Episode 1. Cost Hack'a

    For any developer, a working tool is very important - especially convenience, speed and, of course, cost. In the previous episode, we reviewed the build speed of projects in the IDE Xcode and found out that the hack is not at all inferior to native Macs in performance. Today we consider the cost of hackintosh.

    For comparison, I took my Hack with a 6-core i7-8700K processor, iMac 5K 2017 (as closest in terms of components) and 8-core iMac Pro (a representative of top Apple computers). The table shows the prices of component hack, as well as the total cost of each computer.

    Cost of

    AccessoriesHackiMac 2017iMac Pro 2017
    MotherboardGigabyte Z370 Aorus Gaming 5/14 700₽--------------
    CPUIntel i7-8700K
    6 Cores 4.7 GHz
    / 26 500₽
    Intel i7-7700K
    4 Cores 4.5 GHz
    / € 2,200
    Intel Xeon W-2140B
    8 Cores 4.2 GHz
    / ~ £ 9.00
    RAMCrucial DIMM DDR4-2133 32 GB / £ 22SO-DIMM DDR4-2400 32 GBECC DIMM DDR4-2666 32 GB
    SSD DriveSamsung 950 pro
    512 GB / € 16
    Apple SSD SM0032L 512 GBApple EMC 3197
    1 TB
    Video cardSapphire Nitro + RX580 8GB / 20,000₽Radeon Pro 580
    Radeon Pro Vega 56
    Thunderbolt 3 controllerGC-ALPINE Ridge
    € 5,000
    HousingFractal Design Define R4 Black / $ 109----------------
    CoolerNoctua NH-U14S
    / 5 $ AUD
    KeyboardMagic Keyboard
    / € 7,50
    Magic keyboardMagic Keyboard with Digital Panel
    MouseA4-Tech Bloody V7, USB / £ 1.11Magic mouse 2Magic mouse 2
    Wi-Fi / Bluetooth moduleBroadcom
    BCM943602baed 802.11ac / $ 1,52
    BCM4360 802.11ac
    USI 339S00428 00012021
    MonitorLG 5K UltraFine
    / € 8.00
    as part of a monoblock with a resolution of 5Kas part of a monoblock with a resolution of 5K
    total cost212 000 ₽220 000₽380 000₽
    One of the main advantages of hack's build is the possibility of its further upgrade and transition to a new architecture. And the cost of replacing the motherboard and processor will not be as high as selling the old one and buying a new iMac. In iMac Pro, the maximum that can be changed is RAM and, probably, a processor (if you find them on sale). In iMac 2017, you can replace the processor, disk, RAM, and Wi-Fi / Bluetooth module. The transition (replacement of the motherboard and processor) from my past hackintosh to the current cost me ~ 18,500 ₽.

    As can be seen from the table, the total cost of the hackintosh is currently not much different from the cost of a fairly powerful iMac 2017 and amounts to 8,000 ₽, but with iMac Pro the difference is significant - 168,000$ And from the results of the zero episode, it is clear that hack in many tests of assembly time / speed exceeds the top Apple computer. I do not know how much a hack costs such a difference, everyone decides for himself.

    A little bit about the components

    To work in an Xcode environment, a video processor is enough and you do not need to buy a discrete one. I need mine to be able to get full resolution from the LG monitor. It can save up to 30 000 rub, and even more on the monitor - about 50 000 - 60 000 rub. And then the cost of the hack can be reduced to ~ 120 000 ₽. It all depends on your appetites and needs.

    • When buying a processor, special attention should be paid to its maximum frequency. When working with IDE Xcode, it has a higher priority over the number of cores, as could be seen in the previous post .
    • The amount of RAM is preferably not less than 16 Gb.
    • Well, what you should not save, so it is on the disk. I recommend the purchase of a Samsung 960 pro 512 Gb SSD, its cost is even lower than the 950 model (and it’s difficult to find it now), but the stated read / write speed is higher - 3,500/2,100 MB / s versus 2,500/1,500 MB / s in the younger model. Samsung 960 pro speeds are close to SSD speeds in iMac Pro.

    Everything described in two posts can be summarized in one table.

    Pros / cons of hack and native Apple computer

    Elapsed time to purchase / configure-+
    Dimensions and space occupied-+
    Compilation speed+-
    To be honest, if I was asked to buy now, then with a high degree of probability I would choose iMac. All the time that I spent on finding out, finding, purchasing, assembling hardware and solving various problems in setting up for me personally, exceeds the price difference. On the other hand, it was a useful experience in researching the Mac OS system, the EFI bootloader, the HFS + and APFS file systems, Clover research, the operation of kext, system services and services, viewing logs.

    And finally, how to get your first hack:

    1. Self tuning

    The first hack setting is difficult, long and probably painful. You have to study a lot of sites, specialized forums (the most famous three are applelife.ru , insanelymac.com and tonymacx86.com ), understand different software, ask questions (which you think are quite normal, but you will receive verbal "Pendels" from gurus ).

    2. By ready guides

    You find a topic on a forum or site with a successful plant of some suitable hardware for you, buy components and customize according to the guides and the lined configs, patches, cakes.

    If you are not ready to spend time studying the issue, buying components and setting up directly, but you need a hack (for work or entertainment) there are two solutions:

    3. Paid installation

    A way for lazy people who value their time (cross out too much). Order a paid hackintosh installation from people who specialize in this. The cost depends on your iron and the readiness of the hack. If the components are not purchased, then you will be prompted what is best to buy for your needs. For a paid installation, there are specialized sites and groups in social networks. Typically, the installation takes place remotely through the Team Viewer. The only thing you will need to configure the BIOS / UEFI according to the instructions received, as well as where it is necessary to enter passwords (they are not visible to the installer). You can record the whole process of the plant on video and then repeat if necessary.

    Issue price from 2 000 to 3 500₽ Installation
    time 30 min - 1 hour

    4. Ready solution

    Buy ready-made solutions on Avito, Yulia, but better on the same specialized forums. And on the forum it is better to watch sales of people with high ratings. So that after there were no difficulties and problems.

    In the next episode of the cycle, the second item from this list will be revealed - building the hackintosh according to the instructions.

    Design - Lyudmila Kotovich

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