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Author Topic: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV  (Read 1464 times)

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benyamin39

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I am in my forties and I recall fondly my good high school days in a French small town in Burgundy, sneaking out from high school to gather in one of the numerous smoky cafes scattered in the city to spend my few francs on video games ranging from the mid-80s to early 90s such as Double Dragon, Golden Axe, Ghost and Goblins, Rygar and later on Willow.
Being nostalgic about this time, I took on this project this year to build an arcade cabinet to reproduce this feeling and share as well the joy with my children (they are fond of Super Street Fighter II).

Below is the description of the cabinet and all the web references I used to build it. Thanks to all of them for sharing the information; their names are indicated below in each link. Also, it took me quite some time and a few trials and errors to build this project from scratch. If the info below can give some hints to someone willing to build a similar cabinet, this post will have achieved its purpose. If someone needs more details about some aspects of its construction, I can post more detailed pictures and explanations.

I wanted this cabinet to be as close as possible to the real one (although I reckon this cabinet can be improved, especially for the artwork).

The components are as follow :
  • in MDF board following Dynamo HS1 generic arcade cabinet. I followed the blueprint from classicarcadecabinets.com. The cabinet manual can be found on drzero.org.
  • 16-gauge Custom built steel control panel and marquee holders.
  • 8 button layout (to allow for street fighter II as well as Neo geo 4-button games). I downloaded the button layout from www.slagcoin.com
  • Coin door with light and coin insert
  • Double dragon artwork (quality picture downloaded from mameworld.info and simply printed in Costco along with the marque)
  • in plexiglass (can be found in plastic supplier, cut to size)
  • Custom built marquee (printed in Costco with a lot of LED lights on the back. Result is ok but it is certainly better to buy a proper marquee online)
  • Custom built bezel, following this thread on the forum of arcadecontrols.com
  • 50$ 9 years old Dual Core Small form factor Lenovo desktop running Windows 10
  • 20$ Radeon HD7000 series video card with DVI-I output (basically VGA capable) purchased on ebay and running on the marvelous emucrt driver. I followed this very useful thread.
  • 1998 19 Samsung CRT TV modded for direct  RGB input (19 was the original CRT size for this cabinet. I followed the 8bit guy youtube video and selected the proper resistors from https://shmups.system11.org/ )
  • Groovymame with attrac-mode front end
I picked the dynamo hs1 cabinet as it looks pretty much like the ones that were used back then in my town. Concerning the display, I first tried a 4/3 LCD screen; it gave  pretty good results already (using HLSL to emulate scanlines curved screen). Yet ultimately I wanted to go with a modded CRT TV solution which gives great results. This solution is  challenging though for someone who does not know much about electronics. As a side note, higher resolution / screen frequency games such as Narc run very well on a CRT TV as well (using interlaced mode)

Finally I spent many hours looking at Linux based solution (I am a linux guy), retroarch, raspberry, but I found windows + emucrt + Radeon + CRT TV to be the best path to near pixel perfect result.



Remaining work
Coin reject button :
I plan to print the coin reject button insert using my laser printer on plastic sheets. For a better result, those parts can be purchased on suzzohapp website.

Power on switch and switch relay :
I will add:
A switch connected to the ON/OFF switch of the computer to boot the system without having to reach the back of the cabinet
a USB power switch relay to enable the switch on the TV once Mame is launched so to imitate a real arcade cabinet boot.

Issues (if someone can help, much appreciated
Launching Mame and then a game is no problem. Launching the same game from Attract is a lot slower (an some time freeze Mame)

I have some slight vertical overscan problems : I would like to shift the screen down by a few lines but I cant do it from the service menu of my TV. I tried to play the radeon card settings without success so far. Not a big deal though.





morton

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2020, 11:37:30 am »
Nice build!

I like that it doesn't look outta place or hacked together. It would be cool to see an overlay or something on the control panel to tie it all in, but I could live with it as is... So no need to change now.

I figure when I finally put my PC together the video will be my biggest hurdle, so look forward to seeing what you figure out.


benyamin39

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2020, 11:22:27 pm »
Nice build!

I like that it doesn't look outta place or hacked together. It would be cool to see an overlay or something on the control panel to tie it all in, but I could live with it as is... So no need to change now.

I figure when I finally put my PC together the video will be my biggest hurdle, so look forward to seeing what you figure out.
Thx! I fixed the video issues. I tried different combinations on VMMaker : 15kHz generic CRT vs NTSC TV and standard resolution vs superresolution. I thought that superesolution was the way to go, but indeed it created the picture shift. On con trary, Standard resolution worked like a charm for me. In my case and probably for the games I play, NTSC + standard resolution is the good combination and I seldom have to adjust the picture on the TV.
Then I tested SNES games. the resolution being 512x225, Groovymame would systematically play games in 480i mode. To solve the issue I simply added a modeline from VMMaker command line.
Overall this stuff is really great, damn close to the original.

Another improvement I did was to add a USB Relay so that the TV, lighting and sound switch on right before Attract mode is launch, hiding entirely the windows boot sequence.  I programmed also attract mode exit button to bring the computer to sleep mode and turn off the relay. on wake up the computer would trigger the relay back and switch on back TV sound and light and launch attract mode again, giving the impression of a fast boot. The feature works ok, except that sometimes the computer refuses to wake up. This wake up problem being very erratic, it is a hard issue to solve.

I am now testing Groovyarcade to see if a Linux solution would bring me the ultimate customization solution.

lomoverde

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #3 on: December 24, 2020, 10:08:52 am »
Hi,looks fantastic.
Im curious as to whats going on inside.Did you decase the tv? How is it mounted?
 I have a couple of similar projects on the go and am undecided about the tv as yet.

benyamin39

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #4 on: December 24, 2020, 04:06:08 pm »
Hi,looks fantastic.
Im curious as to whats going on inside.Did you decase the tv? How is it mounted?
 I have a couple of similar projects on the go and am undecided about the tv as yet.
Thx. I did not decase the TV. I did not feel I had to. The TV fits entirely inside the cabinet. The TV is simply sitting on a panel board, leveled and blocked at the black. Because of its weight it does not move and can stand my kids heavy street fighter practice. Also the plastic rim does not prevent from adding the bezel. Finally the casing brings protection to electric shocks.

What I did was to add BNC connectors on the back of the TV (like the 8 bitguy did) so to easily disconnect the TV when needed.

This being said, decasing the TV could be possible to install the tube in a backplate like it was on the original cabinet.


lomoverde

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #5 on: December 25, 2020, 03:58:22 am »
 Are you in France? could you not get hold of a scart tv?
 I am nervous about decasing my TVs,but i have 2 x 14" TVs i am planning to use,and they are maybe not heavy enough to secure themselves.
 Regarding the geometry,have you altered the porch values in ArcadeOSD to shift the picture position?

benyamin39

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #6 on: December 25, 2020, 08:51:44 pm »
Are you in France? could you not get hold of a scart tv?
 I am nervous about decasing my TVs,but i have 2 x 14" TVs i am planning to use,and they are maybe not heavy enough to secure themselves.
 Regarding the geometry,have you altered the porch values in ArcadeOSD to shift the picture position?
I live in Canada, so I had to take the RGB mod road. quite some fun though doing it. I am planning to do it again with another 19" TV I just got a few days ago. I would feel also nervous about decasing the TV (HV, ...). You should be able to secure the TV Casing one way or the other once the TV is set in place in the cabinet.
Which cabinet type had a 14" TV? arcade cabinet from lates 70s early 80s?

I did not have to modify the porch values in arcadeOSD to shift the picture position. By Simply using standard resolution instead of superesolution I fixed the problem and games like double dragons or golden axe are running very well. This being said, before I tested the standard resolution, I tried to play with porch values for a while, but it did not bring me anywhere. One of the reason is that I did not fully understand how it works, despite some long reading on it. Very often I ended up with getting slightly distorted images that did not shifted much.


morton

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #7 on: December 26, 2020, 09:20:05 am »
Another Canadian, nice!

Yeah the 14" I think is a cocktail or cabaret size monitor. At least that would be what I'd use it for if I had one.

How hard do you find the RGB mods? I am tempted to give it a go myself but worry I will spend all this time and have a less than ideal image.

lomoverde

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2020, 06:16:00 am »
Which cabinet type had a 14" TV? arcade cabinet from lates 70s early 80s?


As Morton suggested im planning a couple of vertical cabaret builds.Similar to Javeryhs excellent build.
 
I find the 14" is slightly smaller than id like,but they are so cheap and plentiful here :D

 Im sure your happy with your setup,but if you havent already,check out the read only Win7 groovy mame build thats on the UKVac forums.Being read only you just flip the power on/off and theres no risk of corruption,removing the need for smart power strips etc...

Regarding the software,ArcadeOSD etc,yes its very confusing for a beginner like me i know.Ive finally found i can manipulate the porches fairly well to shift pic up down and sideways.

Love the metal control panel also :applaud: something id love to have a try at.

benyamin39

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #9 on: December 28, 2020, 09:05:47 pm »
Another Canadian, nice!

Yeah the 14" I think is a cocktail or cabaret size monitor. At least that would be what I'd use it for if I had one.

How hard do you find the RGB mods? I am tempted to give it a go myself but worry I will spend all this time and have a less than ideal image.

Mounting the crt in a cocktail cabinet is tricky. You may get away with keeping the plastic casing but it will take more time to adjust and it would be less neat that decasing the TV for sure.

RGB modding took me some time because I had to learn about it from scratch. I am also not an expert in electronic (I only have a multimeter and basic solder iron). I read a lot (on shmups website). There was also the risk for electrical shock so I would wait one day with the TV unplugged before decasing it and shortening the plug so to make 100% sure I was safe.
I started with a Sanyo TV, but the TV broke down in the middle of my testing. Then luckily I found a Samsung TV very similar to the one from 8bitguy, This helped me a lot. I believe if you get a TV from the 90s or early 2000 they are all built pretty much the same.

Overall rgb modding is very interesting to do and very rewarding as the picture is just like the original, crisp and curved and all that (I prefer over LCD, even including GLSL shaders and other enhancements MAME can provide). It was worth the effort.

Good luck in your project and please share with us your progress!

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2020, 09:56:38 am »
Nice to see a traditional looking cab with a CRT.  Looks great, nice work!

benyamin39

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2020, 06:48:22 pm »


As Morton suggested im planning a couple of vertical cabaret builds.Similar to Javeryhs excellent build.
 
I find the 14" is slightly smaller than id like,but they are so cheap and plentiful here :D

 Im sure your happy with your setup,but if you havent already,check out the read only Win7 groovy mame build thats on the UKVac forums.Being read only you just flip the power on/off and theres no risk of corruption,removing the need for smart power strips etc...

Regarding the software,ArcadeOSD etc,yes its very confusing for a beginner like me i know.Ive finally found i can manipulate the porches fairly well to shift pic up down and sideways.

Love the metal control panel also :applaud: something id love to have a try at.
I did not know about UKVac forums. I visited the forum but I could not find the subject related to read only Win7 groovy mame. Can you indicate me the thread number? Thx!


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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2020, 07:46:58 pm »
Great job!

lomoverde

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Re: My DIY 80s Dynamo HS-1 arcade cabinet with Groovymame and NTSC CRT TV
« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2020, 10:31:36 am »

I did not know about UKVac forums. I visited the forum but I could not find the subject related to read only Win7 groovy mame. Can you indicate me the thread number? Thx!



In the mame sub-forum of UKvac topic number 367196.
The user is chunksin.
Alternatively you can just google "chunskin images"