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Author Topic: Widescreen Cocktail Cab - Newbie!  (Read 271 times)

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Pugster

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Widescreen Cocktail Cab - Newbie!
« on: October 13, 2020, 12:13:41 am »
Hi - first off apologies if this info is already out there, I can't seem to get the search function working.

I'm looking for suggestions on building a 2-player MAME cocktail cabinet - the big thing is that my wife loves vertical old-school games...and I really want it to be a decent 2-player Street Fighter (and Gauntlet!) machine as well.  Where this has landed me is the idea of doing a widescreen cocktail cabinet (thinking 24"?) with 6 button control panels.  I understand that MAME can run "mirrored" mode screens for horizontal games like SF, along with a cocktail mode that flips back and forth for 2 player games. 

So my questions is...what do people think of that plan?  Am I better off sticking with a standard 20" non-widescreen build?  Any other options that I should explore?  My wife is pretty keen on the cocktail cabinet, so I think if this is gonna happen that's the way it's going to go.   Also, any plans/dimensions out there that are recommended other than modifying the MsPacMan cabinet plans that I've ran across already? 

Just getting started here, so thanks in advance...excited for the project!


javeryh

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Re: Widescreen Cocktail Cab - Newbie!
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2020, 02:20:19 pm »
Why does it need to be widescreen?  Street Fighter and Gauntlet are played on a 4:3 monitor and classic vertical games are played on a 3:4 monitor.  I would just build a Midway cocktail cabinet if I were you but for the control panels use a joystick and 6 buttons.  Use a 19" monitor and control panels on the ends only.  There are people who build cocktails with a long CP on one side in addition to the smaller CPs on the ends but trust me, it is very uncomfortable to play like that.  I threw away a cocktail cabinet I built years ago that I tried to cram every game under the sun into.

For the software you can do exactly what you said - mirror the 4:3 games so both players have their own playfield or use the cocktail mode to flip the screen for 3:4 games that have alternating turns.  For games like Hat Trick you wouldn't flip and you'd get to use the whole screen for both players simultaneously.   

Pugster

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Re: Widescreen Cocktail Cab - Newbie!
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2020, 03:17:20 pm »
I just did a rough layout on paper and I'm in complete agreement now I think...;)

Looks like a midway build with a Dell 2007FP as the monitor should work well, and once I looked at the dimensions of 4:3 vs. widescreen it became pretty clear that I'd be gaining zero "width" and the extra screen would be wasted.  Originally the 24" idea was because I was going to do a second side, but after looking at setups and reading some opinions I think I'll stick to a 2 player setup as you suggested.

So now the next big question - is it worth scouring the internet for dimensions and plans for a Midway cocktail table that is built for a 20" screen and a 6 button control panel or do I just build one up myself?  I have looked at Haruman's tables, but with the COVID restrictions around crossing the border (I'm in Canada) I think it may be better to just dive in myself and enjoy the process of building a cabinet.  Any suggestions?

Thanks for the opinion!  It really does help, totally new to this.

Osirus23

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Re: Widescreen Cocktail Cab - Newbie!
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2020, 03:49:22 pm »
Here are plans for Midway Cocktail cabinets, both Pac-man and Ms. Pac-man. I used them when building my Pac-man.

https://www.mikesarcade.com/arcade/cabplans.html

There are places you can order blank control panels for Midway cabs and drill your own holes as well.

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Re: Widescreen Cocktail Cab - Newbie!
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2020, 04:06:22 pm »
You may want to work through the design process in the FAQ.

http://wiki.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/FAQ#What_type_of_build_meets_my_needs.3F

Focus on step 2 (game list) and see how those games display on the monitor you're considering using and what controls were on the original upright and cocktail cabs.
- You may not want to mix vertical and horizontal games.
- Some games alternate gameplay with P1 and P2 taking turns on a single set of controls and other games allow simultaneous gameplay with separate controls for both players.

There's a difference between setting the machine configuration/dipswitches to cocktail and the MAME "cocktail" video option.
- Machine configuration/dipswitches make the game inputs and responses behave like the original cocktail machines.
-- Some upright cabs alternated gameplay with P1 controls, but the cocktail cab had separate controls for both players and flipped the screen.
- The "cocktail" video option will usually* give you two copies of the game display oriented toward the short sides of a WS monitor for horizontal games like Bubble Bobble but can be oriented toward the long sides for vertical games like Space Fury.
-- You may need to make custom layout files for 2 displays on vertical games or rotate one big display and use cocktail flipping.
- Some games may not work well if you enable both machine configuration/dipswitches and the "cocktail" video option.
  * IIRC vector games will not work well with the "cocktail" video option.





Remember that there is no simple one-size-fits-all solution to make all MAME games look and work right on a cocktail build.


Scott