Razer's been wanting to deliver a modular gaming PC for quite a long time now. First there was Project Christine, an overly ambitious project revealed in 2014 that never came to fruition, then the Tomahawk, which Razer showed off at CES back in January and is going up for preorder this month.
The Tomahawk is a very different animal compared to Project Christine. Razer's initial vision of a modular PC consisted of a whole bunch of water-cooled modules, or cartridge-like parts for each component—storage, GPU, CPU, optical drive. In contrast, the Tomahawk is basically a custom dwelling for Intel's NUC 9 Extreme Kit (aka Ghost Canyon NUC).
It takes less than a minute to assemble a Tomahawk, as Gizmodo demonstrated earlier this year. All you do is plug in a NUC 9 Extreme into one of the two PCI Express slots, which itself contains the CPU, RAM, motherboard, and storage, and then snap in a graphics card in the other PCIe slot. Then push the "sled" into the box. That's it, you're finished building.
Assembly is not necessarily required. Razer intends to sell a pre-configured model with an Intel Core i9 9980HK processor, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, 512GB NVMe SSD + 2TB HDD, and up to an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 graphics card.
That's a laptop CPU, albeit a fast one with 8 cores and 16 threads clocked at 2.4GHz to 5GHz. Paired with the rest of the components, and in particular a GeForce RTX 3080 (or any Ampere card, really), you'd have yourself a high-end gaming PC.
The chassis is made from CNC-milled, anodized aluminum with Razer's Chroma RGB lighting donning the bottom. It measures 210mm x 150mm x 365mm and can fit a full-size graphics card (so no need to limit yourself to small form factor variants), powered by a 750W SFX power supply unit.
For connectivity, it offers up four USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports, two USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports, two gigabit LAN ports, and a 3.5mm rear speakers/TOSLINK combo port. And on the wireless side, you get Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) connectivity.
The Tomahawk is certainly intriguing, though by no means cheap. Pricing will start at $2,400 when it goes up for preorder this month, and you will need to add your own GPU to that config. If you want it with a GeForce RTX 3080 installed, you're looking at $3,200.