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USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

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USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

Postby paul.pacini » Thu Jul 28, 2011 10:40 pm


I'm trying to read a USB gamepad controller with FS. I started with the XBox 360 component and added a trigger to the input, plus some Float text boxes (to read the joystick values) plus some LEDs to validate switch presses.

Didn't work. My USB gamepad is a Logitech Wingman with rumble. It shows up in the device manager as a HID device and as a game controller.

What is the difference between the Lynxmotion PS2 and an XBox 360 controller?

I know it's unbelievable, but I don't play video games and have never seen an XBox or PS2/3 or their controllers. Just not a gamer, but that seems to be taking its toll on me here. LOL

Any suggestions would be great! I'd love to get my Logitech controller to work 1) to save a few bucks since I already have it instead of just buying more controllers, and 2) so I can learn more about FS by making things work.
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To err is human; to blame problems on external factors is even more so.
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Re: USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

Postby paul.pacini » Tue Aug 09, 2011 5:15 am

Okay, so I went ahead and bought the Lynxmotion PS2 gamepad to work with FlowStone so I can keep testing this kick-butt software.

The good news:
It's working with both the analog and digital functions.

The bad news:
1) Left thumb Y-axis constantly reports noise jumping all over the place (see screen shot). Once I deflect the joystick a little either way - maybe 10% - it then quiets down and gives a normal reading. Once near neutral, it goes nuts. The other three axis are fine.
2) Both L/R thumb X/Y-axis swing fully from -1 to 1 with only about 50% joystick travel. So from neutral to 25% forward deflection gives a full reading of 1 and from neutral to 25% rearward gives a full reading of -1. This is a bummer because it severely limits the range of motion. Is this a hardware or software problem?

Does anybody know of solutions to either problem? Is the noisy left Y-axis a bad gamepad? I just received it today brand-new from Lynxmotion.

How about expanding the response range so I can use the full joystick throw? Does anybody from Lynxmotion read this forum?

Can someone please help? Is there anybody out there? Is there still an Admin on this forum? I feel like I'm talking to myself. Maybe my questions are too stupid, but bear with me while I learn.

I love FlowStone so far and I'd love to upgrade to the full Pro version, but I want to make sure it will work first and that there is some support.

Screenshot of Lynxmotion PS2 issues.
ScreenShot1.jpg (57.26 KiB) Viewed 40677 times
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Re: USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

Postby Embedded » Wed Aug 10, 2011 12:00 pm

Glad you got something going!
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Re: USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

Postby paul.pacini » Wed Aug 31, 2011 10:16 pm

Well, I got something going. But what is going is not very useful.

One of the channels is mostly noise and crap jumping around. See the pic I posted.

Is there any way to determine where the fault is coming from within FS? The 4-joystick channels look fine in the Lynxmotion calibration software.

Again I ask, is there any support for FlowStone? I really don’t want to pay $750 only to end up stuck on something as simple as a gamepad.
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Re: USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

Postby funskymcdoogle » Sun Aug 12, 2012 8:17 pm

I know it's probably a little late but this is my suggestion for robotic control ( I know because I have successfully used this to control my Wind Turbine Trainer as I am still doing R & D on my product):

You need to have FS enterprise or better.

You need an original XBOX360 wired controller.

You will also need the Flowboard with relay output.

From here it is pretty simple.

Plug in the XBOX360 controller and the PC should recognize it and install the drivers. You will also need the xinput_3 program which I think adds some crucial dll files in order to communicate.

Open the FS and find the XBOX360 icon and drag and drop. Install a trigger button on the input to connect. Add boolean icon to output connection stating connection status.

When you hit the trigger button the boolean expression for connection status should change to true, if so you are good, now you can add boolean status icons to various buttons.

Note: I could not get all the trigger and joystick inputs to read on the software, however there are plenty of buttons that do work.

Now you have to add the Flowboard icon along with the trigger to input and boolean icon to the connection status.

If you have properly attached the flowboard, the relay board and power supply with USB connection you should be able to hit the trigger button on the flowboard input and see the connections status boolean expression change to true.

Now you can connect the xbox buttons as outputs to the flowboard digital outputs 1-16 ( the relay board has only 8 relays so it is connected to either 1-8 or 9-16 on the flowboard via ribbon cable.

IF you have done it correctly, you can press button A on the xbox controller and relay 1 on the board will stay active or energized as long as the button is pressed.

From there the sky is the limit. You can check out the video I posted on our site labeled "xbox360 control" on the video links for Wind Turbine Trainer. There is also an updated video of the trainer running off the xbox controller, flowstone software and flowboard with relay.

It takes a little bit of fiddling around to figure it out, once you have all the drivers loaded, program saved, and power, it is quite amazing, well worth any troubles, I do believe this is the future of programming.

What I did is run the relay outputs into the PLC which has its' own ladder logic programming that takes pulsed inputs and latches them with counters to activate functions of pitch +/-, yaw cw/ccw, drive speed +/-, e-stop and reset.

The easiest way to understand this explanation is to go to our site and see the video. It really can be done, once you have it is very satisfying to see something high speed and what the younger generation should really pick up on as far as education is concerned.
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Re: USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

Postby matti » Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:59 am

I see this is an old topic.. but i have to point this out to future users who might wrestle with the same problem.

If you need an XBOX360 controller... get an XBOX360 controller!
They are not that expensive compared to the other controllers(10-20e more.. i got mine for 36e)
They are very robust and high quality.
FlowStone officially only supports XBOX360 controllers!

(oh, and Wii of course)
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Re: USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

Postby trogluddite » Fri Dec 21, 2012 4:18 pm

Yup, I'd second matti's post - I''ve been messing quite a bit with XBox360 controllers and have always got really nice results. There are a couple of points that think are worth mentioning though...

- All of the analogue controls (which for some reason includes the joystick centre buttons) are continuously polled, and so are always sending a stream of values/triggers even when you are not moving them. I've found it is well worth reducing the resolution of the controls to whatever you really need in order to cut down on the number of messages.
For example, I've been using mine to send out MIDI controller messages, which only have 128 possible values - so multiplying the value by 127, then going through an 'integer changed' primitive really helps to eliminate redundant messages.
- The OP mentioned the 'wild noise' from one of the analogue controllers. I've seen this too - but usually the numbers involved are incredibly small (in the screenshot you can see the 'e-xx' indicating a number too small to fit into the number of decimal places). Creating a small 'dead zone' around the centre that will send only 'zero' messages sorts this out; so that only deliberate movements of the joysticks send anything out.
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USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360

Postby Lutherdut » Thu May 23, 2019 2:42 am


I have a USB gamepad Logitech Rumblepad V2 with two powerfull vibration motors, wich I would like to use for certain things.
So I want to make a program Preferably in C# wich can access them and control them, however, I dont know how to do this.

Can someone help me with this?

Thanks in advance
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Re: USB Gamepad Controller similar to XBox 360?

Postby PeterEmerson » Mon Jun 03, 2019 10:27 pm

This is a perfectly adequate USB game controller 8-)
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