(Topic ID: 183206)

American Pinball Houdini thread


By lllvjr

3 years ago



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#10051 16 days ago
Quoted from zahner:

Are you testing the new beta? The weird random extra balls have almost disappeared with my game. I am not sure if it’s a real thing or not, but I swear that the flipper issue has greatly improved with the beta. I might just be convincing myself that that is really a thing with the update, but I’m gonna go with it.
Rosh says he did nothing that should have impacted the boot time, but I’m pretty sure that’s like half the time. Before this update, I’d turn on Houdini and then go fire up Flash Gordon, play a few balls, the Houdini would finally be good to go.
All probably just manifestations of some deep rooted psychosis, but I’m happier with a game I already thought was great.

Yes, I am testing Beta code and don't see any real difference in the flipper performance during full-load play, sometimes they are perfect and occasionally you get half-flips or just weak ones. Power at my house is fine, I have two dames on one 15 amp circuit and a STTNG (on a different circuit with two other games) that is pretty susceptible to weak power (power for it at shows can be a problem) and it is 100% rock solid so I have no reason to suspect my line voltage is ever dropping.

#10052 16 days ago
Quoted from Rdoyle1978:

I have both Houdini and Elvira - Houdini I have had since mid-2017, and Elvira (NIB) since last Saturday. Houdini has far fewer dimples than Elvira. I am not kidding in the slightest. I must have 500+ games on Houdini, and maybe 50 on Elvira. BTW Elvira is really awesome, save for the playfield...

Keep in mind there are two different manufacturers of Houdini Playfields, they switched from Mirco to Bader and it's fairly obvious which is which as the Bader's don't have jeweled inserts. I've been told they switched because they had so many rejects from Mirco but I don't have any proof of this, just what I was told by people who worked for API at one time. That being said my early-production game has a Mirco PF and it looks fantastic with very little dimpling and no sign of any kind of clear pooling, lifting, chipping, etc. after almost two years of pretty significant play / use.

#10053 16 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

Keep in mind there are two different manufacturers of Houdini Playfields, they switched from Mirco to Bader and it's fairly obvious which is which as the Bader's don't have jeweled inserts. I've been told they switched because they had so many rejects from Mirco but I don't have any proof of this, just what I was told by people who worked for API at one time. That being said my early-production game has a Mirco PF and it looks fantastic with very little dimpling and no sign of any kind of clear pooling, lifting, chipping, etc. after almost two years of pretty significant play / use.

I did not know that - at least back then it sounds like Mirco wasn’t having the quality major paint adhesion issues (or is that why the rejects)0. I’ll have to check on mine which Playfield I have.

#10054 16 days ago
Quoted from Rdoyle1978:

I did not know that - at least back then it sounds like Mirco wasn’t having the quality major paint adhesion issues (or is that why the rejects)0. I’ll have to check on mine which Playfield I have.

I personally think the Mircos' look better because of the clear jeweled inserts as opposed to opaque ones in the Baders but again I was told the Baders are really better quality-wise. We didn't get into specifics of what was wrong with the ones they rejected only that Mirco wouldn't take them back or refund them so they switched. Interestingly enough though the NIB Houdini that Zach had for sale at Picinnnati in November had the jeweled inserts, I asked him about it but he didn't know there were two different ones and we didn't bother to pull the apron off to confirm if it was a Mirco but it looked like one. This would suggest they still had / have some of those that weren't rejected and are/were using them in production.

#10055 16 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

I personally think the Mircos' look better because of the clear jeweled inserts as opposed to opaque ones in the Baders but again I was told the Baders are really better quality-wise. We didn't get into specifics of what was wrong with the ones they rejected only that Mirco wouldn't take them back or refund them so they switched. Interestingly enough though the NIB Houdini that Zach had for sale at Picinnnati in November had the jeweled inserts, I asked him about it but he didn't know there were two different ones and we didn't bother to pull the apron off to confirm if it was a Mirco but it looked like one. This would suggest they still had / have some of those that weren't rejected and are/were using them in production.

I wasn't aware of this....

I just looked at mine...It's a Bader playfield.

Does anyone have any pics of the Mirco playfield? I'd like to see the look of the different style inserts.

#10056 16 days ago
Quoted from indypinhead:

I wasn't aware of this....
I just looked at mine...It's a Bader playfield.
Does anyone have any pics of the Mirco playfield? I'd like to see the look of the different style inserts.

Oddly enough I don't have any great ones though I thought I did, I'm out of town right now or I'd go snap some. Here's what I do have.

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#10057 16 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

... That being said my early-production game has a Mirco PF and it looks fantastic with very little dimpling and no sign of any kind of clear pooling, lifting, chipping, etc. after almost two years of pretty significant play / use.

I have a Mirco in mine (I think in the 350ish build range, built mid-2018), and it has held up incredibly well. Really impressive looking when combined w/the Magic Glass. No complaints on my end.

#10058 13 days ago

Houdini does have two different playfield manufacturers, however, there was no specific point where we switched from one to the other, meaning that once we started using a second supplier, we did not stop using the first, so we went back and forth between them as they would arrive from the different suppliers.

As far as the white inserts vs the clear, it is really a matter of taste (as you can tell from the just the few comments in this thread). My personal machine has the white, since I like the way the colors fill the insert, but some don't think they are as bright in a brightly lit room as the jeweled.

By the way, there have been many, many shows were we had games with both playfields sitting side be side and no one noticed the difference.

#10059 13 days ago
Quoted from rosh:

Houdini does have two different playfield manufacturers, however, there was no specific point where we switched from one to the other, meaning that once we started using a second supplier, we did not stop using the first, so we went back and forth between them as they would arrive from the different suppliers.
As far as the white inserts vs the clear, it is really a matter of taste (as you can tell from the just the few comments in this thread). My personal machine has the white, since I like the way the colors fill the insert, but some don't think they are as bright in a brightly lit room as the jeweled.
By the way, there have been many, many shows were we had games with both playfields sitting side be side and no one noticed the difference.

Thanks for the clarification Josh, it's so nice to have representatives from a manufacturer actually share some information about their products here!

I prefer the clear jeweled ones just because it looks more "classic" to me but they both look great. FWIW the way I found out you guys switched was by seeing two side by side at Pincinnati two years ago, it was pretty noticeable to me but again I own the game and play it a LOT.

#10060 13 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

I prefer the clear jeweled ones just because it looks more "classic" to me but they both look great. FWIW the way I found out you guys switched was by seeing two side by side at Pincinnati two years ago, it was pretty noticeable to me but again I own the game and play it a LOT.

I've re-read the last 10 posts three times and still dont get it.
Jeweled is Bader?
Clear/white border are Mirco?

Quoted from bobukcat:

Oddly enough I don't have any great ones though I thought I did, I'm out of town right now or I'd go snap some. Here's what I do have.[quoted image][quoted image]

So this is a Bader Bobukcat?

#10061 12 days ago
Quoted from Ericpinballfan:

I've re-read the last 10 posts three times and still dont get it.
Jeweled is Bader?
Clear/white border are Mirco?

So this is a Bader Bobukcat?

No, that is mine which is a Mirco. I haven't seen a good photo of a Bader or I'd post that too. You can somewhat see the difference in this video, this game has a Bader PF in it:

(not my video)

#10062 12 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

No, that is mine which is a Mirco. I haven't seen a good photo of a Bader or I'd post that too. You can somewhat see the difference in this video, this game has a Bader PF in it: (not my video)

Jeweled / clear = Mirco, opaque white / non jeweled = Bader.

#10063 12 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

I prefer the clear jeweled ones just because it looks more "classic" to me but they both look great.

LOL, classic?, guess it depends on your definition of classic, to me classic, would be the 'opaque', since that is what was used on most machines until the mid to late 80s.

#10064 12 days ago
Quoted from indypinhead:

I've had my Houdini for just over a week. I'm already considering selling it because of the flippers.
Something is definitely wrong here....
It's a shame...other than the flipper issues, it seems like a great pin. I have my doubts that I'll buy another AP machine because of this.

I wonder if one can swap in Stern or Bally/William or Gottlieb coil and flipper kit. If I knew more aboot electronics I’d experiment some. But in theory if you found a compatible flipper set that is wired differently, wouldn’t that fix the issue?

#10065 12 days ago
Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

I wonder if one can swap in Stern or Bally/William

Looks like Bally/Williams ones in there already.

LTG : )

#10066 12 days ago

I’ve got an early game that is a Bader = opaque white and no jeweled. Inserts are bright and playfield has held up great. It has shallow dents I’d call minor and it doesn’t bother me. I always thought the eye inserts looked slightly sunken but they don’t feel like it, so that could just be an optical illusion (pun intended).

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#10067 12 days ago
Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

I’ve got an early game that is a Bader = opaque white and no jeweled. Inserts are bright and playfield has held up great. It has shallow dents I’d call minor and it doesn’t bother me. I always thought the eye inserts looked slightly sunken but they don’t feel like it, so that could just be an optical illusion (pun intended).[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

Looks beautiful!

#10068 12 days ago

I have a Bader but I do like the mirco inserts too. I'm still a houdini fan either way. Mine is staying put.

#10069 12 days ago
Quoted from rosh:

LOL, classic?, guess it depends on your definition of classic, to me classic, would be the 'opaque', since that is what was used on most machines until the mid to late 80s.

I can't help it I'm that much younger than you!

#10070 12 days ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

I can't help it I'm that much younger than you!

what ever happened to respecting your elders?

#10071 11 days ago
Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

I always thought the eye inserts looked slightly sunken

Have you thought about buying the Eye Inserts mod? Looks WAY better in my opinion. More natural looking eyes!

#10072 11 days ago

Has anyone had these issues before? I was streaming yesterday and about 23 min in, the API screen went out. Then, about 10 min later, the GI went out...

I was pretty far through the game with 7-8 stage modes complete. Hit the Vanishing Elephant and the screen went out.

Then, was in Seance and lost all three balls and the GI went out.

Here's a clip of that 10min period:
https://www.twitch.tv/videos/571230789

#10073 10 days ago
Quoted from vongator:

Has anyone had these issues before? I was streaming yesterday and about 23 min in, the API screen went out. Then, about 10 min later, the GI went out...

I was pretty far through the game with 7-8 stage modes complete. Hit the Vanishing Elephant and the screen went out.

Then, was in Seance and lost all three balls and the GI went out.

Here's a clip of that 10min period:
https://www.twitch.tv/videos/571230789

I'd open a ticket on it.

https://www.american-pinball.com/support/service/

Barry isn't with them anymore. But they must have someone there to help.

More sounds like a power issue rather than software.
LTG : )

#10074 10 days ago

I'm figuring that API (as well as many others) are hurting from this Corona virus slowdown. To help them get a bit of cash flow during this time, I'm going to be ordering some replacement Houdini parts that I may need down the road. Things like the pop bumper standoff's (one of which already broke on mine), rubber kit, decals, shirts, things like that.

One item I would buy is the plastic ramp for Houdini. I don't see the wire ones wearing out anytime soon but it'd be nice to have the plastic ramp in reserve. It's not shown on their website but maybe Josh can chime in on the availability of this.

Stay safe everyone and we'll get through this together.

#10075 10 days ago

Rosh and Ferret are software guys and post here. BarryJ was service manager and posted here, but is no longer with AP.

Who is the service guy and does he post here. So we know who to send people to ?

LTG : )

#10076 10 days ago
Quoted from GSones:

I'm figuring that API (as well as many others) are hurting from this Corona virus slowdown. To help them get a bit of cash flow during this time, I'm going to be ordering some replacement Houdini parts that I may need down the road. Things like the pop bumper standoff's (one of which already broke on mine), rubber kit, decals, shirts, things like that.
One item I would buy is the plastic ramp for Houdini. I don't see the wire ones wearing out anytime soon but it'd be nice to have the plastic ramp in reserve. It's not shown on their website but maybe Josh can chime in on the availability of this.
Stay safe everyone and we'll get through this together.

Pretty sure we know we have some in stock, but likely moved to new location. Regardless, if you don't see something you need on the site, email sales@american-pinball.com

Quoted from vongator:

Has anyone had these issues before? I was streaming yesterday and about 23 min in, the API screen went out. Then, about 10 min later, the GI went out...
I was pretty far through the game with 7-8 stage modes complete. Hit the Vanishing Elephant and the screen went out.
Then, was in Seance and lost all three balls and the GI went out.
Here's a clip of that 10min period:
https://www.twitch.tv/videos/571230789

I'll try to take a look at the video later today, but as LTG said, based on description sound like a loose wire or something, but I'll see if I can tell more form the video. In the meantime I would still open a ticket.

Quoted from LTG:

Rosh and Ferret are software guys and post here. BarryJ was service manager and posted here, but is no longer with AP.
Who is the service guy and does he post here. So we know who to send people to ?
LTG : )

Being done by committee for right now, based on the type of issue, so no one to point to specifically.

#10077 10 days ago
Quoted from rosh:

Being done by committee for right now, based on the type of issue, so no one to point to specifically.

Thank you.

LTG : )

#10078 10 days ago
Quoted from rosh:

I'll try to take a look at the video later today, but as LTG said, based on description sound like a loose wire or something, but I'll see if I can tell more form the video. In the meantime I would still open a ticket.

Thanks for everyone's help!

Screen came back w/ reset; I was also doing Direct Video using AverMedia throughput from the main screen if that matters.

GI did not come back on restart. The PinStadiums had power b/c I could still communicate with them through the bluetooth app. But I turned off the game again, lifted the playfield, adjusted the PinStadiums and then the GI came back on restart. Maybe they caused a power issue?

I also bought the game used and don't believe I have the upgraded power supply.

vonpinball@gmail.com if you want to contact me directly for any reason.

#10079 10 days ago
Quoted from vongator:

Thanks for everyone's help!
Screen came back w/ reset; I was also doing Direct Video using AverMedia throughput from the main screen if that matters.
GI did not come back on restart. The PinStadiums had power b/c I could still communicate with them through the bluetooth app. But I turned off the game again, lifted the playfield, adjusted the PinStadiums and then the GI came back on restart. Maybe they caused a power issue?
I also bought the game used and don't believe I have the upgraded power supply.
vonpinball@gmail.com if you want to contact me directly for any reason.

Pretty weird, obviously hooking extra things to the 12v could strain the electrical system, as it was not necessarily designed for that, not sure how much power the stadiums take. Could be just something got loose during game play.

When you were using the AverMedia, how did it handle the screen? Did it cut it off, or was it filling just a portion and then you cropped it for the steam or ??? Usually those devices want standard HD resolutions of 720x1280 or 1080x1920 and we run 768x1366. I could also see how that could create some oddness with the small monitor, but seemed like its a sifnr for a while.

Power Supply upgrade would not matter, 5v and 12v remain on the original power supply regardless. If 12v was the issue due to the pin stadiums, you could use a separate, more powerful/capacity 12 volt power supply.

Regardless, glad you are back up and running.

#10080 10 days ago

Sorry, the AverMedia was running the Direct Video from the main screen no hiccups there, I just had a 920 cam focused on the API Screen.

Pinstadiums power off of the aux power (the 12v outlet), but are triggered by the GI. I guess that's why I was still able to see them on Bluetooth...

#10081 10 days ago
Quoted from vongator:

Sorry, the AverMedia was running the Direct Video from the main screen no hiccups there,

I understood it was the main screen, I'm curious if you were using a splitter, or just feeding the computer directly to the AverMedia. If using a splitter typically there are challenges with resolution.

#10082 10 days ago

Oh my bad, I was using it as a splitter. This one:

amazon.com link »

I streamed Houdini for an hour the day prior with the same set-up and didn't have the issues.

#10083 6 days ago

I’m looking forward to a Houdini soon.
Ive heard knocker is probably an essential extra. Anything else from owners?
Stay safe -Thx All

#10084 6 days ago
Quoted from Vino:

Ive heard knocker is probably an essential extra.

Mine does not have a knocker or anything else and it is 100% great!

#10085 6 days ago
Quoted from Vino:

I’m looking forward to a Houdini soon.
Ive heard knocker is probably an essential extra. Anything else from owners?
Stay safe -Thx All

The knocker is a cool feature as it's actually used in game play. Certainly recommend getting it! The shaker motor is also nice addition as well as the art blades.

#10086 6 days ago
Quoted from JohnnyPinball007:

Mine does not have a knocker or anything else and it is 100% great!

"Ignorance is bliss" as they say. A knocker and shaker definitely contribute to Houdini's complete gameplay experience!

Just a couple of examples:

Knocker going off every time the gun successfully scores a hit in the Bullet Catch mode.

Shaker sensation every time the magic trunk's lid slams shut after a ball is launched into it.

#10087 5 days ago

Shaker when the elephant walks is also very cool.

#10088 5 days ago
Quoted from Vino:

I’m looking forward to a Houdini soon.
Ive heard knocker is probably an essential extra. Anything else from owners?
Stay safe -Thx All

+1 For Knocker and Shaker motor. I have upgraded power supply, and magic glass to.
All are nice upgrades.

#10089 5 days ago

IMO shaker first, if you're only adding
One thing. Side blades are great too, But notoriously thin and not the easiest install. Shaker though is integrated
Really well. And the knocker is as well

#10090 5 days ago

Shaker and knocker for sure - don't even think about not getting them.
Agree with the idea of adding API art blades - they look awesome.
Speaking of the look, the one bit of flair that I think is really nice is the The Mod Couple's API HOUDINI API GRAND THEATER 3D FACADE MAKEOVER MOD at: https://pinside.com/pinball/market/shops/1080-the-mod-couple/01864-api-houdini-api-grand-theater-3d-facade-makeover-mod
It adds a really nice, but subtle look to the game.
Also, the Modfather Houdini Pincup will really finish things off: https://modfatherpinball.com/products/houdini-pincup?_pos=1&_sid=1a51955e3&_ss=r

#10091 4 days ago

Thanks all, I really appreciate the insight.
I’ve put some of these suggestions on order!

#10092 4 days ago

Is the Houdini shaker still available? I may have missed it when looking. I've never been much of a shaker fan but it sounds like a good addition in this case. Is the Oktoberfest shaker compatible?

#10093 4 days ago
Quoted from MMP:

Is the Houdini shaker still available? I may have missed it when looking. I've never been much of a shaker fan but it sounds like a good addition in this case. Is the Oktoberfest shaker compatible?

Looks to be available. I will second the great shaker integration with the trunk lid and elephant steps!
https://store.american-pinball.com/products/houdini-shaker-motor

#10094 3 days ago

Thanks for the tip. Shaker, topper, sideblade added to Octoberfest and Houdini. Now the knocker is on order. A shaker is a must for these two titles!! The topper for Houdini is lit, but you have to directly plug it into the outlet. Octoberfest is not lit. Anyone have any suggestions on how to light up the topper?

#10095 3 days ago
Quoted from unlockpinball:

Thanks for the tip. Shaker, topper, sideblade added to Octoberfest and Houdini. Now the knocker is on order. A shaker is a must for these two titles!! The topper for Houdini is lit, but you have to directly plug it into the outlet. Octoberfest is not lit. Anyone have any suggestions on how to light up the topper?

I plugged my Houdini topper into the service outlet in the right front area of the cabinet. Then use the remote to turn it on and off.

Based on others’ recommendations, I finally ordered the knocker for Houdini to complement the shaker. Such a brutal, but intriguing game!

213098D5-D611-4BEA-BB0D-D0E18F3A30FF (resized).jpeg
#10096 3 days ago
Quoted from unlockpinball:

Thanks for the tip. Shaker, topper, sideblade added to Octoberfest and Houdini. Now the knocker is on order. A shaker is a must for these two titles!! The topper for Houdini is lit, but you have to directly plug it into the outlet. Octoberfest is not lit. Anyone have any suggestions on how to light up the topper?

They make an outlet strip that turns on the other outlets when it senses a current draw in the main outlet. I'll try googling for it, but not sure what they are called. I think they were popular with the HiFi enthusiasts, etc. - i.e. turn on the receiver, and the rest of the equipment also turns on.

edit: Found one, posted pic below.
pasted_image (resized).png

#10097 2 days ago
Quoted from darkryder:

I plugged my Houdini topper into the service outlet in the right front area of the cabinet. Then use the remote to turn it on and off.
Based on others’ recommendations, I finally ordered the knocker for Houdini to complement the shaker. Such a brutal, but intriguing game![quoted image]

I actually leave my topper on all the time. Looks awesome, it's been running for a year and a half, no issues!

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