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Author Topic: Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?  (Read 344 times)

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rtkiii

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Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?
« on: December 03, 2019, 04:14:29 pm »
Hey,

Been sometime since I have done anything new.  I did a MAME cab back in 2013 and a Visual Pinball cabinet back in 2016.  I had been planning on doing a gun cabinet but since I have moved to a new town I realize the cabinet would not get the use to warrant the time and $$$ to make.  So I thought about doing a bartop cabinet for spinner games.  My main cabinet is joystick only and I am really wanting to play some Arknoid(and other games) with legit controls.  I am planning on using left over buttons and input card from other builds but I have a couple questions. (I am not a wood worker)

1. Anyone buy any prebuilt kits?
 - How was the quality
 - recommended site
 - Price
 - Worth doing a two player(grownup hands) or should I do 1 player so there is space to play in the control panel area

2.  Spinner
 - General Advice(quality, recommendations, price, etc)

3. Display
 - Recomendations
 - I have 19" LCD(BENQ) laying around - should I use that or are there other new LCDs I should look into?
 - I also have some old Laptop Displays(can those connect to Raspberri Pi)

I know this post is all over the place...any help is appreciated to get me going along the right path?

Thanks,
Rich


 
Arcade Projects
Visual Pinball Build: "Johnny 5" - http://www.vpforums.org/index.php?showtopic=28935&hl=

Mame Build:  "The Time Machine" - http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,130489.0.html

Dual Gun Cabinet - Planning

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Drnick

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Re: Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2019, 08:11:58 am »
Firstly, where in the world are you,

Prebuilt kit
Haruman immediately comes to mind for Bartop kits,  he is on here,
http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,130522.0.html
If you build a 2 player bartop you may as well build a full sized unit, I learned my lesson on this the hard way.  90% of the time you will be playing it on your own.  Recommend a 1 player setup with spinner and then have a USB port on front for 2nd player to be able to plug in controls.

Spinner
Either the Spintrak USB or the Turbotwist 2,  I don't think you can go wrong with either of them.  They won't feel like an original arkanoid or other geared spinners though.

Display,

IPS 4:3 would be best for viewing angles,  do not fit a wide screen in unless you also plan on running newer steam games etc. I would recommend an NEC 21" 4:3 if you can find one. Alternatively Iiyama make good monitors.


rtkiii

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Re: Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2019, 09:59:56 am »
Indiana, USA  :)

Thanks for the info and I think I will go with a 1 player setup, you make a good point.  Even on my full sized cab(which I love) i play solo 90% of the time.

I'll check out the links and let you know if I have any questions.
Thanks again!
Arcade Projects
Visual Pinball Build: "Johnny 5" - http://www.vpforums.org/index.php?showtopic=28935&hl=

Mame Build:  "The Time Machine" - http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,130489.0.html

Dual Gun Cabinet - Planning

Other Hobby - Youtube Channel
www.youtube.com/rtkiiiprod

rtkiii

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Re: Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2019, 03:58:54 pm »
bought rasberry pi and keybord encoder.  I did not go with a ultimarc like I did on my main cab but I use this $15 one on my pincab and it worked great.  Going to give this a try on the spinner bartop...on my way...will hold off on the cab for now and waiting to see if those ever go on sale!  :)

Planning on getting the TurboTwist 2 in a week or so.

I will create a project post once that starts moving.
Arcade Projects
Visual Pinball Build: "Johnny 5" - http://www.vpforums.org/index.php?showtopic=28935&hl=

Mame Build:  "The Time Machine" - http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,130489.0.html

Dual Gun Cabinet - Planning

Other Hobby - Youtube Channel
www.youtube.com/rtkiiiprod

javeryh

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Re: Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2019, 09:02:45 pm »
I am just about done with building my first bartop.  It is a one player sort of small cabinet (10" 4:3 screen) and I really like how it is turning out.  I am also using a Raspberry Pi (3B+) with a 6 button Street Fighter type layout and 4 "admin" buttons.  One button power on/off and a lit marquee.  I crammed an iPAC inside only because I had a really old one laying around (PS/2 port!) and my wiring is generally a mess due to space constraints (I'm working on a solution). 

I could never see 2 people crowding around one of these things and Drnick is right - 90% of the time it's fine for 1 player.  Even playing 2 player games, a lot of the time people just want to play the classics that alternate turns. 

If I could do things differently, I'd make the bottom panel removable instead of the entire control panel (check out markc74's little micro arcade).  This added a lot of complication for no good reason (how to make it removable but also secure when playing, what to do with the wiring once it is removed, etc.).

Good luck.

rtkiii

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Re: Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2019, 09:56:52 am »
Thanks for the info.  Yeah I'm going 1P for sure but glad to hear you were able to make the project.  Did you buy a prebuilt kit or did you cut your own design out?
Arcade Projects
Visual Pinball Build: "Johnny 5" - http://www.vpforums.org/index.php?showtopic=28935&hl=

Mame Build:  "The Time Machine" - http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,130489.0.html

Dual Gun Cabinet - Planning

Other Hobby - Youtube Channel
www.youtube.com/rtkiiiprod

javeryh

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Re: Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2019, 05:14:20 pm »
Thanks for the info.  Yeah I'm going 1P for sure but glad to hear you were able to make the project.  Did you buy a prebuilt kit or did you cut your own design out?

I designed and built my own (like most people on this forum, I suspect).  I used a few other people’s projects for inspiration and I built the thing out of cardboard (twice) to make sure I liked the proportions before cutting the panels.  The link to my cabinet thread is in my signature.

Zebra

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Re: Thinking of doing a BarTop - Thoughts - Recomendations?
« Reply #7 on: Today at 12:53:08 am »
I have plans for a bartop at some point and my thought is that there is no reason why they have to be so narrow. I guess it depends on the reasons for choosing a bartop style. If you live in a teeny tiny house then you work with the space you have. I just want mine to be on my desk but I see little advantage in saving 10" or 15" in width. My house ain't that small.

Regardless if you do most of your gaming solo or not, more width means you can fit a larger control panel with all the different types of controls you want. The key advantage of an emulator cab is the variety of games. A decent multi game cab should have digital and analog joysticks, a race wheel, trackball and a gun as a minimum (plus pedals under the desk).

Ultimately you want whatever you build or buy to be something you will actually use instead of just having novelty value. I built my first bartop from a kit and it was too light and flimsy to feel like a proper cab.