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E6400 or E6410? Any advice greatly appreciated


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Due to money problems it looks like I have to sell my 2011 Macbook Air and replace it with a good 'ol Hackintosh. I've had several D430's and D620's with Snow Leo and Lion, and love them, but I'm looking for a 14" or 15" with 1440 x 900 resolution. 


I've seen the E6400s on eBay for around 250-260 Euro shipped, and the E6410s for around 310-320 shipped. Pretty decent prices, it seems. I see the big difference between the 6400 and the 6410 is the Core 2 Duo processore vs. i5. Is that the basic difference? 


All things being equal - easy of installation, stability, ease of upgrades - would you suggest the more powerful E6410? Are they both about the same in terms of installing Lion? I really only need Snow Leo, but I'm used to Lion on the Air, so would be happy to stick with that. Whichever is easier. 


I plan to install both Lion (or Snow) and Win 7, usually boot into Lion and occasionally into Win 7. No real heavy software to use, so even a Core 2 Duo would probably be good. 


As I said, I've had plenty of D430s and D620s, so have a fair bit of practice installing Snow and Lion on Dells. 


Apart from the E6400 and E6410, are there any other really solid hackintoshes with 14" displays and 1440 x 900 resolution? 


Thanks a lot for any advice. 

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Besides CPU generation, the E6400 (Core2Duo FSB-1066) and E6410 (1st Gen dual-core i5/i7) also differ in graphics chip (see below), chipset (E45 vs. QM57), etc. This can make quite a difference re: hackintoshing, so you must choose carefully.


For instance, the E6400 uses Intel GMA 4500MHD or nVidia NVS 160M graphics chip, whereas the E6410 uses Intel GMA HD (i.e. 5700MHD) or nVidia NVS 3100M. Generally speaking, these older Intel chips are not always well supported under Mac OS, although we can probably help you here (without garantee of success). It's often better to opt for the nVidia models.


Have a good browse at the various threads in the E6xxx section. You may also want to consider the E4xxx or E5xxx laptops.


Look at our compatibility chart in the EDP pages too, that can help you decide which better would better suit you:



I know of Thinkpads such as the T410 which are more than decent machines and work well under Mac OS X (with NVS 3100M graphics chip). They are quite similar to the E6410 in terms of specifications.



The older Latitude D generation can be a suitable alternative. For instance, a D630 nVidia with 1440x900 14" LCD and T9xxx CPU works extremely well with SL, L, ML & Mav (in 64bit kernel mode) and fits perfectly in your price range (around or well below 200€). There's usually quite a few on ebay. Intel graphics models (Crestline X3100) will work well with SL and L and require that special MLPF hack to run ML in 32bit kernel mode. They can't run Mav, at least at the moment.


The D830 might be a good choice too: the nVidia models (NVS 135M or NVS 140M) with 15" LCD (3 models: 1280x800, 1680x1050 1920x1200) are a very close cousin of the D630 and, again, work very well with SL, L, ML and Mav. Intel Crestline X3100 models have same limitations as D630 equivalent.


These older D Series run on Core2Duo FSB-800 CPUs (T7xxx, T8xxx, T9xxx).

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I agree with Hervé that the D series laptop do a wonderful job and are usually more plentiful and less expensive than their E series counterparts. If however, you decide you would rather go with an E series, there is something you should know. The E6400 comes with either the Intel GMA4500MHD or NVidia NVS 160M video controller. The Intel video controller has no support in OSx, leaving for a significantly less desirable experience (No QE/CI), especially if you are migrating from a Mac. The E6410 will work with either Intel or NVidia graphics Controller (a different Intel controller is used in this model). All models have installation guides here, and enough knowledgeable people to get you through any rough spots you may encounter with both the D and E series. I own both E series models and prefer the NVidia graphics (the E6410 being a recent acquisition) and installation is similar, with the exception that the E6400 required that updated NVidia kexts needed to be installed (they needed to have the device ID added to the kexts). 

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Many thanks guys. Much appreciated. 


I agree re. the D620 and D630, both of which I've used in the past with Snow Leopard. Worked like a charm. They are a bit scarce nowadays and their prices seem a bit high on eBay, in the 180 euro range. I remember paying less last year. 


On the EDP Compatibility page, the E6400 and E6500 have blank spaces beside all the components in the chart, then there are the bootpack downloads for Lion. Does that mean they work fine out of the box with EDP? 


Another model in the same boat is the HP 6910p, i.e. empty boxes in the compatibility chart, then bootpack downloads for Snow Leopard and Lion. Same story? Works out of the box with EDP? Just asking, because prices on the HP are really low compared to the E6400/6500, i.e. in the 175 euro range, shipped.


The Thinkpad T400 has some really good prices, under 200 euro. The T410 is a fair bit more expensive (over 300 euro). The T61, also 1440 x 900, though is a lot cheaper than the T410, in the 170-180 range. 


I was hoping to spend in the 220-230 range, shipped. If I find a good price on a D620/D630 I'd probably go that route. The D830 is an interesting unit with the higher resolution models. I've found a 1680 x 1050 model for 185 euro and a 1920 x 1200 for 239. If I read the specs right, they are a lot heavier than the D620, something like 2 lbs heavier. 


Many thanks again.

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I'm not sure why we haven't added the E6400/E6500 to EDP, because most everything works except true sleep (you will likely have to swap out the WiFi card, as they usually come with unsupported ones). You can read the Mountain Lion Anyone thread for the E6400 and Patel4Prez's thread (E6410 Mountain Lion Guide) for E6410 installation to get an idea of whats working, as it should work for Lion (I have a dual boot drive for my E6500 with Lion/ML, but don't recall if there were any other issues - I can send my Extra folder if you go that route). I had discussed adding the E6400/E6500 to EDP prior to taking a new role at work which has made for more work & travel, odd hours and restrictions on internet use while working, and haven't been giving it the proper follow-up I should. As stated, and of the Dells mentioned are a good bet, so you pretty much let cost and personal preferences dictate your choice. I confess to not being as knowledgeable about the Thinkpad's abilities as a hackintosh, but they are nice machines with a good, comfortable feel.

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