wiki: do we know MSX software which will not work correctly with a FM-TOWNS pad?

By sd_snatcher

Prophet (3594)

sd_snatcher's picture

24-08-2022, 21:10

Quote:

There are 2 sides when we talk about compatibiity.

Agreed. But it's dishonest and false to claim on the MSX-Wiki:

  1. That the FM-Towns joystick port/joypads are fully compatible, when they clearly aren't
  2. Make people believe that the FM-Towns officially was part of the MSX standard or officially related to it in any way

Specially when the sales of a "MSX and FM-Towns compatible" joypad adapter is behind all of this.

Quote:

do we know MSX software which will not work correctly with a FM-TOWNS pad?

That would be framing and misleading (not to mention a fallacy), since it draws a target on only on part of the problem, convincing people that the target was hit.

And we're not going to list on the MSX-Wiki all the FM-Towns software that are not compatible with standard MSX joypads, are we?

The honest full-picture question should be: "what are the restrictions of trying to use MSX peripherals on the FM-Towns and vice-versa? When it works, and when it doesn't, since they're not fully compatible by default.". The same applies to the Atari joystick port (Used by all Atari consoles and computers up to the Atari ST).

This way, people wouldn't risk to burn their joystick ports when using the incorrect devices with their computer, and wouldn't improperly blame/bash developers for any interoperability problems.

By Pentarou

Champion (472)

Pentarou's picture

24-08-2022, 21:10

sd_snatcher wrote:

... the base cause of the FM-Towns incompatibility with standard MSX joysticks: the default state of the pin-8 is HIGH.

I've never read about this before, so I just verified with my (Real) FM-Towns II and it's not true: At boot pin 8 is LOW in both sockets.

By sd_snatcher

Prophet (3594)

sd_snatcher's picture

24-08-2022, 21:23

Pentarou wrote:
sd_snatcher wrote:

... the base cause of the FM-Towns incompatibility with standard MSX joysticks: the default state of the pin-8 is HIGH.

I've never read about this before, so I just verified with my (Real) FM-Towns II and it's not true: At boot pin 8 is LOW in both sockets.

Thanks for testing. Then it seems that, similar to the SMS/MD joypad incompatibilities, some software set the selection pin to the incorrect state and people try to workaround this on the hardware by connecting the common pin of the joystick to the pin-9.

Otherwise there would be no sense on this vendetta of trying to convince people that the common pin should be connected to the pin-9 "for both MSX and FM-Towns compatibility", when connecting it to the pin-8 would be the most compatible way with the two machines. Existing FM-Towns joypads could be easily modified to fix the problem without lack of compatibility.

Or... Again it could be related with an adapter that is being sold and was already designed that way? A simple firmware update could also be a compromise to solve that.

By sd_snatcher

Prophet (3594)

sd_snatcher's picture

24-08-2022, 21:34

Pentarou wrote:
sd_snatcher wrote:

... the base cause of the FM-Towns incompatibility with standard MSX joysticks: the default state of the pin-8 is HIGH.

I've never read about this before, so I just verified with my (Real) FM-Towns II and it's not true: At boot pin 8 is LOW in both sockets.

Maybe the default on boot is LOW, but have you tested it on the games?

It seems to be related to that shoulder button. It wouldn't be possible to read it if the pin-8 state isn't HIGH:

So the games that lack MSX joypad compatibility are those that support the FM-Towns Marty joypads.

And some people are trying to enforce their "solution" to the MSX side to use their joysticks/adapters on both machines, claiming things that there is full compatibility where there isn't.

By mars2000you

Enlighted (6346)

mars2000you's picture

24-08-2022, 21:33

By Pentarou

Champion (472)

Pentarou's picture

24-08-2022, 22:17

sd_snatcher wrote:

Maybe the default on boot is LOW, but have you tested it on the games?.

No, sorry. I only measured the voltage while in the boot screen, my curiosity was about the "default" state.
I could do further checks, but...
I used to own a Marty (Car) which came with a "normal" Marty pad (i-e. without the shoulder button), but I never found a game which needed a third action button, so I wouldn't know which games use it.

@mars2000you: I have such an adapter and while it works Ok with an FM-Towns, it's not something I would recommend for MSX.

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