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PC hardware specs for new cabinet?


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Hi all, i started to build a cabinet 6 years ago, then my wife had twins and my spare time went poof.  I'm getting  back to my project now and lots has changed since then, specifically the addition of LaunchBox (was going to use Hyperspin).  I was wondering if you could provide me some recommendations on the pc hardware aspect.  I plan on adding multiple platforms, not just the arcade classics but nintendo, sega, laserdisc's, xbox and even potentially some steam games.  It seems hardware requirements may jump when you start talking nintendo/sega and I can imagine another jump when talking xbox and steam.

I'm not looking to build a $2k+ pc for this so trying to get a good idea what will work for these specs.  If xbox and steam is going to make a huge jump in price, I may be willing to drop those. I'm also adding pics of the cabinet i started 6 years ago, should be plenty of space for the pc. The idea is to have a hidden drawer for the keyboard and mouse and the control panel lid will lift.  I also hope to be able to use a working coin mech and/or buttons for credits.

Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated!

  • PC hardware: HD recommendations size & speed, MB, RAM, video card, sound, etc...
  • I'd like to add a video marquee if possible, suggestions on this? This may be a bust based on my current cabinet build.
  • I was also thinking of adding those round built in speakers up in the marquee area pointing down toward the player.








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Last I checked there are no reliable emulators available for xbox. Steam games would be the biggest concern for specs. Fortunately building a decent computer for a small amount of cash is possible. 

This link here is probably the cheapest you could swing it while using modern parts. As for the video marquee, I have an idea. But your cabinet dimensions are not friendly towards it, and the solution you might find will probably be very labor intensive and expensive.

Currently at work, but for the marquee I can only point you towards this seller. I have not researched this too much myself, once I get to my desktop I can probably go into heavy nitty gritty on the details. With some hard google work you may be able to find a screen that will accommodate your cabinet dimensions. 




Another edit: Just found this site, I assume you are aware of it also. http://www.paradoxarcades.com/lcd-marquee/

Edited by NOIP
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I built my PC for about $1k and it plays everything I throw at it. I'm about to up it's GPU as well. If you're comfortable building a PC, and have a part or two lying around that you can use to cut some costs, building one for fairly cheap is easier than you think. If you want to play all the latest games for the next year or so at good quality, you want all recent hardware, there's no way around it. If your goal is to not play the latest games at high graphical intensities, but games that work on a cab and emulation, then you can go back a few years and still be just fine. An i7 from within the last 2-3 generations, a GTX950 (you can go higher or lower, but the older series are harder to find, and the 950 is fairly powerful for the price, but a GTX1050 / 1060 are more powerful and not that much more expensive), a decent motherboard that has dual channel ram, preferably DDR4. The motherboard you get will determine the CPU you can use as well because of the socket it has on board. A good amount of RAM, I would say at least 8GB would be good, that way the OS has it's 4 available to it. With some services cutting and making windows lean, 8GB can go far, but 16-32GB would be best in the long run, though you really don't need 32GB unless you want to run the latest games and maybe do some intense applications. 8-16GB I think might be the sweet spot. 12GB works, but finding 2 6GB sticks is more odd, 4GB and 8GB sticks are common. As for the drive, an SSD for the OS and a 7200RPM that's as big as you can afford. 5400RPM will work too, loading times in game nor transfer speed will be affected all that much. It will mostly effect seek time and how long it takes the drive to pull up from after turning it's self off (which will happen after a time it's not being used, even with the PC on). I found an 8TB drive, but it was 5400RPM (the 7200RPM ones were either non-existent or much more expensive), and this drive is perfect.

You want to prioritize in this order (for LaunchBox and emulation), CPU, GPU, RAM. You ideally don't want to slouch on any of them. i7 4k, 5k and 6k series CPU's are the ones you want to go for. The 6000 series might be too expensive, and the 4000 and 5000 series might be more affordable, but obviously you lose some power the farther back you go. It's also dependent on your Motherboard. Depending on the socket, say it only takes a 4000 series, if you don't buy the top of the line in that series, you'd be at your limit right away and need to buy a new motherboard and cpu to upgrade, then your RAM could also potentially be out. Find a decent motherboard you like, with features and ports that you need, then see where the RAM and CPU lie. The GTX1050's and 1060's are certainly not the top of the line, (that would be the currently released 1080's and soon to be upgrades), but they're affordable, and much more powerful than previous GPU's.

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Here's a spec i put together, its a bit more than i was hoping to spend since its not my primary desktop and gaming pc, but it looks like it should handle most anything i throw at it.  Its a shame, as this is almost at the specs of my primary desktop that i built for $2.2k a handful of years ago, for ~60% less.  Yes, I know, the totals don't quite add up for some reason, but not worried about why they did that. Please, take a look and if something looks off or you see room for improvement, please say so.

Name $$$ Discount Rebate Sub Link
CPU Intel Core i5-6600K SkyLake 3.5 GHz 1151 $199.00     $199.00 http://www.microcenter.com/product/451885/Core_i5-6600K_SkyLake_35_GHz_1151_Boxed_Processor
MSI Intel Skylake B150 LGA 1151 DDR4 USB 3.1 Micro ATX Motherboard (B150M Pro-VD) $59.99     $59.99



RAM Ballistix Sport LT 8GB Kit (4GBx2) DDR4 2400 MT/s (PC4-19200) DIMM 288-Pin - BLS2K4G4D240FSC (White) $69.99     $69.99 https://www.amazon.com/Ballistix-Sport-4GBx2-PC4-19200-288-Pin/dp/B01AG9EW76/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&qid=1469243304&sr=8-1&keywords=ddr4%2B8gb%2Bwhite&linkCode=sl1&tag=joeydel2525-20&linkId=8fbf877ab6dfbc44cb503bd81fcbd6ff&th=1
HD WD Blue 1TB 7,200 RPM SATA III 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive WD10EZEX $44.99     $44.99 http://www.microcenter.com/product/398271/Blue_1TB_7,200_RPM_SATA_III_60Gb-s_35_Internal_Hard_Drive_WD10EZEX_-_Bare_Drive
POWER EVGA 600 B1, 80+ BRONZE 600W $49.99     $49.99 https://www.amazon.com/EVGA-BRONZE-Warranty-Tester-100-B1-0600-KR/dp/B00EON40CS/ref=sr_1_1?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1487343922&sr=1-1&keywords=pc+power+supply&refinements=p_n_feature_keywords_two_browse-bin%3A6906985011
GPU MSI Computer GTX 1060 ARMOR 3G OCV1 NVIDIA GEFORCE GDDR5  $212.00   $10.00 $202.00 https://www.amazon.com/MSI-GAMING-GTX-1060-6G/dp/B01L9VAJCW/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1487344087&sr=1-1&keywords=GTX%2B1060&th=1
Network Use old one $0.00     $0.00  
Case Use old one $0.00     $0.00  
Optical Use old one $0.00     $0.00  
Win 10 Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit $130.22     $130.22 https://www.amazon.com/Microsoft-Windows-10-Pro-Bit/dp/B00ZSHDJ4O/ref=sr_1_1?s=software&ie=UTF8&qid=1487345653&sr=1-1&keywords=microsoft%2Bwindows%2B10%2Bpro%2B64bit%2Bsoftware&th=1
LaunchBox LaunchBox Premium w/Big Box $50.00     $50.00 https://www.launchbox-app.com/premium
UPS Already own new one $0.00     $0.00  
CPU Cooler (Optional) 
Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO - CPU Cooler with 120mm PWM Fan (RR-212E-20PK-R2) $34.93     $34.93 https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Delectronics&field-keywords=Cooler+Master+Hyper+212+EVO+-+CPU+Cooler+with+120mm+PWM+Fan+(RR-212E-20PK-R2)&rh=n%3A172282%2Ck%3ACooler+Master+Hyper+212+EVO+-+CPU+Cooler+with+120mm+PWM+Fan+(RR-212E-20PK-R2)
Total   $851.11 $0.00 $10.00 $806.18  
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I recently decided to build an arcade pedastal in my office/bonus room. Since my computer was already in the same room I decided to use a piece of software called Aster (ibik.ru) to create a second workplace/Windows login for the arcade machine. This allows me to run full screen applications on both my desktop and the arcade machine at the same time without having to purchase and maintain a second dedicated machine. The placement of the machine is only limited by the length of your video cable, which can be very long if needed.

Needless to say my desktop is pretty beefy and it doubles as my home theater server and web server and is always on...

  • Asus X99 Motherboard
  • I7-5820K 6-Core 3.3Ghz Cpu
  • 16Gb DDR DRAM 3000MHz
  • AMD Radeon RX 480 Video Card
  • Antec 1000W Power Supply 
  • Samsung 256GB M.2 Boot Drive


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