A Tiny Arcade Machine With Tinier Buttons

Building a MAME machine around a Raspberry Pi has been the standard build for years now, and tiny versions of full-sized arcade machines have gone from curiosity to commonplace. [diygizmo] just built one of these tiny arcades, but the fit and finish of this one puts it above all others. There’s a real, miniature joystick in there, along with 3D printed adapters for tact switches to make this one look like a lilliputian version of a full size standup MAME cabinet.

The entire enclosure is 3D printed, and most of the electronics are exactly what you would expect: A Raspberry Pi, 2.5″ LCD, and a battery-powered speaker takes up most of the BOM. Where this build gets interesting is the buttons and joystick: after what we’re sure was a crazy amount of googling, [diygizmo] found something that looks like a normal arcade joystick, only smaller. Unable to find a suitable replacement for arcade buttons, [diygizmo] just printed their own, tucked a tact switch behind the plastic, and wired everything up.

Add in some decals, paint, and the same techniques used to create plastic model miniatures, and you have a perfect representation of a miniature arcade machine.

15 thoughts on “A Tiny Arcade Machine With Tinier Buttons

  1. That’s friggin awesome! I love it. :D That joystick though…jeez! As the owner of a full-size cabinet (A NEO-GEO 4-slot) I can tell you that stick almost costs as much as TWO actual arcade sticks… That’s just crazy. :(

    After having 3D printed the buttons (Which are BRILLIANT, btw!), why not go a similar route with the stick? I’ve seen miniature cabinet builds where the stick was just some manner of lever surrounded by four microswitches at right-angles…which is really all the real thing is, but with bigger parts.

      1. One of these days, I’m going make a bunch of MVS consoles… Really slick ones though… With real enclosures that make it look a commercial console. That would be hella cool.

        Six years ago, I picked up a lot of 8 ‘non-working’ single slot boards on eBay from a guy in Mexico. Worked out to around $7 a piece, and most of them just need the SRAM replaced. (Which I have the chips for.) Two of the boards even turned out to work, one w/o sound, and one with bad volume control. When it took the guy like two extra weeks to ship the package, he threw in a ninth board, and KoF’97.

    1. Because the author can chose his own price on Shapeways and that is what he chose to charge for it. It is his design and store on Shapeways.

      I’ve noticed most things on Shapeways are way overpriced. I’ve never attempted to sell anything there, so a huge chunk of that may be Shapeways piece of the pie.

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