Need your expert opinion on MVS NEO GEO cabinet

Hello All, ill get right to it

I have met someone nearby who is selling there MVS NEO GEO cabinet. The mother board is either a MV-1F PCB or a MV-1FS PCB.
The joysticks and buttons work really good. Comes with 4 games, metal slug X, samurai showdown, last blade (JP), KOF 2003.

The door in the back is broken off, so he had to use duct tape to keep the wight safety switch pressed in which is usually pressed when u close the back door. There was also quite a bit of dust inside the cabinet.

Here is the real issue, when he switched game cartridges, most of the time the board wouldnt read the game and would go to the neo geo bios mode. He told me that the reason the board doesnt read the cartridge most of the time is because if the board gets contact with the metal behind it, it would get finicky and wouldnt read the cartridge. His temporary solution was to put cardboard behind the motherboard so it would rest on the cardboard instead of the metal.

His motherboard was basically resting on the metal behind it on a angle, He never got around to bolting it in place, sitting on top of another small brown chip in the size of a rectangle like a nes controller. He said a solution to this is to get plastic nails with rubber washers, and bolt the board into place like its supposed to be, with the rubber washers between the metal and the board.

Now is this true? is this the reason the cartridges wouldnt read and instead go make neo geo go into bios mode instead? He would try about 10 times turning the switch to the cabinet off, inserting cartridge, turning cabinet on, seeing bios mode, turning off, and repeating. after about 10 tries the game would work everytime he would turn the system on and off. Once he switched cartridges the problem persisted.

He wants 300$ for it, canadian currency. Here are pics of the system and games
Here is the pics of the cabinet and games

I need your opinion guys, is this price good, should i pay less? and what about the problem of reading cartridges? is he telling me the truth?


In my opinion, as someone who once owned a gold cab: Find a Big Red. You’ll wish you had one. I can’t speak to that cab’s technical difficulties.

I’ve worked on a lot of neo boards from 1 slots to 4 slots.

If the board otherwise is in fine condition than it’s entirely possible the bios mode issue is because the cartridge pins aren’t grounded properly. Touching the metal isn’t particularly great for it but the Neo boards are built tough and it won’t kill them although it isn’t good for them either. I would say if you mounted it properly
it probably wouldn’t have that issue, also they are picky about putting the cartridge on just perfectly to begin with.

What nobody here can guarentee you is if the board has any more problems he’s not telling you about. But i would think if you got some spacers and rubber washers and mounted it properly it should work fine if it works once the cartridge is in right. very few neos with issues i’ve seen either play games right or don’t so if it eventually plays games right maybe it just needs a cleaning is all. they’re fairly robust boards.

ok thats good advice.
so 300$ for it or is that to much? what would u pay for the cabinet and 4 games?

ok thats good advice.
so 300$ for it or is that to much? what would u pay for the cabinet and 4 games? knowing the risks that ive told you would u offer lower?

Depending on the carts, the carts them selves can go more than $300.
I seen main boards go for $150/$200 So a Neo Geo cab in reasonable condition for $300 is excellent.

As for mounting the main board it self, most people use plastic mounting legs made for arcade boards, and those legs are usually mounted on a large board of plywood or mdf.
Its very very common to see a arcade board on on plastic lets mounted on Plywood, MDF or similarly non-conductive material before it’s mounted in the cab. Hell a large enough and thick plastic cutting board would work.
I seen this done in both US and Japanese cabs.

Arcade board mounting Feet

Arcade board mounted to Plywood

300 CAD is about 230 USD, even 300 USD for a full neo cab that needs some repair really isn’t bad. if some games are included, even better. of course, you can always go online shopping and get a multicart almost effortlessly, then for about an extra $100-120 you’ll have most all the games. sadly some of the best aren’t on any multicarts… but that’s a separate issue! plus if it has a working monitor that is great.

in my opinion 300 is fine for the cabinet and games if he’d take no less for it, that said i would of course try to negotiate a slightly lower price because of the risks, that said just get some proper mounting hardware and do the job right and most likely it’ll work perfectly.

Ok i understand, regarding the monitor, it works good, all the colours are there
the only thing about the monitor is that it takes a good 5 seconds after the power is switched on for something to appear. is that normal?

Ok great i understand, im basically going to tell him to mount it properly since this guy is more handy with tools etc.
thank you for your advice

The games you posted could be bootlegs or legit. There are a lot of bootleg mvs games out there. When I got my mvs cab I got lucky, legit copies of two rather rare games and one legit copy of a not so rare game but It had accumulated in value since it was probably the most prevalent boot out there (bubble bobble).

If the games you got are boots but work either keep em or sell em for 30-40 a piece. If they’re all legit you could pay off the machine easy and maybe make a little extra but don’t expect to flip the carts for $$$ unless they’re real.

As long as the monitor looks good and doesn’t make any bad sounds don’t worry about the 5 sec delay. Of it turning on.

Here is some links to tell if you got a bootleg Cart or real one.

And finally the MVS scan Data base, where scans of known legit and bootleg carts had their PCBs scaned and entered

Keep in mind even if the Data base said otherwise sometimes the presence of a Eprom is not a indicator of a boot,
SNK known to use Eproms as replacement/repair chips. A Flash Rom would be a major indicator.

The one Cart I own that I know is a bootleg that I am not upset about is Strikers 1945 Plus, mainly because how expensive the actual cart is.
Games like Ghostlop and Ironclad never had a official release on the MVS so the only ones you can find are bootlegs.

would using bootleg carts in the neo geo motherboard cause the game to not work and go to bios sometimes?

or is that a whole different issue?

so besides bootlegs being “not the original” , is there ANY other disadvantage for owning/using bootlegs?

Only if its screwed up, but this is unlikely

Yes someone selling a bootleg as the real thing, which is then fraud.

I don’t mind a seller who was direct and say “this is a boot” or “This is a replica”