Hackintosh: Should You Build One?
Macworld|Macworld August 2017

Consider the pros and cons before you embark on the journey of building your own Mac.

Rob Griffiths

If you’re curious about how to build your own Hackintosh, Kirk McElhearn and I recently built Hackintoshes and wrote about our experiences. These articles, which appear later in this section, are great starting points for researching your own Hackintosh.

WHY YOU SHOULD BUILD A HACKINTOSH

There are many reasons to build your own Hackintosh. Here are the three biggies.

1. Customization: You can build exactly what you need, not what Apple wants you to have. From a pint-sized portable to a full-size mega tower, onboard video or high-end video card, hard drive type, number, and capacity, speed and amount of RAM, etc. What you build is up to you and your needs (and budget).

2. Affordability: By buying your own parts and assembling them yourself, you can wind up with a much less expensive machine than one offered by Apple. In Kirk’s case, he spent $464 to build a Mac that outperforms Apple’s $999 mini. In my case, it’s a tougher comparison, as the iMac includes a 5K display. But if you add the LG 5K display ($1,300) to my build cost ($1,567), that $2,867 total is still about $500 less than a loaded top-of-the-line 5K iMac. And my machine will run circles around that Mac’s gaming performance, and match or exceed it in CPU performance.

3. Upgradeability: By building your own Mac, you can easily replace and upgrade parts over time. If you aren’t sure you want to spend over $500 on a high-end video card, buy a decent card for $100 and see how it works for you. If you don’t like it, sell it and upgrade to a faster card. Every part can be replaced at your discretion.

WHY YOU SHOULD NOT BUILD A HACKINTOSH

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