Hackintosh part 5
After writing about my problem with a dead graphics card yesterday I had a PC with a 12 year old Matrox mystique PCI card proving everything else worked. Surely something that old couldn’t handle Leopard? Only one way to find out. The Kalyway 10.5.1 disc went in, and to my amazement twenty minutes later I had a working hackintosh. Sure, the display was stuck at 1024×768 and windows had some corrupted menu bars, but it worked. Does a Core 2 Quad and a Matrox Mystique win any awards for the biggest age gap between PC components?
First thing this morning I was off to sunny Southend to pick up a PCI express card to test the motherboard. The store I visited has some sparkle 7300GT cards with 256Mb and a passive cooler for £35, and after hearing the Jetway’s horrendous fan passive cooling was the way to go. The card was fitted and worked perfectly, Quartz extreme and Core Animation supported. All the display modes of my Dell 2005FPW are there courtesy of NVinject, and its looking good at 1680×1050.
One of the most striking things about the computer is the lack of noise. The Tagan PSU has a high quality fan that is virtually silent under normal use, and the Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 PRO is just as quiet. It idle’s at 1000rpm, so the Jetway cooler was making all the noise. The new Sparkle card has a large heatsink and no fan so no noise there. I could really get to like this silent computing. The Synology Diskstation in my lair makes a bit of noise when accessed so either a quiet Samsung drive is required or a move to the garage on the end of a long ethernet cable.
Back to the Hackintosh, and the next task was getting the Gigabyte’s alc889a audio chip working. There’s a post at insanelymac that lists all the steps, and a bit of terminal hackery later its working well. I haven’t tried the audio input yet, so that’s next. When I left home for work the migration assistant was copying my 111Gb account from the macbook backup so I can test all the software.
I haven’t tried overclocking yet but a quad core 3Ghz mac sounds tempting. The Gigabyte motherboard didn’t have firewire so I’m going to try a PCI card, and test if Superduper can backup the mac partition. Then there’s Parallels or VMware, iLife 08……… Lots to try before the hackintosh becomes my main machine, and that’s only going to happen if I can make it disaster proof and reliable.