Mac Mini or Hackintosh?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by kuwistar, Nov 15, 2012.

  1. kuwistar macrumors newbie

    Nov 15, 2012
    Hi folks,
    can't decide between a mac mini quad core and a hackintosh. I want to do some photo and video editing and the usual multimedia stuff and surfing the web. Both would cost me 800 USD but the hackintosh would be seriously faster in an also cool looking small Lian Li metallic case.

    3,4 GHz quad core Desktop (!) CPU
    128 GB SSD
    16 GB RAM
    Blu-Ray disc drive

    Apparently installing OS X on this system is a walk in the park, all the components of this hackintosh are compatible with OS X.

    Or do you think I will regret having to fiddle with the hardware later on every time there is a software update?
    But the performance gain would be really impressive, don't you think?
  2. nnynas macrumors newbie

    Nov 15, 2012
    If you're going to spend $800 on it, I would save the time and go with Mini.

    Whenever you face the hassle, you will wonder was it worth it.
  3. mslide, Nov 15, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2012

    mslide macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2007
    If I were you, I'd get the quad-core mini. It's a powerful computer. I don't see the point of building a hackintosh if you're basically just building something like a mini. If your goal was to build somewhat of a consumer version of a Mac Pro, that would be different. If you wanted a powerful desktop GPU, lots of drives, etc and for a heck of a lot less than a Mac Pro, then a hackintosh could be the answer.

    I use a hackintosh at home and I like it. It's just as stable as my MacBook Pro but I do never let it sleep (don't care about that and I don't want to even bother trying). I've been running it for about 6 months and haven't had any issues even with software updates. Worst case I have to run "multibeast" again to reinstall the audio driver and that's trivial. It's not for everyone though. There's a lot of spin-up time involved. I spent a lot of hours reading tonymacx86 when first getting into this. The biggest headache was getting my GPU working right with dual monitors but it was just a matter of digging through threads and finding the right post that posted the answer. Now, building a hackintosh is easy for me but it wasn't at first.

    The key is to pick the right motherboard. Pick one on tonymacx86's build guide and you should be good. Even still, search their forums for the exact motherboard you plan on using to see what you're in for. It's the little things that can drive you nuts.

    Still, my recommendation is to get a mini in your case. Yes, building a hackintosh has gotten a lot easier over the years but it's still not exactly plug-n-play.

    edit: I missed the part about you spending $800 on either option. In that case, I'd definitely just get a mini.
  4. theRAMman macrumors regular

    May 6, 2012
    The Moon.
    also somethings don't work with hakintoshes, like the wifi
  5. That-Guy macrumors 6502a


    Feb 25, 2012
    Just switched from a Hackintosh to a Mac Mini.

    From experience I recommend you go for the Mini. It was easy enough to set the Hackintosh up but its only after using it you will find more and more bugs that have no fixes.
  6. nnynas macrumors newbie

    Nov 15, 2012
    From what I've seen & heard, it sounds like the same with every machine people try to "hack".

    To start off it might be ok, but you will end up having problems later (e.g. with updates).

    Although having lot more power with the same $$, you will save a lot of nerves by just going with Mini (or some other mac).
  7. motrek macrumors 68020

    Sep 14, 2012
    I'm using a hackintosh now but will be switching to a Mac Mini next week. (Hope there are some black Friday sales this time!) I'm looking forward to everything just working. I'm tired of the litany of minor issues. Even if you get a system working well there's no guarantee it'll still work for the next major OS release (or even minor release). My motherboard's audio chip has worked fine for the last couple of releases but I haven't been able to get it to work under Mountain Lion and running MultiBeast causes the computer to not boot, so basically I'm at the end of the line upgrades-wise. Also with hackintoshes there are occasionally subtle problems that you may not notice immediately, so you might think a system is working "perfectly" but run into issues later. Case in point, there have been times when my ethernet went wonky and I had to unplug it and plug it back in literally every 5 minutes, but it was working fine with my MacBook. Stuff like this makes me think it's not worth it as anything other than an amusing side project.
  8. propower macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2010
    Absolutely! You should build the hack! Then get back to us in 6 months and tell us how it all went and whether you are still happy (or ever were).

    I built two amazing hacks in 2009. Way better than any MacPro and silent. In the end I bought a MacPro 9 months later and lost a good chunk of change selling the custom PC's :). Small incompatibilities drove me nuts. And I poured over kexts and forums for hours, days etc... But maybe its all different now!
  9. QuantumLo0p, Nov 15, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2012

    QuantumLo0p macrumors 6502a


    Apr 28, 2006
    I wouldn't build a Hackintosh unless you build a MacPro killer. You didn't mention your graphics card but for $800 I would imagine a card in the lower range. If the performance would be the same to perhaps a little better than a Mini then I'd go with a Mini. They are such cool little computers and you'd probably never have a serious problem with it; including OS-X updates, lol. When I bought mine there really was anything else in its class that compared overall better than the Mini. I still love my Mini and it only has a Core2 Duo processor although a ram and hdd upgrade was required before really liked it.

    I was seriously thinking of booting my new rig to OS-X but reconsidered after I read basically the same things as previous posters said. If I wasn't going to run cad/cam/cae software on it I may have tried the Hackintosh route but I need to have a reliable computer. My 2010 Mini is still my main computer for email, photos and browsing. It was never able to run the high end cad/cam/cae software I needed and games were all on minimum settings so I do those on my 6-core rig. I haven't benched my rig yet but it's supposed to really smoke using ram for a cache-drive. Sort of like a fusion drive except it should do 4-6GB/second. :D
  10. dukebound85 macrumors P6


    Jul 17, 2005
    5045 feet above sea level
    I built a hacking ish in early 2008 and yea, it was fun though irritating learning experience. I much prefer the no hassle real macs when it comes to updates

    I remember having issues concerning (when it loaded OSX)
    Audio not working
    Kernel panics opening dmg
    Unable to sleep
    Drives unmounting and internal drives able to be ejected

    Each one took a while to find a fix.

    Granted this was assuming OSX booted. When it didn't, that was even more if a pain lemme tell ya. Hard to fiagnose a machine that won't boot

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