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Building a Budget Haswell Build: How Low Can You Go?

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WonkeyDonkey

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I built my first Hackintosh so that I could properly coach an older friend of mine who had moved to a late 2012 i5 Mac Mini. I really like the small form factor of the Mini, but there was the extra cost of upgrading its memory to 8GB, because the standard 4GB doesn't really cut it if you're going to use a virtual machine, and the fact that the 1 TB hard disk is a 5400RPM drive. The Mini's performance is decent, but does not hold a candle to either my i3 3225 or i3 4340 PowerMacs which are, for all practical purposes, Mac Minis in a large form factor because they use HD 4000 or HD 4600 graphics. The Mac Mini had a Geekbench2 score of around 6600 whereas my i3 3225 is 8625 and my i3 4340 is 10,164. So not only is the budget Hackintosh faster in benchmarks, it is noticeably faster in actual use too.

My two cents worth. :D

Tom

View attachment 76130

Yep, I hear ya Tom.

When mine has been in use as a production machine, its been fitted with a 480Gb SSD and 16Gb of 1600Mhz ram; short of doubling up the SSD to a raid setup I couldnt really boost it any more. It also has the Radeon 6330M GPU so the graphics output was good.

Part of me would still like to own the next new one, but I doubt it will include discrete graphics.
 
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Anyone tried to use i5 4570+GA-B85M-HD3 together and worked? i want to like plug and play and not worry about anything
 

trs96

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Anyone tried to use i5 4570+GA-B85M-HD3 together and worked? i want to like plug and play and not worry about anything

Should be no more difficult than an install with the I3-4330. They both have HD4600 graphics.
 
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Should be no more difficult than an install with the I3-4330. They both have HD4600 graphics.

I mean the mobo because i don't want to spend more for h87-d3h mobo. No DSDT
 

Adrian B

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I mean the mobo because i don't want to spend more for h87-d3h mobo. No DSDT


Using a GA-B85M-HD3 motherboard will be fine. It uses Realtek ALC887 (current audio) & Realtek ethernet kexts from MultiBeast:
http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=4568#sp

I did my first build using the Ivy Bridge GA-B75M-HD3 earlier this year, while there are a few minor changes this is essentially a 1150 socket version of my board. PCB is black rather than blue and the B85 chipset supports the Haswell CPU.

Good Luck :thumbup:

Adrian B
 

nobodynose

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So is it really worth spending about what $300-$400 on a Hackintosh? or Just go out and buy a mac mini with an i5 for a little over that price? You can even get a second hand mac mini i5 for $400. I think that is the stress free & cheapest way to go. I'm debating selling all my parts on ebay, and get an i5 mac mini and use it as a quiet small server...

Show me where you can get a new Mac mini for "a little over" $400?!? They START at $600, with a paltry 4GB of RAM and 500GB hard drive.
 
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I live in Japan, and Apple and Macs are really just starting here. Most people buy them for the Name, but most don't know how to use them or find out their Software is not compatible with OSX... but if you are interested here is a link...

This one cost $530
http://www.amazon.co.jp/dp/B009X5EJR8/

http://www.amazon.co.jp/dp/B001UHN7QG/

This one is old 2009 but less than $300
http://used.dospara.co.jp/sale/detail.php?serialno=83290000016415

PCdepotJapan is a local store near where I live, and they have a couple of em, including iMacs, MacBooks starting at $300-$800

I actually got my 13" Macbook Air mid-2013 i5, 128ssd, with 8GB ram for $798... Yep, Got SOOOO Lucky!!!
 
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Dude is your i3 on Steroids or something???

Cause my i5-2500 with 16gb and a dedicated GPU gtx470... well you saw the specs, got a merely "941" :(
 
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bare in mind that mac minis uses laptop version cpus, meaning the albeit the fancier name it actually runs somewhat on par with a 2c4t desktop version i3 4xxx processor. (as discussed on bit-tech a long time ago).

so a hackintosh might still win here, (even the lower budget ones).

But the counter point to OP is this, my experience is with more than 4 hdds on your computer, what you really need is a NAS.

so there is not much point in future-proofing your computer besides leaving 2 more ram slots.

the advantages that h87/z87 provides, besides the overclocking in z87s, is not geared towards the use of a hackintosh. like intel RST, SRT etc.

other than only 2 usb3 ports in back io, there is little point in choosing a h87, especially the lower-spec-ed ones.
 
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If I get a CPU that doesn't have HD 4000 (ivy) or HD 4600 (haswell) graphics then what special must I do to install Mavericks with a HD 5870 2GB card? Also if for some reason I have issues with my graphic card can I get at least even basic use out of the embedded graphics?


Also one thing I would like to point out is that when you are making these buying guides not everyone is looking to buy ALL the parts and they might be using some parts that they already own.

So for example someone might have laying around several compatible graphics cards and they may not have a need for a ton of ram. As for the other benefits who needs more than 2 Sata SataIII connectors and 2 SataII connectors... any normal HD can be connected to the SataII connectors with a minimal if any loss in performance. I doubt many people that are doing this on a budget will be running more than 2 SSD drives so 2 SataIII ports is plenty. You also have to remember the target market. We are comparing these to mac minis which can not have more than 2 HDs and use mobile processors. As for the USB 3.0... again it is similar to the SataII/III thing. Most devices don't benefit from USB 3.0 and you are probably not going to own more than (2) if any devices that do benefit. So for example I own (1) USB3 External HD and a USB3 thumb drive that can hit 200MB/s so I would just make sure I plugged those (2) devices into the USB3.0 ports and everything else into the USB 2 ports.

That being said...

I think it would be a great idea to offer a buying guide to the cheapest possible hackintosh with HD4600 and the cheapest possible hackintosh with non compatible embedded graphics and the cheapest compatible PCIe graphics card.

This way people who already own a compatible graphics card have an idea of what motherboard and processor would be the absolute cheapest they could get.

Celerons are dirt cheap... and you can buy compatible PCIe cards on ebay for $30 that have equivalent or better performance when compared to the HD4600.

Regardless the first time I read one of these buying guides my question was... so the cheap motherboards don't work??? Because you are recommending the Z boards on almost every build with maybe an H once in a while.
 
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