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Author Topic: Another slim cabinet build  (Read 1703 times)

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KevinSc

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Another slim cabinet build
« on: September 17, 2017, 08:24:06 pm »
Hi all, I have wanted to build one of these cabinets for a long time. Finally getting around to attempting it.  I have been reading lots of information found on this site, and my thanks to all the information that has been provided by everyone else.

I am starting this thread to start getting specific help for my build from you experts.  Please feal free to critize and offer suggestions.

My goal is mostly to play the old school classics with MAME, and maybe some of the older fighters, like MK and MK2.  I am also now pretty sure I want some pinball to be able to be played on there. 

I decided to build a slim cabinet since it will be a LED screen. (I realize crt is 'better' but I don't want to deal with it, I'm not going to change this decision). Design is very similar to others that have come before. I have used previous builders sketches provided here and modified them to fit my choices.

I finally decided to go w/ MDF, I almost went with ply mostly to avoid the weight, and potential risk of water damage as this will be in the basement (basement is dry, but you never know). I did end up going with MDF mostly because of its ease to work with and paint.  I decided I will build the base w/ 2x4's and plywood bottom shelf such that the MDF sides are raised up off the carpet 'just in case'.

For the screen, I WAS set on the idea of a 16:10, but then figured out that they pretty much don't exist anymore at the size I wanted, or are too expensive for my use here.  I saw 4:3 monitors were still available, but they weren't very big, and if I flipped onevertical to get better use of the available space for all the vertical games, then horizontal games would be kinda small......so I went with the idea I saw a few people mention, and I am not sure I have seen someone post of pic of actually doing it... I got a 16:9 32", the LG 32MA68HY-P (IPS panels) I plan on flipping it vertical, with a tinted sheet of glass/plexi in front of it, hoping to hide whatever part of the screen is 'not' being used at any given aspect ratio.  My biggest fear here, especially now that I have it, is its size. It seems big. Anything Horitzontal is fine which is why I went w/ 32" for the width when playing horiztonal games, but anything vertical is big. And Future Pinball running full screen vertical is even bigger.

Current plans for controls are two 4-way/8-way switchable servostik's, 6 buttons for each, a spinner w/ two buttons, a track ball, and some side buttons for pinball.

Plan on screwing and gluing the top and upper rear panels. Only screwing on the middle and lower rear panels for access to the monitor. And making a 'door' on the front panel where the coin door is to access the computer from the front easily. Also a drawer under the control panel.

Pics below show the two sides cut-out. (I cut one out, and used a flush trim router bit to copy the second). Also shows how games look on the monitor, and how big it will be when in place in the cabinet (all of the screen will be visible to the user through tinted glass, none of it will be hidden behind any form of bezel)

Base is 22" deep. total height is 75". Top of control panel should end up being about 37" screen angle is ~14deg Inside width is planned to be 24"
« Last Edit: November 06, 2017, 04:42:25 pm by KevinSc »

Drnick

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2017, 12:40:41 pm »
Don't really see the need for the drawer under the control panel. Unless you plan to use it for storage of console controllers or guns.  Other than that it sounds like you have a solid plan. I recommend the hinges that are used in kitchen cabinets if you are going to go for  a large front door.  Have fun with the build.   

Laythe

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2017, 01:11:35 pm »
Looking good! 

...so I went with the idea I saw a few people mention, and I am not sure I have seen someone post of pic of actually doing it... I got a 16:9 32", the LG 32MA68HY-P (IPS panels) I plan on flipping it vertical, with a tinted sheet of glass/plexi in front of it, hoping to hide whatever part of the screen is 'not' being used at any given aspect ratio.  My biggest fear here, especially now that I have it, is its size. It seems big. Anything Horitzontal is fine which is why I went w/ 32" for the width when playing horiztonal games, but anything vertical is big. And Future Pinball running full screen vertical is even bigger.

There's plenty of pics, but they take some searching.  Here's links to pics of the cabinets I know of that have done it so far here, in roughly chronological order.

Maximus's Marvel vs Capcon Revolution 2.0: http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,139647.0
Token's "Moonshot":   http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,147277.0.html
My "Mimic":  http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,149109.0.html
Krangbrain's Star Wars:  http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,152253.0.html   -  though his pictures were hosted on photobucket, and are now held for ransom.
Sealcouch's Nintento bartop:  http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,153085.0.html
Chito's Monolith:  http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,151843.0.html

There may be more that I've missed.  Some might count Thagerty's Pinkadia http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,150352.0.html but I think that's more a virtual pinball than an arcade cabinet.

You can make MAME games smaller onscreen using layout files if you find things are too big.  I'm using a 46" TV, and using the space to run modified bezel art instead of making games too big.  I don't think a 32" would leave you enough room to want to run bezel art, but you can use less of the screen for games that play worse when too large, particularly if you are hiding the remainder of the screen under tinted glass or plexi.  You can also mask off the unused portions of the screen inside the cabinet like Moonshot and Mimic do, which can help your visual proportions to make the cab look right.

I don't think a drawer is particularly necessary - you can use a wireless keyboard and mouse and not need one.

Looks like a good start.  Best of luck.

KevinSc

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2017, 11:17:22 am »
Thanks guys.

I find it interesting about the comments on the drawer. I got this design from penney arcade and 'extended' it for my screen size, and he had a drawer in the 4" spot right under where the control panel goes. I was thinking it was a nice spot for it, and it would give a simple location to throw extra stuff, like the keyboard and mouse, or whatever.  Is a drawer maybe just a pain to get installed correctly? was wondering the 'reasons' to not put one in, given the current cutout has a 'spot' for one.

Thanks for the links. I did see that 'maximus' one. That is a big screen!. On 'Moonshot' I see retroarch can be used to position and resize the screen...I will have to check that out if I decide I need it.

I have been trying to figure out my computer build. I realize mame doesn't need much to run, and this is overkill for that.  But looking at the pinball forums, they recommend some more hefty specs, but they are also running three screens. And I was playing future pinball on my current pc, and it seemed to run the tables I threw at it just fine w/ not that great of a 3d card. I am trying to keep things 'cheaper', so I came up with this setup.  Any opinions? I was thinking the SSD drive would allow the machine to bootup quick. If that is not needed, I am happy to drop it, its the most expensive thing on the list! I will use an existing spinning drive I have with more capacity to store everything else.  I plan on running windows 7, avoiding win 10 if possible. Power supply is also overkill, but they don't cost much, and since the computer is also going to power other things in the cabinet, why not make sure we got enough juice.

CPU: Intel - Core i3-6100 3.7GHz Dual-Core Processor 
Motherboard: Gigabyte - GA-H110M-A Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard
Memory: Crucial - 8GB (1 x 8GB) DDR4-2133 Memor
Storage: Samsung - 850 EVO-Series 250GB 2.5" Solid State Drive
Video Card: MSI - GeForce GT 710 2GB Video Card
Case: Rosewill - Line-M MicroATX Mini Tower Case
Power Supply: EVGA - 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply
Optical Drive: Lite-On - iHAS124-14 DVD/CD Writer
Wireless Network Adapter: Rosewill - RNX-N250PCe PCI-Express x1 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi Adapter
Keyboard: Logitech - Wireless Combo MK270 Wireless Standard Keyboard w/Optical Mouse

Laythe

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2017, 11:15:42 pm »
The drawer used to be all the rage, but it's currently out of fashion.  Doesn't hurt anything, if it's reasonably well concealed.  If it's obviously a drawer, that makes the cabinet a bit less like a real one.  If it's got a big ol drawer pull on it, that's sort of the BYOAC equivalent of bell bottom pants - everybody did it but we find it embarrassing in retrospect.  I put removable doors in the front of mine, and use the whole bottom for storage space, they're hard to spot as removable panels when it's buttoned up.

Sure thing, on the links.  Thanks for reading 'em.

You can also resize the emulated screen within Mame using layout files on a game-by-game basis.  They're pretty easy to write.

Your specs seem pretty good to me.  8GB ram is probably more than you need (I think) but it's not like it's breaking the bank.  I too strongly prefer win7 over 10, I'll argue win10 is malware.  I didn't network my cabinet at all, I do my administration through jump drives.  I'm with you on the SSD, when I use a computer with a HDD in it I feel like something's wrong with it these days.  "Why's it so slow?  Why's it making that noise?  Oh, that's right."   A good SSD like that EVO will, I think, probably outlive an HDD in this application, too.  Setting up all the software is a pain, I don't want to do it again one day because a drive died.  Wouldn't say the SSD is needed, but it's a nice luxury.

keilmillerjr

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2017, 07:27:29 am »
Thanks guys.

I find it interesting about the comments on the drawer. I got this design from penney arcade and 'extended' it for my screen size, and he had a drawer in the 4" spot right under where the control panel goes. I was thinking it was a nice spot for it, and it would give a simple location to throw extra stuff, like the keyboard and mouse, or whatever.  Is a drawer maybe just a pain to get installed correctly? was wondering the 'reasons' to not put one in, given the current cutout has a 'spot' for one.

Thanks for the links. I did see that 'maximus' one. That is a big screen!. On 'Moonshot' I see retroarch can be used to position and resize the screen...I will have to check that out if I decide I need it.

I have been trying to figure out my computer build. I realize mame doesn't need much to run, and this is overkill for that.  But looking at the pinball forums, they recommend some more hefty specs, but they are also running three screens. And I was playing future pinball on my current pc, and it seemed to run the tables I threw at it just fine w/ not that great of a 3d card. I am trying to keep things 'cheaper', so I came up with this setup.  Any opinions? I was thinking the SSD drive would allow the machine to bootup quick. If that is not needed, I am happy to drop it, its the most expensive thing on the list! I will use an existing spinning drive I have with more capacity to store everything else.  I plan on running windows 7, avoiding win 10 if possible. Power supply is also overkill, but they don't cost much, and since the computer is also going to power other things in the cabinet, why not make sure we got enough juice.

CPU: Intel - Core i3-6100 3.7GHz Dual-Core Processor 
Motherboard: Gigabyte - GA-H110M-A Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard
Memory: Crucial - 8GB (1 x 8GB) DDR4-2133 Memor
Storage: Samsung - 850 EVO-Series 250GB 2.5" Solid State Drive
Video Card: MSI - GeForce GT 710 2GB Video Card
Case: Rosewill - Line-M MicroATX Mini Tower Case
Power Supply: EVGA - 430W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply
Optical Drive: Lite-On - iHAS124-14 DVD/CD Writer
Wireless Network Adapter: Rosewill - RNX-N250PCe PCI-Express x1 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi Adapter
Keyboard: Logitech - Wireless Combo MK270 Wireless Standard Keyboard w/Optical Mouse

I have 3.1ghz i3 4gb ram and ssd completely booting to front end in 12 seconds. Get an ssd. You don't need every game on earth on it. No one will play them all.

Skip the keyboard drawer. Get a small wireless handheld keyboard/trackpad. Once set up, you will rarely touch it.

I prefer windows 10. People on this forum make up ---steaming pile of meadow muffin--- about it as an excuse to uphold older versions of windows, so whatever. I'm done arguing with people when I have 100% hidden windows on a fast booting os, and it only took me a few minutes to do.

KevinSc

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2017, 07:36:53 pm »
Pics of the base, top and bottom. Nothing special, just 2x4's and plywood.
Pic of the 1x2's drilled, screwed, and glued to the sides.  I plan on mounting the ones for the speaker panel and around the control panel mount at a later point, they aren't needed for initial assembly (but I did put the screen bezel 1x2 mounts on, figured it was easier at this point since they were large)
Also got the top and rear panels all cut, no pic, they just look like sheets of MDF, but some nice practice cutting angles w/ the table saw :)


« Last Edit: November 06, 2017, 04:42:00 pm by KevinSc »

KevinSc

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #7 on: September 29, 2017, 10:32:56 am »
More assembly, the frame is standing. 

Biggest concern is still that screen size, it still feels very big to me. It sounds like for mame I can resize if I feel its too big, so maybe thats ok. Can one do that in future pinball? That one actually uses the full screen.

« Last Edit: November 06, 2017, 04:41:46 pm by KevinSc »

rablack97

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #8 on: September 29, 2017, 04:46:15 pm »
TBH playing FP and VP on a vertical screen sucks man.

I have a 32" in all of my cabs, although i never went vert....it's going to seem big, but once you build around it will be ok.

Plus think this through on what games you will play the most, for me it was fighting games, so the vert was not even an option.  You can play galaga on a wide in the proper aspect ratio, and they have all of those lovely dynamic bezels for the games as well, if you dont like the black voids.

TV size is good, i wouldn't worry about that too much, you could go smaller, but thats just preference, I've never been a fan of a big cab and a teeny tiny computer monitor, but thats just me...

Frame looks good though, keep plugging away at it.

   

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ivwshane

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2017, 03:56:48 am »
I built a vertical cab for a friend using a 32" screen. I probably wouldn't do it again unless it was specifically for vertical shooters.

It ended up being taller than my standard size cab with 27" hd tv. It was skinny enough but for stability I had to put it on a base (which actually made it look better). If I had to do a skinny cab I think I would have gotten a used 19" 4:3 lcd (Amazon has them for like $50).

« Last Edit: October 03, 2017, 02:14:02 am by ivwshane »

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2017, 11:15:26 am »
Maybe this is obvious but Don't forget leg levelers. That will keep your game off the floor and away from moisture and will protect if from damage moving it around.

Laythe

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2017, 03:49:59 am »
I think even at a 32", it'd look better to be hiding the top and bottom ends of the screen behind the control panel and speaker panel.  Aim for a square display area between them - or at most, a vertical 4:3 area, don't try to cram the whole screen in as viewable area 

Just my earnest $0.02: don't build an ungainly giraffe cabinet like those vpcabs Vertigo things.  Just because you are using a 16:9 screen in portrait doesn't mean it has to LOOK like you are using a 16:9 screen in portrait; look at Moonshot or Krangbrain's project as alternatives.  Cover up the screen ends.  You already fear games might look too big, and you are right.  You don't need all that height for arcade games.

That said, build what you dig.  You are the only one it has to make happy.  My opinion's worth what you paid for it.

KevinSc

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2017, 10:23:29 am »
Thanks for the input guys.

Yes, I will get to the leg levelers down the road, seemed like a minor detail at this point. Also w/ 2x4's on the base, and mdf raised up off the ground, I don't think I will get much damage. (can be seen in pic).
As far as seeing the entire screen. I wanted to be able to see all of it, just in case, you can see the cabinet in pics, it is already cut to accommodate this.  I plan on putting graylite-14 glass over top to only show what is being displayed, everything else would be hidden, in theory.

That's actually why I am writing this. I have the bezel around the screen cut, screen fits in like a glove, was about to build the mount for the screen. And I plan on ordering the glass today, but I won't have the glass for about a week. As far as mounting the screen. Do I want it as close as possible to the glass to avoid any possible reflections (since a lcd is flat, I can get it VERY close) Or do I want it mounted receded back away from the glass for any reason. I was thinking it should be right up as close as possible to the glass.

Thanks.

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2017, 10:48:52 am »
I think even at a 32", it'd look better to be hiding the top and bottom ends of the screen behind the control panel and speaker panel.  Aim for a square display area between them - or at most, a vertical 4:3 area, don't try to cram the whole screen in as viewable area 

Just my earnest $0.02: don't build an ungainly giraffe cabinet like those vpcabs Vertigo things.  Just because you are using a 16:9 screen in portrait doesn't mean it has to LOOK like you are using a 16:9 screen in portrait; look at Moonshot or Krangbrain's project as alternatives.  Cover up the screen ends.  You already fear games might look too big, and you are right.  You don't need all that height for arcade games.

That said, build what you dig.  You are the only one it has to make happy.  My opinion's worth what you paid for it.

Giraffe cabs, I like that term, and itís a great descriptor.

Thereís no way the top half of the cabs should be as tall as (or taller than) the bottom half. Its not aesthetically pleasing.
***Build what you dig, bro. Build what you dig.***

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2017, 02:15:35 am »
I agree. They end up being too tall and just look a little off.

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #15 on: October 03, 2017, 02:11:47 pm »
I think even at a 32", it'd look better to be hiding the top and bottom ends of the screen behind the control panel and speaker panel.  Aim for a square display area between them - or at most, a vertical 4:3 area, don't try to cram the whole screen in as viewable area 

Just my earnest $0.02: don't build an ungainly giraffe cabinet like those vpcabs Vertigo things.  Just because you are using a 16:9 screen in portrait doesn't mean it has to LOOK like you are using a 16:9 screen in portrait; look at Moonshot or Krangbrain's project as alternatives.  Cover up the screen ends.  You already fear games might look too big, and you are right.  You don't need all that height for arcade games.

That said, build what you dig.  You are the only one it has to make happy.  My opinion's worth what you paid for it.

Giraffe cabs, I like that term, and itís a great descriptor.

Thereís no way the top half of the cabs should be as tall as (or taller than) the bottom half. Its not aesthetically pleasing.

+1 Well said.  :applaud:
If you can read this, it means Photobucket's money grab ruined my signature photos.

KevinSc

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #16 on: October 05, 2017, 07:42:30 pm »
I am having trouble figuring out buttons. For each joystick I want 6 buttons that are lit as a single color led. one set blue, one set red (ie NO rgb).  I want this to allow me to light up which buttons are 'live' for the game that is currently active.

I also want micro-leaf switches (unless people say I don't really need them, but sounds like that is ideal).  I am having trouble finding that combination (single blue led and single red led buttons w/ micro-leaf switches). I found "spectra eclipse lighted bezel buttons" at GGG, and thought that seemed like a nice more subtle solution. But after emailing Randy, he indicated the micro-leaf buttons would need to be 'hot glued' on, that kinda scared me, sounds more like a hack then like they are designed to use those switches, maybe I am over-reacting to it.

Anyone got a suggestion for a currently available solution for this?
Thanks.

KevinSc

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #17 on: October 05, 2017, 08:59:27 pm »
just ran into these. How about Translucent IL Concave Pushbutton over at paradise. Not sure which switch would be best, 20, 50, 75, 125 or the rollie leaf switches. Then it sounds like it can be combined with led's they sell?

KevinSc

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2017, 08:05:41 pm »
primed
« Last Edit: November 06, 2017, 04:41:20 pm by KevinSc »

KevinSc

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Re: Another slim cabinet build
« Reply #19 on: October 16, 2017, 07:57:02 am »
.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2017, 04:41:04 pm by KevinSc »

  
 

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