Need Help "Hacking" Analog Triggers on MCZ CoD Xbox Controller

Well, the title says it all. i’ve searched through the forums SO many times, and only gotten pieces of information here or there. I would like to hack the controller to be able to still use the triggers as buttons. I keep seeing one of the following: some triggers on some controllers are already inverted, some don’t need the pot to be attached, or that I would need to keep the pots and set them to neutral first before soldering, but without any instructions on how to do so. I’m going to give the best details I can (and add some pictures once I have the chance to.) Since I’m not that knowledgeable about resistors and such, I’m trying to stay away from them just to be safe… Unless it’s really easy.

I currently still have the potentiometers or “pots” (little 3-legged orange things) connected, and also have the discs that go inside. The pots have “4 sections” listed on the side - in order from upleft / upright / lowleft / lowright = B 5 / 2 / 0 3 / 0

At first, before I knew about all this hassle, I took out the little “discs” inside of the pots. This left the X Axis (in Game Controllers > Properties on my PC) exactly in the center, and I could successfully get the buttons to register by connecting the top two pins on the other side of the board. One of the triggers made the bar go down, one made it go up. Let’s say LT made it go all the way down. When I connected the bottom two pins, it would completely “empty,” and then slowly crawl back to the center. I thought that was a good thing, but…

I was told I need to put the discs back in, set them to “neutral,” and then glue them in place, before I mess with them at all. Again, I still want to be able to use the Triggers, and I’ve also read that gluing them in place can be a bad idea if I do want to still use the Triggers, so I’m all sorts of confused. So, I guess here are my questions.

  1. Before I even do this, are there ANY negative aspects to using the analog triggers in a joystick? I don’t mean “yea cuz they’re hard to hook up,” I mean things such as: is there any chance of it affecting gameplay / my inputs while playing? Or of a game not reading an input because I activated both buttons at the same time?

  2. What is the easiest way to hook them up? Again, preferably without resistors unless that’s the only way to avoid problems such as my examples in Q1.

  3. This question is not trigger related, but rather refers to the two analog sticks. Should I hot glue the stick in place to prevent random inputs, or is this not necessary? I will be using a PS3 TE stick and this MCZ CoD Xbox 360 contr, and linking them with an Imp Board.

Any help is much appreciated. Thanks!


Okay lets get some background stuff done first.
What happens normally in a circuit is if a button is not being pressed, the circuit is held at high, meaning that the signal is being held up and is not going to the ground point. When the circuit is completed, the circuit is low, meaning that the signal has flowed through the button and is being registered. Now for triggers, as you said they are analog. Since they are analog, it uses a potentiometer which measures the resistance or current flow from the three points. These three points are High, Wiper, and Low. High can be though of as the signal and Low as the ground, with wiper measuring the current flowing through these two points. Wiper determines whether or not the input is being pressed or not. So some madcatz controllers with their triggers register the inputs being pressed when the wiper measures that there is current no current flowing from high to low, which means that the button is active when the input is set to high. Now let me answer your questions.

  1. There are no aspects of game-play derogation when a modder decides to use the triggers in a pad. It is the same with respect to a digital signal when responding to the triggers. I do not understand what you mean by not reading an input when you activate both buttons at the same time. If this was the case, then it would be very difficult to play fighting games or any games at all with that controller.

  2. There is a way to use the controllers with triggers that active high and it involves the use of a hex inverter and 2 resistors. This flips the signal so that the signal is reversed and the button is registered when the button is pressed rather than not. I won’t go into detail as to how to do it as it is already posted in a guide that can be found in the stickies. Upas did a great job on explaining how to hack these madcatz pads in this guide that is found in the stickies.
    How to padhack an 08/09 Madcatz 4716 Common Ground Xbox 360 Pad

  3. There is no need to neutralize or glue the sticks in place as long as they are not being touched and held at neutral. Some modders remove them for clearance reasons or just because it has a cleaner look (I fall under this category)

I am glad though that you had at least done some research into your problem before asking.
Hope this helps

Thanks for the quick reply!

  1. What I meant was, since I wasn’t entirely sure how analog triggers work, I didn’t know if pressing both buttons at the same time would “cancel out” the movement on the X Axis, thus negating both inputs. It sounds like this is not the case, so no worries there.

  2. But is there a way to do this WITHOUT having to use the resistors/chip to invert them? I do have that page you mentioned bookmarked already, but I’m trying to do it without buying resistors, inverter chips, and doing all the extra work. I was also told that you only need to use the resistors if you remove the potentiometers, but that you should NOT use them if you leave them attached, for risk of damaging the board…?

  3. I asked about this because I read somewhere on SRK that, if you remove the analog sticks (desolder them from the board,) it can cause your analog stick to always register as being held in one of the diagonal corners (can’t remember which one, though.) My original plan was to remove them completely as you had mentioned, but when I read about the corner reading, I was worried it would mess up the stick.

3a. However, I was also wondering: Let’s say the people are right, and it DOES always read as being held in the corner. Would that even matter? The reason I say that, is because if the console/PC reads the stick as being held in the corner when the controller is initially plugged in, wouldn’t the console still “assume” that the stick is in neutral? Kinda like when you plug a controller in while accidentally moving one of the analog sticks? Or is that only on older consoles?

If I’m going to have to buy all that extra stuff, I might just buy a Brawlpad before they’re all sold out at Gamestop and use that instead.



  1. If that was true, you wouldn’t be able to use both triggers at the same time on the stock (unmodded) controller either, so that’s definitely not the case.

  2. Correct. If you leave the potentiometers there, fix them in place so that that it’s considered neutral, you can solder wires directly to the signal lines and use them. I did this with my first set of Mad Catz PCBs

  3. That’s correct as well. Same principle as the analog triggers. Removing the sticks removes the potentiometers there too, so the PCB thinks the stick is pushed to a corner. Leaving them there is never a problem, removing them will require soldering in resistors to balance it out.

3a) I think that’s only older consoles. Otherwise, there’d be no reason for the big fuss about removing them like you asked in question #3.

But yes, a Brawlpad would be MUCH simpler.

  1. Okay, so when they are considered neutral, is that when the X Axis bar sits directly in the middle? Or?

  2. How do I find the exact neutral point

  3. Would I run wires from two of the three pins on each trigger directly to the buttons they correspond to? If so, which 2 pins? If not, what two points would I use? When I was testing it, they would “activate” when I would touch the top two pins together.

Thanks for the help!

Anyone? Could someone please explain how you know when the potentiometers are set to neutral, how you find the exact neutral points, and what wires to use for those two buttons?

Can anyone help me out with those three questions? I want to do the dual mod this weekend, and I’m trying to not use the Brawlpad I have.

Well, I decided to just go with the Brawlpad installation since I can’t find any info on using analog triggers with the pots still connected. I’ve decided I will just connect wires to one of the pots, and “play around” with testing on them. Even though I’m not going this route anymore, I’m still VERY curious to see how the pots work, and what the easiest way to get them working successfully is.

So, if anyone does have any information, or can find any, please let me know. Otherwise, if I come up with anything, I will post it up and see if someone else can test and confirm my findings.


I found this topic by searching. I’m wondering if there are any YouTube videos showing the parts and labor needed to do this.

This may still be a handy skill because with no Wii Classic solution for the Cthulhu, Brook Retro, Brook Universal USB, or PS360+ for the Wii classic.

I know a way to avoid learning that skill is a Wii Classic Pro, but those are higher prices on Ebay. Vs the first classics.

Stan The Man Escolano said he occasionally does want to learn new technuques. Is there a video on that?

PS: linking my topic to this one.