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View Full Version : Anybody using Hackintosh Macs?



aloysius1001
05-29-2009, 11:50 AM
Just curious. I'm thinking about building one and wondered if anybody has any experience w/LW on them. I'd welcome any hardware advice as well. Love Macs but I just can't keep up with the price. I could build a $3500 Mac for about $1200 going this route from what I've heard. I'm just wondering if anybody here has and if they have any experiences or advice they'd like to share.

JeffrySG
05-29-2009, 12:33 PM
I have not heard much on that front, but I'll be curious to see how it works out for you and how all the software runs, etc. Good luck! :)

Larry_g1s
05-29-2009, 12:38 PM
Never even heard of this. I'd be curious too.

bassmanjam
05-29-2009, 04:29 PM
Yeah, I haven't done it myself but have heard favorable things including their ability to handle pretty strenuous loads. Of course I have no way to back up that claim. I would be worried about the need to keep track of the creative work-arounds at each os update.

How long before Apple just makes the os an open source project? They're not making their money off of the os at this point. I guess they like the control over hardware and os, but from my experience they still break down just like other hardware. Their marketing would rather you buy the latest and greatest long before the old system goes under anyway.

I'd be interested to heard your progress as well. Good luck!

You should be able to find step-by-step instructions pretty easily. Maybe Lifehacker?

Hopper
05-29-2009, 05:31 PM
I've got Leopard 10.5.6 (IPC distribution) working on my Dell 620 notebook and desktop at home. After applying the USB, Sound, and wireless net patches, it's works great. Unfortunately I haven't been able to make the Sentinel driver work and I haven't found anyone who's gotten it to work.

But other than that, it works great. I haven't had a problem yet. Even Windows VM's work just as fast if not faster than running it natively.

Johnny
05-29-2009, 05:51 PM
I have skimmed articles talking about hackintosh performance and what I have seen, tho not definitive, shows that the hackintosh does not perform well compared to the apple-made machine which is its closest counterpart.

IOW, you might build a home-brew mac pro, but your results will be closer to that of the high-end iMac.

I wouldn't expect Apple to make their OS open source. I can't vouch whether they rake in a lot of dough from the OS sales themselves or not, but think about it! They want you to buy THEIR hardware, right? What better enticement than an OS that wipes the floor with every other OS out there?

As far as most people are concerned, all computers are about equal. People keen on bottom price go that route and get what they pay for.

People who want something better are not going to simply by a more expensive ordinary box; they're going to spend extra to get something fundamentally better.

And not really that MUCH extra, either...there are loads of articles online which blow away this fable that you pay through the eye to get a computer with an apple on the side, but when you compare what you actually GET with that purchase, compared to extra things you have to buy to get the "cheaper" PC comparably configured, the PC comes out embarassingly more expensive.

Plus, the user experience is..uh..craptastic.

but we mac users/fans all know that, which is why we're here, eh?

J

toby
05-29-2009, 08:12 PM
Unfortunately I haven't been able to make the Sentinel driver work and I haven't found anyone who's gotten it to work.
In other words, Hackintosh = *No* Lightwave
That's too bad, would be a nice option.

Hopper
05-29-2009, 09:14 PM
In other words, Hackintosh = *No* Lightwave
That's too bad, would be a nice option.
Pretty much. It will eventually come around.

And the performance is just fine btw. I borrowed one of my collegues Mac Pro systems and mine beats it in some things and not in others. The graphics acceleration is WAY better on mine than the Mac and anything involving raw calculations beats the snot out of the Mac. But for some reason the VM switching, iLife stuff and some apps really scream on the Mac while mine is acceptable, just not quite as reactive.

Captain Obvious
05-29-2009, 10:37 PM
I got my homebrew machine running Leopard just fine. Runs without a hitch. But I didn't really need it for anything, since I've got a Macbook Pro anyway.

G M D THREE
05-30-2009, 01:07 AM
I could build a $3500 Mac for about $1200 going this route from what I've heard.

ahhh ...NO YOU CAN'T

Why is it not the same. Apple writes there own OS and builds there own boxes. So things will always run way smoother than anything on any PC.
They relies updates for apps and products that are all tuned for each outer.

... and yes just to prove your point you can go to the morgue and pick up some body parts build a zombie and give it life but it wont be quite the same.


///

toby
05-30-2009, 02:21 AM
ahhh ...NO YOU CAN'T

Why is it not the same. Apple writes there own OS and builds there own boxes. So things will always run way smoother than anything on any PC.
They relies updates for apps and products that are all tuned for each outer.

... and yes just to prove your point you can go to the morgue and pick up some body parts build a zombie and give it life but it wont be quite the same.

I'm sure there are some little disadvantages but nothing worth the $2300 / 66% price difference!
I think what you're getting for the extra money is not having to shop around for parts, having to build it yourself, and the warranty.

G M D THREE
05-30-2009, 03:31 AM
I'm sure there are some little disadvantages but nothing worth the $2300 / 66% price difference!
I think what you're getting for the extra money is not having to shop around for parts, having to build it yourself, and the warranty.

Again you get what you paid for.

You hack a application to run somewhere, where its not supposed to, you deal mostly with few minor problems if any at all. You hack a whole OS, you are in it for a treat. So if this is your hobby, than knock yourself out, overclock your PC with liquid nitrogen for what I care, have fun. If you are planing to use your machine for professional work, and make a living with it. Than you will pay way more than the few bucks you saved building a crapentosh.

A carpenter once told me: being cheep and not buying the tools you need, you end up paying for it, without even getting to use them.

///

Captain Obvious
05-30-2009, 06:51 AM
Also, keep in mind that the Mac Pro is actually a pretty good deal for an eight core workstation.



You hack a application to run somewhere, where its not supposed to, you deal mostly with few minor problems if any at all. You hack a whole OS, you are in it for a treat. So if this is your hobby, than knock yourself out, overclock your PC with liquid nitrogen for what I care, have fun. If you are planing to use your machine for professional work, and make a living with it. Than you will pay way more than the few bucks you saved building a crapentosh.
Eh, if you've got the right hardware, a Hackintosh will be just as stable as an Apple Mac.

caesar
05-30-2009, 11:04 AM
Running iPC 10.5.6 here almost perfect...LW can only run in discovery mode, its a little annoying having to boot and run it in windows...vmware fusion runs it ok, buth only with 2 of my 4 cores.
I have no complaints about it.

Hopper
05-30-2009, 07:21 PM
You hack a application to run somewhere, where its not supposed to, ...
Pffft. And what are you talking about? The version of Leopard I'm running WAS built for the Intel based systems. The only thing that's really hacked is the install and maybe a couple of tweaked drivers. I also have a copy of a "generic" version of Leopard that Dell is currently testing on their Mini 9's. It runs flawlessly as it soon will in production I suppose.


Eh, if you've got the right hardware, a Hackintosh will be just as stable as an Apple Mac.
Word.

Albertdup
06-01-2009, 07:52 AM
Hi

Just a bit of clarification, I had build a "Hackintosh" almost 3 years ago and have kept up with all the updates and changes with hardware and software, it is much easier now than in the past. MAC Pro's are in essence Intel server machines with an EFI bios instead of a PC BIOS. Lightwave runs just great on my system, and my USB dongle works perfect. I have used a Geforce 8800 GT and an ATI 3870 as graphics adapter long before they were available on MAC the ATI card in general is faster than the Nvidia. My current system blows my iMac out of the water on performance and my render times are faster than on a friends MAC Pro 2 x 2 Cores. I use a 3 Ghz Quad core processor. Evertyhing works, just use the same hardware apple uses in their machines, same chipsets etc and it will work the same as a normal mac.

At first I wanted to try using a MAC but was unable to afford it. I then build a hackintosh and I fell in love with MAC. Bought an iMac when I could afford it and decided to build a more powerful hackintosh again, for the MAC Pro's are very expensive in my country 45% more expensive than in the US due to import tariffs. If I could afford it I would buy an 8 core MAC Pro but at 4 cores there's nothing that beats my systems at its price.

My 2c

Johnny
06-01-2009, 09:03 AM
…I had build a "Hackintosh" almost 3 years ago and have kept up with all the updates and changes with hardware and software, it is much easier now than in the past. MAC Pro's are in essence Intel server machines with an EFI bios instead of a PC BIOS. Lightwave runs just great on my system, and my USB dongle works perfect…My current system blows my iMac out of the water …there's nothing that beats my systems at its price.


looks like sound testimony to me...

you seem like a person who already had solid experience building your own machines before this...is that so? it seems like a risky proposition for someone who's never done it (like me) to invest in all that hardware — even tho it's cheaper than an apple Mac — if you're not sure of the outcome.

J

Albertdup
06-01-2009, 09:48 AM
I have to confess I have vast knowledge of building computer systems. Before going into Media production my job was to design pc and server systems and I was part of the Intel Processor Integrator program since the original Pentium CPU days.

I would not recommend building your own system if you do not know what you are doing. There are lots of small yet significant things to take into consideration. Understanding UNIX helps a lot to get to the base of MAC OS X and programming knowledge comes in handy when you need to compile your own drivers. This is not needed as such any-more lots of people are now involved and makes it easier for novices.

The main thing is it works, and it works well if you know what you are doing. Most people do not even know how to use the terminal in OS X. For them it will be challenging to get to the device id's of their hardware and edit plist files and setting file permissions for kexts etc.

The fact remains MAC is an Intel based PC using EFI and MAC OS, nothing more. Apple may manufacture some of the hardware but it is the same technology.

Captain Obvious
06-01-2009, 11:14 AM
Apple doesn't manufacture ANY hardware*— they assemble the complete systems, but all the components are made by other corporations. At any rate, you generally don't need to compile drivers or anything like that anymore.

Also, it's "Mac" — it's not an acronym!

bassmanjam
06-01-2009, 11:37 AM
This is not needed as such any-more lots of people are now involved and makes it easier for novices.

The main thing is it works, and it works well if you know what you are doing.

I like what you're saying, Albertdup. It seems there are enough people doing this that you can probably find help if you get stuck.

Although, it's about as anti-Mac as it gets. :)

Scazzino
06-01-2009, 11:49 AM
Apple doesn't manufacture ANY hardware*— they assemble the complete systems, but all the components are made by other corporations. At any rate, you generally don't need to compile drivers or anything like that anymore.

Just be aware that Apple has been assembling a team of graphics & chip specialists (http://www.geek.com/articles/mobile/analysis-is-apple-becoming-top-silicon-maker-20090430/) to design their own chips for various functions, possibly iPhone or iPod related, but I wouldn't be surprised to see some of their own custom chips find their way into future Macs and be used as a way to lock Mac OS X to real Apple hardware and also boost that new Apple hardware to graphics capabilities beyond PC hardware capabilities...

More info (rumors):
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124104666426570729.html
http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/09/04/30/apples_proprietary_iphone_chips_may_not_surface_ti ll_next_year.html

Johnny
06-01-2009, 12:10 PM
This is wierd...I remember back when Apple was roasted over an open flame for having their own hardware!

they had their own connectors, made boxes that didn't look like everybody else's (still do) and had their own protocols.

People would say that apple was trying to screw ppl over by forcing them to buy proprietary apple hardware. They said that apple should standardize on "industry-standard" components and connectors.

Well...here we are, and if I'm reading correctly, there's just a hint of dismissal now that Macs are just another PC box with a couple of things different inside.

oh, yeah..and that OS..


J

Scazzino
06-02-2009, 10:20 AM
So what do you really get for your money if you buy a real Mac Pro?
According to InfoWorld you get the perfect workstation (http://www.infoworld.com/d/mac/mac-pro-perfect-workstation-168?page=0,0&source=fssr). ;)

Johnny
06-02-2009, 10:34 AM
Well...here we are, and if I'm reading correctly, there's just a hint of dismissal now that Macs are just another PC box with a couple of things different inside.


I wanted to clarify that I wasn't pointing this remark at anybody in particular, just the in-general ongoing comment out there in computer land about how apple ought to do this or that. no rudeness was intended by me.

J

dsol
06-12-2009, 08:32 AM
I think the market for Hackintoshes would be massively reduced if Apple just released a damn mid-range (expadable) desktop. A single-socket quad core mac with decent graphics, PCI-E slots and room for at least 2 hard disks for around $1000 is sorely missing from their lineup. The single processor version of the most recent macPro is horribly overpriced compared to similarly performing "home" desktops.

avkills
06-12-2009, 09:39 AM
I think the market for Hackintoshes would be massively reduced if Apple just released a damn mid-range (expadable) desktop. A single-socket quad core mac with decent graphics, PCI-E slots and room for at least 2 hard disks for around $1000 is sorely missing from their lineup. The single processor version of the most recent macPro is horribly overpriced compared to similarly performing "home" desktops.

Yes.

I can vouch though that the full on 3.2Ghz 8 Core Mac Pros really render super damn fast. We have three of them at work; one is the main edit machine, the other 2 are racked in a custom case for use during live shows.

Network rendering with all three is just super fast.

I've yet to play around with making a Qmaster cluster with all of them; but I will eventually get around to it. Should make Compressor a bit more speedy.

I think if you are a home user; building a Hackintosh is no big deal; but I don't think I would go that route for something that is mission critical.

-mark

dsol
06-12-2009, 10:02 AM
Yeah, my "old" 2008 macpro is hellafast. Lightwave is one of the few apps I have that can really use all 8 cores (After Effects rarely pushes more than 3-4 cores).

But for students and those starving artists out there (and Gamers) - a "MacPro Mini" would be perfect. it might be a consequence of the current financial crisis - and a weak pound/dollar rate - but the new MacPros are significantly more pricey than last year's model. I certainly can't justify buying one at the moment - will wait 'til next year I think.

Johnny
06-12-2009, 10:10 AM
I was hoping that apple would reduce their prices more than it's claimed they did...I know that some writers said well, the price is either lower, or the same for more processing power...OK..

to me $4K is still a bag of loot that I ain't got. $1K is by far more possible, and I suspect I'm not alone in that.

$1K, a Quad-core, sell it bare and let ME stuff it with whatever RAM, Card and drive I want. Heck, I don't even need it to look cool. quality yes, but I'm willing to forego all that cool lookin' stuff if it whacks the price.


J

Lightwolf
06-12-2009, 10:21 AM
So what do you really get for your money if you buy a real Mac Pro?
According to InfoWorld you get the perfect workstation (http://www.infoworld.com/d/mac/mac-pro-perfect-workstation-168?page=0,0&source=fssr). ;)
Too bad that OSX doesn't support NUMA yet, which makes the dual quads roughly 15% slower than the equivalent hardware running another OS. I hope that Snow Leopard will get that right.
I also don't get the low number of memory slots on the new Pros... but I guess that's because of available space in the case.

Cheers,
Mike

Scazzino
06-12-2009, 10:26 AM
Too bad that OSX doesn't support NUMA yet, which makes the dual quads roughly 15% slower than the equivalent hardware running another OS. I hope that Snow Leopard will get that right.
I also don't get the low number of memory slots on the new Pros... but I guess that's because of available space in the case.

Cheers,
Mike

Hi Mike,

Not sure about NUMA specifically, but the article did have this to say about Snow Leopard... :thumbsup:


Let it Snow
The best of the Nehalem Mac Pro is yet to come. Like the iPhone, this is a system that will improve with time at no cost to its owners. Snow Leopard just lights it up in ways that I can't describe (I'm under non-disclosure, but June's not that far away). Even pre-Snow Leopard, turning Intel's version 11 compilers loose on your existing code will produce some surprising results. Mac developers should consider a two-socket Mac Pro a must-purchase, and parallelization of their applications a top priority.