Saturday, May 26, 2007

PlayStation 2 Controller Deconstructed

Wow, I must have been more worn out from my friend's move than I thought. I went through one closet, and ran out of steam on my weeding project. Maybe I'll do more tomorrow.

But I did something else fun. I had a broken wireless PlayStation 2 controller, and instead of just throwing it away, I did what I always do with dead electronics--I tore it apart just to see the insides. There is no socially redeeming value to this activity, but that's not the point. Actually, I'm not sure there is a point. But it is entertaining. To me anyway.

Anyway, here are some pictures . . .

Here's the inside of the receiver.

Here's the inside of the controller, just after removing the back panel. You can see where the rumble pack nests. There's an unused space on the other side for a second one, not that I care, given that I despise the rumble feature.

This is the array of the controller's guts, before and after disassembling the buttons.

Everything else I was able to unscrew or pry apart easily, but the rumble pack was a tough nut to crack (literally). Getting inside it required the not-so-gentle application of a hammer (shown). Unfortunately, this stopped the nifty spinning action and totally ruined the magnet. (Alas. I'd been hoping to keep the magnet and put it on my fridge.)

By far the COOLEST part of the controller was the mechanism for the analog sticks. The steel pin inside the stick was hinged in one direction, and the bar it was attached to would rock in the opposing direction. A curved piece with a long track fit over the bar. It rocked when the lever moved on its hinge, and allowed the lever to slide freely through the track when it moved along the opposite axis. One of these two rocker bars had an extra long bit on the end, which clicked a small button when the analog stick was pushed straight down.

Here are all the parts. Since there were two analog sticks, I only tore one mechanism down to its barest bits, but kept the other intact for my trophy (I keep a trophy from every piece of electronic equipment I demolish).

Any other broken junk laying around here for me to dismember?

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