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#84670 - 03/11/05 02:54 PM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4422
Loc: Marion, IA
For controls, my panel is a little wider than LuSiD's as well. I used a nice, S-Video connection to a 27" TV for the bigger viewing of games. A friend of mine hacked an old cabinet and put a 21" monitor in it in the vertical position (for old games like Pac Man, Donkey Kong, etc) but with my 27" TV, I get as big of a vertical image as he did, but get a lot larger horizontal images that he ever will. Oddly enough, the 27" TV is better quality than what we have in our living room of our house, but I really wanted the S-Video connection for the games. Using a TV also means that I don't have to "turn on" horizontal lines for the arcade feel, but the TV is good enough, that the lines aren't as big as you might think.

Back to the controls...

The right and left controls are the Happs Supers (8-way) with 6 buttons. The one in the middle is a Happs Super but with 4-way control. It is just directly connected to the wiring for the player 1 8-way control. This joystick is the only way to easily play the old 4-way games like Pac Man, Donkey Kong and the like. The 2 yellow buttons by the 4-way joystick are also tied right into the player 1 button 1 since that is all that those games used. I have 2 there so that if you are right handed or left handed, it works the same.

I have a clear, LED lit trackball in the middle with 3 buttons. The ball glows blue normally, but when you press one of the green buttons, it turns red.

I printed my marquee on a thin vinyl materialat Kinkos so that it is one piece. Sandwiched it between 2 pieces of plexiglas and curved it. Put it on with a small florescent light behind it and it looks nice.

Coin door was used off of eBay. It works 100% and accepts any coin size. It has a counter on top that tracks the number of coins that have gone through the game. I don't remember what it had on it when I got it, and I have since reset it to zero. To date, I have a total of about 50 coins that have been put into it (since I just use the button combinations to fake the coin insertion).

I also have the player 1 and player 2 buttons.

Throw in the small Altic Lansing speakers and subwoofer, plus the 2 fans (one for TV and one for the main part of the cabinet). The control panel is actually more blue looking than the pictures show, but I didn't spend the time adjusting the coloration in Photoshop before I posted them. It is also made with regular laminate matterial applied to the surface of the MDF.

I put caster wheels on mine so I can roll it around if I need to since this thing is pretty heavy (even without the TV in it).

There are 2 things that I want to do with it yet. One is get a bezel for around the TV, and the other is get some side art for it. I guess it would be nice to get a faster PC too. I am running a Pentium III 500MHz with 768MB RAM.

I also am behind about 4 years on the MAME application and ROMS, although they are easily obtained.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#84671 - 08/29/05 10:01 AM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4422
Loc: Marion, IA
Reviving an old post....

I am almost done with my second MAME cabinet. After I posted the first message in this thread, I started talking to some of the guys at work about my cabinet, and I sold it so that I could build a new one.

Anyway, I have a few small pieces left, but I am up and running with about 90% of the games (NEOGEO ones don't work yet, plus a few others), but it is getting close.

The web site for some of the details is:

Cabinet

_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#84672 - 08/29/05 02:08 PM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
oldskoolboarder Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/25/03
Posts: 2181
Loc: Menlo Park, CA
oooo.. Is that Space Ace?

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#84673 - 08/29/05 03:21 PM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4422
Loc: Marion, IA
Yup. At the time of that photo (middle of last week) I only had the laserdisk games working (about 16 of them). Now I am up to about 5300 games working. Unfortunately, many of those are duplicates (Pan-Man, Pac-Man on Galaga hardware, etc. Same game, different ROM set) or just pain dumb games. I would say that there are about 4000 unique games, and about 100 worth playing, unless you are in the mood for a 1980's flashback and want old school games, then again, your name IS "oldskool..."

I am going to hook up my old Sega Dreamcast in there, and I have a bunch of pinball machines emulated. That is the cutting edge stuff (the pinball emulation)... You will notice one of the pinball flipper buttons on the left side of the control panel. And to think, several weeks ago I had sheets of particle board, MDF, laminate, a bunch of screws, and a box full of new, real arcade controls and buttons.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#84674 - 08/30/05 10:45 AM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
shag Offline
veteran

Registered: 11/29/04
Posts: 158
Loc: Florida
You can just play all the old original arcade games on your computer. This works just fine for most games and you would be playing the original rom just as it was in the arcade.

I know the idea of playing at a full standup arcade cabinet is cool and all, but for those addressing the WAF or space limitations, playing on your comp is good enough and won't cost anything.

One issue is playing games with special controls like Robotron with 2 joysticks, or Tron with the gun trigger joystick and spin knob coptrol. Star Wars is another or any driving game. You can buy many different controllers out there (at a fraction of a full size mame cabinet) to play most of your favorite games the way you played them on a full size cabinet.
_________________________
Shag
My Home Theater

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#84675 - 08/30/05 11:02 AM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4422
Loc: Marion, IA
You are 100% correct. After all, there is just a nice PC inside the cabinet doing all of the work anyway. I will tell you this, though, when people come over, they would rather fire up the arcade cabinet, that sit at a desk looking at a 17" or 19" computer monitor tapping on a keyboard.

That works for many people though who do not want to spend the money, or have the time/skill needed to build a cabinet themselves. But again, you are 100% correct in that you can play it for free on your PC.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#84676 - 08/30/05 12:40 PM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
BrenR Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 3602
Loc: Winnipeg MB Canada
As a MAME cabinet owner/builder myself... it's mainly the "cool" factor... I always wanted an upright or cocktail table as a kid. It hardly ever gets used, but it is something fun to fire up when people come over.

Bren R.

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#84677 - 08/30/05 07:58 PM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
tomtuttle Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8271
Loc: Tacoma
Nick and Bren, I'd be interested to learn more.

I recently built a very entry-level HTPC but still have a standard-definition TV. I don't use PVR functionality because we have DirecTivo. One of the reasons I assembled the machine is to play games with the family, but I am finding that "modern" PC games don't really meet my criteria on a couple of levels. First, they are primarily complicated, single player games rather than "take a turn and beat my score" sorts of things. Second, the content is mostly unsuitable for the under-12 set.

So, I'm pondering learning more about whether MAME type functionality might fit my bill. I'm interested in using my TV rather than a cabinet, but could certainly spring for some controls if necessary.

What do you think? Where do I learn more? What do I budget?

Thanks for your thoughts. I appreciate you sharing your expertise.
_________________________
bibere usque ad hilaritatem

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#84678 - 08/30/05 11:52 PM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4422
Loc: Marion, IA
I am just outputting my stuff on a nice 27" TV in the cabinet, so it will work for you too. In fact, you SHOULD be able tin interface a control panel with your HTPC and have it all in one location. Your quickest way to get started would be to buy a control panel that you want. Some good ones (you don't even have to built them if you don't want) are at:
SlikStick
HotRod
X-Arcade

I opted to build my own. You can get parts from:
IPac PC Interface
For joysticks and buttons contact PonyBoy at:
ArcadeControls Forums

If you are looking to build one yourself, let me know, I had some spare pieces machined to .0001" precision by a local fabricator with a CNC machine.


_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#84679 - 08/31/05 01:33 AM Re: OT: MAME Arcades
BrenR Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 3602
Loc: Winnipeg MB Canada
I second the IPAC... but I got my controls from the Real Bob Roberts... he's a good ol' boy from Louisiana, great guy, been in the business longer than I've been alive kind of thing. Also got some stuff from HAPP Controls before I learned about Bob.

I'll leave it at that, though... MAME is a bit of a grey area legally. It isn't illegal itself, but you have to own PCBs of any of the games you want to play for them to be legal.

Bren R.

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