|Hackintosh Performance Hardware Options|
|Articles - Featured Guides|
|Written by David Ramsey|
|Tuesday, 16 April 2013|
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The two components that have the most effect on your Hackintosh's performance are the CPU and GPU. Which specific ones you choose depends on your needs and your budget. Today I'll be testing combinations of two different CPUs and three different GPUs. The CPUs are:
The GPUs are:
Intel's HD4000 GPU is surprisingly capable; in fact, Apple uses it across a wide range of Mac Minis and Powerbooks. It has more than enough power to handle the OS X interface effects and animations, and you'll never notice any artifacts, pauses, or stuttering in non-game applications. But if you are going to game, you're going to want a discrete video card, even with the relative paucity of Mac games as compared to PC games.
Choosing a CPU is a decision you'll want to look at carefully. The two Ivy Bridge processors I have on hand represent the low and high ends of the range, and neither would be my first choice for a Hackintosh. If you wanted a small, quiet, non-gaming system, the Core i3-3225 ( $144.99 at Newegg) is identical to the Core i3-3220, except that it includes a full HD4000 iGPU, allowing you to dispense with a graphics card. If you want more performance, especially for virtual machines, rendering, or other heavier workloads, the Core i5-3570 CPU ($214.99 at Newegg) will provide all the real-world performance of the 50%-more-expensive 3770K, unless you have heavily-threaded applications that would benefit from the latter's Hyper Threading, or you want to overclock.
On the GPU front, I can finally compare the performance of Intel's touted HD4000 integrated graphics with the NVIDIA GTX250 I used in my original article, as well as the ASUS-provided GTX660.
Let's take a look at the CPU performance first.