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Psystar launches Open Computer


Available with OS X Leopard

There was a time when there were several Mac clones on the market from various licensed partners, but that was a long time ago, and since then Apple hasn't been to keen on letting other companies use its OS. Enter Psystar and its Open Computer, a US$399.99 capable of running OS X Leopard, without Apple's permission.

In all fairness to Psystar, Apple can't really stop them from selling the system, as it's sold without an OS by default and you have to fork out a further US$155 for a copy of OS X Leopard, but at least Psystar will install it for you for free as well as supply a restore disc for you in case something goes wrong.

The base system is a measly Core 2 Duo E4500 processor at 2.2GHz, an unspecified motherboard with integrated Intel GMA950 graphics, which makes us think 945-series, 2GB of DDR2 667MHz memory, a 250GB SATA drive and a DVD writer.

They offer some upgrade options such as a faster CPU, an 8600GT graphics card, a larger hard drive and more memory, but the options are quite limited at the moment. Don't expect this system to look anything like a Mac, either, for that matter, as the case they use looks quite cheap, but it's not outright awful.

Psystar also offers a Pro version of the Open Computer which has some better hardware and an Antec case. It's available with upgrade options such as quad-core processors and comes with a range of OS options including Linux and Windows XP/Vista, as well as OS X, but prices for this model start at US$999.99 with a 2.6GHz Core 2 Duo processor.

At least it's a way for those interested in running OS X to get a sytem on the cheap; the question is how long Apple will allow them to carry on.

You can check out the full system specifications here as well as some pictures of the sytem itself.
Last modified on 15 April 2008
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