Description

This machine is mainly used for AutoCAD work. Graphic design work is also done in small amounts as well as light gaming and any other general office/communication needs.

macOS was installed with the Clover boot loader method. See following repo for full configuration: https://github.com/heisian/H170M-ITX-DL-macOS1

Part Reviews

CPU Cooler

Can't even hear this thing and it fits very comfortable in the case. Such a great product.

Motherboard

One glaring issue with this motherboard:

1) When pressing F11 for the boot menu, there is a bug where you can't see anything on-screen unless the mouse travels over it. You basically have to use the mouse to 'reveal' the hidden UI that is the entire boot screen. Really weird. Firmware is up-to-date.

Other than that, the system has been incredibly stable so far on macOS and I love the tiny form factor, so it gets an above average rating.

One thing to note - if you are planning on doing a Hackintosh, go with the newer 270/370 chipsets. First of all, newer = better, right? Most importantly, sleep does NOT work on this 170-series board. Sleep works on the 270/370-series boards.

Storage

Super fast, as expected.

Video Card

Definitely not for gaming, but allows for adding more than 2 monitors beyond the integrated graphics ports, as well as a little extra juice for AutoCAD/graphic design programs.

If you are using 2 monitors or less, you really don't need this card and should use the HD530 integrated graphics. Also, macOS requires a couple patches to fix some glitches that occur with the HD530.

Case

I'm not sure if the power off/restart issues I'm having (mentioned in the motherboard review) are also in part to do with this case, but overall this case is pretty amazing. The updated version has USB 3.0 front ports and the design fits all my components without any trouble. I did not have to do anything to mod this case for fitment.

Comments

  • 20 months ago
  • 1 point

Nicely done! I haven't considered this case before in my search for a mini-itx box. It's great to see someone who built with it. Was it difficult to install MacOS on your system? Do you need to be very tech savvy in order to achieve the installation?

  • 20 months ago
  • 1 point

It was difficult at first. There's so much information about how to get the bootloader installed, what drivers to use, what kind of configuration, etc.

The first time I installed, I think I was using an incorrect driver and the system would freeze randomly and make it sort of un-usable. I had to go through the guide again to find I should have been using a different (memory mapping correction) driver. Now the system is stable.

Get ready for a frustrating time, but once you do a few installs it kind of becomes a breeze. Some mobos are easier to install with than others, requiring less config to get everything running. I think Gigabyte and ASRock fall under that category, although I successfully dual-booted macOS/Windows on my MSI Z97 G45 as well.

Sometimes you have to apply macOS kext patches to get things like audio, bluetooth, even graphics working. insanelymac.com and tonymacx86.com are clutch and have links to the tools you'll need. At this point the tooling is pretty well-baked such that if you get a prolific intel-based motherboard you should be able to install w/ nicely packaged software from the community.

  • 20 months ago
  • 1 point

I understand that macOS has Pascal support already; assuming that the software you use can make use of that architecture and can benefit from some extra CUDA cores, may I ask why you haven't chosen a substantially more powerful GT1030?

  • 20 months ago
  • 3 points

970/1070 and pretty much all nvidia gpus work, the only reason i used the 710 is because i wanted the cheapest possible card w/ hdmi out.. i was debugging some freezing issues while running macOS and wanted to see if it was related to graphics. Turned out to be a memory mapping driver issue (i think). That being said, i dont need anything more powerful (yet).

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Quite some interesting stuff from what i’ve read, I’ve never really looked into hackintoshes before. How’s this thing holding up?

  • 20 months ago
  • 0 points

The G4560 is probably a better option than the i3-6100, as it is cheaper and just as good.

  • 20 months ago
  • 4 points

The Intel HD510 and HD610 integrated GPUs found on the G4XXX series are NOT supported in macOS. Therefore you MUST get an i3 or better.

  • 20 months ago
  • 1 point

Oh right, I wasn't aware.

  • 20 months ago
  • 1 point

Theres a lot of gotchas when putting these things together.. even supported devices may need a patch to work in macOS. Realtek/hdmi audio, ethernet/wifi, m.2, often need patches. There are reports of 510/610 working in some cases but just better to spend the money for a well-supported acpu so you don’t have to go down the rabbit hole of writing your own patches. As listed here, everything can be installed w easily available community patches.

  • 20 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah, I built my PC to run win 10 and at a budget of £350, so the g4560 was perfect for me.

[comment deleted]
  • 20 months ago
  • -1 points
  • 20 months ago
  • 1 point

Interesting, kinda sucks! I wish I had gotten a beefier card. The reason I got it, though, was because when I had installed macOS the first time, it kept freezing randomly and I thought it might have had to do with the HD530 graphics, so I got as cheap of a graphics card as I could get to try it out. Turns out I was probably (and i'm not 100% sure) using an incorrect driver for the bootloader.

Just did a fresh install with a different driver and now everything is stable. So I don't really need the graphics card at all now.. except if I want more than 2 monitors!

[comment deleted by staff]