The Razer Core, a plug-and-play external graphics card enclosure that connects to the Razer Blade Stealth or new Razer Blade, starts shipping in April for $499.
The device, which goes up for pre-order on March 16, will be discounted to $399 when purchased with compatible Razer notebooks. Current registered owners of the Stealth can also receive the discounted price.
The Razer Core supports compatible double-wide, full-length, PCI Express x16 cards from AMD and Nvidia. (The cards are sold separately.) The enclosure includes a 500 W power supply, four USB 3.0 ports, a gigabit Ethernet port and two-zone lighting. The unit uses a Thunderbolt USB-C port to connect to a compatible laptop, and can transfer data at up to 40 Gbps. Used with the Razer Blade Stealth, the Razer Core can power the laptop. If the Razer Core is used with the new Razer Blade, the laptop needs to run on its own power supply.
Installing a graphics card in the Razer Core requires no tools. An aluminum housing slides out of the unit, and the card is held in place by a single thumb screw. When using an AMD graphics card and AMD XConnect technology in the Razer Core, the laptop can switch seamlessly between its internal graphics chip and the graphics card in the Core. Using an Nvidia graphics card in the Core may require rebooting of the laptop to switch graphics. Razer said in a press release that Nvidia cards will work with the Core by the time it launches next month.
The Razer Core can accommodate graphics cards that draw up to 375 W of power, and are no larger than 12.20 inches long by 5.98 inches high by 1.73 inches wide. The currently supported graphics cards are listed below.
Qualified AMD Radeon graphics cards (AMD XConnect supported with Blade Stealth):
- AMD Radeon R9 Fury
- AMD Radeon R9 Nano
- AMD Radeon R9 300 Series
- AMD Radeon R9 290X
- AMD Radeon R9 290
- AMD Radeon R9 280
Compatible Nvidia GeForce graphics cards (at launch):
- Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan X
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 Ti
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 980
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 970
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 960
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 950
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 750 Ti
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 750