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FAQ Support and Troubleshooting

This page contains resources that will help you troubleshoot issues that may arise when using RetroGameBoyz products.

On this page:

  • Playing Atari 7800 games with the RetroGameBoyz Robotron controller
  • Atari 5200 - Starting Games
  • Atari 5200 - Calibration and Adjustments
  • Atari 5200 - Playing Star Raiders
  • Atari 5200 - POKEY Adjustment - (Pot Keyboard Integrated Circuit)
  • Atari 5200 - Calibration Defender / Ms. Pac-Man
  • Colecovision - Y Cable with other control pads / peripherals / games (Defender / Bank Panic)
  • Atari 5200 - Playing Frogger and Q*bert
  • Alternative Calibration method for Atari 5200 Keypad Module
    (could be game dependent)

Customer Review:

"Excellent quality work, amazing support. I had an issue with calibration. Turns out the POKEY in my 5200 needed a little adjustment. I wouldn't have known had Mike not diagnosed my issue in just a couple e-mail exchanges. Rare to find someone so dedicated to what they do and the community they support. Looking forward to buying more."

  • Colecovision Y Cable - possible erratic operations with Roller Controller or Games

Always turn off your console before plugging in or switching controller peripherals. Static can cause the controller ICs to short. Make sure your console is not close to a television or on a rug as well. 

As you may know  I develop Colecovision control pad that has 4 buttons. 2 start sequences (1) and (*) and 2 action buttons (1) and (2). I have sold many of these since 2017. Many customers have been pleased and love the controller exactly as it is, as it can play many Colecovision games. In an effort to support more start sequences and actions from use of the original Colecovision controller keypad and keep costs reasonable, I have manufactured a 9 pin DB9 Y cable to be used with the original Colecovision and CollectorVision Phoenix. When used in conjunction with my control pad (or a standard Atari 2600 Joystick or compatible) and an original Colecovision controller keypad - you can perform additional keypad operations. However this Y cable will not work in conjunction with a Roller Controller as the Roller Controller and my control pad share some similar pin outs when used with the Y cable. This may result in erratic directional movement or prevent directions or buttons from working. Solution: Please be sure to use the Y cable in the original Colecovision controller port along with the RetroGameBoyz Colecovision control pad.

Note: Atari 2600 paddles and OEM / original 1 button Atari Joystick CAN be plugged in at the same time AND left in. 

BUT - Sega Genesis controller or OEM Atari 7800 controller will disable paddle functionality
 if left in together.

Note: If you would like to use this Y cable on your Atari 2600 to keep the paddles and joystick plugged in simultaneously, you must use and original Atari 2600 joystick or one button compatible joystick only. If an original Atari 7800 joystick,  Sega Genesis control pad or RetroGamBoyz Atari 7800 control pad is plugged in with the paddle, the paddle will not work correctly. 

Did you know? If this Y cable is used in conjunction with a Colecovision and an Atari 7800 joystick or RetroGameBoyz Atari 7800 control pad - the Atari 7800 (2) button action will work with Colecovision (2) button games. (requires original Colecovision keypad to start games)


  • Defender:

Previous versions of the RetroGameBoyz Colecovision control pad are fitted with approx. 9 ft cable. Some have reported this longer cable with or without the Y-cable causes the smart bomb to fire when firing the laser. This seems to be game programming dependent.  As a remedy to this, the current version of the RetroGameBoyz Colecovision control pad has been fitted with a shorter cable. Also it is not necessary to use the Y-cable when playing Defender, as it can be started with the RetroGameBoyz Colecovision control pad using numeral 1.

  • Bank Panic:

This is a homebrew game created in 2011 that is a conversion over from the Sega Mark III. It has been reported that when using the Y cable – that both shots (left and right will fire when pressing (A - button II). It is not necessary to use the Y cable for this game. BUT if you want to, you can remove pin #6 with a needle nose pliers from one side of the male end of the Y cable where you plug the original coleco keypad into.


  • Atari 5200 Arcade Stick - Center Adjustment - it may be your POKEY!

If you notice your character or paddle game cursor does not move all the way to the edge of the screen - you may need to calibrate your RetroGameBoyz Atari 5200 arcade stick.

Check this video out to learn how:

If that still does not work, your Pokey POT on the Atari 5200 console main board, may need adjustment. Check this video out from Ivory Tower Collections to learn how.

  •  Atari 5200 Game not starting

The keypad uses (A) to Start, (B) Pause and (C) to reset. Please be sure to press (A) to start. Check the calibration and demonstration video at the top of this page to learn more.

  • Characters are wandering up, down or left or right etc.

RetroGameBoyz Atari 5200 Arcade Stick:The horizontal and/or vertical trim knobs may need slight adjustment. Check the calibration and demonstration video at the top of this page to learn more.

RetroGameBoyz Atari 5200 Keypad Module:  Certain games my show character wondering - Ms. Pac-Man, Pac-Man, Kangaroo for example - usually this is toward the left or up - where the character moves in one direction and then goes back the opposite direction after releasing the d-pad. If this is the case - on certain games you can press the D-Pad in all directions and this may reset the calibration for that game. This may be control pad specific as well - but it worked with a Sega Genesis control pad, RetroGameBoyz Sega Master System control pad, and the 8bitdo wireless 2.4gh Sega Genesis control pad - see this video link as an example:

  • How do I play Star Raiders with the RetroGameBoyz Atari 5200 Arcade Stick

Check out this video

  • How can I play other Atari 7800 and 2600 Games with the Atari 7800 Robotron Controller?

Check out this video

  • How do I play, calibrate - Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man and Defender

Chances are you just need to calibrate the joystick using the horizontal and vertical trim knobs. Check out this video as an example.

  • Playing Frogger and Q*bert on the Atari 5200

As per the game manuals listed below, these games require you to press and hold the fire button simultaneously when moving the joystick. This is not a controller issue.

  • Frogger game manual

    • "Joystick: Use the joystick to turn Frogger in the direction you wish him to hop. Then press AND COMPLETELY RELEASE the lower fire button on the side of the controller to hop Frogger once in that direction."
  • Q*Bert game manual

    • "To move Q*bert from cube to cube press down on the Fire Button and move the joystick in the direction you want Q*bert to hop".