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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0..9


  • Analog, Analog data is data considered to be continuously variable -- that is, data that is not simply on or off (see digital). Temperature is a good example of analog data.


  • Bemani, synonymous with the rythm and dance game genre. Originally from BeatMania - the first rythm game in the genre.
  • Bezel, A shroud surrounding the monitor of an arcade cabinet so as to frame the monitor and hide the inner workings of the arcade cabinet.
  • Bucking magnet, A magnet that is glued to the back of a speaker magnet to counteract the magnetic field the speaker produces. Normally used to allow placement of speakers close to monitors without the speaker's magnetic field distorting the monitor's picture.
  • BYOAC short for "Build Your Own Arcade Controls". Also the name of the website and community that spawned this Wiki.
  • BYOACer a member of the Build Your Own Arcade Controls community.


  • Cab Short for "Arcade cabinet".
  • Cap-kit, Capacitor Kit - The capacitors (electronic components) on monitor circuit boards tend to go bad after a while, causing color and picture distortion. Replacing the capacitors (and other related electronic components) will often fix such problems. The collection of capacitors and other components that are needed to repair the monitor are referred to as a "cap-kit."
  • CMYK CMYK is a color description scheme used in printing, and stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and blacK. Mixing various amounts of these four colors produces the other colors needed in the printing process.
  • Cockpit cabinet An arcade cabinet that is enclosed. The player sits inside the cabinet to play the game.
  • Cocktail cabinet An arcade machine that is shaped like a small table. Players sit at the table and play the game looking down on the monitor. The monitor is oriented so that it is facing upwards.
  • Coin door A metal door on an arcade cabinet where players insert money or tokens to be able to play the game.
  • COM Common - a connector on a microswitch that is always used, regardless of whether the other connector used is NC or NO.
  • Control panel The panel of wood on an arcade cabinet or desktop arcade controller that is the home for the pushbuttons, joysticks, and other arcade controls used by the arcade machine.
  • CP Short for "Control panel"
  • CPO Acronym for "Control Panel Overlay." A CPO is a piece of vinyl or similar material originally used to cover the metal or wood control panel, display control instructions and branded game art.
  • CRT Cathode Ray Tube - a type of monitor with a glass tube. You are probably most familiar with a CRT monitor in the form of older televisions and computer monitors (non-LCD based).


  • DDR Dance Dance Revolution. A series of dance arcade games made by Konami. The series is named Dancing Stage in Europe, however many Europeans refer to the games by the DDR name.
  • Degaussing The process of demagnetizing (removing the magnetic field) of a monitor that can build up over time or occur from external sources, to remove the color or picture distortion caused by the field.
  • Desktop arcade controller A box that holds arcade controls use to play video games. The box is usually somewhere around 3 feet in width and 1.5 feet deep, and is designed to sit on a desktop when played. Unlike a full arcade cabinet, a desktop arcade controller only holds the arcade controls and internal electronics. No monitors, speakers, or computer are part of a desktop arcade controller. Some people have designed a complete "arcade-in-a-box" that goes beyond this definition, including the computer inside the controller, but this is rare.
  • Digital Digital data is data that is either on or off, one or zero, high or low. A pushbutton is a good example of data that is represented digitally. The button is either pressed, or not pressed. The amount that the pushbutton is pressed is not measured. A pushbutton that is pressed half-way down is still considered to be "off" until it makes final contact with the microswitch beneath it, at which point it is considered "on." Compare to Analog.
  • Diode A diode is a device that in simplest terms only allows electricity to flow in one direction. A diode has two ends: a cathode (-) and an anode (+). Current can only flow from the anode to the cathode, but not the other direction. Diodes are sometimes used in keyboard hacks.
  • DIY Do It Yourself.
  • DPI Dots Per Inch. Printing term used to describe the resolution of an image. For digital files, it may be better to think of DPI as pixels per inch.


  • Emulator A piece of software designed to make one computer act as another computer or arcade hardware. See also Emulators.
  • Encoder An electronic component, usually a microchip, that takes analog or digital signals from a device and encodes it in a format that the computer is able to understand. See encoders.


  • Front End Software GUI used to launch game roms in one or more emulators


  • GUI Acronym for "Graphic User Interface". A front end is an example of a GUI for MAME. The basic MAME is without a GUI, MAME32 is a version with a GUI.


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  • JAMMA - Japanese Amusement Machine Manufacturers' Association

A trade association based in Japan; it also the namesake of a trade show hosted in Japan; additionally, JAMMA is a wiring standard for arcade machines.


  • Keyboard Encoder - A device used to interpret signals from arcade buttons and joysticks into standard keystroke signals


  • Leaf Switch - A switch type commonly used on older buttons and joysticks. It consisted of two metal contacts, that when united, completed a circuit.
  • Leafs - Short form for leaf switch


  • MAME Acronym for "Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator". See also Arcade emulators.
  • Multimeter A multimeter is an electronic measuring instrument that combines several functions in one unit. The most basic instruments include an ammeter, voltmeter, and ohmmeter. See the Multimeter Wikipedia entry


  • NOS Acronym for "New Old-Stock." This term is most commonly used to describe original, unused vintage items for sale or auction. Many times unused stock may be found stored away untouched for years. NOS items are not reproductions, they were manufactured by the original manufacturer and should be close to perfect condition.


  • OEM Acronym for "Original Equipment Manufacturer." An OEM was the originator of a specific part. Parts from an OEM should be more accurate than reproduction parts made for the aftermarket. Reproduction parts are usually not considered 100% fully interchangeable with parts from the OEM.


  • Port A port can be either a connection on a computer circuit board or a remake of a game/application on another system than the first release. For example the arcade game Pac-Man was ported from the Arcade to various home computer systems.


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  • RGVAC Acronym for the usenet newsgroup This is a newsgroup for arcade collectors and those interested in restoring arcade cabinets to their original form. Regulars to the newsgroup aren't too fond of people that convert rarer arcade cabinets into ermulator cabinets.
  • ROM Acronym for "Read Only Memory". ROMs contain program code, graphics and sound data that is used by the arcade hardware to run the games. Think of it as a CD on a chip. Many emulators require ROM image files to work.


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  • VOM Acronym for Volt-Ohm-Milliemmeter. See multimeter entry.


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