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Best available joystick for an apple IIGS?


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It seems Apple II joysticks are not as dime a dozen as I suspected them to be. I had one already (but it is a more "computery" type controller) and wanted something a little better. Found this and I think its great:




Cheap too. There another one on ebay right now:



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  • 2 years later...
On 3/19/2016 at 5:43 PM, Rockin' Kat said:

Amiga Joysticks aren't going to work on an Apple II unless you build/buy an adapter. Also, personally, that price tag is way higher than I'd consider.


I think the CH joysticks are probably some of the best joysticks for the Apple II... They're not super large and fit in your hand relatively easily. They're definetly popular.


If you want to buy a NOS joystick that isn't analog for an Apple II,I'd check out this arcade style one here. http://www.amazon.com/Apple-II-Joystick-Ideal-Vintage-Arcade/dp/B00PNPID60/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ll1&tag=atariage&linkId=6214515cef7d278248058dec3fbc002d


I bought one of those.. Half the price than that one you linked, significantly less plastic. weightier. uses the external game port on back rather than the internal one. Nice coiled cord. If parts on it break, I bet it'd be easy enough to replace with new arcade parts


I appologize for the HUGE pictures... I'm in a bit of a hurry.




I just wish I could find one today. I had one for my Apple ][+ clone while I lived in Hongkong from 82-85. I tried lots over the years but this was the best. I have just bought a ][e and having to start all over again. 

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  • 7 months later...

I'm intentionally gravedigging this, because it is an interesting topic, and I have recently been fiddling not only with stock Apple joysticks, but with alternatives, and paddles. 


My personal favourite joysticks--made for the Apple series--are in fact the Apple branded Joystick //e (or //c, the only difference is the colour tones of the plastic). There is a clone of this model, otr perhaps Apple cloned one of the joysticks of the time, when they made it, that is also good. 


I also like the 'Joystick III' style, and similar, but the weight of the stick is a bit heavier than the Apple-branded sticks--one of the best elements of these is the steel stick itself, as it allows a far faster response without feeling flimsy. I am not a huge fan of the stick-button on on the JS-III, because IMO it gets in the way of fingertip control, which is nice to have for twitch-games such as Ribbit/Frogger.  


I had a Sunco Tac-1 years ago that I used regularly, but its rectangular stick is a bit odd to control. I may buy another NOS one for the nostalgia (and frustration) of playing ALF with it. :D


One critical thing to note, is that the springs in these joysticks can wear out, they can be DOA and their response may be flay out wrong. The centring dials, or switches can be tired, or the resistors on the buttons can be bad. I have a few (various types) that are sitting, and waiting for me to restore, and the buttons on my Joystick //e are becoming non-responsive, so it is again time to take it apart and rebuild it.


If you buy a joystick of these types, remember, they are an analogue control, and if you don't want to service it, buy one that is NOS.


There is however, a very easy alternative: IBM-PC joysticks are fully compatible with the Apple signals. There is no magic here, and all that you need to make is a DA-15 to DE-9 pin adapter. Many joysticks in the mid-1980s came with one of these. The cheapest way to make one is to buy a PC Joystick Y-Splitter, and two DE-9 hoods, and I have a filing cabinet drawer full of those Y-splitters that I ordered years ago for pretty much this reason. 


THus, if you want a cheap, and reliable oystick, don't look for listings with 'Apple' in the name, look for NOS IBM-compatible analogue joysticks, and make a small converter; if you are lucky they might have one in the box. 


You can also still get the DIP-16 to DE-9 conversion cable for the ][, ][+, and //e brand new from some companies, pretty cheap, which is useful as well.


For anyone curious, I will be building some custom paddles in the coming days. I ordered the correct, 150K Ohm pots, instead of using 100K Ohm pots with caps, as I find them to be far more precise. I my have a hand at making a custom, 70s style stick as well. 

Edited by GameGeezer
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