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  1. #1
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    Lightbulb MAME Arcade machine

    I was thinking about building an arcade machine but using a pc with mame on it (as you do), since I have a few buttons lying around, and an old pc lying round as well. Therefore, does anyone here know a way to somehow attach an arcade joystick and some buttons to the pc via usb (preferably)?
    ~NOBODY CARES~

  2. #2
    Senior Member Paul.Cov's Avatar
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    Default Re: MAME Arcade machine

    I built a MAME cabinet ages ago... and haven't touched it since.

    The technique I used was to canabilise a cheap keyboard. If you open up the keyboard you'll find a small circuit board about 2cm x 8cm.

    If you carefuly trace the paths of the circuits on the keyboard membrane back to this board you can determine which terminals are used for each key on the board.

    I used a ribbon cable to simply wire up the arrow keys (up/down/left/right) to a joystick.
    There's a place in the USA (forget the name) that sells authentic arcade joysticks and buttons at a reasonable price.

  3. #3
    Yup. That IS a typo. 8ftmetalhaed's Avatar
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    Default Re: MAME Arcade machine

    http://www.arcadespareparts.com/
    http://www.arcade-game-sales.com/arcade-parts.html

    There are others too, of course. These are just the ones I have in my history.

    As for joysticks - As I understand it's Sanwa or nothing.

    And as for the keyboard - Bad idea. Simply because of the fact that most have matrixes and blah blah blah won't work in many cases such as SF games.

    I had the idea of getting some USB game pads and using a few of those hooked into the PC with your buttons soldered to the boards.
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  4. #4
    Generic Member The Error Guy's Avatar
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    Default Re: MAME Arcade machine

    I got as far as planning one of these, never got off the ground but it would be awesome if It were completed. once built and running and never used because of various reasons you could sell it on TM I guess.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member pctek's Avatar
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    Default Re: MAME Arcade machine

    Friend did this once. NO idea what he did with keyboards. He did have the screen rotate, (physically) you could change it depending on whether your game was vertical or horizontal scrolling.
    he had loads of games on it, he even made it so you could use the coin slot or not as you felt like it.
    Then he got bored with the old games and sold it.
    wipe your paws.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Paul.Cov's Avatar
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    Default Re: MAME Arcade machine

    Yeah, there is a keyboard matrix, which is how the whole 108 keys work from about 14 or so connections to the KB board.
    It's not too hard to wire up what you want... just a bit tedious.

    I went a step further, using a 4 position switch and some extra buttons in order to get the equivalent of the whole keyboard from the array of buttons.

    Also included the keyboard in a slide out section, so both the normal keyboard function and the hard wired MAME keys were both available.

    The keyboard circuit board was subjected to a few inappropriate circuits in the process of construction and testing, and is still working fine.
    Suggest however that you build it and test it on throwaway hardware rather than on your main computer. Old 1GHz machines from TradeMe are sufficient for most MAME ROMs, so the hardware can be yours for less than $30.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: MAME Arcade machine

    Quote Originally Posted by helensun View Post
    I was thinking about building an arcade machine but using a pc with mame on it (as you do), since I have a few buttons lying around, and an old pc lying round as well. Therefore, does anyone here know a way to somehow attach an arcade joystick and some buttons to the pc via usb (preferably)?
    I built a full mame system last year.

    for the button interface I used this http://www.ultimarc.com/ipac1.html

    I would be happy to answer any other questions.
    "Sometimes the only thing more dangerous than a question is an answer!"
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: MAME Arcade machine

    Quote Originally Posted by robsonde View Post
    for the button interface I used this http://www.ultimarc.com/ipac1.html
    Had a look at the website. Looks quite good the stuff they've got.
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