Using The Steam Controller With LEGO Motors

While Valve’s Steam Controller was ultimately a commercial failure, there’s no denying it’s an interesting piece of hardware. With dual trackpads, a wealth of buttons, and Bluetooth capability, it could be the ideal way to control your next build. Thanks to a recent project by [geggo], now you’ve even got an example you can follow.

A custom PCB holding an ESP32 and DRV8833 dual H-bridge motor controller is used to interface with standard LEGO motors using their stock block-like connectors. That means the board is a drop-in upgrade for whatever motorized creation you’ve already built.

Since the ESP32 obviously has WiFi in addition to Bluetooth, that also means this little board could be used to control LEGO projects over the local network or even Internet with some changes to the firmware.

Interestingly, while Valve officially enabled Bluetooth on the Steam Controller back in 2018, it sounds like some undocumented poking and reverse engineering was necessary to get it working here. That’s great for those of us who like a good hack, but if you’re more interested in just getting things working, [geggo] has been good enough to release the source code to get you started.

If you’re not interested in Bluetooth but want to get your creation up and moving, we’ve recently covered how one hacker used the ESP8266 to bring his LEGO train to life by integrating it into his smart home.

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