First off, the knockoff controller was a bit disappointing. The PCB uses a chip-on-board shift register and is very small leaving plenty of room for extra components, but it just doesn't have the original controller feel. Luckily, I have a local shop that I was able to procure an original controller from. I've done some measuring and I think I can cram all of the components into this space after cutting out the columns (see red box in image). I'll need to use a different speaker though; I'm currently testing sound quality on a few speaks that I have laying around and will post which one I choose. I've also decided that since I won't have a good time to work on this unit this weekend anyways that I'll wait and pick up some dead NES components from my local shop and use them to make a controller breakout board. This is largely due to the connectivity issues I had while testing the knockoff board as the connector sockets are too large to support my male-to-male perf-board wires. The wire size issues caused my initial test to get a lot of false positive button presses during my tests and I think it would be useful to solve this before choosing beyond a doubt which controller I should move forward with.