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CES 2011: Razer unveils ultra-compact gaming PC concept

CES 2011: Razer unveils ultra-compact gaming PC concept

Razer's new Switchblade concept has two displays - one below a transparent keyboard.

CES 2011: Razer's second announcement at CES, following the reveal of the new Hydra motion controller, was the unveiling of a portable gaming PC concept, the Switchblade.

While you can check out a comically cheesy video below, the short of it is that the Switchblade is an ultra-compact Intel Atom PC with both a touchscreen display and a second display beneath a transparent keyboard.

This allows the Switchblade to customise the keyboard display instantly, without resorting to the expensive AMOLED keys of the long suffering Optimus keyboards. The result is undeniably nifty, but Razer's representatives at the show wouldn't be comment on precise hardware specs and stressed that this was still a proof of concept, rather than a definite release.

The big issue we see with the concept though is the lack of graphics power that Intel Atom processors can wield, and whether Razer can leverage enough hardware into the diminutive Switchblade to deliver a quality gaming experience.

Would the Switchblade interest you if it made it out of the prototype stage? Let us know in the forums.

34 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
adam_bagpuss 7th January 2011, 10:54 Quote
if its based around the atom it will be rubbish. i like the keyboard although i thinkid like some tactile feel to the keys so i know im pushing it.
mi1ez 7th January 2011, 10:55 Quote
I can't see it ever having the power from Atom hardware. Make it bigger, improve the cooling and hardware.
Picarro 7th January 2011, 11:02 Quote
IF it's one of the new Sandybridge atoms combined with some sort of easy GPU it will be win. The GPU and CPU doesn't have to be all-powerful. Afterall the resolution of the screen is not exactly mindblowing.
I do believe it is possible - and the fact that they cater to casual gamers also solidifies the fact that it doesn't have to deliver >100 fps.
memeroot 7th January 2011, 11:03 Quote
tigra2?
adam_bagpuss 7th January 2011, 11:08 Quote
Quote:
solidifies the fact that it doesn't have to deliver >100 fps.

even hardcore gamers shouldnt expect 100FPS cause thats just a waste of time

if your running an LCD screen it probly ha a refresh of 60hz so therefore anything over 60FPS is a waste as the screen doesnt update fast enough to show anything.
LJF 7th January 2011, 11:13 Quote
Where's the mouse then?
Tyrmot 7th January 2011, 11:15 Quote
Atom = fail
Lance 7th January 2011, 11:22 Quote
Is he doing an impression of Jamesssssh Bond?
Yemerich 7th January 2011, 11:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by LJF
Where's the mouse then?
I saw a USB port, but looks like they want to use a touch screen instead of a mouse. Wich is a bad move because you will be putting your hand in front of the tine monitor.

This looks to me a netbook for gaming wich isn't good unless you just want to play "popcap" games and some other weaker graphics titles. And its razer, wich means it will be costly.

Anyway, I don't see how it is going to be a market hit.
LJF 7th January 2011, 11:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yemerich
Quote:
Originally Posted by LJF
Where's the mouse then?
I saw a USB port, but looks like they want to use a touch screen instead of a mouse. Wich is a bad move because you will be putting your hand in front of the tine monitor.

Ah yes, comprehension error on my part but the point you make does highlight the major flaw. It's not going to be easy to use unless you have a hand made of glass.
RichCreedy 7th January 2011, 11:39 Quote
sandy bridge would be better for this, if they can fit it in a small case
FelixTech 7th January 2011, 12:01 Quote
I'm sure it can be configured, but not having any buttons to the left of WASD sounds like a terrible idea. Shift, Ctrl and Tab are amongst my most highly prized buttons!
Steelez 7th January 2011, 12:33 Quote
Shows it with a wireless mouse in the video, built in bluetooth?

I imagine you'd use the mouse when you had a bit of room and were gaming and the touch screen would let you navigate the device for when you were just watching movies etc.
Kaiwan 7th January 2011, 12:43 Quote
It looks like a really cool idea. It seems like you can customise the keys so you can still have the keys you want. Just the specs need looking into.
perplekks45 7th January 2011, 13:39 Quote
If the animation in the video is properly scaled that thing is TINY! Why would I want to play ANY PC game on a screen maybe as big as the Samsung Galaxy Tab? :| I can see this used like Android/iOS based phones, judging purely by screen size.

Oh, one problem I see with the keyboard (unless it really IS that small) is where you would rest your hand? I mean, you have to put down the base of your palm somewhere, right? But will the keyboard being touch-sensitive I'd be scared to accidentally press the bottom row of keys by putting my hand down on it.

Also... watch the video, it's hilariously bad. ;)
Xtrafresh 7th January 2011, 14:20 Quote
what? Why are they all talking so slowly? Are they afraid we don't understand it?

It's a nice piece of design, and a nice idea, but i honestly can't think of any scenario where i would want one. Play anything serious, and it's too small, play anything casual, and it's too overdesigned, and mileas and miles behind any old iPhone.
Hamfunk 7th January 2011, 14:40 Quote
The CEO is like a fast-show character! Brilliant!
Yslen 7th January 2011, 17:39 Quote
Make this with a fusion APU and you're sorted. As it is this is just a fancy looking netbook, it has zero gaming performance.
docodine 7th January 2011, 18:33 Quote
This = Panasonic Jungle?
IvanIvanovich 7th January 2011, 19:29 Quote
no interest in the netbook, but a stand alone keyboard like that might. provided it had standard size keys and some tactility.
ZortB 7th January 2011, 20:36 Quote
Not sure about it as a netbook but as a keyboard, it would be intresting.
ssj12 7th January 2011, 20:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by perplekks45
If the animation in the video is properly scaled that thing is TINY! Why would I want to play ANY PC game on a screen maybe as big as the Samsung Galaxy Tab? :| I can see this used like Android/iOS based phones, judging purely by screen size.

Oh, one problem I see with the keyboard (unless it really IS that small) is where you would rest your hand? I mean, you have to put down the base of your palm somewhere, right? But will the keyboard being touch-sensitive I'd be scared to accidentally press the bottom row of keys by putting my hand down on it.

Also... watch the video, it's hilariously bad. ;)

Its called making PC gaming portable like the console manufacturers made console gaming portable.
kzinti1 7th January 2011, 22:15 Quote
Unlike most of you, I actually know very little about it and am quite willing to take a wait and see attitude instead of flaming what may turn out to be a great product.
Panomama 7th January 2011, 22:17 Quote
I really want one of these - Just hope the price wont be too high..
jrs77 7th January 2011, 23:55 Quote
As I've said in another tghread about this piece of hardware allready...

Any gaming-device like the G13 or the like is thousand times better suited for gaming then this rubbish POS. And why should I buy something like this instead of a gaming-notebook?

Sorry, bit as a input-device it's failing becuase of it's high latency, and for gaming it fails because of it's crap hardware.
felipemorse 8th January 2011, 00:37 Quote
Probably these new AMD Fusion's APUs for netbooks and notebooks are a good match with this specific concept.
Panomama 8th January 2011, 13:25 Quote
VBMpAand8mE
frontline 8th January 2011, 16:04 Quote
Netbook sized gaming is probably going to be one of the successes of 2011, but probably not with an Atom CPU.

Alienware's M11X was a great concept, but suffered from inflated prices. I'd be interested in something similar with a dual/quad core CPU and mid range graphics capability - as long as you were guaranteed regular driver updates (which many laptop GPU's lack).

This product just seems to be aimed at WOW addicts who don't like to get out of bed.
Nexxo 8th January 2011, 17:48 Quote
Gosh, a portable device designed around a low-power CPU with an OS and interface geared to specific applications, which are downloaded through a closed-garden purchasing system. It's almost like, like... an iPad. :D
metarinka 9th January 2011, 11:51 Quote
If they made a full sized keyboard like that at a reasonable price I would buy one in a hurry. The optimus was soo good safe for the price tag. This seems a little more straight forward just putting one screen under all the keys.

That's great for every piece of productivity software not just gaming.
Telltale Boy 9th January 2011, 19:48 Quote
I agree with what people have been saying about the keyboard, but for me it would depend a lot on the feel of it. From the video the keys look pretty glassy and like laptop keys. That's pretty much a no-go for me.
ssj12 9th January 2011, 19:57 Quote
website says concept design. Probably not final spec. Could use say a Sandy Bridge based Atom in the end which wouldn't be the worst.
Ahadihunter1 28th January 2011, 02:32 Quote
hmmm..after all that gosmacking namemaking of their rescent products i was wondering if this was "Razer Charcarcarticus boomer" lol ...
Ahadihunter1 28th January 2011, 02:37 Quote
Oh by the way if you focus nicely the Razor mark, has the impression of 666...
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