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Psystar taunts Apple with Open(3) Mac clone

updated 07:55 am EDT, Wed March 18, 2009

Psystar Open 3 Mac Clone

Undeterred by lawsuits, Psystar this morning launched the Open(3) as its latest overt Mac clone. The system drops the conventional mini-tower for a slimline shape but is technically faster: the stock model uses a 2.8GHz Core 2 Duo desktop processor and now has the option of up to a 2.53GHz Core 2 Quad. Psystar further gives the clone space for a small dedicated graphics card and options for 802.11n Wi-Fi as well as three FireWire 800 ports or a USB Bluetooth adapter.

A base configuration costs just $600 with the base processor, Mac OS X Leopard, 2GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive, a DVD burner and a GeForce 8400 GS for video. In addition to faster processors, the Open(3) can scale up to 4GB of memory, two 1TB drives and GeForce 9500 GT graphics. Psystar claims the system is in stock as of today.

Beyond its mainstream offering, the company has also upgraded the OpenPro to include a rackmount version for servers while giving the base, $1,155 mid-tower a faster minimum configuration. It now gets 8GB of RAM, a 1TB hard drive, and a GeForce 9500 GT video card. The rackmount version starts with a 3.16GHz Core 2 Duo and 4GB of memory for the same price. Either system is shipping today.


By Electronista Staff
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  1. Roehlstation

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2001


    Anyone own one?

    They have to be selling, otherwise they wouldn't do it, Has anyone purchased one that can comment on them?

    Comment buried. Show
  1. lamewing

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: Aug 2004


    I would buy it...

    I think it is a great idea. I would buy a copy of OSX if I could easily install it on my hand-built PC or my wife's Dell laptop.

    People claim that it will take sales away from Apple, but I don't believe that. Folks who love Apple are going to buy an Apple machine no matter what. Apple will simply get a larger base of buyers.

    The same thing happened with the iPod. It didn't sell that well (not badly either) until it was officially opened up to the PC world, at which point it took off. I used my 5GB iPod for over a couple of years and no one even knew what the thing was.

    The only difficulty I see is that there would be support issues which would need to be worked out.

  1. eldarkus

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2004



    The support issue you talk about is the exact reason why Apple will never do it. Quality control is what Apple wants

  1. revco

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005


    Fair price

    With Apple's recent price hikes to anyone outside the US it seems like a good deal. I fully spec'd up the Psystar Open(3) and it came to half the price of the new entry level MacPro system. Including shipping to Australia! I think they're going to sell a lot of these to users outside of the US.

  1. JNGowan

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2009


    You're wrong

    "People claim that it will take sales away from Apple, but I don't believe that. Folks who love Apple are going to buy an Apple machine no matter what. Apple will simply get a larger base of buyers" - lamewing

    Failure to remember the past, you're doomed to repeat it, fella! Just as clones were killing Apple's business in the mid 90s, this wouldn't be good if allowed. This is different of course, because the general public doesn't even know about these and even if they did, would be afraid to buy and then eventually be unsupported due to the eventual ruling in Apple's favor. A larger base of buyers for $129 each takes away from the $599-$2500 chunk Apple makes on their hardware. Ask yourself: would you want the $129 slice or the $2500 slice? Get real.

  1. vasic

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005


    Precisely the point

    Apple is the company we know today for one main reason: being able to sell the 'whole widget' -- a computer and OS, specifically built for each other. A combination like that is priced at (sometimes) hefty premium, which allows Apple to plow money into R&D, testing and support at a scale not possible at nickel-and-dime PC box assemblers (Dell, HP, PsyStar).

    When anything goes wrong with your Mac, you go to a Mac Genius, or call Apple support. Single point of contact, they fix it for you.

    Who do you call when your webcam stops working in iChat after the most recent update of Skype (happened to me)? Apple? Skype? PsyStar? (Apple Genius fixed it for me) Expect some volleyball among the three, with you being the ball, and Apple refusing to hear anything about it.

    If by some miraculous chance PsyStar ends up winning this suit, Apple's retail price for a boxes OS X should be set at $600 (no OEM deals). In order to install OS X on that PsyStar machine, they'd tack that price on top of their retail. That way, Apple could (presumably) afford to provide support for the box assemblers' machines.

  1. Mr. Strat

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Jan 2002


    C'mon Apple

    C'mon Apple, stamp these snake oil salesmen into the ground.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    Re: You're wrong

    Just as clones were killing Apple's business in the mid 90s, this wouldn't be good if allowed.

    The clone makers were getting into the same markets as apple, as opposed to developing new ones. And customers realized that the OS is what was important, not some mythical "whole widget" that the faithful like to project.

    But what if Apple allowed cloning into areas they don't want to get in? Why not allow a cloner of netbooks? Or a cloner of mini-towers? Or 12" laptops with expresscard slots and firewire? Or large-screen macbooks? OEM the OS for $500. See what happens.

    Or would this just drive potential customers to these cloners, because it turns out the reason MBPs sell so well is because of the screen size, not because people need all those features? And half the people buying MacPros have absolutely no need for all that computing power, but want the ability to add eSATA and several hard drives.

  1. JeffHarris

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 1999


    Apple Should Make One

    This is the type of machine that some people have been screaming for Apple to make for years.

    A reasonably sized, headless, marginally expandable machine, with all the usual ports. A machine that I can choose a graphics card for. Something that starts at $899 or $999 for a base model.

    The fact that some other company is attempting to produce and market one is proof that there's room for it in Apple's product matrix.

    I just don't get why Apple refuses to do so.

    Apple nearly failed in the 90's, not solely because of Mac clones, but because Apple was trying to produce and market every imaginable peripheral (scanners, laser and inkjet printers, digital cameras, etc.) AND the Mac lines were ridiculously complex. They offered separate model numbers for machines with different sized hard drives. Macs from the low-end Performa line significantly overlapped Macs from the pro line.

    It was a nightmare to recommend or decide which machine to buy. It was a mess.

  1. jorgebob

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 2006


    Mac Clones

    As one who had to support Mac clones in the '90s, I say never again. What a total pain! Having a single source for any support issues, which was pretty much zilch with real Macs versus the hassles with the clones, the cost of ownership is far better with a real Mac. If you want to tinker, go ahead but one needs to figure in lost business and credibility into the TCO.

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