Close-Up: A Homemade Media Cabinet to Fit Every Pastime

Close-Up: A Homemade Media Cabinet to Fit Every Pastime

Sonia Zjawinski
Apr 1, 2009

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Brian Watkins installs home cabinetry in San Bernardino, California so when his son thought it would be a good idea to have a place that could hold on the newest and greatest video game consoles, Brian knew just what to build. "I wanted to build him one but i didn't like the way the arcade machines look and didn't want one in my living room, so we worked out an idea where we would disguise one using a design more fitting to our existing furniture. As the design evolved we decided to adapt other uses and possibly try to make them to sell. The design is very flexible and can be made to match many styles of furniture."

"It took quite long to build and the cost was more than i expected. I haven't done much research to see what something like this would sell for but it would have to be pretty high to make it worthwhile. We love it. I already have ideas for improvements but don't yet have plans to build another unless someone wants one."

  • "One of the primary uses and the driving factor in the design of this cabinet is for video gaming. I wanted to create a cabinet that could function as a complete gaming center including console, PC, and arcade games. It needed to have the means for easily switching between game consoles and a PC (for computer games, MAME), an integrated sound system, state-of-the-art HD monitor and a commercial quality arcade joystick."
  • Brian built the joystick tray so that at its height you feel like you're playing at a true arcade machine.
  • The tilt-up panel behind the joystick opens up allowing the tray to push back for storage.
  • The upper section as outfitted with a flat screen TV or computer monitor, with a space above for rack mounted components. Below a space is available to house switchers, splitters, or converters.
  • The bottom half of the cabinet holds storage for game consoles. The lower rack can accommodate the largest consoles, like the PS3 and Xbox 360, which can feed to switchers below the TV screen. There's also room for a desktop tower and modem.
  • On either side of the rack space is a storage drawer for DVDs.
  • This set-up is for movie viewers.
  • To use the cabinet as a home office, there's room to tuck away an all-in-one printer/fax/scanner. On the right, a pull-out tray holds a computer tower and the pull out tray can hold keyboard and mouse.
  • A pair of speakers flank each side of the TV, providing 150 watts of sound.

photos: Brian Watkins

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