Please recommend a full powered notebook for a hackintosh install.
April 14, 2010 12:52 PM   Subscribe

Please recommend a full powered notebook for a hackintosh install.

I've found many recommendations/guides for netbook hackintosh installs but not much for full powered notebooks, so please recommend a notebook for a hackintosh install with the following requirements:

At least C2Duo Processor or equivalent
Support for 8G RAM (does not need to be pre-installed)
12"-13" screen preferred but willing to go up to 15.6"
Firewire 800
Bluetooth (not a deal breaker)
Bonus if I can order sans OS (but again not a deal breaker)
At least 250GB HD
Graphics chip is not too important but bonus for a discrete chip with ~256mb dedicated VRAM
posted by sockpup to Computers & Internet (12 answers total)
Is there a reason you can't just buy one of the newly-announced (yesterday) MacBook Pros? Meets all your requirements and you even get a legitimate copy of Mac OS X.
posted by at 12:54 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]

That would be a MacBook Pro, surely, which comes with a free, legal, copy of Mac OS X. They even install it for you.

Is there some reason why it has to be a Hackintosh? If you want to dual-boot with Windows or Linux, you can do that with an MBP.
posted by Mwongozi at 12:59 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]

High-end laptops, including Apple's, Dell's, and anybody else's, are all pretty nearly at price parity. You're probably not going to save more than a couple hundred bucks by putting OS X on a third-party laptop (heck, Apple's might be cheaper, depending), and in the bargain you get no warranty support from Apple, possibly violate the manufacturer's warranty, and run pretty high odds that things are never going to work as well as they would on the Apple-branded hardware the OS was written for.
posted by ardgedee at 1:17 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]

Once you threw Firewire 800 on the list of requirements you crossed from "sure hack away" into "are you sure you don't just want a real Mac?" It's rather hard to find in machines other than Apples.
posted by advicepig at 1:23 PM on April 14, 2010

Response by poster: Looking to save some money. Basic 13" MacbookPro costs $1669 CAD with 8G RAM. I thought it might be doable for about $1100 or so with a hackintosh build. I could be wrong though. Just testing the waters. Would be willing to accept Firewire 400 if necessary, I suppose.
posted by sockpup at 1:38 PM on April 14, 2010

Yeah, the firewire 800 is pretty rare. You might be able to get mini-1394 (which I believe maxes out at 400, but there are adapter) on some Sony models, but they won't be cheaper than an actual apple.
posted by Oktober at 1:40 PM on April 14, 2010

So, if the CAD price discrepancy is an issue, you might just want to make a trip to your nearest american city and get it that way.
posted by Oktober at 1:42 PM on April 14, 2010

Don't get the Apple RAM upgrade. Get yourself some decent third-party RAM and install it and you'll save a bunch.
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 2:02 PM on April 14, 2010

I messed around with hackintosh on my ASUS G1S. It was a pretty frustrating experience. I imagine your best bet would be to browse the community forums and see what is giving people the least amount of issues and which distribution. As a hobby or toy, I'd say have at it. If there's any production work or reliance upon this being your sole machine, I'd recommend against doing so.

Also, my Hackintosh ran incredibly hot. Looking into proper ACPI detection and temperature monitoring / fan control would be of importance (couldn't get SMC fan control to work).
posted by liquoredonlife at 3:52 PM on April 14, 2010

Don't get the Apple RAM upgrade. Get yourself some decent third-party RAM and install it and you'll save a bunch.

That's not always the case. I just bought one of the new MBPs today, and the upgrade cost for bumping the 4GB RAM to 8GB was $360, but on it was $499.99. This may be b/c the the laptops are brand spanking new, but I just wanted to post this as a warning to always check the prices before you skip the upgrade.
posted by bjork24 at 5:52 PM on April 14, 2010

Apple used to have a justified reputation for excessive markups on adding RAM. These days, they're reasonably price-competitive - usually a few dollars higher, but you could also consider that as an installation fee, if you wish.

On the other hand, Apple's MacBook Pros ship with 4 GB already installed, which is a pretty reasonable size for most purposes.
posted by ardgedee at 6:00 PM on April 14, 2010

What about a refurbished model? I found this one on the Apple Canada site that meets all of your requirements (except the hard drive, which you could upgrade for $100 or so) for $1019 including free shipping. There's also this one, with a faster processor and more RAM, for $1269.
posted by armage at 6:17 PM on April 14, 2010

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