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Build Your Own Miniature Asteroids Arcade Cabinet

What's cooler or hipper than owning your own DIY Asteroids Arcade Cabinet?

By Cassandra Khaw. Published 7 months ago

Honestly, I dare you to find a cooler project. While owning a pint-sized DIY Asteroids arcade cabinet will not, unfortunately, automatically grant an epic mullet comparable to the one owned by a young Jaz Rignall, it'd definitely raise your maker cred by a wide margin.

As spotted by Hack a Day, Juergen Mueller's Asteroids cabinet is built to sit comfortably atop a desk. The nifty thing about Mueller's design is that it seems dedicated to being as true-to-old-school as one DIY project can get. Instead of cheating and using new-fangled technology, Mueller went ahead and got himself as a vector screen, one pillaged from a broken-down Vectrex console. Naturally, that wasn't without its problems.

"However, the resulting image won't look good. The Vectrex beam deflection is too slow to follow the signals coming from the Asteroids' digital vector generator. All shapes and characters will show rounded edges, gaps in the outline and other shape distortions. It is possible to bring the Vectrex display up to the required speed, but that requires some work and electronic parts." Mueller explains on his website.

So, what did Mueller do with his problem? He made a homebrew circuit board to, quite literally, bring the Vectrex display up to speed. But, really, that's not the coolest thing about the whole project. While this isn't exactly a new endeavor (DIY miniature arcade cabinets have been around for a long time) or the kind of comprehensive step-by-step guide that could walk your grandmother through the procedure, it's thorough enough to be useful to anyone with even a lick of electronics know-how.

If you end up making a miniature Asteroids cabinet of your own, please share it with us in the comments!

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