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Thread: Arcade Cabinets and Temp

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    whaler on the moon Custom rank graphic
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    Question Arcade Cabinets and Temp

    I am looking to buy one or two cabinets, hoping to get some classic beat-em-ups. However, the cabinets would be kept in our detached garage. As I have a small house, no basement, there is no other suitable location. I live in an area with hot summers and mild/cool winters. Our garage has air conditioning and heat, but the unit is only used in extreme situations. So, my question comes down to this: is there anything I should worry about with external temperatures and arcade cabinets?

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    Alex (Level 15) maxlords's Avatar
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    Yes....especially if it gets cold, as the machines heat up, the condensation will end up frying em. You really don't want em in a non-temperature controlled environment, or if you do have em there, never power em up if it's humid or cold.
    scooterb: "I once shot a man in Catan, just to watch him die."

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    Thanks maxlords. This will probably change things. As much as I would like an arcade cabinet I may have to wait until I have a better location for the unit.

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    Peach (Level 3) DogP's Avatar
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    I wouldn't worry about it too much... the biggest problem is really the art, if there's painted glass, the hot/cold cycles will promote flaking. The electronics are fine for the most part... most likely you won't want to play them when it's really hot or cold out there anyway.

    But the condensation thing is a misconception... condensation forms when air cools below the dew point. Put humid air near a cold surface and it'll form on the cool surface... so electronics warming up will actually reduce the relative humidity, and reduce the chance of condensation. That's why the defroster lines on a rear car window work. Of course if it was hot and humid in the garage, then a storm blew through and quickly cooled the garage down, if you walk up to your arcade and the control panel is wet... don't turn it on, since the boards are probably wet too :P .

    DogP
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    Flawless Rawkality Flack's Avatar
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    I have 25 or so machines stored in an outdoor shed with no real insulation (plywood, 2x4, plywood) and while I've had my share of hardware failures, I don't think they've been any higher than the average. I do have a window A/C unit out there, but I don't run it unless I'm planning on going out there. Like DogP said, I rarely go out there in the winter (playing games when your fingers are numb isn't much fun).

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    Thanks for all the input guys! I appreciate it. We'll see, I am still debating - there are a couple cabinets I have my eye on, but not really sure for a multitude of reasons. Sounds like it would be fine in my garage though, so I will definitely keep that in mind. Thanks again!

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    Kirby (Level 13) cyberfluxor's Avatar
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    Spring and fall are two great seasons for playing arcades this far above the equator. Weather is generally nice and plenty of breezes to keep a window or door open for fresh air. I have mine stashed in the attached garage so if it's cold I'll just make sure things are closed up and let them warm the space a bit, if it's summer set the fans and open a ventilation route for maximum air flow.
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