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How to build a Hackintosh with GeForce GTX 1080 Ti: practical experiment

Modern Macs have the same components, and personal computers personal computers. Then why macOS can’t work on a PC? In fact, software platform Apple can be used on modern PCs and it is not as difficult as it seems.

Jeff Benjamin from 9to5mac spent just over a week to assemble a fully working Hackintosh with graphics GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. He set out to deliver a well-performing machine with the ability to upgrade running macOS. At this point in the range of Apple such models do not, although recently the company has promised to release a modular Mac Pro for professional users.

If we consider 2016 the MacBook Pro as a machine for mounting, it’s a decent option, but not ideal, says Jeff. Here you need something more powerful, relatively quiet and expandable, and Hackintosh fully meets these requirements. To build the system was only used Clover EFI Bootloader.

The disadvantages of the Hackintosh

Of course, a Hackintosh will not be able to replace a full-fledged Apple computer that “just works” it will Take many hours to bring the system to mind. In particular, you may experience problems with iMessage, to make the application work, you will have to use workarounds.

Another problem associated with modern GPUs from AMD. Technically they are the best option for use in a Hackintosh because of the excellent performance of OpenCL with Final Cut Pro X. unfortunately, these GPUs require active iGPU and modifications kext and often lead to failures in the latest version of Final Cut Pro X.

Not to say that graphics processors from AMD do not work. This is not so. Just Nvidia products are better suited for beginners due to the easy to install drivers Pascal.

In the web you can find a lot of useful tips that will help solve the problems concerning the creation of a Hackintosh.


As a user who works a lot with video, do voiceovers, and participates in recording podcasts, Jeff was interested in creating a quiet device. So he chose the Corsair case Carbide Series 330R. Although it’s big enough inside for cooling and subsequent upgrades. Side panel, front and top cover is covered with soundproofing material to reduce noise.

Housing is not the most pretty, but in this case more interested in the technical side of the question.

Power supply

One of the possible options for Hackintosh build was a Silverstone 520W fan less, because it is completely silent. But it is not enough capacity for use with graphics GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. So the choice fell on the EVGA SuperNOVA 750W, which provides power and has a modular design. He’s not exactly silent, but quiet enough to not interfere during recording.


Motherboards from Gigabyte are well-proven, and GA-Z170X-Gaming 7 is no exception. The set of interfaces include Thunderbolt 3 and USB 3.1. Gigabyte UEFI allows you to easily overclock the CPU.


As a hardware basis was selected processor Skylake Core i7 6700K. It can easily be overclocked up to 4.6 GHz. This is the same processor used in the latest iMac, but only Hackintosh allows you to unlock the potential of the stone. As a result you can assemble a PC more powerful than any device of the line Mac, with the exception of the 12-core and 8-core Mac Pro.

Cooling system

The Noctua Quiet fan copes with the cooling of the CPU at reasonable temperatures and is virtually silent.


For Mac users, graphics Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is an accomplishment. Even with the test drivers, the GPU shows impressive performance in the environment of macOS and Windows.

As mentioned above, there are many fairly powerful graphics processor in the AMD range. However, for newcomers in this business better suited GPU the new drivers Pascal due to the ease of installation.


For the system was chosen memory Corsair Vengeance 16GB DDR4 DRAM, as needed 16 GB of RAM. Corsair Vengeance have a lot of good reviews at an affordable price. In the future the amount of RAM can be increased up to 32 GB.

Network adapter

The 802.11 AC Wi-Fi Desktop Card supports 802.11 A/B/G/N/AC and Bluetooth 4.0. It works best with macOS Sierra 10.12.4.

Hard drive

For Hackintosh was chosen as a solid state drive, SanDisk Ultra II 960 GB. It provides sufficient storage space, although inferior to the speed of NVMe storage devices. However, this is a decent option for the selected system.


Jeff used a cheap wired keyboard for pre-setting and operate the loader. Once the system is completely ready, you can go to wireless devices, e.g., keyboard, Matias Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard and Apple Magic mouse.


One of the advantages of Skylake Core i7 6700K is good potential for overclocking. Ready models of processors demonstrate the ability to stable functioning at frequencies of 4.5-4.6 GHz, and such acceleration does not require the use of special cooling systems, no special tricks for configuring the UEFI BIOS. Motherboard Gigabyte greatly simplifies this process.


The result was assembled productive Hackintosh, which fully meets the specified requirements. Machine copes with the task of editing 4K video in Final Cut Pro X.

Fully working:

  • The sleep/Wake.
  • Off.
  • Ethernet.
  • Wi-Fi.
  • Bluetooth.
  • Sound.
  • iCloud.
  • The Mac App Store.
  • AirDrop.
  • Nvidia.
  • 4K with a refresh rate of 60 GHz via DisplayPort.
  • USB 3.1.

Not currently available:

  • 4K with a refresh rate of 60 GHz via HDMI.
  • iMessage.
  • Thunderbolt 3.

If you make the effort, it was possible to work iMessage and Thunderbolt 3. Connecting monitor via HDMI more complicated.

Despite these shortcomings, Jeff was a powerful machine. The results of the tests Hackintosh was more productive than any Mac computer released by Apple. In the single core test, he managed to get ahead of the iMac with the same CPU and multicore — to bypass all the models in the lineup, with the exception of the 12-core and 8-core Mac Pro.

BruceX benchmark 5K Final Cut Pro – a popular benchmark to test the performance of Final Cut Pro X. the Assembled device is it on average for 20 seconds, which is a very good result.

In the future Jeff plans to use a faster NVMe drive and increase the RAM.

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