AAPL Stock: 118.3 ( + 0.49 )

Printed from

Reports question Mac clone maker Psystar

updated 03:40 pm EDT, Wed April 16, 2008

Psystar Mac clone phantom

Just over 10 years ago, Motorola, Umax, and Power Computing were active members of the official Apple clone community, and the recently popular Psystar is looking to offer the same sort of service, but it could be too good to be true. The Psystar Corporation seems to have materialized out of thin air, and that investigation reveals that the company could be little more than a potential fly-by-night operation.

Allegedly based in Miami, the The Guardian's Charles Arthur probed the company's background history to find out that despite being registered in 2000, several search engines revealed absolutely zero information on Psystar before the recent announcement. A call to the Miami Chamber of Commerces and the Better Business Bureau told Arthur that they hadn't heard of the company.

Some time Tuesday, Psystar had relocated its address from a three-bedroom house in a suburban area to an industrial park, where further inquiry exposed a packing supply firm, USA Koen Pack, with the manager claiming he had not heard of Psystar.

Arthur also finds it peculiar that Apple - a company famous for its control over product integrity, leaks, and other things - has remained mute on the subject. Arthur theorizes it could be waiting to see what happens before exhausting energy into the matter.

Blogger Gene Steinberg of The Mac Night Owl noted earlier that the Psystar's claim to offering a more powerful computer than the Mac mini at a cheaper price comes at a cost, lacking a $200 Firewire card. Some of the specifications are superior, but it also lacks iLife, one of the Mac's best selling features for home users.

MacNN contacted Psystar via email and phone on Tuesday, but had not received any response by publication time.

by MacNN Staff



  1. robttwo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    uh, duh

    What did I say TWO days ago?! It was so obvious this was some kind of scam.

    Doofuses. (Both the scammers and those who "bought" into it - Especially that dumbass testudo.)

  1. Beechlady

    Joined: Dec 1969



    The BBB and the Chamber not knowing who Psystar is isn't as big as say, the Attorney General of Florida's office getting involved (after some poor schmucks get the shaft) on credit card fraud.....basically "if it sounds too good to be true......". Even at it's best, sounds like Psystar is guilty of poor planning. I foresee these selling at the "Festival Fleamarket Mall" (on the Turnpike) LOL.

  1. lancelott

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Have you seen their site?

    Potential "buyers"... Really?

    How can you buy something from that website... Some people deserve to be scammed. (/agree with robttwo)

  1. RichPate

    Joined: Dec 1969


    It's been taken care of.

    "...Arthur also finds it peculiar that Apple a company famous for its control over product integrity, leaks, and other things has remained mute on the subject."

    Give Jobs more credit than that. These guys have been "disappeared" already. Psystar, what Psystar? It never happened, right?

  1. Mebsat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    They do have a license

    They have a Miami-Dade county business license, #635193-6, registered to the house on Killian Drive. All that means is that they sent the county around $80 to do business. They are probably a couple of guys got into the Hackintosh scene via the Linux crowd and had no idea what they were getting themselves into. Actually quite hilarious when you think about it.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    stupid comments

    What is any company when it first starts up, if not unknown. h***, you could have said the same things about Apple some 30+ years ago. "Buy a computer from Apple? Are you insane? Who are they?"

    BTW, they actually have a security certificate for their web site, which means someone thinks they exist and are for real.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    And what's this about their computer coming at a price, lacking a $200 firewire card? Since when does a firewire card cost $200?

    And hasn't Gene learned that firewire is dead for most people.

  1. greenG4

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Hey Testy!

    They can cost well over that actually:


  1. RichPate

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Hey, street haz't Job's cousin Tony flew down Miami way and took care of dat ting... forgetaboutit!

    ...and dose tre bodies floatin offshore? Hey forgetaboutit already... yu don't know nut'n!

  1. macnixer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    everyone seems to

    get it all wrong.

    1. Psystar maybe started by two new business guys who may make it big sometime. they have taken a step. The step may be in the wrong direction as of now. This is the only commendable part.

    (Last I checked on the psystar site, they had added more OS(es) to the list on Open Computer since they do fear the backlash they may have to face from the battery of Apple attorneys)

    2. The OC is a good PC with upgradability (like any other PC that you can assemble off newegg or fry's electronics). the key is the hack used to install Leopard. One can get it from osx86project. End of the the day it is a hack.

    (Why should I pay some Miami dude to assemble me a PC when I could do better and read all I need on hackintosh to configure Leopard).

    3. Add the $155 for Leopard on psystar and $75 for iLife and $LOTS for support and it seems the better option is to buy a system from Apple would be cheaper.

    (It is a fact - I own three Macs, one is about 6 years old, one is about 2 and this one is 2 months old. For all of these I have got extremely great support from Apple whenever and wherever I needed it. I was traveling to India last year and Apple released an info for all Macbook users that they could change their batter if they had a certain kind of problem. Well I was one of them. I called a local Apple Certified Support center and they were happy to replace the battery in less than 30 minutes - only down side I had to drive for 1 hour to get to them in the Bombay traffic. My Apple global warranty came in handy. Next I needed a Superdrive replacement when in US on my MAcbook again and Apple Store nearby did it without blinking an eye. My old iMac was on extra support and Apple never said no when they were called)

    Considering what I get from Apple in terms of great support, I am ready to pay the extra bucks. Questions to consider are: 1. Will psystar help me if I need a hard-drive replcement if I have moved to South Africa. 2. Will psystar replace my RAM if it goes bad after nine months? 3. Will psystar sell me extra 2 year warranty and annual protection plus if I would like to keep my OC for many years? 4. Will psystar also install the iLife and Leopard within $399? 5. Will psystar make sure that Apple Attorneys do not run after me for breaking the EULA?

    If psystar can claim and signup in blood for the commitment we get from Apple, I would consider buying from them. I don't see that happening and I don't intend to buy from them. Apple invests a lot on the development of the ardware and software so they deserve to keep the prices what it is. I am totally in favor of Apple and would even go to the extent of contributing funds to help Apple if they ever need or I would create a fund to help Apple fight these germs in court.

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.


Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook


Most Popular


Recent Reviews

Ultimate Ears Megaboom Bluetooth Speaker

Ultimate Ears (now owned by Logitech) has found great success in the marketplace with its "Boom" series of Bluetooth speakers, a mod ...

Kinivo URBN Premium Bluetooth Headphones

We love music, and we're willing to bet that you do, too. If you're like us, you probably spend a good portion of your time wearing ...

Jamstik+ MIDI Controller

For a long time the MIDI world has been dominated by keyboard-inspired controllers. Times are changing however, and we are slowly star ...


Most Commented