Morning Cup O' Joe

Time you enjoy wasting isn't wasted time.

Build a “Hackintosh” Mac Pro for $800

I’ve already said that I’d buy my next computer whole, not build it myself, but this looks tempting enough to make me reconsider. In a nutshell, someone over at Lifehacker figured out a way to build the equivalent of the Mac Pro (which starts at $2499 for 1GB RAM and a 250GB HD) for less than $800 (with 4GB RAM and a 500GB HD), and run Leopard on it.

It looks like a pretty involved process, but I don’t think it’d take more than a day or two of work for someone relatively comfortable with the idea of futzing with computer technology, and it’s potentially a savings of over $2,000 (a Mac Pro configured with 4GB of RAM and a 500GB HD runs $3,327).

Can’t say for sure I’ll try it. I will say that I am intrigued.


November 13, 2007 - Posted by | Geeks and Gadgetry, How-To, Mac


  1. The OSX86 community is pretty strong and the Lifehacker guide is thorough. I’d say that you have winning situation here as long as you don’t mind being a little behind with the OS X patches that are released periodically.

    Comment by Mike | November 14, 2007

  2. Dang, now you’re making me want to do this… again. (I did this on my old laptop, which is now your laptop)

    Comment by Mike | November 14, 2007

  3. I’ve been doing a little more reading on the OSx86 project. Apparently, they just released a modified Apple Darwin bootloader that allows PC hardware to boot a “vanilla” (unpatched/unmodified) EFI kernel. I am taking this to mean that in theory one could run this version of OS X and still run all the software updates just fine.

    But not like I needed another reason to do this. =)

    Comment by agalcid | November 14, 2007


    A 24″ iMac with 2.4 GHz CPU, 1 GB RAM, and 500 GB HD is $1,789. 4 GB of RAM is $209.99 at Newegg, making the total almost exactly $2,000.

    To add all that you get with the iMac to that package, you’d have to throw in a high-quality 24″ LCD ($669.00 from Dell), a nice keyboard and mouse combo (probably at least $100), nice webcam ($40?), speakers, and Bluetooth. Oh, and just to be on the same page (and compare “apples” to Apples) you’d have to throw in a copy of Leopard, which costs $130.

    Maybe I’ll just buy an iMac after all. =)

    Comment by agalcid | November 14, 2007


    Add $80 for the iLife Suite.

    Also add the fact that your warranty is attached to one company, not a dozen and the fact you can get Applecare.

    Also the Asus board only comes with firewire 400, not 800

    Add the Apple remote compatibility. Will it still work. I use it all the time.

    I will give that the graphics card is better and that there is an extra ethernet card.

    Also the fact that on any Leopard upgrade, Apple can break the hack. So you may always be playing catch up all the time.

    And don’t forget sexiness and style.

    It looks like a fine project, but when you add everything up I think I’ll stay with an iMac as well.

    And to compare it to the Mac Pro is a bit off as well. The Mac Pro comes with twin Xeons and 1.33 GHz dual frontside buses. Up to 16 gig of ram and a hell of lot more. Although, a lot more expensive, it is a hell of lot more powerful and a lot tougher looking.

    Food for thought.

    Comment by Michael | November 14, 2007

  6. iMac FTW!!!

    Comment by Bernard | November 14, 2007

  7. Very interesting. If I had the money to waste, I might have tried it 🙂

    Comment by Ed Oswald | November 14, 2007

  8. I’m exceedingly familiar with installing OS X on PC hardware, so give me a ring if you’d like to try it. I’ve got everything you need. It works perfectly on my Athlon64 desktop. My Dell laptop had some issues due to unsupported wifi, but otherwise was fine. And strangely enough, OS X works surprisingly well on my Macbook…

    Comment by Joe | November 15, 2007

  9. […] Filed under: Geeks and Gadgetry, How-To, Mac — Mike @ 2:18 am Here’s a follow-up to Angelo’s post. Lifehacker did an informal performance test pitting the Hackintosh against real Macs. Not bad at […]

    Pingback by Hackintosh vs. Mac Pro vs. MacBook Pro « Morning Cup O’ Joe | November 16, 2007

  10. Why build one when you can buy a Hackintosh.

    Comment by xraytech | April 14, 2008

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