How do you turn a Arcade cab into your game of choice?

So Ive always wanted my own Arcade cab and my friends dad just so happens to have a tekken 2 ( or 3 whichever one has the affro eddie ) and I wanted to know if I bought it off him would I be able to and how would turn it into another game of choice say… MVC2,sf3 3s,SSFT2 or CVS2? I know Im gonna need to find a way to add 2 button slots to each side and all, and if the parts suck Ill probably gut my spare TE fightsticks for them. So any help/suggestions and insight to help me live out my childhood dream>?

pretty much

1.How much should I pay for the arcade cab?
2.How much time/money/effort will this take?
3.What mods will I need to do to the cab? ( More button slots etc )

You’re going to have to replace the board. That said, it should be a JAMMA compatible board so you shouldn’t have any problems.

How would I replace the board? any insight would help.

I would encourage you to get the cab, sell the board and wire it up for your home consoles. This would be the cheapest, and most cost effective way to start yourself on the Arcade cab hobby. It would also get you a feeling as to the amount of work that comes with it.

You can buy most of the CPS2 (Capcom games) for less than 100 bucks on ebay. Other games can get a bit more pricey.

Replacing the board would be a simple unhooking of the Jamma harness and putting the compatible board in place, there may be board specific connectors as well, but the Jamma harness takes care of most of the work for you.

  1. Tekken 3 in a good condition North American style stand up Arcade Cab = $250.00 (on average, I’ve seen the boards and cabs for a lot less) - Low ball him, if he’s a family friend he’ll give in if he knows he cant get more than 200 bucks for it.

  2. Its an expensive hobby, but if you’ve modded your stick or made a stick with a little soldering and understand the concepts you could do it mostly yourself. There are a lot of communities for this hobby as well.

  3. If you went with a basic 6 button “classic street fighter” button layout with a pair of P1 and P2 start/coin buttons you shouldn’t have to do much more.

Both tekkens ran on Jamma systems, and with a kick harness you can run any CPS2 arcade board.

If you wanted to start off slow, I’d say do it !

Tekken 2 ran on System 11 hardware
System 16 - System 11 Hardware (Namco)

Tekken 3 ran on System 12 hardware
System 16 - System 12 Hardware (Namco)

There are a lot of things you can do with a Jamma set up, most of the arcade hardware pre 2000 runs on it, or there are adapters to run on it.
MVC2, CVS2 both ran on Naomi hardware, while SF3 3s runs on another set of hardware.

I’ve done the math on starting my own arcade and its expensive with all the boards, and cabinets… not including the overhead expenses.

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so whats the first thing id need to do? Im good with soldering and electrical and stuff like that. I just need a good walk through lol.

what is your plan ? turn it into a modded cab for your consoles ? or purchase the EXPENSIVE CvS2 and MvC2 hardware and game stuff ? (its not that expensive to people who run arcade boards)

I don’t think there is a easy to follow walk through, but you might read some of the FAQ’s for the arcade hardware and some of the stuff on arcade otaku.

honestly, just run mame and PC. thats what I’m doign with my Blast city. and then download a dreamcast emulator and roms.

That you acquire legally


JAMMA is the arcade “standard.” If a cab has a JAMMA rig all you need to do is unhook the pcb (game board) and replace it with another JAMMA pcb. So you’d have to buy another game you want to play and swap it out, that’s it.

However, MVC2 and CVS2 run on Sega’s Naomi system. For 3s you just need a kit that includes the Jamma pcb, cd and security cart, and a capcom kick harness.

MAME is rice, get the PCB of your favourite game and that’s all you’ll ever need. :slight_smile:

If you got a tri sync monitor you could hook stuff up directly via VGA.

So you think it would be easier for now as my first project to per say… Hook up a console into the Cab for now?

I did a similar project recently. I got a fantastic deal on an old Hyper Fighting cab, got it for $25. The monitor was busted however. I decided to just gut the entire thing. Threw a CRT Monitor in there, DC to VGA box, and couple of PSX PCBs wired to the panel.

If you really want to get into the arcade scene then there are better forums than here for the technical matters. Check out, forum.arcadeotaku, and KLOV as they can provide you with much better information.

If you’re really interested in living your childhood dream of owning an arcade game, don’t go for MAME or installing a console into the cab. You’re not really living the dream unless you’re using arcade hardware. Some random thoughts:

  • Installing another Jamma board will probably be less effort than consolizing an arcade cab. Figure out what game you really want in there, then go from there. The easiest of the games you mentioned would be ST; the hardware for the other games is more expensive. I would personally avoid 3S until you’re pretty savvy with arcade stuff. CPS3 systems are notoriously finicky.

  • For godsakes, don’t gut your TEs for spare parts. Just go buy spare parts. Check the stickies for vendors. Also, unless you custom make a new control panel (or mod it), Japanese parts will not easily fit in an American cab.

wiring up a jamma cab for console is doable, but a bit of a ball ache…
you need to make padhacks and something like a scart to jamma adapter…
I have done this on my New Astro City and it is awesome…

the downside is the picture is kind of crappy playing current gen consoles (standard definition interlacing :confused: )…
ps2 and jamma boards are fine though…

the most common screen modes are 15khz and 31khz…
in resolution terms, 15khz = 320x240 and 31khz = 640x480

Something like a Sega Naomi is fairly common and cheap and won’t be too bad on the picture front (31khz)…
it’s still a bit lame compared to an HD lcd…

but being able to sit at a cab and play is awesome… :slight_smile:

arcadeotaku is a wealth of information it’s mainly UK guys, there are a few US guys on there and cabs in the US do come up fairly frequently…
sign up and have a look around…

this is mine btw:New Astro City

This past weekend Ive been playing A lot of arcade cabs and I can say right now I fucking hate American style set up. It hurts my hands and it sucks, Bat tops are okay though, I hate circle gates ( i prefer square gates ). For some reason I feel like I’m to close all the time to my opponent. What I did like that saw In renos circus circus is they took out the older tvs and it looked like they out in a flat screen which looked very nice. So basically what I Like are
Square gates
Sanwa buttons laid out Japanese style
space for both people
Possibly a flat screen Tv ( this I may out in later down the line because I can live without it for now )

So Games I Want to do
MVC2/CVS2/ST and is there any way I can get my hands on sf4 ( maybe ssf4 in the future )?
and is there a way I can run multiple games?

SF4 and SSF4 are really expensive.

You’re talking a few grand for the arcade games! Something like $3k-4k a piece!

Why wouldn’t you be satisfied with the PS3 and 360 ports? Doesn’t make sense to me to get into current-gen arcade games. So few of these are being produced and the costs are prohibitive for most people.

As for other games on your list, it depends on what you want to spend…

I don’t know that Marvel VS Capcom 2 is going to be cheap if you get the official arcade version. It’s still an expensive game to buy from a dealer in the US. Maybe over $1,000 for a copy in very good/near-mint condition. You can probably get it far cheaper online… a gently worn version of the game shouldn’t cost $1,000. HOWEVER… It’s also a game that’s emulated fairly well on PS3 or XBox 360 and it will only set you back $15 for a download. Even the Dreamcast M v C 2version shouldn’t be that expensive… Generally something like $30 for the CD-ROM. A new Dreamcast which is basically a down-sized Naomi can be had for $100 or less now.

This gets to be an expensive hobby and the choice is are you that anal that you absolutely have to have arcade-perfect ports (meaning actual arcade hardware and PCBs in many cases), or are you willing to forgo for a decent/near-perfect home port?

The last two Sega systems had excellent ports of many CPS-2 games. They were great for fighting games in general, period, and the Saturn in particular had great runs with both Capcom and SNK/NEO GEO conversions in addition to several original (to the system) fighters.

(Oddly enough, Samurai Shodown 1 and 2 never got ported to either Sega CD-based system. A good compilation of the games on CD-ROM didn’t happen until the PS2 came along years later. I happen to think the PS2 ports are fine but many people still swear by the cart versions for the SNK arcade and console systems.)

The Street Fighter Alpha series was excellent on the Saturn. Many people consider SF Alpha 3 (with 4MB RAM expansion) better on the Saturn than the Dreamcast!

Also very good if not perfect on the Saturn were NightWarriors: Darkstalkers’ Revenge (my favorite of that series) and practically perfect ports (with 4MB RAM expansion) of X-Men Vs Street Fighter, Marvel Super Heroes vs Street Fighter, and Vampire Savior.

Also decent but not great was X-Men: Children of the Atom. The PS1 X-Men:COTA was basically unplayable. Avoid Marvel Super Heroes at all costs — horrible port! Cyberbots was okay but it’s a weird Capcom game hardly anybody knows anything about anymore and I admit I never played it much even though I still own it for Saturn.

Very good CPS-1 ports of the first four Street Fighter II games were done for Saturn as well. SSF2Turbo was a bit weak because of less-than-optimal programming and the Saturn’s generally memory-weak soundchip.

The Dreamcast was substantially more powerful than the Saturn but didn’t receive as many fighter ports due to its shorter lifespan and also the fact that the fighting game scene was drying out by the time this system came out.

Still, there were some very good CPS-2 ports and the arcade perfect translation of Marvel Vs Capcom 2 for the system.

Street Fighter Alpha 3 was also darn good but some prefer the Saturn version since it matches the arcade closer in resolution (DC runs 640X480 native) and has animations cut out of the DC port of SFA3.

My favorite CPS- ports for Dreamcast were definitely Super Street Fighter II Turbo (technically Super Street Fighter II X: Grand Master Challenge; a Japanese DC exclusive) that is hands-down the best home port of SSF2T and Vampire Chronicles for Matching Service. Vampire Chronicles was adapted into a PSP portable fighter. It’s basically like Street Fighter Anniversary Edition but for the Darkstalkers series… I must say that I prefer the Darkstalkers collection for PS2, though. The DC game generally has washed-out colored sprites and I prefer being able to pick which game to play instead of mish-mashed rules.

well ive been thinking about it more and for my first project i may want to do it cheap for now seeing as i am young and moneys tight…
One of my plans is to also Put an arcade machine in my uncles barber shop ( kinda in the hood but seeing how many people wait they may want to play a quick round and my uncle used to play so he will most likely hype that stuff up ) And most likely im gonna wanna make money off it but yeah. But first I wanna make my personal one, if I did run console how would that work exaclty? would the console be stuck in there >? if so fuck xbox360 I dont want red rings… lawls. I mean dreamcast seems the best right now because it has, CVS2 and mvc2 and does it has ST ? and Alpha 3? and would I have to change discs physically to change games?

I bought a Mvc2 cab for $295 - cam/game/coin mechs/everything form a local mini golf place. A month later I bought another full working MvC2 cab from a private collector for $450.00 You just gotta keep your eyes open.

TDCFinal2.cdi (i <3 toodles) for your non-alpha3-needs

If you want more info the build your own arcade forum is your best bet for anything arcade related , including the good stuff like discharging a monitor and installing a cap kit.