Precision Joystick Controller BU0836

8 analog axes, 32 buttons, hat switch

Sophisticated and powerful, yet simple and affordable...
BU0836 PCB image

Unique joystick controller with high precision 10-bit (1024 step) analog inputs. Still not enough? Consider 12-bit (4096 step) version.

Suitable for converting gameport devices to USB, retrofitting existing gaming devices or building your own from scratch.

Fully supported by Windows and Mac OS X.


  • 8 analog inputs with 10-bit (1024 steps) resolution each
  • 32 buttons
  • 8-way ‘point-of-view’ hat switch
  • Very compact - 2.2"×1.25" (55×32mm)


  • Natively supported by Windows 7/Vista/XP/2000 and Mac OS X
      Forget drivers - just plug it in and it's ready to go.
  • Unique serial number helps Windows remember each device
      Ever unplugged a joystick and had Windows lose calibration settings?
      This controller retains settings even if plugged in a different USB port.
      Or if you use two and swap them over.
  • Analog inputs filtering
      Digital processing removes noise from axes position reports while preserving extremely fast response.
  • Powered from USB bus
      Just attach pots and/or buttons and plug in USB cable
  • Full-speed 12Mb USB connection
      250 position reports per second
  • Custom versions for OEMs
      Building half a dozen racing pedals or throttle quadrants for sale?
      Why not let them display your proper product name in Windows?
      At no extra cost.
  • New! Available with 12-bit resolution , load cell interface or simple no-solder connectors

   How to use

  • Buttons and switches are connected either as...
    full 6x6 matrix
    • connects to six ROWS and six COLUMNS pins on the controller...
    • ..with diodes if there will be 3 or more contacts activated simultaneously, e.g. if you use ON/OFF switches
    • diodes if buttons used only momentarily like most joysticks
    • First 32 buttons are standard buttons
    • Last 4 contacts make up 8-direction point-of-view hat (coolie) switch
    • Literally any diodes can be used - 1N4148 or 1N4004 are good ones
    or simplified direct connection to any of GND pins
    • connect up to 12 buttons or switches
    • no diodes are needed even with switches or toggle buttons
    • no configuration needed to use either connection method
  • Compatible with any game that uses joystick - MS Flight Simulator, X-Plane, Racing, etc
  • Uses standard Windows gaming device calibration. If needed, curves and deadzones can be tweaked with DIView
  • Feel free to use two or more devices if 8 axes or 32 buttons is not enough
  • Use other sensors with 0..+5v output, e.g. ratiometric magnetic Hall sensors. You may use spare +5V and Gnd pins to draw some power (up to 100mA)
  • Eight 3-pin and two 6-pin connectors are included with each controller. Pin header has standard 0.1 inch (2.54mm) pitch
  • Simple utility allows to invert axes

       Construction tips

    • What to do with unused inputs?
      • Unconnected buttons will appear as not pressed - just ignore them
      • Unused analog inputs are automatically disabled. They will appear as soon pots are connected and BU0836 is powered up. In other words, if they are not connected - you will not see them
    • Which pots are the best?
      • Any value from 1kOhm to 100kOhm will work fine. If you don't know where to start, get 10kOhm ones
      • Use linear pots (taper B.) Avoid non-linear, log pots with tapers A, D or Y used in audio level controls
      • Any pot would work but the best ones are industrial quality Spectrol (Vishay) and Bourns. They have life expectancy of few million shaft revolutions.
      • Good wiring helps. For ultimately clean signal use shielded wires and ground the pot's case if it's metal
      • Try to use as much of pot travel range as possible

    Windows Joystick applet

    BU0836 Hardware Found

    Scan matrix for buttons
    Button matrix (diodes are optional)
    Direct connections for buttons
    Simple alternative connection for up to 12 buttons or switches. No diodes needed.

    Pot connection

    BU0836 Configuration Utility
    Simple configuration utility. Download

    Image  of BU0836 PCB
    BU0836 controller is only 2.2"×1.25" (55×32mm) in size

    PCB  pinout diagram
           Connector layout

    © 2006-2013, Leo Bodnar
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