Hackintosh for logic?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by rube740, Mar 9, 2010.

  1. rube740 macrumors newbie

    rube740

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    #1
    I've been doing a lot of research and a hackintosh is looking mighty tempting. I still have a 1.8 dual G5 which Logic no longer supports. I got money in the bank ready to get a mac pro, but ive been waiting for an update. I just started looking in to building a hackintosh and let me tell you these machines are powerful and the price difference compared to a mac pro is great. We are talking about 1000 to 1500 in savings. I know that there are cons to doing this but it kind of looks like pros are out wheighing them. I'm gonna wait for the update and see what apple has to offer then I'll make my decision. Any advice out there? Should I spend 1000 more for a mac? Should I plan on building a hackintosh? THIS IS DRIVING ME CRAZY. any body see that J.D Wetworth commercial? I WANT A MAC PRO AND I WANT IT NOW!!!!!!
     
  2. goMac macrumors 603

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    #2
    The new Mac Pros will be way faster than an i7.

    Just wait. Plus you want to be officially supported on a production computer.
     
  3. rube740 thread starter macrumors newbie

    rube740

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    #3
    . Wow faster than an i7? I really hope so cause a high end i7 is pretty powerful. I'm definitly going to wait for the update and see what they have to offer.
     
  4. Transporteur macrumors 68030

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    #4
    The processors of the current Mac Pro and the i7 desktop processor are both based on the same architecture (which is called Nehalem by the way) and so will the upcoming Gulftown processor that will be used in the next Mac Pro.
    The Gulftown comes in quad and hex cores, so if you're going for a hex core, you get 50% more performance at equal clock speeds.

    However, if you're already complaining about prices, waiting for the next generation Mac Pro might be a waste of time since the Gulftown processors are going to be very pricy.
     
  5. rube740 thread starter macrumors newbie

    rube740

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    #5
    And that's why a hackintosh sounds pretty darn good. If you look at a highend i7, that run in the range of 3 to 5 Hun bucs, that's not bad and it will probabaly give me much more than what I need. Audio doesn't require as much power as video. With a good i7 and good RAM I could could probably run many tracks with loads of VST's. There are two main reasons stopping me from getting a hackintosh. 1- I might run in to some headaches installing and upgrading the software and 2- sometimes apple will just smack the crap out of you with a suprise(good computer at a good deal) Im hoping # 2 happens! NOT THE BATHROOM KIND EITHER!
     
  6. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #6
    And that's ONLY for multi-threaded applications that can utilize all the cores in the CPU/s.

    For single threaded applications, the only thing that will make a difference is a faster clock speed (given the architecture is otherwise identical).

    The pricing will at remain the same at best (though there's the possibility of an increase in clock speeds; i.e. base Quad would use 2.8GHz instead of 2.66GHz).

    There will only be one SP hex core Xeon, and no other SP parts will use the 32nm process (parts released on March 16th). DP parts will all use 32nm, but some are Quad core (so most of the systems will remain Octads).

    If you're on a really tight budget, a hackintosh may be the right solution for you. Just put in the research, and you'll be fine (updates work). There's information on what works on what boards,... it just takes time to wade through all of it.
     
  7. goMac macrumors 603

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    #7
    Logic is heavily multithreaded, so yes, a Mac Pro is going to be way faster.

    What's wrong with an iMac anyway? For Logic, you don't need a fast/upgradable GPU. But an 8 core or a 16 core Mac Pro is going to slaughter an i7 in Logic.
     
  8. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #8
    Well, it was more of a general statement (aimed at what Transporteur had written).

    But at any rate, I'm used to seeing more Quads used for audio work lately, and in such cases, a faster clock and upgrades for bottlenecks can make a fast system (SSD's seem to be really useful, given the random access requirements).

    If there's a large budget, then they could opt for an Octad and address the bottlenecks in it as well. But as money is almost always limited, I'm guessing the Quads have been chosen based on that reasoning.

    As such upgrades are difficult at best on the iMacs, MP's and even hackintoshes have an advantage here (namely the ability to use RAID and/or SSD's). It would be possible to add an SSD to an iMac, but not easily (the screen has to be pulled to access it as I understand it). RAID is only possible across a slow interface on an iMac (USB or FW800, neither of which are capable of adequate bandwidth; 100MB/s at best). Then there's also the possibility of using a PCIe audio adapter (additional options vs. external only).
     
  9. cutthroughthebs macrumors member

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    Feb 14, 2010
    #9
    It seems if your going to spend most of your time on the box (this is why you buy a real mac because it works) instead of your music, it seems like you'd be burning the candle @ both ends! Get the hack because obviously you don't care about putting time into your music, just the box, in which is exactly what you'll be doing with a hack... but it's your music!
     
  10. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #10
    It depends on the hardware used.

    A blanket statement that all hackintosh's are crap is flat out false. As it happens, it's been improving substantially. Those that do have issues, are using hardware not used by Apple (as in actual components on the board, such as audio,...), and no one's figured out how to write a kext for it.

    Remember, current macs are Intel based, and the only real difference is EFI firmware rather than BIOS. Intel chips and chipsets are used just like any other PC. Other devices may differ, but there are boards that use the exact same components found on Apple's logic boards (NIC, audio,... chips). Because of this, some PC hardware works without issues (using Apple's own kext files). It's also advisable to stick with graphics cards that Apple offers for the same reason (uses the same kext files).
     
  11. goMac macrumors 603

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    #11
    To expand on this, I currently work as an engineer at a company that makes creative software. If our support department hears you're working on a Hackintosh (and we've had people with Hackintosh specific issues because they bought cards without Mac equivalents), we pretty much aren't going to spend any serious time with you.

    With the new Mac Pros rumored for next week, I would just wait. Honestly, for audio work... a Mac Pro is very nicely architected. Your Hackintosh is not going to have a good number of FW800 ports, unless you start throwing a bunch of cards in. You're not going to have support on the software and hardware. If you're doing professional work, I'm not really sure why you'd even want to risk the downtime.

    Yeah, a Core i7 Hackintosh will likely be cheaper, but you're definitely going to get what you paid for.

    (And I used to maintain a Hackintosh.)
     
  12. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #12
    Quite understandable, and I'd take the same approach (engineer on the hardware side). It wasn't meant to do that explicitly, and the validation testing is expensive (paid man hours).

    Hackintosh = user is their own tech support system. Period. So that's the compromise for the lower cost. For a student, enthusiast, person who just likes to tinker,... this may be a fine alternative, especially on a tight budget.

    But for professional use or the non-technically inclined (or those that can't follow directions well, assuming they're following someone else's lead on a system + methodology know to be problem free), a hackintosh should be ignored. Bite the bullet as it were, and get the Mac Pro suited for the task.
     
  13. rube740 thread starter macrumors newbie

    rube740

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    #13
    You have a great point there. You just start to think of the 1500 you save and that drives me crazy. hopefully the new macpro will stay at the Current price. What you said makes alot of sense but if the new macpro jumps $500 a hackintosh will look really tempting. And the fact that I have to spend alot of time in the box is not totally true, with new hardware that is available. I can have a hackintosh up and running in About 3 hours
     
  14. crazyrog17 macrumors regular

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    #14
    As mentioned, Hacks are for tinkerers. I have my MacBook Pro which I know will always work (and I have support for it if it doesn't :) ) in case the Hack goes down. Although the i7s are enticing, from what I gather, they're not yet straight forward to run a Hack on. It seems there's a lot of trouble still, mainly from the motherboards that support the processors. An awesome Quad Core rig can be had, but you're still going to spend a lot of time to get up the learning curve of building a Hackintosh. I've been working on Hacks for a few years now and still have a lot to learn.

    I say pony up for the updated Mac Pro and work on a Hackintosh project on the side. Once you get the Hackintosh running smoothly, sell the Mac Pro and your Power Mac G5 to get some money back and see the drool worthy savings.

    :eek: 3? Haha, I've got mine down to a science now.:) After rebuilding my hack 3-4 times, it takes me half an hour to get it running a fresh install. (installed an SSD boot drive, wiped everything clean)

    With similar supported hardware, I built my girlfriends Hack from the ground up in an hour. If you're still using the physical instal disc, put a disk image on a flash drive and say hello to 40 minutes of your life back! My Chameleon flash drive (with all the proper kexts/patches), my Snow Leopard flash drive and my Everything Else flash drive are my heroes of a vanilla install.
     
  15. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #15
    The board I use works, save the SAS chip (which I don't use). Everything else has a kext for it.
     
  16. crazyrog17 macrumors regular

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    #16
    Good to know. I've been catching up with the InsanelyMac forums since I posted, too.
     
  17. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #17
    The board I refer to is the ASUS P6T6 WS Revolution (though others in the P6 family share much of the design and parts used = high potential for success).

    But it's not a cheap board ($330USD is about the best I've seen). Board = more $$$ than the least expensive LGA1366 chip you can use. :eek:
     
  18. rube740 thread starter macrumors newbie

    rube740

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    #18
    So in your opinion, since it looks like you know what your talking about? I buy the ASUS P6T6 with a high end i7 (about $500) and build my hack from there. Do you think that my hack will blow away the current "nehalem" Macpro?
     
  19. Transporteur macrumors 68030

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    #19
    Depends on the processor you'll use, don't you think?

    If you can find anything higher than 3.33GHz, then yes, your machine will probably be faster than the quad Mac Pro.
     
  20. goMac macrumors 603

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    #20
    Nehalem is at least as fast clock for clock as i7 (Nehalem is an upgraded i7). So you'd have to be running at the same clockspeed at least.

    And any 8 core configuration, even if you're back down at the 2.26 ghz Xeons, is going to be much faster in logic than any Core i7 4 core configuration.

    But I would wait, as all these specs we're talking about will likely change.
     
  21. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #21
    It will depend on specifics. As it's been mentioned, the processor will matter, as will other components (memory for example), and whether or not you OC the system (if you do this, make sure you've a really good cooler and a case with really good airflow, as that particular board runs on the hot side due to the nForce 200 chip on it).

    BTW, ASUS will end up issuing a firmware update so it can accommodate SP Hex core parts (i7-980X or Xeon W3680). The difference between the two processors, is the Xeon has ECC enabled. That's it.
     
  22. Nostromo macrumors 65816

    Nostromo

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    #22
    A MacPro, while more expensive than a hackintosh, seems to be the better choice if you have to earn your living with your computer. I simply don't have time to fix trouble coming from a self-built hackintosh. That's why I have a Mac and not a PC. I want trouble free operation.

    Doesn't this depend on the application? I doubt Photoshop will be able to take advantage of hex core over a quad core.
     
  23. Transporteur macrumors 68030

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    #23
    Nehalem is no processor, it is an processor architecture. Both the i7 desktop processor and the XEON 5500 series, which is used in the current Mac Pro, are based on this architecture.
    But you're absolutely right, considering that they share the same architecture, they perform equal with equal clock speeds.


    Of course it depends on the type of applications you're using. They have to be heavily multithreaded to gain any improvements from a hex core. Photoshop can't, yet. The upcoming CS5 will certainly be better suited for multiple cores, if it can max out 6 cores is questionable though.
     
  24. disconap macrumors 68000

    disconap

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    #24
    Turbo Boost will make a difference, however, so (in THEORY) a hex core using two cores will run faster than a quad core using two cores. In practical terms that difference will likely be negligible as there is a definite ceiling to turbo boost, though I bet the ceiling for the hexes will be higher than that of the quads...
     

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