What is it? This is a kit which will allow you to convert a (preferably non-functional) Commodore 64 (or C64C or VIC20) into a USB keyboard which can be used just like any other USB keyboard. It al...Read More…
This is a kit which will allow you to convert a (preferably non-functional) Commodore 64 (or C64C or VIC20) into a USB keyboard which can be used just like any other USB keyboard. It also includes two joystick ports which allow you to use standard 9 pin Commodore / Atari style joysticks as USB joysticks.
I have made many USB keyboard kits for many different vintage computers, which I am starting to list here on Tindie. This is an extension of the original Commodore 64 USB keyboards I made, with added joystick support. These allow you to reuse the case and keyboard from a broken machine, either as a plain USB keyboard or to install a Raspberry Pi or other single board computer.
This is a plug in and go kit, designed specifically for the C64. No special drivers and need to do any remapping in software, the keyboard will be detected as a standard USB keyboard in Windows, OS X, Linux, and any tablets or phones which allow you to connect a standard USB keyboard. The joysticks will appear as two separate USB game controllers with a 4-way directional stick and up to three buttons.
The kit includes the USB keyboard controller, fixings and a USB lead. Mode switch versions also included a replacement power LED for the case which will change colour depending on the keyboard mode.
The kit does not include a Commodore case or keyboard, metal brackets or Raspberry Pi, you need to provide those yourself, and please try to start with a broken computer if possible.
The USB connector can be fitted in different locations, depending on how you plan to use it
There are three options for the keyboard mapping
The keyboard mapping is designed for standard UK or US keyboards. Contact me if you need an international variant.
The board is designed to fit on the side of the case in place of the original board.
A bug in recent versions of Windows causes both joystick ports to be labelled as 'Joystick 1', although the order they are displayed in is correct. Linux based systems identify the ports correctly.
See also a version without the joystick connectors. Commodore 64 USB keyboard kit
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I write a blog about old computers, repairing them, upgrading them, replacing them. Read more at blog.tynemouthsoftware.co.uk