Custom Cabinet for Dreamcast - How hard is it to do?


#1

I’ve been sending inqueries to custom stick makers here but now i’m thinking maybe just go for a cabinet for my dreamcast set up.

The questions is, i don’t know how to wire for shit, never built my own stick or even know how to, would this project be way over my head??

This got me thinking while browsing through neo-geo.com and saw this thread.

http://www.neo-geo.com/forums/showthread.php?t=160361

Can someone also tell me the difference or show me pictures of a Mini-Cute and the other ones there he listed?

I want a japanese cabinet btw like the ones where u sit on a stool and it’s low. help me out PLEASE!


#2

Egret II: http://www.killercabs.com/albums/Dennis%20Collection/DSC00002.JPG

Superneo 29: http://www.killercabs.com/albums/Ye%20Olde%20Killer%20Cabs%20Haul%20Pt1/PICT0048.JPG

Hyper Neogeo: http://www.killercabs.com/albums/Ye%20Olde%20Killer%20Cabs%20Haul%20Pt1/PICT0146.JPG

Impress: http://www.killercabs.com/albums/Ye%20Olde%20Killer%20Cabs%20Haul%20Pt1/PICT0177.JPG

Capcom Minicute: http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/2687/minicutearticlepic65ry.jpg

I think that about covers most of them. Love the minicute!


#3

wiring takes a bit to do the first time. But, you know, we all had a first time and most of us don’t have any background knowledge. Difficult but definitely doable–especially with SRK’s resources.


#4

I agree with chipper. Arcade machines are surprisingly simple machines, a little daunting at first sure. Its all a matter of learning as you go and having the balls to try and do things like discharging monitors and the likes. That being said though, youre talking about wiring up a whole machine, and that is not easy. Especially for someone with little/no knowledge on wiring.

My advice would be buy a cabinet. If you have the loot for a Jcab, then get it! I own 4 (soon 5) of them and I love em. They look clean and the monitors are (generally) top of the line. Good luck finding a minicute, the fact that matsu actually got some was suprising and I think they all got snatched up in a day or two. A sega Astro City is great for the money and parts are easier to come by then most of the other ones. In my opinion the Egret 2 and Impress are the pimpest cabs ever/ You will not be disappointed by them in any way. The Egret 2 has a 1200 prictag though so be ready to drop some loot. The Impress cabs are just hard to come by but nothing is better for some official Street Fighter action.


#5

Thank you all for your help. I’m still deciding but damn that minicute is awesome.

Couple more questions - Do people buy these cabs to turn it into a Dreamcast machine? What do they normally put in these cabs, real arcade boards?

If i do buy this cab, what other parts would i need to buy? It comes with a monitor, the stick and buttons, and speakers? I don’t know what i’m buying when i buy this cab nor know what i’m getting myself into.

Is there anyone in the NJ area that want to do this wiring IF i were to get one for $$$?

One final question - If i live in the NJ area, where can i get japanese cabs for pickup and not shipped? Or do they all have to be shipped?


#6

Wow that minicute is hot.


#7

Yeah, I’ve been craving some candy cabinet action lately. Unfortunately, I live in NC, so odds of me finding one and not getting raped on shipping are pretty low. There is an arcade kind of close to me that has a bunch of Namco Exceleena IIs (red ones). But they’re pretty beat up and I don’t know if they’re willing to sell them.

Any idea how SuperAuctions are for candy cabinets?


#8

honestly, unless you live in california, your odds of finding a candy are kind of slim. Not impossible, but slim. Scour craigslist and Ebay, ya never know. Ive never dealt with arcade auctions before but you have to assume that if they did get some they would go quickly. Your best bet to get a candy cab is to hook up with Matsu. SHipping to the east coast would probably set you back around 300-350 but if you buy more then one he will give you a deal on shipping. Woould be a good idea to organize with people close by/friends and arrange a group order and maybe spread the saving around a little bit.

If you buy a cabinet you will have everything you need to get started. Monitor, wiring, power supply, speakers etc…Most of the candy cabs are Jamma ready meaning you can just throw a board in there and get going. Alot of people hook up the DC into the cabinet to play CvS2 and shooters as it is a cheaper alternative to owning a naomi and tons of shooter boards. You will need to get some sort of DC>jamma convertor if you do not have VGA plug in the cabinet. And then most likley have to hack a DC pad and wire it to the cabinet controls. Other people could tell you more about that though, I have never done it myself. The Atomiswave SD cabinet is a good one for this as it is a tri-res cabinet and affords you the luxury of having a VGA plug so you can hook up the DC or MAME with minimal hacking or convertors. Atomiswave cabs or up there around 1800 dollars though because of the tri res flat screen monitor. Pretty much exactly like the Egret 2, just a different monitor and different graphics on the side. Also it does not have the easy monitor rotating mechanism that the egret 2 has.


#9

I have a sega astro city that I put a DC in. First you can get a DC-VGA box hack that then wire it up to your monitor, hack a couple of DC pads to the controls and your set to go. Its really not as hard as it sounded. There are a few threads on www.byoac.com that explain this fairly well. My biggest fear was finding the correct wires on the monitor to use.


#10

Thank you TigerCraneFist and metrock1 for that. Tiger you answered all my questions.

Actually Matsu has a New Astro City and i’m highly considering this. I think i might pull the trigger on this.

With the New Astro City, is that one good to wire a Dreamcast too? I know i most likely need a DC-VGA adaptor but where do u get that?

One last question, can i see the guts of your Astro City Metrock1?


#11

thats great man. The astro city is a really great cabinet, I think you will be very happy with it! Thay all have superb monitors and the general aesthetics of them are super nice. Make sure to ask Matsu if the monitor has any burn-in on it and if it has all the keys. With these cabs the monitor is crucial. Look into a MGCD convertor, I think that is an okay one for DC>jamma. I think Metrock1 can help you more in that area. If you need any other pics of the cab let me know and I will snap some of mine for you. Be aware though that the Astro CIty cabs are very cramped for space inside. Might even be better for you to just leave the DC outside of the cabinet so you do not have to open it everytime you switch discs. Matsu is a great guy to work with, I know it seems a hefty purchase but you will be so happy you did it. Dont forget to post some pics when you get it!


#12

That’s what i’ve been reading as well that the astro city is really cramped inside. I wanted the Dreamcast integrated in the machine.

What kind of setup do you have on your astro city? I would like some pics of this. It’s quite a hefty purchase so i want to be fully commited and know the ins and outs before i pull the trigger on this.

One more thing - My local fire department has a neo geo cabinet they are trying to get rid of. They say the machine is banged up but the buttons and joysticks work. He said that the game in it is a SF clone with ninjas so i’m thinking it’s word heroes. Should i pick this up instead for free instead of the Candy CAbinet route? I reallly really do want a japanese cabinet though.


#13

Why not get both? :slight_smile:

I mean, the Neo cabinet is free, so why not?


#14

HAHA yeah it got me thinking I SHOULD get both haha. Start a collection. The thing is i have no idea what to do when I go check out the Neo cabinet. I mean i don’t want to lug it in my house and find out it’s garbage. What do i check for? IS this a MVS machine? Or is there something else? I’ve been reading up on this all day but still don’t know what to do to see if it’s worth taking home. Help me out here!


#15

It’s highly unlikely that the Neo Geo cab isn’t MVS. You’ll be able to tell easilly by unhinging the control panel (open the coin door and reach up to either corner, you’ll be able to feel the hinge clasps) and peeking inside to see if there’s a gigantic MVS cart…provided there aren’t any other tell-tale signs on the cab itself. Check out http://www.hardmvs.com to see some pictures, and you’ll know just what you’re looking for. I was dead-set against buying a conversion cab, since a lot of them leave something to be desired.


#16

Oh, and I know this isn’t the official way of doing it, but there’s an easier alternative to the monitor solution for a Dreamcast cab. If you find an empty cab, depending on the cab, bolting in a television’s guts may be very, very easy. All that’s entailed is gutting the television and setting the screen/tube in place. My friend is working on a custom NES cab, and he opted to do this. As the television is already ideal to display the NES at its native resolution, it was a real no-brainer. If you’re satisfied with the way your Dreamcast displays on a teleivision, this might be a viable option for you.

That’s if you find an empty cab, or one with a burnt out/ busted monitor. Then, you can just mount the Dreamcast (again, gutted) to the inside of the cab, and come up with some creative wiring solutions for “real” cab functions.

What the others say is true: once you’ve worked with a cab for a bit, you’ll realize that there’s actually a lot less involved than you may imagine- or perhaps more, I suppose. After owning my Neo Geo for only 2 weeks now, I’m considering picking up an empty cab in order to make a PS2 standup.


#17

Thank you vynce for the tip. Now i know exactly what to do when i get there to check it out.

As for the TV thing, i’m really set on a japanese cabinet and it already comes with a nice monitor. I’m guessing the dreamcast to vga adaptor think is hard to come by for you to mention that? Can someone tell me where to get that dc > jamma converter?

Again thank you all for this. You guys helped me tremendously about an area i have no idea about. I definitely hae the itch now and want to pull the trigger soon for the candy cab haha.


#18

VGA boxes shouldn’t be too tough to find, in all honesty. I only meant that it was possible to skip a step altogether, as I’ve never had any experience with RGB monitors (beyond the one in my Neo Geo) and I don’t know how tricky it all is.

I know some DC to Jamma converters can be pretty pricey, though. Lik-sang had one for over $200, if I recall correctly.


#19

Turns out that the Neo Geo cabinet is old as fuck lol. It has a SNK Street Smart game in it. WTF is that? it has only 3 buttons and he’s trying to get rid of it for free. I just couldn’t do it cause the monitor was in so bad shape and it just looked like crap lol.

Anyway the search for a Candy Cabinet continues. Going to local arcades to see what they i can get from them.


#20

So take the cabinet, gut the MVS out of it, and stash it. Viola, something to play in the new candy until you get the DC worked out. Cabinet may be bashed up, but the mobo sounds just fine. Or just sell the MVS mobo and card on ebay, maybe the power supply too as a separate auction.

Unless its a 6 slot, in which case you PM me and we work out a trade for tech work.

The MGCD converter mentioned is your best bet for a out of the box dc>jamma setup. Doing it yourself is tons cheaper, but if you’re not familiar with the tech, get the MGCD.