Core X is the first of Razer’s Core eGPU lineup to feature Mac support, and sits below the Core V2 on the company’s product totem pole at $299 without graphics card. Core V2, which also received macOS today, will remain on sale as Razer’s high-end enclosure option.
Designed to provide a graphics boost to Windows ultrabooks, Core X incorporates a comprehensive set of components that makes it an ideal break-out option for Mac gamers, power users who require more graphics horsepower than Apple’s stock configurations, and casual crypto currency miners. Both powerful and — relatively — portable, Core X boasts a solid mix of performance, efficiency and future-proofing features with few concessions.
A single Thunderbolt 3 cable with USB-C connector ferries data and power between the eGPU and host machine, with support for PCIe graphics cards like NVIDIA GeForce, NVIDIA Quadro and AMD XConnect-enabled Radeon and Radeon Pro cards.
Inside, the enclosure sports a beefy 650-watt ATX power supply, up from the custom 500-watt slim form factor PSU found in the Core V2. Offering a sense of what Razer means by future-proofing, Core X dedicates 500 watts of power to GPU operation, capable of powering two NVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan X cards despite having enough room inside to fit only one.
Another 100 watts goes to laptop power delivered over the single Thunderbolt 3 connection, more than enough to accommodate Apple’s latest 15-inch MacBook Pro models.
Core X’s roomy innards fit 3-slot cards measuring up to 330mm in length and 160mm in height, a cavity large enough for oversized cards like those based on the popular GeForce GTX 1080 Ti architecture.
To install a GPU, users simply slide the component drawer out from the aluminum chassis, pop a compatible card into the PCIe slot and lock it down with a thumb screw. No tools are required for installation. A built-in, mesh grill venting system with integrated desktop cooling keeps the interior within thermal limits.
At $299 and with a more complete set of capabilities than Core V2, Core X could be one of the best eGPU options for Mac. Razer told AppleInsider it was able to achieve a low cost basis by incorporating a standard power supply rather than custom-built unit, reducing the number of ports to a single Thunderbolt 3 connection, going without Razer Chroma LED lighting and utilizing a cast aluminum enclosure, among other cost-cutting measures.
Core X is available today from Razer for $299 in the U.S., Canada, China, France, Germany and the UK. The device will launch soon in the Nordics, Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Taiwan.