We are not going to fool ourselves. Make a hackintosh It is quite a difficult operation. If you have ever tried it, it is most likely that you have ended up giving up and going religiously through the Apple Store, dropping the corresponding two thousand euros to get an original Mac from the bitten apple. Those who know how to build a Hackintosh perfectly, are aware that they have superior knowledge. For this reason, they fill their YouTube channels with videos showing us, mere mortals, the true chimeras they are capable of creating. A great example would be Teresa de Morgonaut, who has the ability to create a perfect Hackintosh with AMD Ryzen —but she has never explained how she does it— or our protagonist today, iketsjwhich has been made Mac inside a Game Boy.
The Game Boy that dreamed of being a MacBook
Ike T. Sanglay Jr is a Filipino engineer who already has several videos on YouTube explaining how to make a pocket hackintosh. Last year, he built a macOS Big Sur computer entirely from scratch, with a design resembling a Palm PC or a BlackBerry. This time, this modder has gone a little further and has managed to create a Game Boy able to move macOS inside. But how has he done it?
macOS currently ships in two versions: the version written for Intelwhich comes in the equipment that Apple has been selling until recently and the ARM-based version, which is the compilation that the equipment with the Apple Silicon variants carries, that is, the M1 processors. At the time when Apple launched computers with Intel processors, many experts discovered that it was possible to install macOS on an Intel PC (or rather, any computer with x86 architecture). This is how Hackintosh was born, which is nothing more than making macOS work on a standard PC. To do this, you need to create a boot loader customized so that Apple’s system can interface with non-native hardware.
At the moment, the Hackintosh world has not been able to handle the ARM versions of macOS, so iketsj has not been able to create his Hackintosh on a computer like the Raspberry Pi. Instead, he had to find a miniature x86 board for your Game Boy. That was how he came up with the LattePanda Alpha 864s, a motherboard that fits in the palm of your hand and has almost the same hardware as the 12-inch MacBook, that is, an Intel Core M3 and 8 GB of RAM. The board is ridiculously small, but it has all the connectivity you can imagine and even two M.2 slots.
The consumption of this machine is ridiculous considering that we are not dealing with an ARM computer, so the heat generated by the chip is quite easy to control. Once he got the plate – which costs more than 450 dollars – Ike mounted it on a gameboy shell made to measure by himself and also designed a PCB to control the equipment with its own keypad.
To install macOS, the engineer followed Dortania’s awful but helpful guide to installing OpenCore, the most advanced bootloader that exists at the moment to install macOS on a PC. The result? A Game Boy with a fully functional version of macOS that can connect to an external monitor without giving up the ability to be used for 8-bit gaming.