Budget TGM(2+?) setup?

Thread in 'Hardware' started by Omio9999, 22 Jun 2016.

  1. Alright, so I'll admit that my income is a little... ...abysmal. However, I still want to play at least ONE of the TGM games with the actual stick and buttons. Getting a CRT screen isn't going to be a particularly hard problem for me, BUT... ...getting a board and controller is.

    So let's see about getting as budget-y as possible.
  2. You're looking at $200ish for a TGM1 board, $100 for a supergun, and $100 more for a stick. Probably another $50-60 for the cables and mods involved.
  3. What kind of CRT are you getting? Judging by your profile you're American, which makes the supergun solution a tad expensive as Kevin mentions, since American TVs generally don't take pure RGB inputs like basically every single European one would.
    Now, a PVM or BVM monitor isn't exactly a cheap solution unless you're lucky to find a cheap deal somewhere locally, but I'd rather spend my money there, than on an American-style supergun that converts the video signal from the board to S-video or whatever.
    If you have an RGB compatible CRT, you can make your own Supergun for basically the price of a PSU, if you're somewhat tech savvy, or at least mediocre with a soldering iron and able to read documentations on the JAMMA standard. If you're planning to ever get any kind of arcade hardware I'd recommend you get familiar with JAMMA anyway.

    You don't have to spend $100 on an arcade stick either (and if you want one that comes equipped with Sanwa, you'd probably end up closer to $200, too).
    For good hardware, you should invest in at least a Sanwa JLF stick and at a few Sanwa OBSF-30 buttons as well (you need at least 2 for buttons A and B, and a third if you plan on using A+C rotations - but you might as well hook up 4 so you're ready for Neo Geo or similar if you were ever to branch out). You'll also need at least a start-button, and buttons for credits and service coin, even if TGM can easily be set up to Free Play, but these don't really need to be good quality. You probably want them much smaller than your actual controller buttons.

    That shouldn't set you back too badly - at least it's a lot cheaper than buying a fancy-ass "pro" arcade stick controller that's probably made for USB input anyway. For building the stick, either buy a cheap no-brand stick to mod, or take a defunct one off someone's hands, or just find something else entirely you can use for casing. You don't need a PCB, encoder or anything since arcade controls can be wired directly to the arcade board - But do yourself a favor and get a set of DB15 connectors so you can easily disconnect your stick. :p
  4. Muf


    Starfall, shrizza and Tomek like this.
  5. Exactly that :D
  6. Canada, actually, but for NTSC-vs.-PAL purposes, similar enough.
    I'll keep my eyes peeled.
    I thought CRTs were RGB-compatible by default? o.O;
    ...aww,, fsck. I've never used a soldering iron. Don't even have one. D:
    I'll try, but... ...uh.... ...see above notion of "lacking a soldering iron" on why this is going to be awkward. >.<;
    Whatever option's cheapest, but it has to be a stick; a d-pad would throw me off even more than a stick.
    So 1 stick, and 8 buttons? Got it.
    And this is where this turns into "Proto-Uralic" for me (I understand Greek at least a little bit, and thus need to use a different language for the saying to hold weight - so I went obscure as crud).
  7. Cables that would natively output RGB would be something such as a SCART cable or VGA. Cables such as Composite and Coaxial can't handle a native RGB signal and output something like that (Left side) because of it.

    We recommend Sanwa parts because of how responsive and reliable they are. A regular arcade button feels really stiff and mushy compared to them and when you're inputting very fast there can be a chance you'll lose input because of it.

    For TGM you'll need a stick (preferably in 4-way mode), 4 buttons for input (3 of you aren't playing TGM3) and 2 more buttons for Start/Coin. If you want to you can add more buttons for Test/Service or even ditch the coin button and stay on Free Play. It's your choice.

    PCB = The actual arcade board TGM1/2 is stored on, Encoder is the thing that turns raw input into something that can be read (Used for USB devices) and a DB-15 connector is something like this. It's pretty much used so you aren't wiring directly to the PCB
  8. I'm pretty sure Sumez meant a PCB like you find in a fightstick to convert the arcade controls to USB
  9. Commas confuse me. Especially when things get mentioned twice.
  10. Ah, I have a female 15-pin to USB connector floating around in case someone goes the USB route, so I might actually have an easier time going with an encoder since I have that connector already. If I can forgo the encoder, I'll see.

    All-in-all, with everything in CAD, $~150 for the PCB, $240-ish for the TGM board, $80 for the cords and crud, Prolly another $100 for all the tools, and then whatever for the controller and TV, is what I'm hearing, for a total of around $530 CAD and upwards. I think.
  11. Sorry for confusing US and Canada, whenever someone has a state listed as location rather than a country, I always just assume USA.
    Like Archina said, all CRTs technically run on RGB, but the TV set itself might not have an input for it. I'm not sure how common those are in North America at all, but it's my impression they are rare, since a supergun is considered such an archaic thing over there. Where I'm from we usually wouldn't want ANY console to run anything other than RGB.

    This might be contested, but I think that if you're gonna deal with arcade stuff at any point in your life, you might as well familiarize yourself with a soldering iron. It's a good start as well, since most solderings you'll come across are pretty coarse and difficult to mess up. Though getting the gear you need to hook your arcade game (the PCB ;)) up to a TV set and attach controls to it, will set you back a few bucks, consider it a sound investment that will open up the world for all other sorts of original arcade games that you can now own in your own home.

    Yeah :) PCBs are just circuit boards, nothing crazy foreign.
  12. You can follow the profile link to the location, and the location that gets clicked on turns into a Google Maps search query.
    Yeah, I figured if I want to repair other techy things down the road, mastering a soldering iron might be a good idea.
    Knowing me, I'll find a way to mess it up. ^^;
    If I find a way to mount multiple boards up, using the 15-pin method, I'll have a swappable setup, that can just plug/unplug a few things, and bingo. We're golden.
    I had a feeling this was the case.
    Also going to note that once this cab's finished, it'll be available for (semi-cheap) per-day rental, and it'll be $0.25 CAD per play (unless Free Play is turned on for the rental), and then it'll be also worth noting that I might actually generate some local competition (that I'll prolly direct here too).
  13. The DB15 (15-pin connector) is for the stick. You can think of it like a controller port for a game console.
    If you want swappable boards, you'll need a more complicated setup which can also switch power, video, and so on between your PCBs.

    The game PCB is connected to the outside world with it's JAMMA connector. This connector handles everything the game needs (power, video, sound, input).
    (it's the connector you can see on this image on the bottom right)

    The DB15 connector is just a way to have your stick not permanently plugged in to your JAMMA connector.
  14. Okay... ...that explains a lot more things for me! :D
    Marginally, if I solder the ports to the JAMMA connector so I can just hop the JAMMA connectors between boards. Pretty sure older computer monitors that can handle 320x240 res are gonna be an example. The most difficult part is figuring out how to power the monitor AND the JAMMA unless I go full-blow 240W which will eat up power hardcore.
    Which I think I have managed to understand (albeit with mixed specifics), and such a thing would be great if I make a mini-table modification to the cabinet to make the controller-plate come off and become a viable table.
  15. Personally I'd just try to make a form of supergun, then have a rack of arcade PCBs with JAMMA extenders so then you can easily plug/unplug at will without messing with the boards themselves (Basically the setup I'm using right now.)
  16. The supergun's for the monitor, aye? I'm hoping to avoid that, if at-all possible. I have local TV/audio resources to bank on, and their knowledge on a pretty old age, so... ...I'm pretty confident we can jump to the scary there.
  17. The supergun is used to split/power everything. It's not required yet imo it's useful to have if you plan on having multiple arcade PCBs. You would have something for power (Usually a 20-pin power connector for motherboards), ports for 2 players and an RGB-compatible video out (Plus sound if your video out doesn't also do sound.) An example of a purchasable unit would look like this. Just remember these can be either made yourself or bought online.
    Last edited: 26 Jun 2016
  18. Gameplay footage? xP
  19. Whoops. Wrong link. I meant this.
    This is what I get for attempting 4 conversations at once.
  20. Pff :) Arcade boards aren't made of glass or anything. They are sturdier than they look. I swap out mine all the time, and carry them around for events, etc.

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