(A few) Picade buttons are not working

Hello fellow bucaneers!

I recently built my Picade and loved every minute of it. Pretty much everything is operating normally, with exception to trouble I am having with 3 buttons. Specifically, they are the Vol UP, Joy DOWN, and Button 5 switches.

I’ve made a brief (unlisted) video on YouTube which demonstrates the issue that I’m having here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YjFlSPO4xt8

Before you watch, or even after, it’s important to note that I have flashed the Picade board with the latest firmware from Github, and while I don’t mention or show it in the video, all buttons are connected properly, and I also swapped them around to confirm that it wasn’t the button switches themselves which had the problem, and it wasn’t.

Really looking forward to a solution, or failing that, an option to RMA or obtain a new Picade board? Please help pirates, I can’t wait to be retro-gaming in perfection!

Many thanks in advance,

  • scar45

By “swapped them around” do you mean you connected a completely different button to the screw terminals on the Picade PCB to verify that it’s not working?

You can also test this on the bare PCB by shorting any of the button inputs to ground using a wire. If the Picade is plugged in to your Pi and it’s powered on, you should not only get a key press within Retropie but also see the little TX light on the board light up to show it going out.

Thanks for the tips gadgetoid! You’re correct with my description of ‘swapping them around’.

I did the shorting test on each button, and my results confuse me more. Basically 2 buttons do not light up the Tx LED, and while I said in my video that the volume UP button and button 5 do not work, if I short them, they do. Again though, the volume UP button / button 5 don’t work ‘normally’.

Very weird, but this makes me think it could be the wire harness too, considering the shorting test works on some buttons, but then again, not at all on 2.

I know this issue I’m having is a pain to troubleshoot, but I am willing to try anything/everything else.

Ooh- worth noting that since the volume up/down buttons don’t actually send any data over USB the Tx LED will not light. I forgot that bit. Would those be the two buttons that don’t light it up for you?

Since we’ve been laboriously making all the wire-harnesses in-house there have been a few with problems like crimping over unstripped wires or bad solder joints. It’s possible that you’ve got one of these problems. In fact from what you describe it sounds very likely!

…Oh and since I tested most of the PCBs myself I’d like to think that it’s not the problem! fingers crossed

Sorry, I should have mentioned the two buttons that don’t light up: Down + 3. You’re right about the volume buttons of course, and both work when shorted. Actually, here’s kind of a synopsis of the buttons and their problems:

Down - doesn’t work at all, joystick or shorted
3 - doesn’t work at all, button or shorted
Vol Up - doesn’t work with button, works shorted
5 - doesn’t work with button, works shorted

Thanks so much for the quick help too gadgetoid!

Drat, sounds like you got a duff board and a duff harness. That really sucks! Could you drop us a support email with your order particulars, mention this thread, and you’ll be sorted out post-haste!

Thanks for being a thorough and awesome debuggererer, but sorry you had to do it in the first place.

I will certainly drop you a line as soon as I get my particulars together. Really appreciate the service too! Plus, if you’d like, I can re-ship my current Picade PCB + harnesses back on my own dime if you’d like to do some post mortem on them.

Thanks again for all of the help gadgetoid! <3

You’re absolutely welcome! Don’t worry about sending anything back- I rejected a few Picade PCBs with exactly the same problem you describe, and one must have slipped through. I don’t think there’s anything we could learn from the harnesses- we’re continuity checking every single one now so it shouldn’t happen again.

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Ahoy @gadgetoid! Just wanted to follow up to say that I received the new Picade PCB + wiring loom, and after initial tests, everything is working perfectly now! Once I have more time I will do the full, finalized setup for RetroArch, but to confirm again, each of the issues that I had previously are no longer!

Many thanks again for the awesome support and quick shipping of the replacement parts. Cheers!

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Brilliant, and thanks for letting us know it’s working!

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