I love, love, tiny gadgets and gear — and even more when they're ridiculously powerful. So when I got a first look at Razer's Tomahawk N1, a gaming PC capable of supporting Nvidia RTX 2080 graphics (ray tracing, baby!) that's barely larger than twice the size of the GPU, my jaw pretty much dropped to the floor.
The Tomahawk N1 I saw was still an early prototype. Though the black aluminum chassis, tempered glass side panels, and lit-up green Razer logo on the front looked final, the small gaming PC lacked details like a power button and front-facing ports. Don't worry, they'll all be there when the N1 launches in the first half of 2020.
Quickly swap components — The N1 is not your typical desktop PC. Razer designed it to be simple as possible with computing modules that you can swap in seconds. Yes, seconds. Meaning everything is basically plug and play; there's no screwing for mounting things and no real cable management outside of a few main plugs.
There are five key components to the N1: the chassis, the Intel NUC 9 Extreme Compute Element (codenamed "Ghost Canyon"), which contains the a CPU configurable up to a Core i9 processor, M.2 SSD, and DDR4 RAM up to 64GB, and industry SFX power supply, Nvidia RTX graphics (up to RTX 2080), and tool-less design aluminum sled.
So many ports — The N1 is small, but it doesn't sacrifice ports. On the rear, there are ports galore. Here's what you get: 2x Thunderbolt 3, 2x 1G Ethernet, 2x HDMI 2.0A, 6x USB 3.2 Gen 2. The compact PC also supports Wi-Fi 6.
Super small and super customizable — Really, the only reason to get the N1 is if you love small and compact tech like I do and can spend money for the size. Razer's refused to say how much the N1 will cost when it launches. But considering the RTX 2080 GPU is about $700, the NUC Element module with CPU and RAM are hefty, and the chassis will probably come with a "Razer tax," you can expect a number that will make you wince.
I absolutely love how easy it is to pull open the handle and then drag the N1 out of its case. Noticeably missing: RGB lighting. I'm cool with that because I think RGB lighting is overrated and tacky when it's overdone.
If you take nothing else from this PC, it's that nothing is forever and you should appreciate that Razer made it so dead simple to upgrade. Consoles: you're on notice.