Last Modified Feb 3, 2013


In April of 2012, I had been impatiently waiting for Apple to update the Mac Pro for a year, and the iMac for a few months.

I honestly had no reason to believe the Mac Pro was going to be updated soon. While it was a somewhat dated machine, in the world of Xeon multi-processor machines it was not that far out of date. If it received a bump before 2013, I believed it'd mostly be in the name of peripheral support. While there were many who needed to see a bump on the Mac Pro to avoid having to jump ship to Windows, I was not one of those people; I can easily run FreeBSD on Xeon multi-processor machines and get nearly all of my work done on such a machine. And given what Tim Cook said after WWDC 2012, I didn't think we'd see a new Mac Pro until late 2013, if ever.

I was fairly certain that the iMac would get a bump in late 2012 in order to remain competitive. And I needed an OS X desktop machine, for both development and day-to-day tasks. However, it was still a significant investment in hardware, which isn't easily accessorized and upgraded. I love the design of the iMac 27" and the screen is gorgeous. But if I wanted multiple internal hard drives plus SSD, I couldn't do it within the enclosure of the existing iMac and I didn't expect to be able to do it in the next iMac. There is also no way to run a discrete graphics card. While the Nvidia GTX 680MX isn't terrible, it's not ideal for my work. And given the thermal consstraints of the iMac, it's just not the right thing for me.

The Mac Mini was out of the question for my needs for reasons similar to the iMac.

That left me wanting to build a hackintosh; commodity PC parts running OS X. There's quite a bit of community support for building and running such a machine these days, at a price point much lower than Apple's machines, especially if you already have parts you can use (say my pair of 24" monitors).

I have thus far completed one machine (Build1) and am nearly done with a second (Build2). I've learned a lot in the process, which has been useful. It's certainly more work to get a hackintosh up and running than it it to just buy an Apple machine, but I got what I needed and wanted which unfortunately isn't offered by Apple today.

My first hackintosh, and currently my primary desktop.
My second hackintosh, built for my mom.