Gaming hardware company Razer has unveiled a new concept for a modular PC which makes upgrades as easy as sliding a block out of the PC frame and replacing it with a new module. You could theoretically upgrade the CPU, add a graphics card, throw in some extra storage, or change just about anything on a PC in a matter of minutes or even seconds.

Razer calls the concept Project Christine, and while it’s not ready to ship yet, the company wants to get the idea out there and see what potential customers think before deciding whether to bring a product to market. Razer did something similar with Project Fiona a few years ago, which turned into the Razer Edge PC gaming tablet in 2013.

Razer Project Christine

While there’s nothing particularly “little” about Project Chrstine, it caught my eye because of the out-of-the-box thinking that went into its design. I also love the idea of a modular PC that’s simpler to upgrade than existing desktop solutions.

You don’t have to open the case, remove a CPU fan or heatsink, and go through all the other steps you’d normally have to complete to upgrade the hardware on this type of machine. Just buy a new module, pop out the old one and insert the new. The connectors can handle input and output and provide power.

This is also an entirely fanless system thanks to liquid cooling. The Project Christine computer has a cooling module which cranks liquid through every module. When you remove a module, the vents automatically close so nothing will leak when you swap out components, but when the system is in use the coolant will keep all your components from overheating.

If enough people like the idea, we could see something like Project Christine as a real product in the next year or two, but don’t expect it to be cheap. Its appeal is its power and simplicity, not its price. The Razer Edge gaming tablet is one of the pricier Windows tablets around, but it’s aimed at gamers willing to pay a premium price for performance. Project Christine will likely follow suit.

The company might open up the platform to third party vendors though, which could bring down the price of modules. If you can buy a graphics module from competitors like Saphire or Zotac as well as Razer, you might have a better chance of finding one that meets your needs (and budget).

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3 replies on “Razer Project Christine concept is a modular, liquid-cooled gaming PC”

  1. Just a heads up, you state it’s fanless, it almost definitely won’t be though. Watercooling is just more effective at shifting heat away from chips by nature, you still have to get rid of it into the air. There have been some passive solutions like a zalman reserator but they’ve been large towers of fins with limited dissipation capacity. Oh and quick-disconnect joints are in fairly common use, they restrict the flow a bit because they’re always trying to be closed but they can be useful for external radiators and chillers.

    As for what I think of the project itself, it’s interesting but it will be expensive, a motherboard is the best way we’ve found so far to have a few hundred wires connecting devices while keeping distances short so changing to a tower design with (presumably) cables or increased distances is a tricky move. Is there really a market for the person who has multiple GPUs but can’t figure out how they got in there in the first place? One would think we might eventually run out of rich lazy people who don’t know how a screwdriver works.

  2. Hmm this actually doesn’t look too bad; they could even scale it down by reducing module slots to help with the price. Definitely makes building a PC a whole lot less worrisome.

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