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How do you actually make an arcade pcb?

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Most important questions I have are...

What componets are on an Arcade Pcb?

How do they work?

Why are they absolutly full of chips unlike consoles usually are?

Why are original arcades so much more powerful then all their console ports? (Well, usually)

Mainly, how are official, actuall arcades made?

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There's nothing special about a PCB used in an arcade machine. They're the same as any other electronics: resistors, capacitors, transistors, maybe some relays or latches, the odd IC. Nothing magic. If you're interested in how electronics work, I recommend an electronics hobby community; GDNet isn't really specialized in hardware.

I'm not sure where you get the impression that arcade machines are "full of chips" whereas consoles are not. Have you disassembled either of these things?

I also don't know what you mean by "arcades" being "so much more powerful" than consoles. Usually, it's the other way around, by many orders of magnitude!

Lastly, arcade machines are manufactured the same as any other electronics. There's typically a prototyping phase, then once the circuit design etc. is all nailed down, they do a couple revisions in "actual" hardware and then scale up to mass production. Secret: many arcade machines are actually built like general-purpose computers, with just really restricted functionality presented to the "user." Think of a typical arcade machine as a console in a fancy cabinet.


In general I think it's hard to give good answers to your questions because they are very vague; could you elaborate a bit on your interest in this area and what specifically you want to know more about?

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There's nothing special about a PCB used in an arcade machine. They're the same as any other electronics: resistors, capacitors, transistors, maybe some relays or latches, the odd IC. Nothing magic. If you're interested in how electronics work, I recommend an electronics hobby community; GDNet isn't really specialized in hardware.

I'm not sure where you get the impression that arcade machines are "full of chips" whereas consoles are not. Have you disassembled either of these things?

I also don't know what you mean by "arcades" being "so much more powerful" than consoles. Usually, it's the other way around, by many orders of magnitude!

Lastly, arcade machines are manufactured the same as any other electronics. There's typically a prototyping phase, then once the circuit design etc. is all nailed down, they do a couple revisions in "actual" hardware and then scale up to mass production. Secret: many arcade machines are actually built like general-purpose computers, with just really restricted functionality presented to the "user." Think of a typical arcade machine as a console in a fancy cabinet.


In general I think it's hard to give good answers to your questions because they are very vague; could you elaborate a bit on your interest in this area and what specifically you want to know more about?


I get the feeling he's talking about old school, 80's type stuff, not modern arcades.

Modern arcade machines are just PC's nowadays.

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There's nothing special about a PCB used in an arcade machine. They're the same as any other electronics: resistors, capacitors, transistors, maybe some relays or latches, the odd IC. Nothing magic. If you're interested in how electronics work, I recommend an electronics hobby community; GDNet isn't really specialized in hardware.

I'm not sure where you get the impression that arcade machines are "full of chips" whereas consoles are not. Have you disassembled either of these things?

I also don't know what you mean by "arcades" being "so much more powerful" than consoles. Usually, it's the other way around, by many orders of magnitude!

Lastly, arcade machines are manufactured the same as any other electronics. There's typically a prototyping phase, then once the circuit design etc. is all nailed down, they do a couple revisions in "actual" hardware and then scale up to mass production. Secret: many arcade machines are actually built like general-purpose computers, with just really restricted functionality presented to the "user." Think of a typical arcade machine as a console in a fancy cabinet.


In general I think it's hard to give good answers to your questions because they are very vague; could you elaborate a bit on your interest in this area and what specifically you want to know more about?


Well, what I said was pretty much based on my experiance.

When I played the Mortal Kombat arcades, they have better graphics and everythings bigger and the sound is a little more realistic.
So that made me assume that their hardware was superior.

About the PCB thing, I've seen both motherboard of consoles and arcade boards. Console's I see some rom chips and other componets, and from all the arcade boards I've seen, so many rom chips are everywhere (The rom chips was what I was talking about)

I'm really sorry about my unclearness, It just seemed odd to me compared to consoles from all that I've experienced, and I just wanted to make sure how it worked. I have Autism btw.

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I guess it depends on the arcade machine and the console, then :-) I've played just as many console ports of arcade games that were quite a bit more interesting in many ways. The old Crazy Taxi comes to mind...

For modern consoles, electronics have shrunk a lot. Keep in mind that we can now fit thousands of times more circuitry onto a chip than was possible in the 80s, for instance. And on older consoles like the NES, don't forget that a fair bit of electronic magic was relegated to the cartridge itself.

For comparison:

Ms. Pac Man arcade board

A Commodore 64

The NES


Seems pretty on-par to me, considering the relative complexities of each system and all.

Of course, I'm not an electronics engineer, so what do I know ;-)

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[quote name='ApochPiQ' timestamp='1316654194' post='4864486']
There's nothing special about a PCB used in an arcade machine. They're the same as any other electronics: resistors, capacitors, transistors, maybe some relays or latches, the odd IC. Nothing magic. If you're interested in how electronics work, I recommend an electronics hobby community; GDNet isn't really specialized in hardware.

I'm not sure where you get the impression that arcade machines are "full of chips" whereas consoles are not. Have you disassembled either of these things?

I also don't know what you mean by "arcades" being "so much more powerful" than consoles. Usually, it's the other way around, by many orders of magnitude!

Lastly, arcade machines are manufactured the same as any other electronics. There's typically a prototyping phase, then once the circuit design etc. is all nailed down, they do a couple revisions in "actual" hardware and then scale up to mass production. Secret: many arcade machines are actually built like general-purpose computers, with just really restricted functionality presented to the "user." Think of a typical arcade machine as a console in a fancy cabinet.


In general I think it's hard to give good answers to your questions because they are very vague; could you elaborate a bit on your interest in this area and what specifically you want to know more about?


Well, what I said was pretty much based on my experiance.

When I played the Mortal Kombat arcades, they have better graphics and everythings bigger and the sound is a little more realistic.
So that made me assume that their hardware was superior.

About the PCB thing, I've seen both motherboard of consoles and arcade boards. Console's I see some rom chips and other componets, and from all the arcade boards I've seen, so many rom chips are everywhere (The rom chips was what I was talking about)

I'm really sorry about my unclearness, It just seemed odd to me compared to consoles from all that I've experienced, and I just wanted to make sure how it worked. I have Autism btw.
[/quote]

It could be due to miniaturization and analog vs digital designs. The consoles are using processors that can way reduce the amount of "chips" needed while the arcade boards could have (and probably were if they were older) designed using more analog methods (everything literally hard coded). Note how a console can run many different types of games, while the arcade machine is purpose built for one specific game. More "stuff" does not mean that it is more "powerful", in-fact in can actually mean quite the opposite!

EDIT: Ninja'd. I am no electrical engineer either (but maybe some day!) Edited by shadowisadog

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Actually, a lot of the earlier arcade machines were custom engineered for each type of game. So instead of doing things exclusively in software on a generic computer, they had hardware acceleration circuitry built for specific algorithms in the game. Those circuits consisted of discrete components, too.

What componets are on an Arcade Pcb?[/quote]

Mostly CPU(s) discrete logic gate chips, flip-flops, adders, multipliers, registers, RAM, ROM and other integrated circuits.

How do they work?[/quote]

It's complex. You will need to undertake a course in digital systems to understand.

Why are they absolutly full of chips unlike consoles usually are?[/quote]

Back in the early days, chip technology was not as advanced compared today. Therefore, the amount of complexity you could cram into a single chip was limited. Which means if you wanted to create a custom, complex system with special hardware acceleration, you'd have to use discrete components in addition to the standard CPUs at the time. Today things are different. Many of these things can be done in a single chip package. Depending on the application, you can use powerful generic GPU and DSPs, FPGA chips, or go for the more expensive ASIC route.

Why are original arcades so much more powerful then all their console ports? (Well, usually)[/quote]

Depends what you mean by powerful. Arcade machines built for a specific game used a lot of optimisations and custom engineering to accelerate the game. These machines are finely tuned to reduce latency, frame drops, they are even carefully synchronised with the video signals set to the TV. Consoles are generic machines, designed to run many games. Therefore, some optimisations seen on arcade machines is not portable to consoles. Some gamers can see the difference, and thus the gaming experience feels different for them.

Mainly, how are official, actuall arcades made? [/quote]

Like with anything else, you have a team of engineers, designers working together with a single goal in mind: Making a product.

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