MakeyMakey NES Controller Shield


Today I decided to do something fun, I went to my local flea market for inspiration and found it! It came in the form of a dead but in good-condition NES controller. After closer inspection, the problem was a dead 4021 p2s IC.

I was about to convert it to a TV controller when I remembered it was MakeyMakey Monday!


I started by cleaning the device and figuring out how I was gonna go about wiring the buttons to the MakeyMakey. I then got a few of my Adafruit Extra-long break-away headers and an old red pen (I needed the ink, you will see why in a moment).

I inked the top of the headers with the red pen’s ink and then placed the NES Controller back on-top of the headers; This gave me a clear idea of there I should drill.

I got my trusty hand drill and fitted the headers to the back of the NES Controller. Afterwards, I testing the header locations to make sure the MakeyMakey fit correctly. It did!

My attention them moved over to the PCB, I cut the wires for the controller cable and desoldered the whole thing, IC and all.

I then soldered a few wires from the headers to the controller PCB.

And finally cut the pull-up resistor traces; this step is extremely important! Failing to cut them will result in all buttons getting triggered.

I then cleaned up and closed the controller making sure I didn’t bend any of the internal wires.

Tested it by playing some minecraft.


Up Arrow = W Left Arrow = A Down Arrow = S Right Arrow = D

Select = F Start = G



About the author : gamaral

Incredibly handsome open-source software engineer, gamedev and trekkie. I also draw comics in my spare time; they aren't very popular.

View all articles


  1. Pingback: Dead NES controller used as a Makey Makey shield

  2. Pingback: Belgaum news | About Belgaum | Belgaum information | Belgaum district | Belgaum city | Belgaum Hotels | Belgaum People | Belgaum tourism | Belgaum entertainment | Belgaum students | Inside facebook | Hack | make use of | technical news | | Dead NES contro

  3. Pingback: Dead NES controller used as a Makey Makey shield - Blogger

  4. Pingback: MakeyMakey NES Controller Shield #makeymakey #makeymakeymonday « adafruit industries blog

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>