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[Success] El Capitan 10.11.5 - Skylake i5 6600 - Mini ITX GA H170N WIFI - GTX 950 - 16 GB Ram

Joined
Sep 30, 2014
Messages
27
Motherboard
Gigabyte GA H170N WIFI
CPU
i7-6700
Graphics
EVGA GTX 950
Mac
iMac
Mobile Phone
Android
machineNZ's Build: GA H170N WIFI - GTX 950 - i5-6600 - 16 GB RAM


Silverstone FT03 Mini, Mini ITX case
Components

Gigabyte GA-H170N-WIFI Motherboard, Mini ITX with USB 3.0
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B015CQ8D9Q/?tag=tonymacx86com-20
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128871

Intel Core i5-6600 Skylake, 3.3GHz, 65w Processor with HD530
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0136JONRM/?tag=tonymacx86com-20
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819117562

CORSAIR Vengeance LPX 2 x 8 GB RAM, 2400, DDR4 (CMK16GX4M2A2400C16)
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B017NW5NZY/?tag=tonymacx86com-20
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233970

EVGA GTX 950 with db Inverter (smart fan, no fan at idle)
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B013WQC9Z2/?tag=tonymacx86com-20
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814487157


Already Owned

Silverstone FT03 Mini Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA0AJ3T02804
http://www.silverstonetek.com/product.php?pid=333

Silverstone ST30-SF STX power supply (no fan at idle, 300W)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817256097
http://www.silverstonetek.com/product_power.php?tno=7&area=en

Thermalright AXP-100R CPU fan, height 58mm
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA7WF2RB2380

Dlink AC1900 WIFI usb3.0 adapter
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA6504AR6084

IOGear USB Bluetooth adapter
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B007GFX0PY/?tag=tonymacx86com-20
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833139027

Western Digital 2TB 3.5 inch HDD

OCZ Vertex 4 128GB SSD
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B007R1FH3K/?tag=tonymacx86com-20

Dell U2715H 2K Display
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00P0EQD1Q/?tag=tonymacx86com-20


Comments

This set up is a compact, low power, low noise, general use machine. I use it for mainly photo editing and office work. Performance is excellent, a very straight forward install, ideal for first time hackintosh builder! I like mini ITX boards which does all the basics and helps keep everything nice and compact. Most things worked out of the box (USB 3, sleep/wake, SATA, PCIe, Audio) which was a relief and adds to making this an easy build.

I am a big fan of this case, its solid Aluminum, well designed, looks great (very mac like in silver) and runs quite. Both my power supply and GPU run in a semi-fanless mode, which basically means no fan under low load. This with the large 140mm case fan means the setup can run very quietly.

In this build description, I will run you through the component list first, provide instructions on installing the software, provide the benchmark scores and then finally explain how to build in the Silverstone FT03-mini case (as it can be a bit tricky due to the compact size).

Given the small size of the case, it can be a very tight build, here is a good video showing how to go about the build (they use higher power components to make a gaming setup). You just need to be aware of this space issue before deciding to use this case (mind you every compact case has this space issue!). The case has a single 140mm fan and filter at the bottom of the case that pushes air up into the case (positive air pressure), which is great as it keeps dust out of the case.

This is my 2nd hackintosh build, I reused the case, power supply, WiFi adapter, Bluetooth adapter, CPU cooler, monitor, SSD and HDD (all from my 1st hackintosh build). I did not use on-board WiFi or Bluetooth (both provided by external adapters that I already owned). I plan to upgrade to a 4k monitor in the near future, the GTX 950 can, of course, handle that.

This guide is based on the installation guide from ammulder who wrote a brilliant guide for the same motherboard. Their build instructions go into a lot more detail, I did not need to use all these steps, will just edit ammulder’s instructions and list what I did.


Software Installation

This guide assumes you are installing from scratch.

If you are new to Hackintosh, then the guide from Tonymac is the best place to start.

I went straight to 10.11.5 for this set up, it worked with only minimal issues (just remember to use HDMI cable not display port cable). My previous setup was also on Gigabyte motherboard. I had a good experience with that so I stuck with Gigabyte (most things worked out of the box and setup went smoothly).

I always followed the setup guide from someone else who was typically more experienced than me (in this case from ammulder). There were very few software issues with this set up using this motherboard, most issues were easy to sort out, so this build is ideal for a first hackintosh builder! Most things work out of the box which is great (USB 3, sleep/wake, SATA, PCIe, Audio, my 2k screen works fine).

These are the files I used from ammulder’s setup guide.
  • USBinjectall.ktext (get the latest)
  • Config.plist for nvidea cards (as I am using the GTX 950), if you are using onboard HD530 graphics use this file
  • I had issues with Clover Configurator, so I used EFI mounter and just added lines of code to the config.plist file that ammulder had.
  • If you want you can try Clover Configurator,
  • I provided my config.plist file, for your reference, check the bottom of this post (so you can see the changes I made)
  • Latest version of the web drivers for Nvidia for the latest version of El Capitan.

BIOS Settings
  • Press DEL during boot to access BIOS
  • In BIOS Features:
    • Fast Boot: Disabled
    • VT-d: Disabled
    • Windows 8/10 Features: Other OS
    • LAN PXE Boot Option ROM: Disabled
    • Storage Boot Option Control: UEFI Only
    • Network Stack: Disabled
  • In Peripherals:
    • Initial Display Output: PCIe 1 Slot (if graphics card installed) or IGFX (otherwise)
    • XHCI Hand-off: Enabled
  • In Chipset:
    • VT-d: Disabled

Prepare Bootable USB Drive Installer
This whole section should be performed on the working Mac/Hackintosh
  1. Insert the USB drive
  2. Open /Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility
  3. Highlight the USB drive in left column
  4. On a Yosemite or older system:
    • Click on the Partition tab
    • Click Current and choose 1 Partition
    • Click Options...
    • Choose GUID Partition Table
    • Under Name: type Installer
    • Under Format: choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled)
    • Click Apply then Partition. When it finishes, close Disk Utility.
  5. On an El Capitan or newer system:
    • Click on the Erase button in the toolbar
    • For Name: enter Installer
    • Make sure Format is set to OS X Extended (Journaled)
    • Make sure Scheme is set to GUID Partition Map
    • Hit Erase. When it finishes, close Disk Utility.
  6. Run UniBeast
    • Hit Continue on the main screen, Continue on the UniBeast+MultiBeast screen, Continue on the Clover Credits screen, Continue on the Software License Agreement screen, and agree to the license
    • Select your newly formatted USB drive (so it turns blue) on the Select a Destination screen and hit Continue
    • Select El Capitan (so it turns blue) and hit Continue
    • Select UEFI Boot Mode (so it turns blue) and hit Continue
    • Select appropriate graphics options (nothing checked for the GTX950 or onboard HD530 graphics) and hit Continue
    • On the Verify Installation Options screen, hit Continue
    • Enter your password when prompted and wait
    • When the install finishes, hit Quit
  7. Customize the USB install drive so all USB ports on the machine are recognized for the installer. UniBeast should have left a drive mounted that appears as "EFI" in Finder. Go to that drive and:
    • Go to EFI/CLOVER/kexts/ and copy the USBInjectall.kext you downloaded (get it from the "Release" directory of the ZIP) into 10.11/ AND 10.10/ (must be in both!)
  8. Create an extra directory called postinstall on the USB drive to hold the files you’ll need on the machine after installation. Copy these files you downloaded to the new directory:
    • MultiBeast
    • Clover Configurator
    • UFI loader
    • USBInjectAll.kext
    • config.plist
  9. Eject the USB drive and insert it into the new machine.

Install El Capitan
Note: the speed of this installation process is not a reflection on the speed or quality of your hardware. It’s just going to take a while.
  1. Start the GA-H170N-WIFI machine with the USB drive inserted. If you don't see the Clover boot screen, restart and hit F12 at the BIOS splash screen to get a list of boot devices, and select the UEFI entry for your USB drive
  2. Select Boot Mac OS X from Installer (it should have a picture labeled "EXTERNAL"; use left/right arrow keys to select from multiple options and press enter when the correct one is selected)
  3. You should see the apple logo and a progress bar as the installer loads.
  4. After a couple of progress bars (one of which takes a long time with little apparent progress), you should be prompted to select a language. Then you should see the OS X screen.
  5. Select Utilities / Disk Utility... from the menu bar.
  6. Select the drive on the left where you want to install El Capitan
  7. Hit Erase (important to erase the destination drive, otherwise you can end up with kernel panics!)
  8. From the dialog that pops up, put in whatever Name you want for the disk, select the Format OS X Extended (Journaled), and the Scheme GUID Partition Map
  9. Hit Erase
  10. When the erase finishes, hit Done then Quit Disk Utility from the menu
  11. Back at the OS X screen hit Continue.
  12. On the license screen hit Continue
  13. Select the disk you just created by name and hit Continue
  14. This stage of the installation will take some time. It may stick for up to 5 minutes at different points, but it should eventually restart. (The installation is not yet complete, though; do not remove the USB drive.)
  15. After the reboot, the machine should boot to the Clover menu again. If it says there's no boot device or boots to the wrong thing, reboot and hit F12 from the BIOS splash screen and select the USB drive. At that point you should get the Clover menu. At the Clover menu, select Boot Mac OS X from YourDiskName and you should get to the Welcome screen.
  16. Select your country, keyboard, and complete the rest of the setup process. Tell it your computer does not connect to the Internet. Do not "Transfer Information to This Mac" yet either (you can run Migration Assistant later to do that).
  17. After the setup, you should end up at the desktop. Congratulations! But you must still perform the post-install setup next.

Post-Installation Configuration
Note: You must complete this or else your Hackintosh won't be able to boot without the USB drive in place. If you are using integrated graphics, you should expect some graphical glitches, particularly in the menu bar and window title bars.
  1. Copy all the files from the postinstall directory of the USB stick to your new El Capitan install (e.g. to Downloads)
  2. Run the copy of MultiBeast you just copied to the new drive.
  3. Select Quick Start and then UEFI Boot Mode
  4. Select Drivers and then Audio and then Realtek ALCxxx and then ALC1150
  5. (I did not do this step as I was using an external wifi adapter) Select Drivers and then Network then Intel then IntelMausiEthernet (while the latest AppleIntelE1000e driver also works for this Ethernet chip, it breaks sleep/wake in some configurations so the Mausi driver is preferred)
  6. (I did not do this step as I was using an external wifi adapter) If you want to enable the i211 Ethernet port above the USB Type C port (not recommended), select Drivers/Network/Intel/AppleIGB
  7. Go to Customize then System Definitions:
    • If using an Nvidia card, select Mac Pro / Mac Pro 3,1. This will avoid needed to manually edit files after every system update.
    • If using integrated graphics, select iMac / iMac 17,1. At present, this is the only Apple model with a Skylake chip.
  8. Hit Save on the top right to save a copy of this configuration for future reference.
  9. Hit Build and then Install
  10. When it says "Install Succeeded" then quit MultiBeast.
  11. The MultiBeast installation should have left the EFI partition of your system drive mounted (called EFI in Finder).
  12. Copy the following files from your postinstall directory to the EFI partition:
    • (I did not do this step) Any SSDTs to EFI/CLOVER/ACPI/patched/
    • (You MUST do this step!!) config.plist to EFI/CLOVER/config.plist -- this file has a grab bag of fixes in it, including an audio fix, HDMI fixes, a Bluetooth fix, an integrated graphics fix, and a USB tweak.
  13. Copy USBInjectAll.kext from your postinstall directory to the Desktop.
  14. (I did not do this step as I was using an external wifi and bluetooth adapter) If using the suggested wireless card above, extract these four kexts:
    • Unzip RehabMan-FakePCIID.zip and copy FakePCIID.kext and FakePCIID_Broadcom_WiFi.kext from the Release/ directory to the Desktop
    • Unzip RehabMan-BrcmPatchRam.zip and copy BcrmPatchRAM2.kext and BrcmFirmwareRepo.kext from the Release/ directory to the Desktop
  15. Open Clover Configurator again and open the file EFI/EFI/CLOVER/config.plist again.
  16. Go to the Boot screen on the left. Enter your system drive name (e.g. "Macintosh HD" or whatever you named it) under Default Boot Volume.
  17. Set the Size and Frequency for each of the two memory entries to match your installed RAM.
  18. If you don’t care about iCloud/iMessage/etc. then hit File/Save to save config.plist and Quit Clover Configurator.
  19. Otherwise if you do want iCloud/iMessage/etc., then you must further customize config.plist. For more details on this process see How to Fix iMessage.
    • Eject and remove the USB install drive
  20. Restart your system. It may take some time to restart.
  21. You should get a Clover menu on restart, and you can select Boot Mac OS X from YourDriveName or let it do it automatically. It should quickly proceed to the login screen.
  22. After the restart, your audio jacks should be working. In System Preferences / Sound you can turn on the volume control in the menu bar. If you have speakers or headphones handy, try playing a song in iTunes to be sure.
  23. If using an Nvidia card that's not supported out of the box, install the Nvidia Web drivers. While that installation runs (before restarting at the end):
    • The below did not work for me, I used EFI mounter and just updated the config file myself, I have attached a copy of my config.plist file for you to see the changes I made.
    • Open Clover Configurator, mount your EFI partition, and select EFI/CLOVER/config.plist.
    • Go to the Boot screen and uncheck the box for nv_disable=1 on the Boot screen and then check the box for nvda_drv=1
    • File / Save and then Quit Clover Configurator
    • After the Nvidia Web drivers installer finishes, restart. After that you should get full graphics acceleration.

Final Power Saving Setup
Again this is from ammulder.

At this point CPU power saving is not fully configured, which may cause problems with heating and/or sleep mode. To fix this:
  1. If you have one of the following CPUs, mount your system drive EFI partition again and select the one correct SSDT and copy it to EFI/CLOVER/ACPI/patched/ (future versions of this guide will use ssdtPRGen.sh but the version with Skylake support is not yet ready). Your system will still run OK without the SSDT, but may not reach full turbo speeds or maintain turbo speeds for as long. SSDT files can be found here. http://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/guide-el-capitan-on-the-skylake-h170n-wifi.178197/#SSDT
  2. Reboot one last time
  3. If you want to confirm that your CPU is using the correct speeds and power states with the SSDT above, there are tools and techniques at http://www.tonymacx86.com/mavericks...vericks-native-cpu-igpu-power-management.html
And that all worked for me! I had issues with the video card which is why I edited the pconfig file myself, but the rest worked fine.


Credits:
ammulder (original installation procedure, a big thank you to ammulder for putting up the guide, it was a big help for me!)
UniBeast and MultiBeast from tonymacxx6 Downloads
USB fix procedure from RehabMan
Wireless kexts from RehabMan (wireless and Bluetooth), Bluetooth handoff enabler from lisai9093


Benchmarks

The setup works very well, all the menus are displayed properly (this is an issue if you use on board graphics), I get good USB3 speed, audio works out of the box and my external wifi/bluetooth adapters work fine. GTX950 is very good, I plan to upgrade to a 4K screen early next year when prices drop a bit. I use HDMI cable at the moment as there seems to be an issue with the display port cable working (I probably need to run some extra configuration to get this going). Very happy with the set up.

About screenshot, for some reason RAM is showing as 3200, when its 2400.




General system benchmarks from Geekbench 3





Hardware Installation

If anyone is interested with using the same case, this part outlines how to go about the hardware build. There are lots of got-ya's with this case, and lessons learn. So, hopefully, this will help you avoid those and save a bit of money and time!

I am pretty happy from a hardware point of view. I reused my case, which I really like. It has a great silver finish, looks very mac like and does not take up much space. It almost resembles a small trash can. It is pretty quiet too, it has one 140mm fan in the base pushing air up into the case (positive air pressure), and that is it. Keeps dust out of the set up as there is a filter before the fan, which you just have to clean once in a while.

The motherboard installs with the connectors pointing upwards to the top of the case, so all the cables connect from the top of the case. Its different, can get a bit messy, but makes it easy to install/uninstall cables.

Downside of any small case is the limited space inside. It take a bit of planning and you need to select your components carefully (otherwise they may not fit in the case and will be a waste of money).

If this is your first build, I would say watch a few youtube videos (like this one) about this case first, which really highlight the space issues you will face.

Here is my process for the install with this case, I will go into a bit more detail afterwards.
  1. Install CPU cooler backplane, CPU and RAM
  2. Check height of CPU cooler (I had to remove the WIFI card built into the board as the cooler was touching it, not sure how much of an issue it would be, but better safe than sorry)
  3. Install Motherboard into case
  4. Then, the power supply and CPU Cooler
  5. Connect all the power supply cables, SATA cables, fan connectors and other motherboard connectors (after drive caddy goes in, its is almost impossible to change any cables/connectors)
  6. Install SSD (if you are going to install it below the MB and not in the drive caddy)
  7. Next comes the GPU (need to remove the case 140mm fan to put this in, take note of which way the fan installs, as you want it to blow air into the case) and
  8. Finally the disk drive caddy with the HDD and optical drive, connect SATA cables (I don't really think you need to waste money on an optical drive, up to you)
Motherboard fits in fine. Power cables from power supply can be a bit tight. I would go for a newer power supply with flat cables, as the space between the hard drive caddy and power supply is tight, this means the power cables are bent hard over and put the power cables under a bit of pressure (makes putting the hard drive caddy in a bit hard). Flat cables should take care of this.

Go for low rise RAM, the LPX Vengeance fits in nicely, don't go for RAM that has higher casing around it or fins as it will push up against the CPU cooler. The LPX is about 35mm in height, just as a reference. Don't go for anything taller.

This case only takes a low rise CPU fans, the one I have is fits nicely. But, I had to rotate it 180 degrees after I installed it, as the CPU fan was putting pressure on the RAM. You can get lower CPU coolers, just check first as it could be an issue.

The case only allows for a slim optical drive. To be honest I have one, but hardly use it. If you want the bigger size optical drive, then this is not the case for you. You can also only install one HDD and two SDD in this case.

Power supply is SFX only for this case. The 300W Power supply, which I have, is semi-fanless, meaning no fan at idle which is great from a noise point of view. The fan on the power supply hardly spins up when I use the system (as I don't really game on this system). Silverstone also make a 450W, 500W and 700W semi-fanless SFX power supply, so if you need the extra juice, just buy one of these. I did a power calculation for this set up has a peak load around 220W all up.

I went with the EVGA GTX 950 as it also runs in a semi-fanless mode, so basically under idle no fan. It just fits in the case, I had to remove the bottom 140mm fan to install it. It is a tight fit. Check the length of any video card first carefully, as space is limited.

I reused my existing SSD and HDD. You have to cable up the HDD before putting the caddy in (GPU has to be installed before HDD/SDD). You can put the SSD in either the caddy or just below the motherboard. Because of the GPU and the power connectors on the PS, I installed the SSD below the motherboard. I used an external usb WIFI adapter and a usb bluetooth adapter. You can set up the board to use the on board wifi and bluetooth if you want, just need to do the extra software configuration (ammulder talks about this)

I have been running the system a few months now and basically only the large 140m case fan and CPU fan spin up. Both the GPU and PS fan are generally not spinning, which is great for me, means the setup is very quite. I have a fan control switch put in line with the 140mm fan, and basically have it turned down to a pretty low speed.
 
Last edited:

Stork

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UtterDisbelief

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Agreed. Excellent write-up. Very professional and a splendid machine too!

:)
 
Last edited:

Stork

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Motherboard
ASUS ROG MAXIMUS X HERO Z370
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Thanks for the feedback! Have updated the post! :D
Whatcha changed/added? You should add an Update section at the end of the OP so your followers don't have to read all of your build description to figure out what's changed or been added.
 
Joined
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Nice set up and guide. I definitely will use this guide for my next build. The only difference is that I will be using Gigabyte Z170N instead.
 
Joined
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Nice build and great guide... I've been looking at that case recently. I'm also running a GTX950 - underrated little cards!
 
Joined
Feb 19, 2016
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Asus Z170M-PLUS
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i5 6500
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Very nice build, very close to what I plan to do.
I've always heard that USB wifi adapters tend to cause problems in osx, what is your experience? If it works flawlessly it is an interesting option in ITX builds.

Another question, I see you mounted 2400 mhz ram in a h170 chipset board. Does it run to its rated speed or slows down to 2133?
Thanks!
 
Last edited:

Stork

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Heads up! You'll need to change your System Definition from Mac Pro 3,1 to iMac14,2 (the new default) so you can eventually install Sierra. Apple dropped support for the Mac Pro 3,1/4,1 in Sierra as well as macs older than 2010.
 
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