In this article I'll present step-by-step how I build Retro Arcade Machine. It's not really hard to do, so if you have basic skills in tools, I'm sure you can do it.

retrocade-marquee black

Let's start with required parts and costs:

  • Plywood plates. I recommend to buy veneered ones. You will save time and the money for painting. Quantity and sizes which I used to build my machine are in xls file (cost ~130$)
  • Arcade stick and buttons. I've used parts bought on chineese Whole package includes:
    Include 1: 2 player USB adapter PCB
    Include 2: 2 x red long shaft joystick
    Include 3: 16 x Transparency Illuminated push buttons
    Include 4: LED bulbs,holders,fixing nuts
    Include 5: wire for 2 player USB PCB
    Include 6: 1 x player 1 & 2 pushbutton with microswitch
    Include 7: 1 x LED cable, 1 x Daisy Chain Ground Wires
    was about 30$ + 25$ shipping (total cost 55$), which is cheap.arcade parts
  • Sound. As an amplifier I've used cheap LP-268 Mini Hi-Fi Stereo Amplifier. (10$)
    amp 1amp 2
  • Speakers. 2x10cm Boschmann G-4532 S 85W speakers. Included cable was very thin and bad quality, so I've used thicker 2x2mm HQ cable. (17$).
  • Computer. Desktop DELL Optiplex GX740 with 2GB of RAM (50$), NVidia GeForce 210 (40$) 500GB HDD (25$) (it's required minimum to have Hyperspin Arcade front-end installed with most roms and emulators). (total 115$)
  • 19' 4:3 LCD monitor, with 1280x1024 native resolution. (50$)
  • Cooling. 2xSilentiumPC Zephyr 120mm fan + grill. (20$)
    12cm fan with grill
  • Lighting. 5m RGB LED + 12V PSU. + 4m plastic profile to mount LED's in. (35$)
  • Stickers with custom made graphics for control panel, marguee and bezel. (30$)
  • Plexiglass for marquee (60x10cm), bezel (60x55cm) and control panel (60x35cm). (33$)
  • Screws (3$), rubber foots (x4 - 3$) and rollers (x2 - 3$) for the bottom, hinges for front door and keyboard door (x4 - 8$) (17$ in total)
  • Minor parts: USB hub, USB cable, speaker cable, power socket with power switch (~20$)

Total cost ~530$.

How to put those things together? Below gallery speaks for itself. If you have any questions regarding this project feel free to ask.