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PRKLCD
2nd July 2006, 03:14 PM
Hey guys,

I am after some mame help. Thought I would post as much detail as I can about my cabinet, choice of games and PC specs.

I bought a lowboy ( see attached photos) and I am interested in putting in a simple Mame setup. I will using both an arcade VGA and a JPAC.

My computer that I have to use is

P3 500
256 ram
10gig HDD

It currently has no operating system, but I have the choice of 98se or XP. ( should I upgrade my Ram?)

I don’t want my cabinet to have heaps and heaps of games. 20 is about how long the list is. Games like

Double dragon.
Final Fight
Bubble Bubble
Golden Axe
Shonbi
Kung Fu Master

I think the most complex games I want are NBA Jam and Street Fighter 2.

Now this is where I need some help. What front end system should I use? I should stress that I am not overly concerned about what the front end looks like – as long as it’s simple to select games and is reliable.
(also want to use coins – which I am guessing the front end doesn’t have a lot to do with)

I have no experience in the front end of Mame – I just use DOS on my laptop at the moment. If anyone has good websites that guide you through the setup of a particur front end that would be great.

Overall I want something simple, effective and reliable. I have a good understanding of computers but don’t have any programming experience. Willing to do over-time to make sure it runs well.

If anyone has any experiences and could point me in the right way that would be great.

Davefjedi
2nd July 2006, 04:36 PM
i use game launcher it has a windows based exe and a dos based exe i use the dos one and find it great
http://www.dribin.org/dave/game_launcher/

atadich
3rd July 2006, 06:42 PM
Hi There!

I use MAME32, a windows based front end. It has many options configurations. You can download enhancements, such as cabinet pix, game history etc... I havent had any problems with it. Good luck!!

link: http://mame32.classicgaming.gamespy.com/

Viper
3rd July 2006, 07:09 PM
MameWah - The dude who designed MameWah designed it around those using a J-PAC and ArcadeVGA by the sound of the e-mails I received from both him and Andy from Ultimarc.

Gamelauncher also has a good rep.

RetroGame
3rd July 2006, 07:50 PM
If you want somthing simple, effective and reliable with a PIII 500, forget windoze use DOS 7 and Gamelauncher. Also you will need to use an older version of mame, say V.36 final. This would only need 64Mb of ram and will run at full speed (you might struggle with NBA jam)

Davefjedi
3rd July 2006, 08:12 PM
If you want somthing simple, effective and reliable with a PIII 500, forget windoze use DOS 7 and Gamelauncher. Also you will need to use an older version of mame, say V.36 final. This would only need 64Mb of ram and will run at full speed (you might struggle with NBA jam)
i run dos mame 084 fine with glaunch runs pretty sweet i found when i go to use 100 the load time is increased????

feeras
3rd July 2006, 08:15 PM
This might be useful:

http://wiki.arcadecontrols.com/wiki/Front-Ends

I use GameEx but that is CPU intensive and unlikely to run well on your system. Would AdvanceMenu be a better choice? I've never tried it as it was quite complicated from the outset to setup.

Cheers,

Smit
3rd July 2006, 08:28 PM
I use mamewah and really like it. It runs well on older PCs, supports alot of emulators and is specifically designed to be used in an arcade cab. It is highly recommended over at BYOAC.

I must admit that i have only played around with 4 or 5 other frontends at the most.

Smit

The Pinny Parlour
3rd July 2006, 09:57 PM
Fraggal's BOOT CD

New features to 4.02.F:

- Completely new install interface
- AdvMAME 0.97.0
- Dos Mame 0.100
- ArcadeOS 2.51
- ArcadeVGA support
- Fixed goofy random bugs here and there
- ArcadeOS "UPDATE.BAT" support!
- Several more options for installation.

miikeboyle
3rd July 2006, 10:08 PM
with this fraggals boot cd

does it mean you do a fresh install so you dont have windows on your computer?
you just have dos mame and the front end?

or is it a cd you leave in the cd drive and when the computer turns on it loads up the frontend and mame instead of windows?

mike

The Pinny Parlour
3rd July 2006, 10:42 PM
You don't have to have anything installed. RAW Hard drive, pop the disc in and away it goes. You remove the CD when finished.

Viper
3rd July 2006, 10:47 PM
I'm certainly going to give the new Fraggal boot CD a go when I finally get around to testing for my next cab.

miikeboyle
3rd July 2006, 11:34 PM
so do you recomoend it over something like mamewah?

with the fraggal cd, ive downloaded it, now do i just burn it to a cd as data, or is there a special way to burn it?

The Pinny Parlour
4th July 2006, 12:02 AM
so do you recomoend it over something like mamewah?

with the fraggal cd, ive downloaded it, now do i just burn it to a cd as data, or is there a special way to burn it?
I have never used mamwah so I can't really comment there. With the fraggal's boot cd, you just burn the iso image and your set to go.

uprising
4th July 2006, 12:55 AM
Its hard to look past GameEx

http://www.tomspeirs.com/gameex/default.aspx

its got everything you could possibly need and more.
Its easy to use and looks slick

Check here for front end links

http://www.mamedownunder.com.au/frontends.htm

3d arcade is another one to look out for
http://3darcade.mameworld.net/

feeras
4th July 2006, 08:35 AM
For me, 3darcade was an absolute nightmare to configure. I eventually got it up and running and despite it's brilliant colourful menu system, i went back to a more simple menu system. I guess if you do consider 3darcade make sure you have enough CPU grunt and a lot of free time...

Cheers,

PRKLCD
4th July 2006, 11:43 AM
Fraggal's BOOT CD

New features to 4.02.F:

- Completely new install interface
- AdvMAME 0.97.0
- Dos Mame 0.100
- ArcadeOS 2.51
- ArcadeVGA support
- Fixed goofy random bugs here and there
- ArcadeOS "UPDATE.BAT" support!
- Several more options for installation.

Think I will give this a shot and see how it goes.

PRKLCD
5th July 2006, 06:14 PM
Fraggal's BOOT CD

New features to 4.02.F:

- Completely new install interface
- AdvMAME 0.97.0
- Dos Mame 0.100
- ArcadeOS 2.51
- ArcadeVGA support
- Fixed goofy random bugs here and there
- ArcadeOS "UPDATE.BAT" support!
- Several more options for installation.

Do you have a link for V4?? I can't seem to locate it

The Pinny Parlour
5th July 2006, 07:19 PM
Do you have a link for V4?? I can't seem to locate it

http://www.fraggals-boot.tk/

PRKLCD
5th July 2006, 07:35 PM
Thanks for that!!

I can't get my old p3 to boot from the CD rom and of course I dont have a floppy drive to make a boot disk :cry

The Pinny Parlour
5th July 2006, 10:23 PM
Thanks for that!!

I can't get my old p3 to boot from the CD rom and of course I dont have a floppy drive to make a boot disk :cry


Hit delete on post then go into your bios and edit your boot sequence. Make the Cd first boot device. If this still fails, make all the Boot devices CD-ROM, First, Second, Third and Forth.

DKong
6th July 2006, 01:17 AM
If you want to use Mamewah you will need XP. It's a bugger to figure but once you work it out it is great! Has so much flexibility for customization and supports all emulators and pc games and does not tax the processor power But with a PC with low specs I would stick to Arcadeos and dos for maximum FPS which also is pretty cool..Fraggels boot cd has been around for a while and in its infancy had probs with sound cards etc haven't tried the new one don't want to mess up what I already have..
Is the fraggel Boot CD that good now Ian?

The Pinny Parlour
6th July 2006, 07:54 AM
If you want to use Mamewah you will need XP. It's a bugger to figure but once you work it out it is great! Has so much flexibility for customization and supports all emulators and pc games and does not tax the processor power But with a PC with low specs I would stick to Arcadeos and dos for maximum FPS which also is pretty cool..Fraggels boot cd has been around for a while and in its infancy had probs with sound cards etc haven't tried the new one don't want to mess up what I already have..
Is the fraggel Boot CD that good now Ian?
To tell you the truth DKong I haven't set it up on a new system yet. I used the first version of Fraggal's BOOT CD years ago. I am redoing mine when time permits with it. Others, feedback seem very happy with it though.

Smit
6th July 2006, 11:36 AM
If you want to use Mamewah you will need XP. It's a bugger to figure but once you work it out it is great! ......

I've had it running on Win98 no probs..

Smit

elvis
6th July 2006, 12:27 PM
My computer that I have to use is

P3 500
256 ram
10gig HDD

should I upgrade my Ram?
Depends on the games you play.

Some bigger games decompress to over 300MB. A few examples are Gunbird 2, and the more recent MVS games like Garou and the later King of Fighters games.

The easy way to tell is to fire up MAME with your favourite game. Under windows, open up Task Manager and look for mame.exe (under Linux or MacOSX, use the "top" command in a console for the same sort of thing). Check out how much memory it is using. You need at least that amount of PHYSICAL memory installed. Virtual memory (or your "swapfile" when speaking the language of a real OS) is no good. You'll find performance extrememly bad as the game data constantly swaps in and out of RAM to your disk.

Adding more RAM to a system that doesn't need it WILL NOT improve MAME's performance. If your system is performing fine with 512MB, jumping to 1GB will do nothing for MAME's speed. If however you are sitting at 128MB and you find out via Task Manager that MAME is using 200MB for a particular game that you enjoy and will play often, then it's time to upgrade.

Viper
6th July 2006, 07:20 PM
I've had it running on Win98 no probs..

Smit
Same here. Always used Win98 (se) with MameWah and no problems.

PRKLCD
7th July 2006, 09:22 PM
Ok I have a question...................... again.

I have set up my system using the CD ( it's really great) Now cause my computer isn't ready to be hooked up to my cabinet I had to pick the options of normal video card and PC screen. When I do finally get an arcadeVGA and hook it up to the arcade screen will I be able to change this or do I have to re- do it?

Viper
7th July 2006, 10:09 PM
You can definitely change the setting without having to re-install it. Can't remember how though as it's been ages.

PRKLCD
7th July 2006, 10:20 PM
You can definitely change the setting without having to re-install it. Can't remember how though as it's been ages.

Cool thanks!

My games seem to take a while to load. Say 1-2 mins for wonderboy. Is this normal or is it my p3 500 128ram having a baby?

OzStick
8th July 2006, 03:57 PM
Ok I have a question...................... again.

I have set up my system using the CD ( it's really great) Now cause my computer isn't ready to be hooked up to my cabinet I had to pick the options of normal video card and PC screen. When I do finally get an arcadeVGA and hook it up to the arcade screen will I be able to change this or do I have to re- do it?

Someone please correct me if I'm wrong but if PRKLCD leaves it set up as a standard PC monitor for AdvanceMAME and installs the AVGA Card then connects the arcade monitor, nothing will be different.

As I say to everyone else, I reckon you should use standard DOS MAME with the GameLauncher front end - set it up using a standard PC monitor then swap over the the AVGA Card and arcade monitor and it will all be hunky dory.

Cheers,
Chris


Cool thanks!

My games seem to take a while to load. Say 1-2 mins for wonderboy. Is this normal or is it my p3 500 128ram having a baby?

Modify your AUTOEXEC.BAT file to set up a smart drive, which will act like a memory buffer and significantly speed up loading time. I used to get caught out by that all the time!

Use this to start off with: c:\XXXX\smartdrv.exe 1024,0 where XXXX is the directory in which the smartdrv.exe file resides. If you don't have it then copy it from the C:\WINDOWS directory of someone's Win98 setup.

Cheers,
Chris