I constructed a Hackintosh in April 2013. It served me well until November 2018, when it died a tragic death.
I had a lot of trepidation building it, as it was my first self-built machine, and Hackintoshes have their share of issues, but it was a very smooth project, thanks to the wealth of information on the Internet. I loved the price / performance I'm getting, I loved the expandability, and I loved being all Mac!
Using CustoMac Pro Guide as a guide, I selected these components:
- Corsair Obsidian 650D ~$170
- Intel Core i5-3570K Quad-Core Processor 3.4 GHz ~$225
- Gigabyte ATX Motherboard GA-Z77X-UP5-TH ~$250
- 16GB RAM ~$100
- Corsair 750 Watt Modular ~$150
- SATA 6Gb/s 120GB SSD ~$110
- WD Caviar Black 2TB ~$180
- Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920. ~$70. Doesn't officially support Macs, but works great. For manual controls, you can purchase an app called Webcam Settings from the App Store
- Azio USB Micro Bluetooth Adapter Version 4.0 (BTD-V400) ~$13
- Reused my Nvidia GEFORCE 9400GT from my Dell Inspiron 531, which supports dual monitors (which I'm also reusing)
- Reused the DVD-RW drive from my Dell Inspiron 531)
- Reusing my wireless Microsoft Natural Keyboard (but not the mouse)
- Reusing my Apple Bluetooth Trackpad
Total cost was less than $1,300, which is an absolute steal considering the specs. An equivalent Mac Pro would have cost triple this.
November 21, 2018
Bought some new USB drives, but Unibeast kept returning a, "Couldn't modify plist" error. I searched, and this post eventually saved me. First, I ran:
to see which disk my USB drive. (It was /dev/disk2.) Then I ran:
diskutil eraseDisk HFS+ usbdrive GPT /dev/disk4
After that, I ran Unibeast, and it worked perfectly.
Unfortunately, upon attempting installation, my Hackintosh got into a reboot cycle that I was not able to correct. After futzing around, I decided that it was time to put this noble machine to bed.
November 2, 2018
Created a USB installer and ran through the installation, but kept running into problems, and now hugh is unusable. Suspect my USB drive is fried. Will try again with a new USB drive.
June 22, 2016
I had a weird problem where everytime I shutdown, the computer would shutdown, then restart again. Turns out I was connected to the drive on my laptop, and the BIOS was set to wake on LAN. Turned that setting off, and all was good in my universe again.
June 20, 2016
- I created a new USB installer via Unibeast 6.2.0. I selected the UEFI Boot Mode and the nVidia graphic options (since I have an older card — essentially the equivalent of "GraphicsEnabler=Yes" on Chimera).
- I tested Clover by booting to the USB drive, then selecting my Yosemite installation.
It worked! Unfortunately, I didn't remove the old Chimera installation, but fortunately, Clover and Chimera can coexist just fine. I rebooted and ran the OS X installation. I then logged into my account and ran MultiBeast 8.2.3 with the following settings:
- Drivers > Audio > Realtek ALCxxx > ALC898
- Drivers > Misc > FakeSMC v6.16-313-g671f31c.1707
- Drivers > Misc > FakeSMC Plugins v6.16-313-g671f31c.1707
- Drivers > Misc > FakeSMC HWMonitor Application v6.16-313-g671f31c.1707
- Drivers > Network > Intel > AppleIntelE10000e v3.3.3
- Drivers > USB > 3rd Party USB 3.0
- Customize > Graphics Configuration > Inject NVIDIA
- Customize > System Definitions > Mac Pro > Mac Pro 3,1
June 19, 2016
Upgraded to a 4 TB Western Digital hard drive. Used rsync to transfer most of my data over. For some reason, rsync got tripped up several times by seemingly harmless looking files in Library, so I tarred up that directory and transferred it manually.
April 23, 2015
System upgraded to OS X 10.10.3. Had to rerun Multibeast in order to get my sound working.
February 8, 2015
Upgrading to OS X 10.10.2 Yosemite. It's a bit of a chore. First, I had to modify /Extra/org.chameleon.Boot.plist. I then had to reinstall from USB via Unibeast. To boot, I used "-x GraphicsEnabler=Yes".
I used DSDT Free, then set:
- Audio > Realtek ALCxxx > ALC898
- Disk > TRIM Enabler > 10.10.x TRIM Patch
- Misc > USB 3.0 - Universal
- Network > Intel > AppleIntelE10000e v3.1.0a
Under Customize, set "GraphicsEnabler=Yes".
September 25, 2013
Apple updated me to OS X 10.8.5, which broke sound, Ethernet, and Bluetooth. Ran Multibeast 5.2.1 and reinstalled sound, Ethernet, and TRIM. Those worked, but Bluetooth did not. Upgraded to Multibeast 5.5.1 and did the same upgrades. Again, all is fine, but no Bluetooth.
Tried this fix a few times, and got Bluetooth working. However, it's not clear that this was the problem. My Trackpad may have been connected to my laptop when I was trying to get this working, which may have prevented it from connecting to my Hackintosh. Regardless, all is well now.
April 3, 2013
Swapped in my Nvidia GEFORCE 9400GT from my Dell Inspiron 531. (I needed to swap it out of the Dell anyway, in order to convert that machine into a media center PC.) Initial research suggested I may have issues:
However, it worked out-of-the-box for me! Sweet!
Also swapped in my DVD-RW from my Dell. WIth the drive, it took forever for it to acknowledge a DVD, and I've had issues with eject. Basically works, though, just not perfectly.
April 2, 2013
Powered up the machine. No problems! Relatively quiet! Booted it off the UniBeast Mountain Lion USB drive I had created. Again, no issues.
Installed Mountain Lion. When rebooted, got the endless startup wheel. Rebooted in safe mode using "-x" boot parameter. Started up Mountain Lion just fine.
Went through Apple post-installation steps, then installed MultiBeast. Selected:
- Drivers > Audio > RealTek ALC8xx > RealTek ALC898
- Drivers > Network > hnak's' AppleIntelE1000e Ethernet
- Drivers > Disk > TRIM Enabler > 10.8.1+ TRIM Patch
Installed 2 TB hard drive. Formatted.
Other SSD hacks from this post:
- Set noatime flag for root partition
- Moved User directory to HDD and created symlink
- Moved /private/tmp to HDD and created symlink
The CPU instructions said to apply thermal grease to the CPU before installing the cooler, but it looks like there was already thermal grease there. In any case, here's a guide.
The Corsair Obsidian 650D is largely self-explanatory, but there are things that took me a while to figure out:
- This is the best guide I found to all of the internal wiring.
- Mounting an SSD. Remove the back side bolt (just give it a pull), and screw it in from the bottom.
- It's actually reasonably quiet (when I first saw the case, I thought it would sound like a rocket ship. In case I want to make it even quieter: