Razer’s CEO on Project Christine: “The PC market doesn’t reward innovation”

Razer Project Christine

By on March 25, 2014 at 3:40 pm

According to Min-Liang Tan, the biggest problem facing getting the modular, open-architecture Project Christine off the ground is that major PC hardware manufacturers simply don’t want to be a part of it.

“The problem is the PC market, at this point of time, just doesn’t reward innovation. It rewards commoditization,” said Tan to Polygon. “It rewards mediocre, shitty project because it’s become this vicious cycle of sorts. Anyone who tries to innovate, like for Christine, everybody wants it, but they all want it to be immediately at commodity pricing.”

“And that’s the thing, we’re trying to encourage the rest of the OEMs, and we’re literally telling them, ‘Look, we’re not going to make a cent out of this. We just want to be part of an ecosystem; we’re happy to open this up to everyone to do that.’”

Tan went on to say that he was even willing to share design schematics with third parties for no cost, just to get the system going.

“It’s got to be open. It’s got to be stuff that you can swap out modules and stuff like that because we won’t always have the best, for example, say, sound module.”

“So, I believe that Christine, to be perfect, the utopian ideal is really an entirely open system, and at least, I’m not saying that every OEM should take on, immediately, but I think at least three to five OEMs together, we could make a huge difference to the entire PC landscape.”

34 comments (Leave your own)

Just seems needlessly proprietary and costly, really, I see no significant market for something like this.

 

hobomaster,

Yeah pretty much. Sounds more like sour grapes because nobody wants to drop everything and instantly conform to Razer’s way of thinking.

 

Proprietary? Didn’t he say he was going to give the schematics out for free, more in the sense of open source? I could have mis-read that though. As for a modular system, hell yeah there’s a market for it. Ultimate plug and play man. It’s be perfect 1st step into migrating consolers over to glorious PC gaming.

 

‘Look, we’re not going to make a cent out of this. We just want to be part of an ecosystem; we’re happy to open this up to everyone to do that.’

O’rry?

Anyway, how modular is the motherboard itself in Christine? Current PCs are somewhat modular already so long as you can operate a screwdriver.

But I do think this is a great marketing idea. It fits with the current trend of dumbing everything right down to cater to the lowest common denominator — mass marketing.

 

At least they’re trying. No matter what the end goal, They’ll have my respect for trying to push the boundaries and try new things, or different things.

 

I remember considering the modular-esque tower from ThermalTake when building my current rig. Looked awesome and I could afford the bloated price… but it just didn’t look practical in terms of maximum airflow/cooling.

Consoles overheat and melt, you lose what? Some save games and installed game data? Lose a PC and you lose work files, personal files, etc ontop of games.

Modular looks too much like a gimmick right now

 

kinkykel: At least they’re trying. No matter what the end goal, They’ll have my respect for trying to push the boundaries and try new things, or different things.

Oh they’re trying…. trying to maximize profits using gimicky bullshit that appeals to rich kids.

Christine is a terrible project, they’re taking something that works and making it more expensive with no real benefits gained in return. The whole Steambox idea 100% went to shit the instant it was opened up to any manufacturer… it went from “cheap, small pc to compete with consoles” to “lets make overpriced shit with steambox stickers on it”.

 

kinkykel,

It’s true, he was talking up the openness of the system. However we’re only hearing his half of the story. It’s possible said big manufacturers looked at the setup, went “that just looks too impractical for these logical reasons here” and he just decided to rant on about “oh their crushing innovation how dare they?”

 

nekosan,

All right, I give up. I’m walking away.

 

Too bad. Project Christine could’ve been a great companion for Steam machines.

 

I think it looks kind of cool. I’d definitely look at it if my preferred manufacturers were on board.

Even having different length modules with different coloured lights would allow a huge amount of external customisation, not to mention solving the issue of not being able to fit stuff in a case when they increase the size of a component.

Sure there’d be a premium, but if this “case” would last me as long as 3 regular cases, I’d be more than happy to pay it. Especially with lots of sweet LEDs on it.

 

hobomaster,

vcatkiller,

^ what they said

 

stuff that you can swap out modules and stuff like that because we won’t always have the best, for example, say, sound module

Isn’t that already the case, its a piece of cake swapping out/ adding in a sound card. Sounds like reinventing the wheel to me.
Also being so modular would be hard to manage things like airflow/ chucking on water cooling etc. To the people that would spend the money they are expecting its pointless.

 

But my PC is already modular.

 

matty,

But does it look like it’s modular from outside the case?

 

matty:
But my PC is already modular.

But it’s not mineral oil cooled…

 

I cannot afford innovation :(…

 
James Pinnell

I don’t see why people are shitting on this idea – just because the status quo is the status quo, why can’t we improve it? Why can’t we make PC gaming more accessible and simpler?

Making a PC isn’t that easy for everyone, and come on guys, how much do you sigh and bitch when you have to pull everything apart for an hour to replace your motherboard, or when the clips break on your CPU fan, or one of the other zillion reasons fucking around with hardware sucks when you are tired or just want to get things working.

Don’t get me started on cable management.

 

James Pinnell: Why can’t we make PC gaming more accessible and simpler?

We could and this would definitely do that, though the people that want it simpler and easy are also the ones wanting it at “commodity” prices. (yes my opinion)

I can’t see how you would work high performance gear in a design like that, and early adopters are always the one with an eye to performance. If they can show how you would run an overclocked sli setup with this that’s great. If not they cant really complain about people wanting it at commodity prices and a general issue of not getting picked up by those early adopters.

Innovations is good, reducing capability to make it simpler is something else.

 

James Pinnell:
Making a PC isn’t that easy for everyone, and come on guys, how much do you sigh and bitch when you have to pull everything apart for an hour to replace your motherboard, or when the clips break on your CPU fan, or one of the other zillion reasons fucking around with hardware sucks when you are tired or just want to get things working.

How often do people replace their motherboards? Let’s for arguments sake be extremely conservative and say every year. Is this design worth saving one hour per year?

 
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