Corsair One Pro i180
There’s no messing with this compact workstation.
IT’S RARE THAT WE fall head-over-heels in love with a pre-built system like this. And yet, as we look at the Corsair One Pro, silently flashing its subtle RGB front plate on our test bench, we can’t help but feel a pang of guilty longing. Corsair’s newest and best PC yet is like a childhood crush; cool and attractive on the outside, but an absolute monster on the inside, just waiting to be unleashed. Middle school was a tough time for us, OK?
We’re not joking about the One Pro, though. The i180 model we have in for review is packing some serious heat beneath its burnished metal exterior. For starters, our unit has an MSI-branded RTX 2080 Ti GPU, making short work of 4K gaming. The One Pro can even feed four 4K monitors simultaneously. Processor-wise, we’ve got a 24-thread Intel Core i9-9920X mounted on an X299E motherboard, with 32GB of RAM at 2,666MHz. In other words, this is a beast of a machine. You wouldn’t know from looking at it, though. The One Pro’s 12-liter case is elegant yet minimalistic, consisting primarily of bead-blasted aluminum with a gray matt finish, and triangle-patterned ventilation on either side of the tower. It’s an unmistakably sci-fi product, running quietly thanks to its single top-mounted fan. The CPU and GPU are cooled with Corsair’s own AIO units, with radiators mounted on either side of the case. The One Pro runs toasty, but that’s OK; it’s designed to handle the heat. It’s a trade-off: lower volume in exchange for higher temperatures.
One of the One Pro’s most impressive features is the elegant use of space. Cable management is smart throughout, and the ASRock motherboard vertically mounts the boot drive, a 960GB Samsung M.2 SSD, to help with cooling. The 2TB hard drive sits in a small tray beneath the mobo. The graphics card? Oh, it’s plugged into a flexible connector that bends around the motherboard, where it’s mounted against the mobo’s rear side. Genius. The case’s footprint is almost breathtakingly compact, measuring just 7.9 inches long and 6.8 inches wide.
Upgrading isn’t impossible, but would be a worthy trial for any seasoned PC tinkerer. The lid of the case pops off with a release button, and the side panels are easily unscrewed, but from then on it gets much trickier. The motherboard only takes SO-DIMM RAM, which limits upgrade options. Swapping out the CPU or storage shouldn’t cause too much grief, but replacing the GPU is sure to be a demanding process—Corsair warns that doing so will void your warranty, too. In fairness, there should be no need to upgrade a 2080 Ti for quite a while.
In terms of physical interactivity, the One Pro has all you’re likely to need. The rear I/O packs three DisplayPort 1.4 outputs, six USB ports (one of which is a Type-C connector), and two Ethernet ports, as well as the usual selection of 3.5mm jacks. The front I/O is small and simple: a headphone jack, two USB ports, and an HDMI port, specifically for VR headsets. Yes, the One Pro is VR-ready, and it has the graphical power to make VR gaming a smooth experience.
The true judge of this PC is how well it measures up to its intended purpose. This is a workstation PC that will comfortably handle 4K video encoding or high-end rendering work. Our ray-tracing tests resulted in satisfying performance, too; this system won’t struggle with graphically demanding titles. So, it’s amazing—and has a price tag to match. The One Pro i180 retails at $6,799. No, we’re not crying. It’s just eyeball sweat. Could you build this yourself? Sort of. Some of the components are proprietary tech that you can’t buy online, but we ran the numbers: A build with comparable internal hardware would likely cost you barely over half the i180’s price tag. Yes, that’s a significant price disparity, but good luck creating a build this sleek and compact.
Processor: Intel Core i9-9920X
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
RAM: 32GB (4x 8GB) Corsair Vengeance SO-DIMM @ 2,666MT/s
Motherboard: ASRock X299E-ITX/ac
Primary Storage: 960GB Samsung PM981 NVMe M.2 SSD
Additional Storage: 2TB Seagate ST2000LM015 Barracuda SATA HDD
Cooling Solution: Corsair One AIO cooling
PSU: Corsair SF750
Case: Corsair gray aluminum
Warranty: Two yearsPlus:
Powerful graphics; inspired use of internal space; runs quietly; looks great.Minus
: Brutal price point; upgrading isn’t exactly easy.Price: