This unit is a couple years old now but there seems to be little information on a couple key components of it going forward.
1 - What are compatible fan replacements for the 2 top 120mm fans? They appear to use some type of custom 5 pin connection. These fans eventually die and Razer needs to provide direct replacements or compatible options.
2 - The intel NUC platform is supposedly all about modularity. The NUC 9 is now long in the tooth. Razer needs to provide information to compatible NUC upgrades whether that may be 10,11,12,13 NUC compute elements.
I’ve seen a few questions like this posted over the last couple years and basically no official Razer response. I really like the unit and want to be able to keep it going with replacement parts and upgrade path.
I finally did it and picked up one NUC12EDBi9 from Newegg. The NUC came with the 12th gen i9, no drives, and no RAM. To save money, my original plan was to pull the SSDs and RAM from old NUC but decided to buy new because they were on sale. Samsung 980 Pro 2 TB (without heatsink because I wasn’t sure it would fit) and Gskill DDR4 3200 64 GB. You can’t imagine how much better Stardew Valley looks! Then I fired up Cyberpunk 2077 and that also looked better.
I only looked at the case fans so I could dust them. I didn’t notice the brand or any other information.
The old NUC was not very difficult to remove. The connections on the top of the NUC took me a moment to figure out. I just wasn’t pulling hard enough so used some small pliers to help.
The old NUC had an almost paper thin SATA cable running to the original 2.5 SSD. The new NUC does not seem to support that connection type which also helped me decide to just buy a new M.2 storage.
The old NUC had some wires plugged into pins in the top front of the board which are missing from the new NUC. I thought, at first, incorrectly, it was for the Tomahawk case lighting so was expecting to lose control of that feature but that wasn’t what happened. The Razer Synapse app can still control the case lighting. I’ll need to open it back up to see if I can figure out for sure what those pins are for.
The new NUC has a built in thermal solution for the M.2 slots on the CPU side so I hope getting the drive without the heatsink works out.
Having to upgrade so soon after purchase was unfortunate but not unexpected. It almost made me not buy the Tomahawk in the first place. I noticed the 13 gen NUC is a bit more different in size when compared to the 9th and 12th gens. The guts of the Tomahawk don’t leave much room for large changes. So far, it is working very well and I’m happy with the performance increase. In a few years I’ll see if it can be upgraded again. In the meantime, the GPU can be upgraded from the one that came with the PC. I haven’t looked into replacing the PSU but that might need to happen eventually.
Thanks for that. Good to know a 12th gen update is possible. The wires on top of the compute element are for the Wi-Fi radio’s I believe. I did end up inquiring with Razer support directly on top fan options. Their answer is that they are proprietary, not available separately, and if they die the whole unit has to be sent in to Razer for repair which is nuts.
I finally did it and picked up one NUC12EDBi9 from Newegg. The NUC came with the 12th gen i9, no drives, and no RAM.
Did you replace the NUC board element too? If you did not, are you stuck with a PCIe Gen 3 connection to the GPU? I’m about to do the same thing myself, and need to know if I should buy the board element while I’m at it.