Mini arcade cabinet looks as good as the real thing


[Ed] had a netbook he no longer needed and decided to make it into a mini MAME cabinet for some of his family members. MAME cabinets are pretty plentiful, but this one was so nicely done, we wanted to share it.

He removed the monitor from an EeePC 901 in order to get some precise measurements, then went about crafting a mini cabinet from MDF. The whole thing was wrapped in sticky label paper adorned with old-school Galaga graphics, then covered in plexiglass for a nice sleek look that also protects the artwork.

He used an iPac 2 controller board to wire up all of the buttons and joystick to the netbook, opting to solder the controller’s wires directly to the USB header on the eeePC’s motherboard. A power switch was added up on top for easy operation, and the cabinet was sealed shut, though the back does open easily in the event that maintenance is required. The system is managed using the Maximus Arcade front end for MAME, which [Ed] claims is incredibly easy.

If you are interested in making your own MAME cabinet, check out some of the other MAME-based projects we have featured in the past, and don’t miss the video below of [Ed's] cabinet in action.


  1. JeremyC says:

    Nice build! The tiny cabinets are pretty cool…

  2. DMackey says:

    Excellent, I’ll take 2 please.. :) Nice job.

  3. joe says:

    Nice project. Could have been even cooler if he had rotated the screen 90 degrees to get a more authentic arcade setup.

  4. Xavi says:

    A couple of speakers mounted in the front part of the cabinet would be a good improvement. eeePC sound is too bad.

    Nice job!

  5. mark says:

    “Could have been even cooler if he had rotated the screen 90 degrees to get a more authentic arcade setup.”

    The narrow vertical viewing angle on netbook screens means you really wouldn’t want this. Each eye would see substantially different images. It’s really annoying. If you wanted a portrait display, you’d need to use a different display.

  6. I want this. Oh the envy.

  7. prem says:

    love these mini arcade cabinets, cant get enough of em. the only thing i’d do differently on the software side of things is replace the boot screen and launch mame as the shell on startup.
    lookin awesome, keep em coming.
    extra points for the turtles pinball machine in the background.

  8. matt says:

    is this for sale

  9. Charles says:

    Could you provide a link to the art so we can print it up?

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