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Build

VR Hackintosh

by djgrahamj

26
19 Comments

Details

Date Published

May 17, 2016

Date Built

May 11, 2016

CPU Clock Rate

3.0GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.17GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

7.01GHz

Description

As the title suggests this machine has two identities - one for day-to-day and development in OSX and one to drive the HTC Vive that should be arriving any day now. I chose to stick with Haswell and Asus to maximize OSX compatibility, and for SLI-friendly components to keep things future proof.

I used to build all my own machines but haven't since I switched to Macs around 2007. Things have really improved since then - putting my chosen parts together was a dream, owing largely to the Corsair case. I can't say enough good things about it!

Other notes:

  • Went with dual SSDs to make dual-booting easier. Can't go wrong with Sammy.

  • Originally got a Gigabyte G1 Gamer video card (as seen in the pix) open box from NCIX but it turned out to be defective so I returned it and got this EVGA one used for $75 less. Score!

  • Already had Apple peripherals and monitor.

Part Reviews

CPU

Got it used and accidentally got the lower power S version but I haven't found myself waiting for it despite throwing some pretty heavy games at it.

CPU Cooler

Whatever the opposite of understated is, the Hyper 212 EVO is it. What a monster! It's completely overkill for my modest CPU but I love it anyway. Installing it was a bit finicky (you don't need to screw in the middle thumb screw!) but having a HSF that produces its own gravity well makes me smile. Plus you can see it from orbit.

Motherboard

It's been a while since I built a PC so I was pretty blown away by modern mobo features. Crazy graphic BIOS with every tweaker setting known to man, cool looking heat sinks, M2 interface, it's great. Kind of surprising wireless isn't standard though.

One issue I had: Turning on Intel Rapid Storage sounds like a good idea right? Nope, Windows kept giving me INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE with this on. Took me forever to figure out the problem. I guess it's only for RAID setups.

Memory

Cheap, looks nice, no problems with it.

Storage

Cheap and stupid fast. You can't go wrong with this SSD.

Video Card

This video card eats Ultra setting for breakfast. Crysis 3, Witcher 3 and Project Racing maxed out, no prob. Looking forward to using it with the incoming HTC Vive.

Case

I can't say enough good things about this case! Slide-in SSD bays, covered PSU and HDD bays, rear cable management, air filters everywhere, beautiful understated design; I'd choose it again in a second.

Power Supply

I've lost parts in the past due to blown PSUs so I opted to spend extra on this one. Wow, totally worth it - Solid and heavy, modular, flat cables and keeping the power bill down doesn't hurt.

It even comes in a nice box with carrying handle and the cables have nice velcro straps. No expense spared, love it.

Mouse

Being into Macs I never had a need for a gamin mouse but when I went looking for something more Windows friendly than a Magic Mouse this came up in many a good review.

Feels great in the hand, though perhaps a touch heavy for day to day use. Braided cable feels great. Software is alright although odd to pick pointer speed via DPI settings.

Comments Sorted by:

Minky7 2 Builds 4 points 8 months ago

Nice cable management! I never knew you could install osx on anything other than demon I mean apple systems.

RhettRO55 2 points 8 months ago

Not a bad build. Very nice, clean & to the point. One question though, why does the fan on your CPU cooler blow air downward right onto the top plate of the GPU?

djgrahamj submitter 1 Build 2 points 8 months ago

Thanks!

hehe you're not the first to ask that. My thinking was that it draws cool air from the top grille while keeping a clear channel for the front-to-back air flow. That and it looking a bit cleaner. But I guess up and out is the usual idea.

After a couple hours of Project Racing this morning the HSF was still stone cold so I don't think it makes much difference either way :)

Gooberdad 7 Builds 2 points 8 months ago

I don't think it matters with this locked "S" cpu. The cooler would be killing the heat without any fan attached. That 4590S runs at a lower power/heat level.

djgrahamj submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

I did consider removing the fan altogether, might still do that hehe

FilipA 0 points 8 months ago

he maybe wanted the logo the right way

RhettRO55 2 points 8 months ago

I said the FAN was inverted, not the cooler. The cooler has no orientation whatsoever and the fan can be mounted on either side. But physics dictates that heat rises so instead of potentially exhausting heat out the top of the case he would be pulling "heat" back down. Granted I dont think it makes a lot of diff with this lower TDP CPU he is using.

iCutToasts 2 Builds 2 points 8 months ago

really clean , love it

FACUNDO 12 Builds 2 points 8 months ago

+1 for not cheaping out on the PSU. That is the right way to go! :D

djgrahamj submitter 1 Build 2 points 8 months ago

Thanks, I learned the hard way in the past :P

FACUNDO 12 Builds 1 point 8 months ago

Lol did one of your PSUs exploded?

djgrahamj submitter 1 Build 2 points 8 months ago

Not quite that dramatic but I've had them smoke, and had ones that just randomly died and took out a video card.

FACUNDO 12 Builds 1 point 8 months ago

Lol your karma is very strong

BoHofmans 1 point 16 days ago

I've had a cheap 500W explode in my face. It was all my fault though, I thought I had a problem with my psu because my pc was not booting, so I went to check if it was actually receiving any power and had the great idea of switching the voltage switch to see if it was maybe stuck. So I switched it from 240 volt to 115 and since I receive 240 from the wall, (I live in New Zealand) it made a huge bang and a white flash, white smoke came out and it smelled like burnt plastic. Luckily all my parts were fine but I had to wait a week for a new one. :/

Gooberdad 7 Builds 2 points 8 months ago

Nice job. Cool to see someone keeping Apple and Windows (what version of Windows are you running?) on the same machine. I used a MacMini with dual boot about 8 years ago. I needed Windows to do online GM training at that time, and I really liked Apple back then because the little thing ran without a hitch. I couldn't game on it worthis a damn, but I liked it until I fried it.

Thumbs up.

djgrahamj submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

Thanks! It's running Windows 10 as that's likely to have the best VR support. Picked up a license key on eBay for $20 :)

ShriyansM 2 points 8 months ago

+1 For being the few people who actually did this. I love the idea of dual booting since I used to have an old MacBook from school which also could dual boot OSX and Windows 7.

soundreaper 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

Hopefully you didn't build this too recently because the GTX 1070 is coming out in a few weeks!!! I still love the 400C build however so +1 for you!

djgrahamj submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

I did build it recently. Pascal looks great but the Vive could arrive any day and I don't want to be GPUless when it does, and even the 1070 is still going to be quite a bit more than the CAD$300 I paid for this card used. I'll wait for the non-Nvidia boards to come out and for prices to settle a bit then upgrade.