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I'm currently setting up a gaming room in my house and was wondering if anyone has set up some sort of MAME machine or other emulating machine. I wanted to build an actually cabinet of sorts to look like an old arcade machine. I have a good computer to handle the emulation and roms, but needing other advice on where exactly to start.

I have seen other machines when powered on, they are brought directly into MAME where a game can be selected, instead of going into Windows and having to load the application manually. What is all behind that?

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closed as off topic by Matthew Read, Fluttershy, Sorean, StrixVaria, GnomeSlice May 14 '12 at 18:33

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This is a little open-ended IMO. – Matthew Read May 14 '12 at 18:02
I found this site:, although I personally would go with an easy solution. Buy 1 Monitor, 2 Matcatz TE sticks, 2 chairs and and a cheap computer table. Screw the sticks into the table... done. Cost about 200 + 2 X 100 + 2 * 25 + 50 about 500 bucks if you go for second hand. – ayckoster May 14 '12 at 18:57
Use a Raspberry. There are plenty of tutorials out there to turn it into a arcade cabinet or just emulation station. And it only costs about 50$, maybe 100$ with a casing. – user28015 Sep 21 '14 at 16:33

Maximum PC has a great 10 part article on how to build a MAME box from scratch. And I literally mean from the planning phase all the way through to configuration.

As for your startup question, most PC's can be configured at BIOS to restart when accidentally powered down. Windows can be configured to login without a user. Then MAME is configured to launch at machine start. You may want to consider launching MALA at login because it gives a more MAME like selection screen for your games. MAME+Plus is better if you want to traverse a large collection and have a trackball on your box.

The bootup of the machine is way down the construction cycle so I would suggest starting with the article and planning your box. Once you get down to the PC install section you will see there are many more options than could be covered here and a lot of them come down to personal preference and hardware on the box.

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