Image: MisterAddons

Input latency is a real bone of contention amongst gamers these days. Not every piece of gaming hardware is created equal, and the introduction of wireless control and cloud streaming means that lag and latency get a lot more attention than they used to.

The retro gaming sector is more sensitive to latency than most, largely because older games usually have some form of underlying emulation (which introduces extra frames) and the games themselves were often designed around CRT displays, which traditionally have less latency than modern flat-panel screens.

Porkshop Express / @MisterAddons is a well-known name within the MiSTer community, and he's looking to solve this issue with a new range of console controller adapters, A/V solutions, and power accessories, all produced under his new 'Reflex' branding.

The Reflex Encode Fighting Board — Image: MisterAddons

"I've spent hundreds of hours measuring and documenting the latency of controllers, joysticks, and adapters, searching for the lowest latency controllers for the gaming community," he says. "I care deeply about latency's impact on the 'fun-ness' of games and believe there should be hardware worthy of the incredible games we enjoy. In that spirit, I'm launching a new line of 'PORKCHOP APPROVED LATENCY (TM)' gaming accessories, called 'REFLEX'. The product line will focus on both modern and retro entries. Modern devices will work with PCs and MiSTer (along with a few modern-ish consoles). Retro accessories will include things like console controller adapters, A/V solutions, and power accessories. Power accessories and latency don't really have anything to do with each other, but just humour me."

The range will focus on both modern and retro systems; modern devices will work with PCs and MiSTer, along with a few "modern-ish" consoles. On the control side of things, the open-source Reflex Encode Fighting board is already available and is compatible with Direct Input, Xinput, Switch, and PS4.

The Reflex Adapt — Image: MisterAddons

The Reflex Adapt, on the other hand, is a multi-console controller adapter and supports many classic controllers and multi-taps. "In addition to the popular controller support (NES, SNES, Genesis, Saturn, N64, Gamecube, Wii), it features special modes for PSX JogCon (Spinner, fake spinner, wheel, and paddle), PSX GunCon (lowest latency USB light gun solution for 240p/480i), NeGcon, and more obscure consoles like Jaguar and Virtual Boy (pending adapters)," says MisterAddons. "The OLED screen shows real-time button inputs so the device can be used to test controllers as well. Best of all, the same adapters used for MiSTer SNAC/SNAX are used with the Adapt."

Stick 'n Spin is a modern stick combined with an arcade-style spinner, while 'CTRL' is a series of drop-in PCB replacements for original console controllers. The SNES model is done and is currently in production, but other consoles are to follow. MisterAddons will also sell Video Switcher and USB-PD cables for original consoles.