Below is the front-end software comparison table. Click on the software's name for detailed information about that software. Please be aware that this may be incomplete! The individual pages will have the software's homepage for you to verify any information or questions you may have!
Note: Any unknown information in the table is filled with placeholders (placeholders are shown in italics). Note: To be listed as Cabinet friendly, it needs to be able to be used with joysticks and buttons only (CAB).'
|Software||BYOAC User||OS||Type1||Monitor Orientation 2||Emulators3||Other Features4|
Typical recommended frontends by BYOAC users:
|AtomicFE||Youki||Freeware||CMD PC||CAB JB LED LR MR ST TOU VID DEV|
|GameEx||TSpeirs||Shareware ($25)||CMD PC||CAB JB LCD LED LR MR ST SW TOU VID DEV|
|HyperSpin||BadBoyBill||Freeware||CMD PC||CAB DEV LR MR ST SW VID LED|
|MaLa||Loadman (previously Swindus)||Freeware||CMD PC||CAB JB LCD LED LR MR ST SW VID|
|Mamewah||Minwah||Freeware||CMD PC||CAB DEV LCD LED LR MR ST VID|
|Maximus Arcade||%||Shareware ($25)||39+ arcade and console emulators||CAB JB LED MR ST VID|
Recommended for Linux (both active and discounted):
|AdvanceMenu||%||Open Source||CMD||AM CAB LR MR VID|
|Wah!Cade||Balki||Open Source||CMD||DEV CAB LR MR ST VID|
Other cabinet friendly frontends:
|Cabrio||Cosam||Open Source||CMD||CAB DEV LR MR SW VID|
|Emulaxian/3D Arcade||)p(||Freeware||CMD||CAB MR SW|
|Fronty||FrontyDev||Freeware||CMD PC||CAB DEV LCD MR ST|
|Khameleon||Cakemeister||Open Source||CMD||CAB DEV LR MR SW VID|
|MAMELOAD TNG||Tafoid||Freeware||CMD (MAME-BASED, Including MESS), M1, Final Burn Alpha||CAB DEV MR SW|
|MultiFE||Space Fractal||Freeware||Mame, CMD (Includning MESS) & PC Games||CAB DEV JB MR TOU|
|UltraMame||r.cade||Open Source||MAME only|| CAB DEV MR VID
Mouse based frontends:
|EmuLaunch||%||Freeware for personal use||Emulator dependent||Uses Finder to open ROMS in 15 arcade and console emulators||CAB SW|
|MAME32||%||Freeware||MAME only||DEV MR|
Touch screen based frontends:
|SimpleTouch FE||Lave Laar||Freeware||Application dependent||CMD||DEV ST TOU VID|
Discontinued and/or unsupported frontends5:
|ArcadeOS||%||Open Source||CMD||AM CAB LCD LR MR|
|ArcadEpic||chowny||Freeware||CMD||CAB JB MR VID|
|Dragon King||Howard_Casto||Freeware||CMD||CAB LR MR SW VID|
|GameLauncher||Dave Dribin||Open Source||CMD||CAB LR MR|
|Kymaera||PacManFan||Open Source||CMD||AM CAB LR MR ST SW VID|
|Ultrastyle||ultrastyle||Open Source||MAME only||CAB MR SW VID|
Frontends with missing "other features" tab:
|XMAME-GUI||%||Open Source||SDL-MAME Only|| Placeholder
Homepages for these FEs are gone, and are (might?) not active anymore:
- Arcade.EXE - Windows-only MAME front-end
- ArcadeFE - Windows-only MAME front-end
- ArcadeFX - Windows-only MAME front-end
- Open Source: is fully functional software with source code included.
- Freeware: is fully functional without payment and without nag screens and ads.
- Shareware: has limited functionality (or has nags) until payment is made.
- Commercial: software is fully functional for a limited time, after which payment must be made.
2) About software and hardware rotation:
Most Frontends with vertical support typical require Windows to been rotated as well. Some frontends, such like Mamewah, MultiFE and others support software rotation as well.
- If CMD is shown, this front-end can run all command line based emulators.
- If PC is shown, it can run PC games as well (using bat and/or shortcuts files).
4) Other Features:
- DEV - Still in developing for fixing bugs or/and supported.
- AM - Native arcade monitor support without ArcadeVGA card
- CAB - Mouse and keyboard-free operation (for cabinets)
- JB - Integrated jukebox
- LCD - LCD screen, such as those found at http://www.seetron.com/
- LED - Front-end can control a LED controller
- LR - Low Resolutions (below 640 pixels wide)
- MR - Multiple Resolutions
- ST - Skin tool included
- SW - Skinnable without tool
- TOU - Touchscreen Support
- VID - Video snapshots (movies)
Howover Mamewah and MultiFE (in realtime) have software rotation as well.
Just because a frontend is discontinued does not mean that it is a bad frontend. Either there is no more need to update it, or the author just left the project. Discontinued frontends are still used in cabinets today, and most run on both older and newer machines, though some may have some issues with newer versions of MAME. So check these out as well.