Please Note: This project is very old. The content on this
page was last updated on June of 1996. The information here
may be out of date. But the steps for building your own
arcade test box are still valid today.
A lot of the newsgroup articles linked from this page are very
old. Also, some newsgroup articles have been removed from this
site in lieu of requests from the authors.
Use the information here at your own risk.
Nick Shin firstname.lastname@example.org
My Very own Arcade Test Box
I have built a working JAMMA compatable self powered
arcade game controller, also known as a test box by
technicians in the realm of coin-op game industry.
If you want to make your own, the basic parts for the test
< Click on the name to see a picture of what the part
looks like! >
JAMMA Cable (I'll try and get a better picture than this)
The parts listed above are all you need to start building your
own Arcade System. There are other ways to get an arcade system.
You can goto auctions to get good deals on cabinets or just go
to your local convient store and ask them if they want to get
rid of their game sitting in the corner of the room collecting
dust (but this method is hardly the way to go if you are looking
for a particular game). And if all else fails -- go in to an
actual arcade room (if there are still any around you) and ask
if they can sell you one.
AUCTIONS are one of the ways to get good deal on getting
an arcade cabinet. You can check out the place to see what they
have available and what you can ultimately buy. Be sure to
inspect the cabinets thoroughly before you buy it.
WAREHOUSES and OFFICES that sell and trade used
arcade units are also some of the best places to find, buy, have
some sort of guarantee, and additional options when purchasing a
cabinet, PCB, or a whole arcade game.
I sometimes buy PCB's from the net by looking in
NEWS GROUPS such as:
What to Do
If you feel the need to have a giant cabinet in your room then
go buy one. If not, you can have a personal set up that can be
put away under the bed.
Buying a cabinet isn't all that necessary, you can buy a
used one, a
or drop some major coin and get a
kick @$$ one.
For the homegrown users, here are some schematics for you
to take a peek at. Just follow the diagram carefully and
you should be able to figure out how to make your own arcade
But before you do -- read some of the articles from the news
groups that I have compiled together here for you:
The diagram above is a layout of the JAMMA harness. I have put
some of the wires together in plugs for easy connector removal.
Some cheap JAMMA harnesses will not have all lines being fed
from the end connector. That's OK - as you can see from the
bottom of the diagram; there are unused wires that that have
been bunled together (for clutter free storage).
By just put one and one together; you are on your way to
completing your very own arcade system.
Follow on down to the next diagram for the power connections.
Pay very close attention to this one!
Just look at the diagram closely to see what needs to
be done. I probably should elaborate more on what to
do and what the parts do on this system. But, if you
can not figure out what you are look at, then you probably
need to find a friend who knows more about electronics
than you do. =)