It’s never good when you have to replace a computer and recently my old PC started having some weird issues like random rebooting, switching monitors off and not transferring data between hard drives without the transfer failing amongst other things. I decided that it was time to build a new system as one of the things I primarily use my PC for is making music and a failing PC is not ideal when trying to write a new track.
To give you some background on my general computer usage first of all for work I use a MacBook Air mid 2013 and for all my personal computing needs I use a PC with Win 7, I like to keep my work and personal computers completely separate so this is why I use two systems.
When I came to the conclusion it was better to build a new PC rather than fix up an older one I didn’t think to build a Hackintosh initially ( A Hackintosh is a custom built computer that’s capable of running Apples OSX Operating system ), I was just building a new PC to install all of my music software on that had newer hardware.
After doing some research online for some good top end current computer parts the thought then occurred to me that maybe I could get the correct parts that would not only run windows but also run OSX which I use everyday too, now that would be cool :).
Firstly I’m not going to go through exactly how you build a Hackintosh as there are many great websites providing this information already like TonyMac86, what this post is about is exactly which hardware I used and a little of how I got OSX installed and working.
What I will say though is since Apple moved to Intel CPU chips building a Hackintosh is now about as easy as installing windows on a PC, if you purchase the correct hardware that is. The computer I have built runs the latest version of OSX Mavericks and all the hardware I purchased is natively supported by OSX so no major hacks are required to get hardware features to work in OSX.
My Hackintosh Running OSX Mavericks
As you can see above this is my Hackintosh running the latest version of OSX Mavericks and all hardware is working correctly just like a Mac including, network connection, audio card, graphics cards, Apple magic mouse, Apple bluetooth keyboard and Apple trackpad all with no major hacks for any of this.
Motherboard – 1 x Gigabyte Z87X-D3H
CPU – 1 x Intel i7-4770k 3.50ghz ( Turbo Boost 3.9 Ghz ) Quad Core / 8 Thread Haswell
RAM – 4 x 4GB Corsair Vengeance PC12800 1600Mhz DDR3
HardDrives – 2 x Samsung 840 Pro SSD 256gb and 3 x Seagate Barracuda 3TB SATA3 Drives
Graphics – 2 x MSI GeForce GTX 770 Twin Frozer OC editions in SLI
Power Supply – 1 x Corsair AX860
Bluetooth – 1 x Belkin F8T016 Mini Bluetooth Adapter
By using this hardware above I was able to install OSX using the Unibeast tool and then install two drivers via Multibeast, one for sound and the other for network connectivity after this OSX was up and fully running. The Bluetooth dongle worked first time with all apple control devices as did the graphics card drivers which power both my 24in 1920 x 1080 Monitors via DVI and a 47in TV via HDMI.
The end result is I now have a dual boot system with Windows 7 on and SSD and OSX Mavericks on another SSD and the machine is unbelievably fast and extremely stable with all the components when working in either operating system.
So Is a Hackintosh For Everyone
It has become much, much easier to install OSX on a modern computer not built by Apple and if you don’t mind a different update process when you want to update OSX along with having no apple support those are the only two downsides I can see for a general user. So far I have had no issues whatsoever with my system and it functions exactly the same as my MacBook Air does when I am using OSX on it.
I would say building a Hackintosh is for the enthusiast who’s building a new computer who maybe wants to have a play around and try OSX but if you want a Mac then go buy an iMac or similar.