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on 12 August 2015
Bought this at a good price and was happy with the build and quality of the hardware. But when I fired up MAME there was a regular stutter/pause when playing any of the games which quite frankly totally ruined the playing experience.

I assumed an issue with IOS 8.4 and Bluetooth as I'd seen old videos of the iCade working perfectly on an iPad 1!!

After quite a bit of experimentation I discovered that the following change to settings totally fixed the issues hence 5 Stars!

Settings / General / Keyboard / disable Keyboard Split
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on 31 December 2013
My wife has bought me the iCade for Christmas and after a week of playing here are some views to help you make your mind up:

The iCade is basically a funky 2 foot tall retro arcade cabinet box with a joystick and buttons, which you set your iPad in and connect via Bluetooth to use the joystick and buttons to play games. It does work with the new iPad Air / 5. It comes flat pack but you'll put it together in 15-20 mins.

However the key thing to note is that it does not work on all iTunes apps/games. The individual app developers have to make their games iCade compatible. For example Sega have made Sonic the Hedgehog 1 compatible and I have been getting my nostalgia buzz off that all week. The control is reasonably responsive, but anyone used to the sensitivity of modern gaming consoles might still get annoyed that games sometimes don't respond to button presses.

Finding a definitive list of compatible games is proving difficult. Even if you go to the manufacturer's website (ionaudio) the list is not up to date. If you search for 'icade' in the iTunes Store you'll find games where the Developers have stated in the description that their game supports iCade - but that doesn't mean there aren't more games available, I just don't know how I'll find them. Apart from Sonic1, I know the Namco app (Pac-Man, Pac-Land, Rolling Thunder...) and the Midway app (SpyHunter) are also compatible.

Which brings me to the main failing. The product heavily promotes that it works with the Atari Greatest Hits app. Ignore that. The Atari app was always a turd and now doesn't work at all with iOS7. Atari went bust (again) in early 2012 and the app hasn't been updated since. If you were going to buy this for Pong or Asteroids then don't. Before I realised the app was the problem I contacted the iCade manufacturer whose attitude was 'we're not responsible for the app', which is true - but then don't splash 'Atari...' as a key feature on your website and in the retail blurbs when the app has been defunct for months. When I had finished putting it together, paired it with the iPad and downloaded the Atari app it was a real bummer when I couldn't get past the player select screen on any game.

So because of the Atari thing (maybe it will work again in the future?...), the failure to keep an up-to-date list of compatible games on the website and for not including a power pack (it can be powered from the mains but no power pack is supplied) I am docking the two stars.

One last thing, which is not a fault of anyone's I suppose, but is a minor irritation: When the iCade and iPad are paired the iPad keyboard will no longer appear. This can be mildly frustrating but you just have to flick off the Bluetooth on the iPad temporarily if you need the keyboard, it will pair again when you turn Bluetooth back on.

EDIT: The Double Dragon Trilogy also works with iCade
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on 2 July 2014
This is no laminated cardboard gimmick - this is the REAL DEAL!!!

Bought as a birthday present for a friend, this iPad Arcade Cabinet was one of the most difficult things to part with - even more so when said friend opened and put it together?! The box was surprisingly big when it arrived safely, inside of 3 days, but when it was built up we were presently surprised - this is a serious gaming accessory!!

The panels are made of top quality cabinet material, heavy in weight with fully coated decals on each side. The joystick and buttons are exact replicas of those found on classic arcade games, and there's even a fake coin slot!

This was a great bargain, and should proudly grace any self-respecting gamer's room!
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on 7 January 2012
This device is compatible with the samsung tablet 10.1. You can just about get the tablet in verticle but the lid doesnt quite shut but its not a problem. Why buy a samsung when this was made for ipad you ask? Well the secret to unlocking this little baby is a program called MAME which runs every single arcade game known to man from pong to street fighter 2. With mame installed this works perfectly with over 2000 games at your finger tips. Android tablets arent locked like apples stuf so they run all emulators too. The build is solid for this little cab and the buttons and joystick are solid and made to last. Once your tablet is in and youve got mame running its just like being back at the arcades. Outrun, street fighter 2, Space harrier all work perfectly on my samsung 10.1. The price tag is high but i managed to pick this up for £40 online. The coin slot isnt real but it does light up as part of the bluetooth sensor indicator. I've been a fan of mame for years and wondered if having a cabinet would restore the feeling of an old arcade? Thankfully it does. 80's action at its finest! :)
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on 12 January 2013
The iCade I bought as a gift for my brother in law has finally arrived, I've assembled it and tried it out. It's as cool as I hoped, except the build quality outside the inputs area, basically the actual cabinet, isn't actually all that great. Mostly the side parts, it's like condensed paper or something, I got some marks on it while screwing things in and a little bit of damage where the top lid fits in the side piece with the metal bits. Thankfully it's not at all visible in regular use from any angle and it's not something you'd constantly move up and down to risk making it worse but yeah, be more careful than I was when you assemble yours, do not force anything in. Other than that, it's also definitely as loud as people say, but playing Metal Slug 3, Raiden Legacy and even Pac-Man is awesome. It's very responsive and feels good. The buttons are perhaps a tiny bit stiff but I imagine they'll normalize with use. The only problem is that many games perfect for it don't support it (hello Crazy Taxi). I think that's partially ION's fault, the official price needs to be cheaper (the price I got it for on Amazon was alright outside the international shipping fees) and they need to market it as the legitimate and hardcore retro arcade revival device it is, not the niche rich people novelty it's currently seen as, and also provide developer incentives for support as even now that new iOS versions have support for "proper" controllers the iCade can have its own unique place. It's a very cool way to get a very good arcade cabinet experience without the cost, effort and room a real cabinet requires.
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on 14 March 2012
What really screams at me, using this thing even for five minutes, is "ugh, man... if only I could play more than Missile Command!". I reckon this would do a cracking job of running arcade games from the 1980s and '90s ('my era'), but in the absence of better releases, this great little cabinet is of limited use.

Still, on the basis of its build-quality and the *potential* for a great retro gaming experience, I'm happy to award it four stars. And it's a guaranteed head-turner and conversation-starter, if nothing else...!

EDIT: Nothing was happening re the above despite months of patiently waiting, so I took matters into my own hands last week and jailbroke my iPad. I have installed the iOS versions of MAME and SNES9x (both free), and this little cabinet has since become indispensable to me. It's marvellous. I echo the words of another reviewer, who commented that he no longer aspires to build a MAME cabinet, because this is doing a damned-fine job for a fraction of the cost.

The only reason you might *not* want to get one is that there're rumours of an iCade 2 being released sometime soon... but if you want to get gaming now, this here's your weapon of choice.

Thank me later.
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on 27 October 2015
This is a really great cabinet and lots of fun, but only if you have Mame 4 all or gridlee installed on your ipad. These Apps were pulled from the App store some time ago, which only leaves the option of jailbreaking. Without some form of emulation, I wouldn't bother, as the fun from owning the icade really comes into it's own when playing old coin op classics. For this purpose the icade is excellent, the joystick and buttons are great quality as is the cabinet, it really looks like a mini arcade machine! The only thing it lacks is another Joystick for 2 player Streetfighter 2 etc, which would probably spoil the aesthetics of it being a mini machine. Horizontal games are played either bordered or by turning the ipad into landscape mode. This slightly spoils the illusion of it being an arcade cab, but works well by supporting the screen in place by a grooved edge. Overall its a great way to get a cost effective, authentic arcade experience (albeit 1player only!)
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on 14 March 2013
So glad I bought this as a present for my boyfriend. I didn't realise that it came disassembled though! Luckily, it was very easy to put together. I love all the games and think they are a great price. The cabinet itself actually looks really nice and neat on the counter, so I don't mind it being there on display
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on 12 August 2011
The iCade cabinet design changed has a great 80's look.

The hardware itself is excellent quality and very well-built. The joystick and buttons are super-responsive. You DO have to put the unit together, but the construction isn't difficult and it is very solid provided you do it properly. The unit itself uses batteries for power (included) as well as the option for an AC adapter. The unit turns on when you press a button, and automatically turns off.

The iCade actually connects to the iPad over Bluetooth, which some of you might not expect. It works fine, though you'll want to turn the Bluetooth on the iPad off when you're not using a related app, since apparently the iPad thinks it's a keyboard and won't display the on-screen keyboard in other apps, like Safari, while it's connected. You can feed the iPad/iPod cable through a hole in the bottom of the unit and charge it.

The Atari's Greatest Hits app comes with one free game. At first it was Pong, but now it's Missile Command. I'm sure it's going to change to a different game later. You can buy a 4-pack of related games for $0.99, or you can buy all 100 games for $14.99.

There is limited third-party game support; a lot of the best games of the era were made by other companies, such as Pac-Man (Namco), Space Invaders/WarBlade HD (Taito), Defender (Williams), and many others. ION has said that they have a simple API that app developers can implement to support it, and hopefully many will continue to do so.

The iCade supports portrait mode on the iPad mostly I believe, so for some of the games you have to fiddle with the settings to make sure it displays in portrait and not landscape. For most games you just have to change the "Orientation" option to Portrait, but for other games you have to change the "Control type" to Arcade.

Overall, if you have an iPad already, it's great fun and very worth the price of the iCade. Note that if you're paying more than $100 for this you're being ripped off. That's ION Audio's list price. Anyone who loves video games, especially old school arcade games, you'll love the iCade.
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon 28 January 2012
As a senior citizen who harps (on and on) about the advent of games on screen, my family capitulated and bought me the iCade plus bonus of an i-Pad. I must say it is a marvel. Here I am playing space invaders and pacman as if the 70's never left. The joy stick is sensitive and responsive. The button controls are learnable and lead to hours of enjoyment. The iPad requires some concentration. Advice is not to read instructions but swoop on children and grandchildren (preferably on bribes) to narrate the methodology of the machines. I am chasing my tail here but hopefully will overcome my technophobic approach. Where have all the pinball machines gone? This is a wonderful combination that I thought would never surface.
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