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Arcade Project Progress - Jarrett Heather
Jarrett Heather's Journal
jarrett
jarrett
Arcade Project Progress
I've spent practically all weekend working on the arcade cabinet. Friday night I installed the ArcadeVGA video card. Getting the drivers installed was a headache and a half. But seeing the old games run in their original resolution is pretty amazing!

Besides that, I've made fantastic progress on other parts of the project.


So, here are the speakers I installed in the cabinet, the Sony XS-V134OH. I bought them because the red cones look cool. And, hey, they don't sound too bad either. I hooked them to the computer by bastardizing a Creative Inspire T3000 2.1 speaker system. I just spliced the leads from the satellites to the Sony speakers.


The best part is, the Inspire T3000 includes this nifty little volume control knob, which I mounted under the control panel for discreet, but easy access. It even has a headphone jack right there for late night gaming sessions.


I used a 12v molex adapter to wire up the coin return and power button lights to the PC power supply. The coin door came with 14v bulbs, so they are a little dim. I plan to replace them with super-bright LEDs. Actually, I think I might order some red reject buttons as well. In the meantime, it doesn't look too bad.


Here's all the custom wiring I did for the lights and the coin mechanisms. I had a lot of fun wiring this stuff up. The coin mechs are actually connected to the keyboard encoder in the control panel, so when you drop a coin in the slot, the emulator gives you a credit! When I have company over, I may un-map the credit buttons on the panel, and then this project will start to bring in some cash.


Here's a peek inside the back of the cabinet. There is a back panel that hides all this, but I'm not going to be able to close it up until I'm a little further along in the project.


Finally, I got a miniature keyboard so I'd have a little more room on the keyboard tray. I also mounted the monitor controls to the keyboard tray for easier access.
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Comments
kissel From: kissel Date: November 15th, 2004 07:03 pm (UTC) (Link)

Awesome

I've been pondering building one of these for about 4 years now, briefly... what's the biggest obstacle you have run into?

Your controls (all-in-one) overwhelm me, I was going to use a variety of swappable ones based on the games I wanted to play.

Is that a "Tempest" spinner in the top middle?
I'm sure there's a QBert fix as well.

And finally, where are you finding most of your ROMS?
jarrett From: jarrett Date: November 15th, 2004 07:23 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Awesome

Because mine is constructed with all brand new parts, the only major obstacle I've had to overcome was the cost of the project. Everything has gone pretty much as planned.

Creating a swappable control panel is probably not the best solution. I like jumping from one game to another, personally, and switching out hardware would be a pain. On the other hand, I wish I had a TRON-style trigger stick, and now I'm kind of stuck with my little top-fire 8-way instead.

SlikStik will build a panel to spec, but pulling it out of the cabinet is not terribly easy. Mine already requires no fewer than six connections to unhook when I take it off.

The spinner I have is a SlikStik Tornado Spinner, which works in Tempest and any other spinner game (Arkanoid and TRON are my favorites). It's also functional as an analog steering wheel, but of course it doesn't feel terribly authentic.

The only fix for Q*Bert would be to mount a 4-way joystick such that could be rotated 45 degrees. It would be a lot of trouble for one game. Now that I think about it, I could map four pushbuttons in a square pattern and play using those instead.

I got all my ROMs from this guy. I found it was a lot easier than downloading seven four-gig DVD-ROM images off bittorrent. When new ROM updates are released, though, I found a site someplace that posts them as a torrent, and I've had pretty good luck keeping my set up to date.
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