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Help wanted
passion
bohemiancoast
There's a loose connection somewhere in one of my dance mats; the pads are registering (LEDs lighting up), but the message isn't getting to the PS2. We've taken it apart but the connections to the PCB look fine -- so either the problem is on the PCB (surely not?) or in the cable. Should I just admit defeat and buy new ones? Or I could cannibalise a different PS controller and solder the wires onto the PCB... if the wires are standard colours? Anyone have any experience in this sort of thing?

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Can we assume you've tried turning everything off, unplugging it and then plugging the bits in one by one? And presumably the game works OK with the other mat and with a hand controller? And there's no switches that might have been knocked into the wrong position by the trip to Newbury? (I know I'm always having problems with the analog switch setting being in the wrong position with my snowboard controller)

Hmm. Yes, all works fine with the other mat. No switches, though that's a good thought.

It could be the PCB. It's happened before.

My bet is the cable. You can run a continuity test on each wire with a meter.

If you have both ends of the wire, you can replace the wire. You'll need to make a wire map before you cut off the old cable. Number (if they aren't already) each connector pin and each solder pad, then just map out where each color ends up, say, as a guess, Red is Pin One, but gets soldered to Pad 5 on the PCB. You don't care about the color. You care about which pin of the connector goes where.

Once you have the map, you can repace the cable. Steal a cable from a old controller. Use your meter, and figure out what color wire from this new cable goes to what pin. Mesh your maps, and you can solder it correctly.

Example, with an imaginary cable. I tear apart a cable, and find, on the connector end, that Red is Pin 1, Blue is Pin 2, and Black is Pin 3. On the PCB. Red is soldered to Pad 3, Blue, Pad 2. Black, Pad one. Thus, a map:

Pin 1:Pad 3
Pin 2:Pad 2
Pin 3:Pad 1

Now, I desolder that cable and toss it. I salvage a new cable. I note its three wires are Orage, White and Green. So, I use a meter and figure out where the go, and I get

Green:Pin 1
Orange:Pin 2
White:Pin 3

Meshing, I get

Green:Pin 1: Pad 3
Orange:Pin 2: Pad 2
White:Pin 3: Pad 1

And there is it. Solder green to Pad 3, Orange to Pad 2, White to Pad one, and Robert is you father's brother.

There are standard colors. There are *lots* of standard colors. So, really, there isn't any standard. There is, if you know what realm the cable is made for. US electrical power states that Black is Hot, White is Neutral, and Green is Saftey Ground. USOC Phone says pair one is Red and Green. TIA568B states that pair one of an ethernet twisted pair cable is Orange/Orange&White -- or Green/Green&White. Yes, both are compliant. Yes, this makes no sense. It's even worse when two people are wiring, and each pick a different pair.

(For the record, Erik wires O/O&W, because that's the way the office does so.)

I always end up relabelling things (liquid paper pens!), and then asking someone to check.
Ah, the joys of colour-blindness, coupled to a desire to hack hardware.

bohemiancoast, if you are willing to buy a new one, you may as well try pulling the old one apart; what's the worst that could happen?

I did pull it apart; it neither hurt nor helped.

Re: This might be of Use

Thanks; in fact I bought two of these from Lik-Sang's very wonderful European depot. (The Logic 3 you linked to is generally held to be the best of the 'flat' mats, but because I'm such a heavy lump I need a mat with a significant amount of hard foam). Lik-sang were amazing -- I ordered the mats Sunday night, and they arrived yesterday evening, from Europe, no VAT or duty, total cost including shipping for the two mats about £64, which is about 1/3 what I paid for the previous two. They're not quite as well-constructed as the previous pair of mats, but they're better in some ways.

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