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"Mac in the Box" Hackintosh, for the budget minded.

Joined
Jun 13, 2017
Messages
733
Motherboard
Gigabyte H370M D3H GSM
CPU
i5 8500
Graphics
RX 570
Mac
iMac, MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
Power Mac
Mobile Phone
iOS
Dell 7010 Ivy-Bridge
Core i7 3770
HD 4000
4GB Ram
Dell 250W PSU
CPU fan
1 TB FireCuda SSHD Catalina 10.5.3
Cardboard

Obviously this is just for fun! and it's NOT meant as a serious build, it's probably not recommended at all. But it was a silly project that was completed in a couple of hours and it didn't cost anything. The 250W Dell PSU enclosure is just a three sided box with two card beams holding it up off the floor, they also act as feet and stop it falling over. The two pieces above the PSU hold up the motherboard, not very well admittedly. The beams holding up the PSU and the mobo frame could of been one piece, that's for phase 2 of my build. The side panels and top are all one piece which slots into the back of the mobo frame and wraps over the top and slots in place. Did I mention I didn't use glue!. The front and back panel haven't been started yet, I have to cut the rear IO for the rear and find a way to mount the front case fan.

Structure.png
iBoard.jpg
 
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trs96

Moderator
Joined
Jul 31, 2012
Messages
16,313
Motherboard
GA-Z97X-UD3H-BK
CPU
i5-4690K
Graphics
HD4600 / RX 570
Mac
iMac, Mac mini
Mobile Phone
Android
You've built a "Mac in the Box" hackintosh. Perfect for those on a shoestring and cardboard budget. All that polished, brushed Aluminum in Macs is over rated.
 
Joined
Jun 13, 2017
Messages
733
Motherboard
Gigabyte H370M D3H GSM
CPU
i5 8500
Graphics
RX 570
Mac
iMac, MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
Power Mac
Mobile Phone
iOS
You've built a "Mac in the Box" hackintosh. Perfect for those on a shoestring and cardboard budget. All that polished, brushed Aluminum in Macs is over rated.
:lol:
You comedian you, "Mac in the box" what a brilliant name!. I'd be interested in seeing other "Mac in the box", I could recycle this every week.
 
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Joined
Jun 13, 2017
Messages
733
Motherboard
Gigabyte H370M D3H GSM
CPU
i5 8500
Graphics
RX 570
Mac
iMac, MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
Power Mac
Mobile Phone
iOS
The "Mac in the Box" updated to 10.15.4 successfully, a couple of restarts and 40 minutes later I was back on the desktop. I fitted internet into the PCIe X1 slot and I downloaded Intels Power Gadget 3.7. Great as HWMonitorSMC2 is, it doesn't show as much information without the gadget!, it gives you a lot more info with it installed. I let it idle for a minute or two before doing GB5 bench, oddly I couldn't search Mac mini Server 2012, there were no results. Mac mini6,2 (Link GB Browser), returned plenty of results to compare and I was quite surprised!. I broke the RGB fan, the cardboard case is absolutely fine. And a Safari tab glitch, you can move the pointer over it and create art, if that's what floats your boat. Another harmless glitch for my Hackintoshing Glitch Album.


Screen Shot 2020-03-24 at 6.15.46 PM.png


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Joined
Jun 13, 2017
Messages
733
Motherboard
Gigabyte H370M D3H GSM
CPU
i5 8500
Graphics
RX 570
Mac
iMac, MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
Power Mac
Mobile Phone
iOS
Phase 2: New internal structure created with 2 pieces of cardboard with the mobo and PSU providing horizontal support.
I remembered the hard drive caddy this time!. This is much stronger and sturdier than before and provides a good base to build upon.

IMG_1757.JPG
IMG_1758.JPG
 
Joined
Jun 13, 2017
Messages
733
Motherboard
Gigabyte H370M D3H GSM
CPU
i5 8500
Graphics
RX 570
Mac
iMac, MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
Power Mac
Mobile Phone
iOS
Phase 3: We can forget about phase 2, there were some structural integrity issues after I applied the slats to the back and it ended up collapsing!. So I tried again by mounting the PSU and hard drive behind the motherboard, this has a much lower centre of gravity and it's starting to look like.... a box!. And because I pointed the PSU fan at the rear of the motherboard, I'm starting to see better temperatures as well. I liked the slat idea, I'm going to try it again using two spines to attach them to, and mounting it over the hardware.

IMG_1763.jpg
IMG_1760.jpg
 
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Joined
Jun 13, 2017
Messages
733
Motherboard
Gigabyte H370M D3H GSM
CPU
i5 8500
Graphics
RX 570
Mac
iMac, MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
Power Mac
Mobile Phone
iOS
Not as good looking as my recently finished G5, but it's Complete!. I finished the front, rear and side panel and mounted it onto the interior structure, the rear IO and PCIe X1 slot are easily accessible. It looks like a toaster I guess, using the front and back panel as spines and slotting slats between created a strong and light cover.

IMG_1770.jpg
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IMG_1773.jpg
 
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Joined
Jun 13, 2017
Messages
733
Motherboard
Gigabyte H370M D3H GSM
CPU
i5 8500
Graphics
RX 570
Mac
iMac, MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
Power Mac
Mobile Phone
iOS
Conclusions:

Is cardboard a good material for building a Hackintosh?.
No, probably not!, it's flammable.

"It looks terrible, I'm sure I could do better."
I don't doubt that at all. With proper drawn out plans with accurate measurements you could create a masterpiece that would make my Kadinksy Yellow Red Blue inspired creation pale into insignificance, or at least the recycling bin.

How much does it cost?
Motherboard $13, PSU $16, RGB case fan $12, 1TB Firecuda SSHD $31. I'm using an i7-3770, the cheapest CPU with HD4000 is an i3-3245 @3.4GHz, dual core and 4 threads, you can find those on eBay for under $15. Cardboard $0.
Total cost $87, You could save money by using a smaller capacity hard drive. Edit: I forgot to include 4GB DDR3 Ram $18, but I saved by installing 500GB WD Blue HDD $14, instead of 1TB FireCuda SSHD $31. And a PSU fan $9. Total $98.
 

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pastrychef

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May 29, 2013
Messages
13,939
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K OC'd @ 5.0GHz
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Radeon VII
Mac
MacBook, Mac Pro
Classic Mac
iBook, Power Mac, PowerBook
Mobile Phone
iOS
Conclusions

Is cardboard a good building material for building a Hackintosh?.
No, probably not!, it's flammable, it's not as strong as Aluminum or any other metal tbh. But, I think with thicker cardboard you could create a much stronger interior structure that supports the mobo, psu and hard drive. The PSU and Mobo are part of the structure, the PSU on its own isn't going stop it collapsing, so I added beams to hold the card together, they help spread the weight too. Layout wise, the worlds your oyster, in this version with the help of gravity!, I kept the PSU and Mobo low to the ground and left a lot of space between components.

"It looks terrible, I'm sure I could do better."
I don't doubt that at all. With proper drawn out plans with accurate measurements you could create a masterpiece that would make my Kadinksy Yellow Red Blue inspired creation pale into insignificance, or at least the recycling bin.

How much does it?
Motherboard $13, PSU $16, RGB case fan $12, 1TB Firecuda SSHD $31. I'm using an i7-3770, the cheapest CPU with HD4000 is an i3-3245 @3.4GHz, dual core and 4 threads, you can find those on eBay for under $15. Cardboard $0.
Total cost $87, You could save money by using a smaller capacity hard drive.
I think a little duct tape could go a long way with helping your structural integrity. Btw, don't worry about fire too much. The system should shut itself down way before it ever gets near 451F. Just make sure you are using a power supply of decent quality.

In my opinion, it looks fantastic. An absolute thing of beauty. :thumbup:

Excellent total cost. It would make no sense to me to spend a lot of money on a case for a system whose components total $87. Even $40 case would represent almost 50% of the total cost of the components.
 
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trs96

Moderator
Joined
Jul 31, 2012
Messages
16,313
Motherboard
GA-Z97X-UD3H-BK
CPU
i5-4690K
Graphics
HD4600 / RX 570
Mac
iMac, Mac mini
Mobile Phone
Android
Is cardboard a good building material for building a Hackintosh?.
No, probably not!, it's flammable, it's not as strong as Aluminum or any other metal tbh.
The main problem with using cardboard is a lack of grounding for the motherboard and components. That's why you always mount the board on brass standoffs to ground it to the metal case.
 
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