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Author Topic: Arkanoid Spinner  (Read 2136 times)

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azs

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Arkanoid Spinner
« on: September 09, 2022, 06:47:36 pm »
The spinner on my Arkanoid game (arcade style) is not right. It’s super sensitive and very difficult to control when the game speeds up. The best way I can describe the spinner is “slippery”. To the point when you remove your hand it continues to move some.

I tried reducing a sensitivity setting which seemed to help some, but the spinner is still extremely loose/slippery. I feel as if it needs more friction (if that makes sense).

Assuming the existing spinner cannot be modified and or jury rigged, I was hoping someone could help me find a compatible spinner that feels and plays like it should. For what it’s worth, when I move the Vaus from the far left to the far right of my screen, the spinner rotates approximately 90 degrees.


KenToad

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2022, 10:30:58 pm »
The spinner on my Arkanoid game (arcade style) is not right. It’s super sensitive and very difficult to control when the game speeds up. The best way I can describe the spinner is “slippery”. To the point when you remove your hand it continues to move some.

I tried reducing a sensitivity setting which seemed to help some, but the spinner is still extremely loose/slippery. I feel as if it needs more friction (if that makes sense).

Assuming the existing spinner cannot be modified and or jury rigged, I was hoping someone could help me find a compatible spinner that feels and plays like it should. For what it’s worth, when I move the Vaus from the far left to the far right of my screen, the spinner rotates approximately 90 degrees.

Sounds like you have the wrong resolution spinner for your game, should be 120-130 degrees twist to move the paddle from one end of the screen to the other. How many gears does the spinner have? Is this an arcade board or an emulator?

azs

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2022, 11:15:16 pm »
Interesting, and thank you. That would make sense why it feels so off. Not sure on the gears…would need to take a closer look. Not very techie w arcade consoles but assuming it’s gotta be an emulator.

So is it just a matter of finding a spinner with the correct resolution?

azs

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2022, 11:16:45 pm »
Pic

KenToad

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2022, 01:53:50 am »
Since you're emulating, you don't need a new spinner, but if you're looking for a better arkanoid spinner, I recommend the Turbo Twist 2 from Groovy Game Gear because you can stop it from free spinning with one of the options.

If ithe emulator is Mame, try pressing Tab to get into the settings while playing the game. There should be analog controls. What you want is sensitivity. When you find it, dial the sensitivity number down until the paddle movement feels right to you.

leapinlew

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2022, 08:20:02 am »
Totally agree on the turbo twist spinner - I use it and it's great. The slippery feeling is because the sensitivity is much too high. I had the same issue initially as well.

This post describes what spinner settings should be in mame:http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=164017.0

The setting for Arkanoid is 48.

As far as the resistance, that's not something that can be emulated. The arkanoid spinner had some gear resistance that you're not going to get with these free wheel'n spinners, but I think once you get the sensitivity right, you'll be happy with it.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2022, 08:22:25 am by leapinlew »

PL1

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2022, 08:22:48 am »
Looks like you've got an Ultimarc SpinTrak.

No sense swapping it for a TT2.  Both are the same resolution -- 1200 transitions per rotation.

Neither of them is geared like the Arkanoid spinner, but either of them will work fine for MAME games after you set the sensitivity in that game's menu.

Related thread:  http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,164017.0.html


Scott

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2022, 09:27:13 am »
Looks like you've got an Ultimarc SpinTrak.

No sense swapping it for a TT2.  Both are the same resolution -- 1200 transitions per rotation.

Neither of them is geared like the Arkanoid spinner, but either of them will work fine for MAME games after you set the sensitivity in that game's menu.

Related thread:  http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,164017.0.html


Scott

 :cheers: totally agree, and I see we quoted the same thread.

azs

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2022, 12:22:19 pm »
Appreciate all the feedback!

What is strange is that when I first got this game, the sensitivity setting was at 41%. I was finding that there was a lag between me physically rotating the spinner and the paddle moving. This was especially evident when the ball speed increased. With the ball speed very fast, I felt like it was impossible at times to control the paddle and that I was having to overturn my wrist in an effort to get to the ball. When I bumped the setting up from 41% to 60, I felt as if my control improved but it felt too slippery and over sensitive.

This is why I became convinced it was the physical spinner and NOT the sensitivity settings.

Do original Arkanoid spinners still exist? Would I be able to use one with the way my game was configured? That said all of you seem to agree the proper settings with my existing paddle should suffice.

What’s so confusing is all the replies I got from everyone made perfect sense. Yes as I explained above, I felt like the original setting of 41% felt off to me. But then again so does 60%.

All I know is when I played Arkanoid in college in the late 80s, the spinner was perfect and NEVER an issue in game play.

With the way my game plays now, it’s almost physically impossible for me to get beyond a certain point because my inability to really control to paddle at high ball speeds.

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2022, 02:27:25 pm »
I was finding that there was a lag between me physically rotating the spinner and the paddle moving.
Do you also see this lag in Windows?


Scott

azs

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2022, 02:53:35 pm »
Lag in windows?

Meanwhile I reset the sensitivity to 48 (based on an earlier reply) and it definitely seems better.

azs

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #11 on: September 10, 2022, 03:18:25 pm »
Totally agree on the turbo twist spinner - I use it and it's great. The slippery feeling is because the sensitivity is much too high. I had the same issue initially as well.

This post describes what spinner settings should be in mame:http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=164017.0

The setting for Arkanoid is 48.

As far as the resistance, that's not something that can be emulated. The arkanoid spinner had some gear resistance that you're not going to get with these free wheel'n spinners, but I think once you get the sensitivity right, you'll be happy with it.

Where did you come up with 48?

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #12 on: September 10, 2022, 04:00:18 pm »
Lag in windows?
A delay between physically rotating the spinner and the mouse cursor moving while you're in Windows -- not in MAME or your FE.

If you see the same lag in Windows that you noticed in MAME, the issue is probably with Windows.   ;)


Scott

azs

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #13 on: September 10, 2022, 04:11:06 pm »
Lag in windows?
A delay between physically rotating the spinner and the mouse cursor moving while you're in Windows -- not in MAME or your FE.

If you see the same lag in Windows that you noticed in MAME, the issue is probably with Windows.   ;)


Scott

I think that might be above my pay grade 🙄

KenToad

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2022, 12:27:56 pm »
Totally agree on the turbo twist spinner - I use it and it's great. The slippery feeling is because the sensitivity is much too high. I had the same issue initially as well.

This post describes what spinner settings should be in mame:http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=164017.0

The setting for Arkanoid is 48.

As far as the resistance, that's not something that can be emulated. The arkanoid spinner had some gear resistance that you're not going to get with these free wheel'n spinners, but I think once you get the sensitivity right, you'll be happy with it.

Where did you come up with 48?

Yeah, that's a bit more sensitive than the original cab, but 48 might feel better than setting sensitivity to 41 because the spinner knob is probably smaller in diameter than the original spinner. I usually dial up the sensitivity 2-3 percent because the knobs I have are usually 1/4 to 1/2 inch smaller in diameter than the original arcade knobs.

The reason I recommend the Turbo Twist 2 for Arkanoid is because you can get them with the adjustable resistance knobs, so you can easily stop the spinner from spinning freely and adjust the resistance to your liking. Most arcade games actually didn't use free spinning spinners and are harder to play with a free spinning spinner.

It feels like there is this competition to have the most freely spinning spinner. I've seen video reviewers put them head to head, as if spinning freely longer is a mark of quality. Once you start actually playing the majority of games, however, this makes no sense, as most games require fine precision control and spinning freely isn't helpful.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2022, 12:29:48 pm by KenToad »

azs

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #15 on: September 12, 2022, 03:25:19 pm »
Ken - I like the idea of adjustable resistance knobs. Although 48 feels pretty good for now with my current spinner. While I followed your logic about increasing the sensitivity to compensate for spinner diameter size, I was under the impression the original Arkanoid spinner was smaller than what I have now.


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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #16 on: September 12, 2022, 05:03:10 pm »
 Personally, it sounds more like a USB issue, to me.  Ive seen a lot of such problems.. when too many devices are utilized..
when both power and bandwidth are taxed.   Also, certain ports on the PC, could be performing at different rates,
and different power levels.

 Some various things to test:

1)  Turn off Mouse Acceleration in the windows mouse options
2)  Delete any old setting files for Arkanoid, in mames folders  (sometimes previous settings, cause issues on new mame revisions)
3)  Turn off any Anti-Virus software, temporarily
4)  Remove any un-necessary USB devices. If there is too much power draw, or bandwidth issues, it might cause issues.
5)  Try a direct line to the PC, rather than using a USB Hub.
6)  Turn OFF "Auto-Frameskip".   If you must skip frames, use a manual setting.
7)  Turn off any Auto Running programs, such as Backup software, that might be running.
8 )  Do not run a Browser at the same time, as mame is running.  Too many tabs, can eat up a lot of memory.  Certain Browser
Plugins can also cause issues.
9)  Turn off any Torrents / Downloads.  Anything that could be moving large amounts of data,  and or eating up CPU cycles.
10 ) Uninstall unused programs,  and run windows  "Disk Cleanup",  to remove garbage from the system.
11)  Try plugging your spinner into a different USB port.

KenToad

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #17 on: September 12, 2022, 05:12:32 pm »
Ken - I like the idea of adjustable resistance knobs. Although 48 feels pretty good for now with my current spinner. While I followed your logic about increasing the sensitivity to compensate for spinner diameter size, I was under the impression the original Arkanoid spinner was smaller than what I have now.

Cool. 41 would be the mathematically correct number, but it's your game, so if 48 plays well for you, go for it. Glad to hear that it's working better.

azs

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #18 on: September 16, 2022, 01:13:43 am »
Ken - I like the idea of adjustable resistance knobs. Although 48 feels pretty good for now with my current spinner. While I followed your logic about increasing the sensitivity to compensate for spinner diameter size, I was under the impression the original Arkanoid spinner was smaller than what I have now.

Cool. 41 would be the mathematically correct number, but it's your game, so if 48 plays well for you, go for it. Glad to hear that it's working better.


With a game like Arkanoid, is it accurate to say that the original arcade board versions will always play more accurate and precise than emulators? Specifically with regards to spinner feel and control.

Is it possible to find arcade units for Arkanoid with original board (or rebuilt boards accurately representing the original) for sale?

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #19 on: September 16, 2022, 01:11:04 pm »
The only difference would be the geared spinner. Emulation is excellent, assuming you're not using underpowered hardware like a Raspberry pi, although even with a decent emulator setup you could potentially feel a difference in input latency.

I've played original cabinets both back in the 90's and over the last few years. For my money, the geared spinners are overrated. The geared action was never as smooth as it should have been. The game is designed to take your money, not present a reasonable challenge. Some of the sequels are better.

BTW, the best spinner game of all time is still Puzz Loop.

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #20 on: September 16, 2022, 07:12:06 pm »
The problem with Arkanoids geared spinner, is that the gears used have very fine teeth...
and when the bearings start to wear... it causes bad alignment on these gears.. which causes
slippage, skipping, breakage of teeth, and or complete seizing... so that you cant even spin it
at all.

 Larger Teeth gears, are far less likely to experience this type of failure, because the teeth are
deep enough that... even if they get a MM out of alignment, they still tend to function fine.
(albeit, with a bit more  "Slop"  when changing directions)

 The gearing served a good purpose... To add a higher resolution, much like how modern
mice have high DPI settings, for highly competitive FPS aiming.

 The gearing also helped to prevent accidental over-spinning / unwanted movements.  Free-spinning
is awesome for games like SuperSprint... but you lose a bunch of control on games like Arkanoid, and
even on Tempest (moving when you dont want it to move).

 That said, I believe certain spinners used dual sensors (quad encoding?), to get a higher resolution,
without needing the gearing.   They also tended to have a much larger optical disc, with much
smaller holes.  (IE: Discs of Tron spinner).

 It would be cool to design a geared spinner, when much thicker toothed gears, to see how it would
compare.  Not sure how much more friction might be involved.. and not sure how much larger the
assembly would have to be, to replicate Arkanoids arcade resolution.

 As for saying Puzzloop is the best spinner game?  I personally cant agree.

 A list of most of the Non Arkanoid spinner games... all of which Id probably choose above Puzzloop.

 - Mad Planets
 - Tempest (non geared)
 - Tron (non geared)
 - Kick  (Ratio geared via Rollers)
 - Star Trek
 - Major Havok  (Ratio Geared via Rollers)
 - Discs of Tron  (non geared)
 - Tac Scan
 - Zektor
 - Omega Race
 - Wiz Warz
 - Top Secret
 - Off the Wall (Sente. Like a side-view Tennis.  Not to be confused with the Atari brick game)
 - Moon War
 - Demolition Derby
 - Crater Raider
 - Aztarak

 360 Degree Optical Wheel games:

 - Turbo (Sega - Geared)
 - Super Sprint (Non Geared)
 - Pole Position I & II  (Geared)
 - Super Offroad
 - Firetruck
 - TX-1  (Geared)
 - Buggy Boy
 - Hot Rod

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #21 on: September 17, 2022, 11:14:42 am »
The gearing served a good purpose... To add a higher resolution, much like how modern
mice have high DPI settings, for highly competitive FPS aiming.

 The gearing also helped to prevent accidental over-spinning / unwanted movements.  Free-spinning
is awesome for games like SuperSprint... but you lose a bunch of control on games like Arkanoid, and
even on Tempest (moving when you dont want it to move).

My take on the whole geared-spinner thing is that it was done solely for the sake of resolution.  The gearing used was selected to provide a specific number of pulses over an equally specific number of degrees of rotation of the knob.  The control uses the standard optical encoder configuration and easily sourced plastic disc for the time.  The other thing which points to this is the fact that DOH added yet another 2 gears to increase its resolution further, which also changed the feel of the control.

While the spinner build did have this effect of adding resistance, that moment-of-inertia is also what eventually ended up destroying the gearing.  Changing directions after moving it quickly put big stresses on those tiny gear teeth.  This is because that encoder wheel, and the shaft it was connected to, were spinning much faster than the knob was being turned which meant that the effects of momentum were amplified.  I recall fast movements feeling like they wanted to keep going, but in a more disconnected way than a 1:1 encoder feels.

The short of it is that Arkanoid is a Breakout clone with added elements.  Breakout used a potentiometer-based control, which by its nature, has a very small amount of resistance but is extremely smooth.  Unfortunately, they suffer from mechanical wear, which leads to inaccuracy over time.  Therefore, the ideal control for a game in that genre is one which comes close to the feel of a quality potentiometer, without the negative aspects of that device.   The closest one can currently come to perfection is a modern, high-resolution optical spinner, with a light-ish knob and some means to dampen any residual momentum there might be.  But there will always be one aspect missing, unless the user wants to hobble the spinner for other titles, and that is the positive stops at the end-of-travel.   

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #22 on: September 17, 2022, 06:48:29 pm »
Quote
that moment-of-inertia is also what eventually ended up destroying the gearing.  Changing directions after moving it quickly put big stresses on those tiny gear teeth

 But that is Not why they failed.   Ive owned a few destroyed Arkanoid spinners, that were part of a parts-lot sale.

 It was easy to see, that the small shafts had "Play", due to the bearings or "Holes" that the shafts were mounted
into... were bored out of spec.

 Since the smallest shaft deflection angles, caused such small gear teeth to be so far off from each other... the gears
quickly shredded themselves,  and locked up completely.

 If you forced the thing back and forth, sometimes you could keep it from seizing up for part of its rotation.
But it was very clear that there was no way to repair / restore these things.


 Its not that different than the Classic Two-Way "Denfender" mini-sticks.  Once the bearings started to wear,
the stick developed too much "Play".  The parts were too loose, and would go at off-angles.. and create even
worse wear.   Eventually, you had a control that was virtually (or completely) unusable.

 The first things to wear were typically the bearings... but eventually, the shafts themselves, ended up
wearing to the point of no possible repair.  You would simply have to replace everything.

 Anything with small gears, needs the utmost precision with alignment.   As said, larger toothed gears
have the ability to deal with some deflection issues, without too much issue, if at all.


Quote
Breakout used a potentiometer-based control, which by its nature, has a very small amount of resistance but is extremely smooth.  Unfortunately, they suffer from mechanical wear, which leads to inaccuracy over time.

 Pots are Analog, and by their very nature, have virtually Infinite values between their two ends.
And since there is no gear backlashing (gear slop / play),  you are always getting a direct  One-To-One, control input.

 Where as Optical, is Digital.. and its resolution, is based on taking "samples per time unit".  The higher the sample rate,
the higher the Resolution.   Digital will always be inferior to the original analog values.  But at a certain level, you are
taking so many samples per time unit... that the human senses, might never be able to tell the difference.

(Though... Id argue, that your subconscious mind, might be able to pick up the differences in Audio from a non-compressed Record,
vs a high resolution digital recording)

 Pots are not merely used for certain games like Pong... but were far more often used in Arcade driving games,
with Gas, and Brake, pedals... as well as Analog Joysticks.  They tend to last a good 5 to 9 yrs of Daily Arcade
abuses... before they eventually fail.   And being that Arcades were opened 7 days a week, 15 hrs a day... thats
more than enough use to justify their wear issues.

 That said... a game like Pong,  where you are constantly moving the Pot in most of its travel, at aggressive speeds,
all day long... is very different from a gas pedal, where you often leave it fully depressed.  Even when used for
steering wheels... you tend to move left to right... far less frantically, than what would occur in a game of Pong.

 Hence, the combination of lower quality Pots that may have been used for Pong... combined with much
greater use per game, and more use of the Pots full length of travel... and you got much faster wear issues.

 Very rarely do you ever see someone tossing out their Flight stick, due to a bad pot.  Even mini-pots in
Thumb-Stick gamepads, rarely go bad, to the typical household gamer.

 As a former manager at an Arcade, I have replaced bad pots in these machines.  But many of these machines
were between 10 to 20 yrs old... and once you replaced one, you didnt have to worry about doing that again,
for another decade or so (unless you got a defective pot).

 As a Note, I will add... that a lot of the pot based controllers, used Gearing with these pots.  They were rarely
direct-drive... such was likely was the case, with the Pot for Pong.  The gearing allowed more of the Pots
values to be utilized, thus, upping the resolution/values possible.

Quote
Therefore, the ideal control for a game in that genre is one which comes close to the feel of a quality potentiometer, without the negative aspects of that device.

 This is sort of a dishonest take.  You see... any "Resistance" that you add to an Optical spinner... is still going to
wear down.  And in fact, depending on what you use for the resistance friction (and how much friction that you choose to apply)...
it might wear down far faster than any Pot ever would.

 Furthermore, both the Pot and the Optical spinners... would likely have far less resistance than a Geared spinner.


 But all of that is besides the point...  Because the only Breakout games that use Pots, are mostly the older
1970s or earlier... black and white, arcade games.

 One of the main reasons for not using Pots on games like Arkanoid, was due to the fact that the player might
over-crank the POT,  and damage it.  Sure, it might take a dude with insane grip to do this... or,  some idiot
that used a pair of Pliers / adjustable wrench... but it probably happened to Arcade owners games... far more
times than people realize.

 Also.. if anyone wants to make an actual Paddle controller for certain games that actually used one...
its simple as Pie.  Just hack a standard PC joystick... and use a $10 pot,  and place a knob on top.


 Personally, I was always awful at Arkanoid... and I have not felt a PRIME working example, since I was
a little kid... to know the comparison in feel, and precision control.

 I do know how geared 360 degree steering wheels feel and control,  such as Sega's Turbo...
which worked smooth as butter... and were very high in control resolution.  But these are a bit different,
in that you have much larger gearing, and much greater leverage forces, via the large wheel.


 But IMO... sometimes its not merely about what works Universally "acceptable".   Its about what matches
the original experience.  If you can, for example... replicate the exact Resolution... so that the game
controls and plays 100% the same as the Original Arcade machine.

(or as close as possible, with potential improvements to certain failure points... such as upgraded materials
that do not wear as easily, superior rigid housing that doesnt flex / distort, any possible, in this case,
use of larger gears altogether)


 There are in fact certain controllers that... while you can replace with generic controllers... will NEVER
come close to the feel and control of the real deal.

 One of these is the sit down version of Race Drivin.  That powerful FFB Dryer motor that is directly
attached to a large steering wheel with a full 3.5 rotations.  That brake which used a Strain-Gauge
for precision FAR beyond a POT.  That dual-pot based 6-Gear shifter, with perfect snap locking...
all create an experience that your generic PC wheel equipment, cant replicate.

 Even Spy Hunter's wheel... is designed for you to Bump the baddies with Full human Strength force..
which would quickly destroy a modern plastic gaming wheel.  At very least, it wont feel good doing it,
as you hear the thing creak and flex under those stresses.

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #23 on: September 17, 2022, 07:34:31 pm »
Digital will always be inferior to the original analog values.

This might be true in theory due to analog having "infinite" values but in practice the DAC on an arcade board is going to convert that into discreet digital values with a set resolution.  At that point any advantage a pot would have is lost.

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #24 on: September 19, 2022, 10:14:25 am »
It was easy to see, that the small shafts had "Play", due to the bearings or "Holes" that the shafts were mounted
into... were bored out of spec.

It's easy to come to that conclusion, but the fact of the matter is that the gears were a soft plastic, and all that force and friction will deform them over time.  Enough deformation and the gears start to skip and the wear increases 10-fold.  Some small slop is necessary to keep the control from feeling too tight, so it's a trade-off.

Quote
Pots are Analog, and by their very nature, have virtually Infinite values between their two ends.

As brandon stated, this is pure theory.  In practice, it is a very different situation.  Ever see an analog stick without jitter reduction and smoothing algorithms?  You can leave the stick without touching it and the cursor bounces all over the place.  This is because the analog values are sloppy and don't remain constant.  They also change with temperature.

Quote
Where as Optical, is Digital.. and its resolution, is based on taking "samples per time unit".  The higher the sample rate,
the higher the Resolution.   Digital will always be inferior to the original analog values.  But at a certain level, you are
taking so many samples per time unit... that the human senses, might never be able to tell the difference.

This comment turned my brain inside out.  This is NOT AT ALL how optical works.  It is a dead 1:1 reckoning with the angular position of the control knob.  The higher the CPR of the optical encoder, the more discrete angles of rotation the device can convey to the system.  This translates DIRECTLY to the number of linear positions which may be accurately represented over any given portion of the knobs rotation.  There is absolutely no time base involved.   The only sampling is done by the interface (which can be initiated by an interrupt, so it's instant the moment the value changes).  If an interface is too slow, or poorly coded, it results in lost or missed steps.  That's why a dedicated, modern interface is important and why old mouse controller IC's used in certain HAPP trackballs show issues.

I'll also add that Analog, by it's very nature, requires the same amount of sampling and far more processing time to get anything close to being accurate. 

Quote
Even mini-pots in Thumb-Stick gamepads, rarely go bad, to the typical household gamer.

It's literally the biggest killer of controllers.  Replacements are sold everywhere for specifically that reason.

Quote
As a former manager at an Arcade, I have replaced bad pots in these machines.  But many of these machines
were between 10 to 20 yrs old... and once you replaced one, you didnt have to worry about doing that again,
for another decade or so (unless you got a defective pot).

I don't know how long you were at that gig, but there's no way that a pot in a popular game lasted that long.  Maybe in a pedal controller, but not one in a game like Circus, Avalanch or Breakout.  I used to play those and often ran into poorly maintained machines with flaky pots.  All it takes is one dead or "noisy" spot for things to go haywire and make them unplayable, resulting in lost quarters and pissed-off players.  Why do you think Arkanoid went to the optical control in the first place?  It's because those pots were a costly maintenance PITA for operators and it was a selling point.

Quote
As a Note, I will add... that a lot of the pot based controllers, used Gearing with these pots.  They were rarely
direct-drive... such was likely was the case, with the Pot for Pong.  The gearing allowed more of the Pots
values to be utilized, thus, upping the resolution/values possible.

Maybe in a pedal or joystick controller, but never in a knob controller.  And, you just contradicted your own statement that the pot's values are "infinite".  If they were, one would be able to get any range of values on any portion of the rotation without gearing.

Quote
This is sort of a dishonest take.  You see... any "Resistance" that you add to an Optical spinner... is still going to
wear down.  And in fact, depending on what you use for the resistance friction (and how much friction that you choose to apply)...
it might wear down far faster than any Pot ever would.

This is a "strawman".  First of all, the correct materials will likely out-last the bearings in the unit and can easily be replaced even if it didn't.  Secondly, the resistance aspect has nothing to do with the operation of the device as a functional control.  Pots turn to useless junk once they begin to cease working perfectly.   Why do you think every potentiometer manufacturer gives a rating for the number of turns?  Some very expensive ones have huge ratings, while cheaper ones are much less.   But they all have a fixed lifespan due to the mechanical contact of the wiper, which grinds away and leaves that conductive debris inside.

Quote
Furthermore, both the Pot and the Optical spinners... would likely have far less resistance than a Geared spinner.

Balderdash.  It all depends on the mechanism one adds to said spinner to achieve whatever resistance one is seeking.  It can be made so tight that you can barely even move it by hand, not that you would want to do that.

Quote
But all of that is besides the point...  Because the only Breakout games that use Pots, are mostly the older
1970s or earlier... black and white, arcade games.

Because the control cares about color  :dizzy:

I will always agree that original controls are the best at replicating what was used, because that was what was used.  But we live in reality and no-one is going to put a 40-year old geared Arkanoid spinner on anything but an original (or dedicated replica) Arkanoid machine.  Why?  Because it will suck on any other game you try to play with it.  Full stop.

« Last Edit: September 19, 2022, 12:21:43 pm by RandyT »

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #25 on: November 21, 2022, 11:21:37 pm »
Is is possible to find original or rebuilt circuit board Arkanoid cabinets that are in good working condition? I’m so tired and frustrated by the paddle sensitivity in my emulator. Makes the game impossible. I want to play it as it was designed to be played with true, accurate, and precise spinner control.

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #26 on: November 22, 2022, 11:18:01 am »
Sorry to hear you're having problems. Which emulator version are you using? Also, what hardware are you using?

Do the sensitivity settings affect the speed of the paddle going from side to side? You should be able to to easily modify the behavior to go from say a quarter turn of the spinner moving the paddle all the way across the screen to a half turn of the spinner moving the paddle all the way across the screen. If you can't make those adjustments, it's possible that the emulator settings are being overridden for some reason. Sometimes, this can be due to an invisible layer, like a frontend that is using its own set of settings.

I can tell you that Arkanoid and its sequels are basically perfectly emulated in MAME at this point. I recently played on an original cabinet and it was actually a worse experience than playing at home with my Turbo Twist 2 spinner (the one with variable resistance that I mentioned in this thread).

I will say that I've had bad luck using Pi for arcade games. I have a couple of RPi3b's with Retropi and they use older versions of MAME that aren't easily configurable. Analog settings aren't always set up correctly or at all. If you downloaded some pre-configured Pi setup, it could easily have been configured incorrectly or not at all for analog inputs. In that case, it could be treating your mouse inputs as a digital inputs, which would make it impossible to adjust the sensitivity.

Before investing in new arcade hardware, I would figure out your software issues, as you should be able to dial in the sensitivity. The easiest way to test would be using Windows on a decent PC. The spinner should have a USB and you should be able to test it out on a version of MAME that hasn't been configured by some random Pi user and copy pasted by countless others, if you know what I mean.

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #27 on: November 22, 2022, 12:25:32 pm »
Let's also not discount overall lag induced by any component in the chain.  In the photos, I not only see a Pi, which has never met my expectations where lag is concerned, but also an HDMI->VGA? converter of unknown quality.  The latter of which could be ok, or absolutely terrible in this regard.  I'm assuming that this isn't being connected to a flat panel, but if it is, that can be one more source of problems.

The nice thing about quality controls and interfaces is their ability to provide precise control in near real-time, or in short, to replicate the experience that the original hardware provided.  But connecting them to lower grade or sub-optimal hardware, and expecting them to be able to fix the inherent issues with that hardware is, to put it mildly, a futile endeavor.

As KenToad stated, get a decent PC (it doesn't even need to be fancy) with a proper video output which the display can use natively (i.e. without conversion) and you are likely to be surprised at the difference which results.  Only with a capable and properly configured system can one start to look at the controls and come to any conclusions about them being fit for the tasks you are expecting from them.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2022, 02:06:31 pm by RandyT »

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #28 on: November 26, 2022, 04:16:20 am »
i havent got a spinner yet but im trying to see which is the best spinner current Turbo Twist , Spintrak or  the GRS Push & Pull Spinner Controller.

Turbo Twist is pricey but what i can make little bit based of the comments it doesnt allow alot of free spinning (so its closest to the arcade feel?) so does it play better with 360 wheels aswell?



i played arkanoid a decade ago dont remember the sensitvity controls of that anymore (arkanoid is then a game that has to be adjusted compared with other games)


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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #29 on: November 26, 2022, 12:09:28 pm »
Turbo Twist is pricey but what i can make little bit based of the comments it doesnt allow alot of free spinning (so its closest to the arcade feel?) so does it play better with 360 wheels aswell?

The TurboTwist2 was the first high-resolution, lag-less and truly optical-sensing spinner to be made in the pushbutton-style.  Any others which use that form-factor have "borrowed" it from the TT2.  With controls, the old adage of "getting what you pay for" applies, as it does for most anything.  The last spinner in your list doesn't use arcade-quality optical sensing technology and is therefore cheaper.  However, the technology it uses likely does not have the same 1:1 feel and lag-less operation.  But if one is the type of user who is happy with the A1UP class of devices, they might find this to be an acceptable trade-off.

The TT2 is a "free-spinning" spinner, but not so much that it feels "greasy" and spins forever.  This is intentional, as this is mostly detrimental to gameplay.  What it does offer is a unique optional add-on, which provides user-tweakable friction to prevent the knob from free-spinning.  This is useful for virtually any paddle-based game, as well as something like Omega Race, Tac Scan, etc... where a dial is used to provide fine aiming control.

The TT2 allows the use of 3 different sized steering wheels, to better suit the space available on a given panel.  The weight of these wheels allows them to be very free-spinning, and will spin for quite some time with them attached, much like the old arcade wheels did.  However, any wheel which is used with a spinner in this manner will not be as robust as a dedicated arcade wheel controller with heavy-duty construction.  I.e. it will work well, but it's not designed for small children or drunken adults to do pull-ups on :)

And one other unique feature of the TT2 from others in your list is that it uses a US standard 1/4" shaft, which allows many original arcade knobs to be used with it.  Could be important to some.                 

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #30 on: November 27, 2022, 07:11:15 am »
And one other unique feature of the TT2 from others in your list is that it uses a US standard 1/4" shaft, which allows many original arcade knobs to be used with it.  Could be important to some.                 

This turned out to be a big deal for me. I wanted to use an authentic Tempest knob for my Tempest build which uses a 1/4" shaft size. Wouldn't fit a GRS.

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Re: Arkanoid Spinner
« Reply #31 on: December 05, 2022, 07:18:12 pm »
Had the same issue here with the fit on a tempest. Thanks for the info.