Could I get this done with a single AVR that you linked to?
Not with the currently avalable firmwares.
Looks like your curent setup has:
- 3 360 degree steering wheels (optical encoder) ==> 6 data lines, 5v, ground
(U-HID, Opti-Wiz, Opti-Pac, or maybe
- 3 Potentiometer pedals (analog encoder) ==> 3 analog inputs (wipers), 5v, ground
(U-HID, A-Pac, or KADESTICK)
- 14 (?) buttons assuming each player gets 4 buttons (coin, start, and two nitros) plus admin buttons for Pause and Exit
(U-HID, A-Pac, I-Pac, or KADESTICK)
Here are 5 possible aproaches:
1.) Connect everything to a full-size U-HID. ($69)
2.) You could use a U-HID Nano ($35) for the steering wheels + Exit button (ESC) and a KADESTICK ($17) for the pedals and other buttons. The 9-pin Nano would normally be short several 5v and ground pins due to a 30mA per pin limit but you can get 5v and ground for two of the wheels from KADESTICK.
3.) You could use an OptiWiz ($15) for the wheels and KADESTICK for the pedals and buttons.
(This is the least expensive option, but I think the third wheel would be on the "mouse scroll wheel" Z-axis. IIRC there is a workaround by recompiling Mame with a minor code change.)
4.) You could use an OptiPac for the wheels and KADESTICK for the pedals and buttons.
5.) You could use a newer I-Pac (2015) for the buttons and maybe
the steering wheels if
it can handle 3 separate optical axes (check with Andy to find out if the trackball X-axis, Y-axis and spinner can be set to three separate axes) and KADESTICK for the pedals.
Would the single 5V on the AVR have enough juice (thinking amperage is the right word?) for the 3 wheels and the 3 pots in the pedals?
The pots only draw 1 mA (5v/5kohms) each and the 6 IR LEDs in the optical circuits probably draw 20mA each so you're only looking at around 123mA.
Would I have to edit the code that is being put onto the AVR for my specific use?
The current firmwares are good for either 2 or 4 analog axes and a bunch of gamepad buttons.
As long as your front end and emulator(s) can use gamepad buttons everything will work OK.
The reason I suggested #2 above is that IIRC some front ends and emulators want the exit button to be the ESC key.