My Hackintosh Build

January 13, 2011

So, I’m in the process of building a hackintosh (almost done, fingers crossed). I’ll be posting more about the actual building process, but for now I thought I’d share the parts I used to build it and how much they cost me.

For reference, here are the specs for a stock 27″ iMac:

  • 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5
  • 4GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM – 2x2GB
  • 1TB Serial ATA Drive
  • 8x double-layer SuperDrive
  • ATI Radeon HD 5750 1GB GDDR5 SDRAM
  • I wanted to match or beat that setup as cheaply as possible, so I bought the components from NewEgg over the period of less than a month, only buying things that were discounted.
    Here’s what I ended up with:
    (key: ‘+‘ indicates an improvement over the reference iMac, ‘=‘ indicates it is an equal part. ‘?‘ indicates an item for which Apple does not provide enough detail to make a comparison.)

  • 2.8 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5-760 – $179.99 (regularly $204.99)=
  • 6GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM – 3x2GB (CORSAIR XMS3) – $64.99 (regularly: $79.99)+
  • 1TB Serial ATA Drive (WD Caviar Black) – $77.99 (regularly: $87.99)=
  • Sony Optiarc Black $19.99 (regularly: $26.99) ?
  • ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB DDR5 SDRAM (HIS Juniper XT) – $99.99 (regularly $129.99) +
  • Items that Apple doesn’t list specs for, but you need for a computer:

  • GIGABYTE GA-H55-USB3 Motherboard – $99.99 (regularly $109.99)
  • Cooler Master RS750-ACAAE3-US Power Supply – $59.99 (regularly $99.99)
  • Baller unnecessary upgrade:

  • Corsair CSSD-V32GB2-BRKT $59.99 (regularly $78.99)
  • Items I already had and paid nothing for

  • Monitor
  • Mouse
  • Keyboard
  • Computer Case
  • What it cost:
    All in all, these purchases cost me $662.92. Shipping was free on all of them. If nothing was discounted, I would have spent $818.92, meaning I saved $156.00 by doing my shopping over the course of 2.5 weeks (first order was placed 12/21/2010, last order was placed 1/7/11). Compared to the cost of the iMac I was referencing, I saved $1,336.08. That is a lot of money.

    What I got that is better than an iMac is a slightly faster graphics card, 2GB more RAM (not to mention faster ram), a 32gb Solid State Drive that will allow for quicker booting and application launching, and USB 3 support.

    What I didn’t get is a 27″ monitor, a sleek enclosure, or official Apple support. To me, this tradeoff is worth $1,336.08. I could buy a decent monitor and a MacBook Air with that amount of money.

    So, how’d it all come together? I’m still working on it. More posts to come!


    4 Responses to “My Hackintosh Build”

    1. Chris Z Says:

      Honestly, I’d probably list the hard drive as an improvement, not an equal. From what I’ve seen, Apple typically uses Hitachi hard drives, and Western Digital is a much superior brand.

      Also, Apple uses their own “SuperDrive” optical drives, which are really over priced (they charge $100 to add one to a Mac Pr0), and the Sony drive you got for $20 out-performs it as far as faster burning speed. So that’d be a + too, not really an unknown.

    2. jontbecker Says:

      I will modify this post accordingly.

    3. […] Skip to content HomeAbout ← My Hackintosh Build January 17, 2011 · 7:05 pm ↓ Jump to […]

    4. kirkgray Says:

      To me, one of the primary reasons for going with a 27″ iMac is the 2560 x 1440 display. Stand alone monitors capable of this resolution run about $1,200 from online sources.

      I seriously considered building a hackintosh just a few months ago. But when spec’d out with the high resolution monitor and i7 processor, it would have cost me more to build than to buy.

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