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Old Sep 26, 2014, 11:48 AM   #1
hab.786
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Mac or Hackintosh

Hi peeps, this is my first post ever on this site... :-|

I've just started a Graphics Design degree and all the computers in my uni are Macs. So, I need to make the ever-delighting switch from PC to Mac. And due to the fact that I'll be rendering high graphics and developing large-scale sites almost all the time, I want one that is reasonably high spec. So i7 cpu, 2tb hdd plus 120gb ssd, 16gb ram etc. The usuals...

But my question is;

Should I purchase a Hackintosh or an actual iMac / Mac Mini?

Does the hackintosh work EXACTLY the same as an actual mac? Will I have problems in the future? Is any official support offered? Does a hackintosh offer all the features and functionality that a mac offers? Whats the difference in software between the 2?

Many thanks
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 12:18 PM   #2
yukyuklee
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If you are doing graphic designs I would build a hackintosh you get more with your money. Everything will work the same just buy a motherboard that has bluetooth. Also only downside I see with this is not having thunderbolt but if you don't care much about having that than I think thats the way to go.
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 12:22 PM   #3
hab.786
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Many thanks for your reply. I think I will do just that. There are some people on ebay who build a full hackintosh system and send it out to you, the value for money is great, so I'll most likely go for that.

One more question, will I have a problem if I get a 27" HD LED screen. Also, can a hackintosh handle dual-screen display? So if I get two of the 27" screens, could I one as an extended display?

Regards
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 12:44 PM   #4
yukyuklee
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Originally Posted by hab.786 View Post
Many thanks for your reply. I think I will do just that. There are some people on ebay who build a full hackintosh system and send it out to you, the value for money is great, so I'll most likely go for that.

One more question, will I have a problem if I get a 27" HD LED screen. Also, can a hackintosh handle dual-screen display? So if I get two of the 27" screens, could I one as an extended display?

Regards
You have the option on how much you want to spend on a video card and it will handle dual screens like nothing lol don't ever worry about that.

Check this video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K9CNsBCmrNg
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 12:53 PM   #5
hab.786
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That video is amazing!!

I've decided, I'm gonna build my own beast of a hackintosh, most likely using the parts that the guy in the video is using... :-)

Many thanks for your help!!!
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 01:21 PM   #6
h9826790
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Just be aware that a Hackintosh will never as stable as a real Mac. Once you get it work, you better not to upgrade / update anything.

For cost to performance ratio, a Hackintosh will win.

However, if put all compatibility, stability, future OS support... into consideration. It's seems an old Mac Pro will better fit your need. You can get a Mac Pro 4,1, upgrade the firmware to 5,1, install a i7-990X, 48G RAM, a flashed GTX780 / HD7970 (or native GTX680 / HD7950) which can easily support more than 2 screens (the GTX 980 is coming soon), a internal SATA SSD (or PCIe SSD) + another 4 internal HDDs, eSATA / USB 3.0 PCIe card, 802.11AC + BT4.0......
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 01:30 PM   #7
hab.786
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That is indeed a VERY good option... But now I'm right back where I started - I can't decide what to do
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 01:32 PM   #8
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If you can't afford any downtime, get an iMac. It will cost you more but it will have a good resale value when you finish your degree.
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 01:33 PM   #9
hab.786
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Can you put a second screen (DVI / VGA) into iMac?
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 02:27 PM   #10
paulrbeers
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Can you put a second screen (DVI / VGA) into iMac?
Yes, you can run two additional displays using the "thunderbolt" ports. All you need is a simple Mini-displayport/Thunderbolt to VGA/DVI in order to run additional monitors.

I have an extremely powerful Hackintosh (4770K overclocked, dual 7870's, 24GB of RAM, Dual SSD's in RAID0). While it is a beast, it is not as stable as my Mac Mini (or macbooks). It can compete with anything (even beats an entry level Mac Pro), but with every OSX release I have to redo audio (at the very least). I've also had problems with the Ethernet port and what drivers I use (I have to use older drivers or else it completely fails on large file transfers). The Ethernet also at times goes crazy and brings down my whole network (how I know it's my Hack is upon shut down or restart, my network all of a sudden comes back to live). Not to mention if I don't use the onboard video for driving one of my monitors, I can't get OSX to display (probably just a setting I need to figure out). I also can't seem to get power saving to work right. It will go to sleep, but I can't get it to come out of sleep.

All of this on a Tonymacx86 recommended motherboard!

So while it is fairly simple to build a hackintosh anymore (especially if you follow a guide from Tonymac), do not think for a second that it will be "as good" as a genuine Mac.

So while mine beats out an entry level New Mac Pro by quite a bit, I can't use it as a server like my Mac Mini. It just isn't as stable. I also can not leave it all 24x7 due to power issues.

With all of that said, the thing is a beast when it comes to transcoding/encoding videos.......
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 02:31 PM   #11
hab.786
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Thank you everyone, I've finally made up my mind.

I've decided to just purchase a new iMac 27in and install an additional display to it.

I think that's the best way to go, then 3 years down the line, after I get my degree, I'll sell it and get a proper MacPro or whatever is available at the time.

Thanks for your help peeps... !!
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Old Sep 26, 2014, 11:45 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by hab.786 View Post
Thank you everyone, I've finally made up my mind.

I've decided to just purchase a new iMac 27in and install an additional display to it.

I think that's the best way to go, then 3 years down the line, after I get my degree, I'll sell it and get a proper MacPro or whatever is available at the time.

Thanks for your help peeps... !!
Good idea! You made the right choice. I had a hackintosh when I first started getting into Macs before I bought my PowerMac G5, and it was not always fun. You would be working on a video project and randomly lock the whole machine up. Granted, it could be a bad kext or extension, but it is nowhere near as seamless, reliable, or stable as a true Mac.
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Old Sep 27, 2014, 01:02 AM   #13
hollandog
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I think you made a good choice. I built 2 hackintosh and converted to a MacBook Pro. While I get the performance when it's working. Often there will be issues. Especially if you update the os. I would not recommend hackintosh if you don't know or don't have the time to fix it.
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Old Sep 27, 2014, 02:54 AM   #14
76ShovelHead
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Just be aware that a Hackintosh will never as stable as a real Mac. Once you get it work, you better not to upgrade / update anything.

For cost to performance ratio, a Hackintosh will win.

However, if put all compatibility, stability, future OS support... into consideration. It's seems an old Mac Pro will better fit your need. You can get a Mac Pro 4,1, upgrade the firmware to 5,1, install a i7-990X, 48G RAM, a flashed GTX780 / HD7970 (or native GTX680 / HD7950) which can easily support more than 2 screens (the GTX 980 is coming soon), a internal SATA SSD (or PCIe SSD) + another 4 internal HDDs, eSATA / USB 3.0 PCIe card, 802.11AC + BT4.0......
Not necessarily true.

I currently have two hackintosh's running Mavericks 10.9.5 both of which very stable machines..

Bottom line is you have to pick the most compatible parts for OS X. Gigabyte seems to be the best among motherboards, and obviously you'll need an Intel processor. Graphics can be loosely based on the previous and current offerings in the Mac line.

For instance, my first Hackintosh is a Core 2 Quad Q6600 paired with an HIS Radeon HD 4670 1GB w/ 4GB of ram. This machine was built previously as a budget Windows computer until I discovered the Hackintosh community. Surprisingly enough, my MOBO (an ECS G31T-M) was a good fit. Again, I didn't build this computer around OS X. I built it back in 2009 where I originally fitted it with a Pentium Dual-Core and 2 gigs of ram. This computer will run constantly (for months at a time) and is over clocked from 2.4 ghz to 2.9 ghz.

My newest machine I built back around this time last year, a Core i5 4430, 12 GB Ram, and a Gigabyte H87-D3H. It runs at 3.0-3.2 Ghz w/ turbo boost. This machine however was built around OS X.

Both update just the same as my actual Macs, and interestingly enough, on both the only thing that breaks is the Audio. After which I just need to re-apply the audio kext.

That said, Macbook's are the only official hardware I buy. Even if the installation of OS X on a standard laptop couldn't be more than flawless, you can't hide the fact that it's a Dell! And seeing as all hardware minus the Mac Pro use laptop components, it's makes since to just plunk that down on something you could carry with you.

Even though, I still find myself wanting an iMac... Since I won't have to worry about cost effectiveness once I finish college, that will be my graduation present to myself
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Old Sep 27, 2014, 06:13 AM   #15
mad3inch1na
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Originally Posted by hab.786 View Post
Thank you everyone, I've finally made up my mind.

I've decided to just purchase a new iMac 27in and install an additional display to it.

I think that's the best way to go, then 3 years down the line, after I get my degree, I'll sell it and get a proper MacPro or whatever is available at the time.

Thanks for your help peeps... !!
I think you made the right decision. I built a hackintosh last year, and my dad owns a maxed out 2012 iMac. My computer is significantly more powerful at about 2/3 the cost, but it is significantly heavier with a lot more clutter. Even with a perfect build, it still won't run perfectly. OS updates require an entirely new install, and the iCloud features are a headache to set up. Although I have not had any issues with stability, I would not trust a hack to do any professional work on. The iMac is worth the added cost for peace of mind alone. Check out the refurbished store, as I am sure you can find a really good deal. Make sure to get the Fusion Drive or pure SSD.

As somebody else mentioned, getting a cMP is not a bad idea, and it is a good middle ground. It will provide stability at a slight premium, but you will be able to have much more power than an iMac.

Matt
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Old Sep 27, 2014, 05:06 PM   #16
Beachguy
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One thing to keep in mind...

You cannot LEGALLY run OS X on anything but an Apple machine. Getting a copy on DVD to install could lead to certain challenges. As well, you may not find it as stable as a Mac. As well, you'll get NOT support for the software you load from the publishers since you do not run it on hardware it was designed for.
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Old Sep 27, 2014, 07:45 PM   #17
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@hab.786 - Agree with everyone's recommendations for a real Mac. A hackintosh is fun to dabble with - I like to dual-boot with Windows - but I wouldn't want to rely on it.

As 76ShovelHead mentions, if you buy the correct hardware you'll get a stable system, but then you're locked into certain hardware choices. My choice of GPU or sound-card is dictated by what works with my Hackintosh.

On the software side, sleep's always been a problem with my hack, and updates tend to break things, even if that means reinstalling a kext. Not to mention finding the best bootloader (using Clover means more work), and hoping everything works when Apple release a new OS like Yosemite.

You've made the right choice imo, and the resell value of Macs makes the initial outlay bearable, especially when it's time to upgrade.
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Old Sep 28, 2014, 09:23 AM   #18
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On the software side, sleep's always been a problem with my hack,
Anyone been able to get sleep working?
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Old Sep 28, 2014, 12:19 PM   #19
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IMO if you are looking for the best power to dollar ratio then build a Hackintosh. If you want a turn-key computer with a warranty and be able to get you online within ten minutes of un-boxing then buy an Apple.

By the way, can Apple delete non-authorized Apple apps on Hackintoshes like they can on real Apples??? Perhaps that's a good question for the software forum...
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Old Sep 28, 2014, 03:36 PM   #20
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Anyone been able to get sleep working?
Honestly no. I mean there are those at tonymac that state they do, but I haven't been lucky with that at all. I completely have up trying..... I'm not even sure power states work all that well either....
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