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Announcing QuokkADB, a marsupial-powered alternative to USB Wombat

rabbitholecomputing

Vendor The First
Rabbit Hole Computing is pleased to announce general availability of QuokkADB, a small and easy-to-use peripheral that allows you to use modern USB keyboards and mice with ADB-equipped macintosh computers. It's available today via our web store at an affordably-priced $29.99. Over the past few months, we've had a closed beta period, where approximately 30 QuokkADBs were deployed to early adoption customers, to gather real-world feedback. A special thanks is due to @treellama for a recent contribution which significantly improved mouse sensitivity and handling, as well as to @zigzagjoe for providing constructive feedback and extensive testing.

The QuokkADB hardware is designed around the low-cost RP2040 microcontroller, and the QuokkADB firmware is powered by Rabbit Hole Computing's RP2040 port of the open-source adbuino firmware, licensed under the GNU GPL v3. QuokkADB usage instructions and documentation are available on the project's GitHub Wiki page.

QuokkADB Rev. 2022g is Unidirectional - It allows you to use USB keyboards and mice on ADB-equipped computers, but not the other way around.

QuokkADB allows for simultaneous use of most USB HID keyboards and mice with any ADB-equipped Macintosh computer. Each QuokkADB comes pre-flashed, fully tested, and mounted in a 3D-printed clamshell housing. Macintosh computers that support soft power-on can be powered on via the push-button on the QuokkADB. A second pass-through ADB connector is provided by default, allowing you to use an ADB peripheral at the same time as the attached USB peripheral. Mouse sensitivity is configured via keyboard shortcuts, which are documented here.

In addition to our ready-to-use, closed-source design, an Open Source Hardware version of QuokkADB, which uses the Raspberry Pi Pico, is available for anyone who would like to produce their own. QuokkADB Community Edition is licensed under the terms of the CERN Open Hardware Licence Version 2 - Strongly Reciprocal license, an Open Source Hardware Association-recommended Open Source Hardware license.

Known Limitations

Currently, only USB keyboards and mice are supported. QuokkADB has limited support for USB hubs; Not all are compatible. The IOGEAR - GUH285W6 - 4-Port USB 2.0 Hub is readily available at an MSRP of $9.99 and known to work well. It is based on the GL850G, a very low-cost USB chip, which is commonly used in inexpensive USB 2.0 hubs.QuokkADB-Rev2022g-PCB-bare-front-iso.JPG
 

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dramirez

Well-known member
Looks great, but what about those who want to use our ADB keyboards on USB machines? Could it be just a later firmware update or is it more complicated that just that?
 

rabbitholecomputing

Vendor The First
Looks great, but what about those who want to use our ADB keyboards on USB machines? Could it be just a later firmware update or is it more complicated that just that?
This sort of functionality can only be enabled with a revised hardware design, and is not possible to enable via a firmware upgrade. Since there are already products available in the marketplace that do what you want, we'd recommend those. There is nothing wrong with USB Wombat.

Our design philosophy is generally "do one thing, and do it well."
 

dramirez

Well-known member
Thanks for answering! The only thing I don't like about the USB Wombat it's the price...
BTW I really enjoy using the ZuluSCSI on my Macs and NeXT Cube, great products!
 

halkyardo

Well-known member
Just got mine today!

I can confirm that it works great with these cheap hubs that I have lying around everywhere, and also works with a Logitech Unifying receiver that acts as both a keyboard and mouse. The default mouse sensitivity seems to be a lot higher than on the ADB-USB Wombat, but that's more an observation than a complaint, especially since it's adjustable.

It also seems to cope well with USB devices being hotplugged (the Wombat didn't seem to like this), which means I can finally integrate my IIfx into the janky USB-switch based KVM solution that my modern desktop machines are all connected to. Brilliant!
 

MrFahrenheit

Well-known member
Just got mine today!

I can confirm that it works great with these cheap hubs that I have lying around everywhere, and also works with a Logitech Unifying receiver that acts as both a keyboard and mouse. The default mouse sensitivity seems to be a lot higher than on the ADB-USB Wombat, but that's more an observation than a complaint, especially since it's adjustable.

It also seems to cope well with USB devices being hotplugged (the Wombat didn't seem to like this), which means I can finally integrate my IIfx into the janky USB-switch based KVM solution that my modern desktop machines are all connected to. Brilliant!
I never thought of doing a Mac setup with a KVM. That would be a great setup!
 

Reasons.

Well-known member
Really appreciate the report that hotplug works--I had to take the Wombat out of a similar desk setup for that reason (plus it might not play well with the webcam that's attached to the same hub). I might have to pick one up!
 

Compgeke

Well-known member
I've been using one for a while (a year or so? Idk it's been a while) and so far so good :) . I've rocked it on my Powerbook for a few events since USB mice are way more disposable than ADB at this point in time.
 
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