book collections email follower instructable user

**** Improved Version with Integrated LED Marquee Here ****

A bartop arcade build with the unique feature of an integrated LED display that matches the selected game. The character art on the cabinet sides are laser cut inlays and not stickers.

A huge thanks to Tobias for posting the original laser cut CAD design for this project. This project leverages the design from Tobias with the following modifications:

  • An integrated PIXE: LED ART display that changes with the selected RetroPie game
  • Laser cut side art inlays
  • Audio amp with volume control knob
  • Shutdown/Restart Button
  • Acrylic vs. Wood

Note that the instructions from Tobias are very clear on how to assemble the case so refer to his Instructable when in doubt.

All laser cut .SVG files, software scripts, LED GIF images and animations, wiring table, and artwork for this project are here in GitHub.


1x Arcade Joystick

4x 30mm Arcade Buttons

1x momentary panel mount push button (.62" mounting hole)

(2) 12mm Dome Pushbutton - Red - E-Switch PV5S64019

(1) 12mm Dome Pushbutton Green - E-Switch PV5S64018

(2) 12mm Dome Pushbutton Yellow - E-Switch PV5S64016

(1) 12mm Dome Pushbutton White - E-Switch PV5S64012

(1) 12mm Dome Pushbutton Black - E-Switch PV5S64011

1x 2.1mm Panel Mount DC Jack (.33" mounting hole)

1x Rocker On/Off Panel Mount Switches (you'll need 2 but the PIXEL:Maker's Kit comes with 1)

1x Raspberry Pi 3+

1x microSD card (128 GB is a good size for this project)

1x Official Raspberry Pi Monitor

1x Pixelcade LED Marquee Kit

1x 32x32 P4 Pitch LED Matrix 5" x 5" - Adafruit or other sources

1x Audio Amplifier

2x Mini Oval Speakers 35mm x 20mm

1x Stereo audio cable (right angle is better but normal will fit and is ok too)

2x USB Panel Mount Cable A-A

6x Super Bright 5mm White LEDs (for back lighting the marquee)

6x 220 ohm resistors

1x Right angle DC power jack

1x microUSB jack (use an old microUSB cable and chop off the large USB side)

1x Bottle of India Ink

1x Mr. Clean Magic Eraser Sponge

Blue Painter's Tape

Screws, Nuts, Stand-Offs

8x 4/40 x 3/16" pan head screws (for maintenance ports)

2x 4/40 x 7/16" pan head screws ?

7x M3 screws x 10mm

4x M3 screws x 5mm (for joystick mounts)

4x M3 square hex nuts (for joystick mounts)

8x 2/56 x 1/2" pan head screws black (for speakers)

8x 2/25 nuts (for speakers)

(2) Hex Stand-Off Aluminum, 1/4" Hex, 1-1/8" Long, 4-40 Thread

(4) Hex Stand-Off Aluminum, 1/4" Hex, 5/8" Long, 4-40 Thread

2x 4/40 x 3/8" Nylon Screws

4x 4/40 Nylon Nuts

4x rubber bumper pads for the bottom

Acrylic & Glue

4x 12x20" Black Acrylic Sheet , 1/8" thick

4x 12x20" Red Acrylic Sheet , 1/8" thick

1x 12x20" White Acrylic Sheet - 1/16" thick

1x 12x12 Translucent Smoke Acrylic Sheet, 1/8" thick (optional LED matrix diffuser)

1x 12x12 Clear Acrylic Sheet, 1/8" thick

Misc colored sheets depending on desired arcade character inlays (optional)

Acrylic Cement Glue

Acrylic Cement for Capillary Application

Low Density Polyethylene Bottle Applicator


Kaptop tape (for securing the cables to the Pi header)

1x USB Audio Adapter (this is not really needed, while the Pi audio is known to be poor, I can't really tell the difference with this one)

Dupont Female Pin Crimp Terminals 2.54mm Pitch (for making your own cables with DuPont connectors that plug into the Raspberry Pi GPIO 40-pin header but you can also just use off the shelf cables and splice them which is cheaper

Dupont Terminal Crimper


Laser Cutter (I used a Glowforge with a 19.5" x 11 cutting area)

4/40 Tap Tool (for tapping eight 4/40 holes for the maintenance ports)

Step 1: Measure Before Laser Cutting!

Picture of Measure Before Laser Cutting!

VERY IMPORTANT: Before you laser cut the acrylic for this project, be sure and have all parts on hands first and measure to ensure they fit the mounting holes in the laser .SVG files. Here are items in particular to check and adjust. If you don't do this, you'll end up having to scrap and re-cut a lot of acrylic.

1. 32x32 P4 HUB75 LED Matrix - The one used in this project I bought direct from China, not from Adafruit and different LED panel manufacturers have different mounting hole locations.

2. Speakers - I did not use the speakers in the link and instead had some lying around my shop. The ones in the link I think are close but am not sure the mounting holes will line up exactly.

3. Buttons - You'll be fine on the 30mm arcade button holes but do check the 7 push button mounting holes vs. your buttons. The push button mounting hole on the back is larger than the 6 push button holes on the front.

I used a Glowforge laser cutter and all the .SVG laser cut files are sized for the cut size of the Glowforge at 19.5" x 11".

evantully3 months ago
Great project! We are in the process of making the mini bartop arcade in class, I'll post pictures during and after we complete it.
Arbormakes7 months ago
This is nicely documented with great pics!
alinke (author)  Arbormakes7 months ago