Intel’s tiny desktop PC solution is getting bigger to accomodate graphics cards, but also to help cool a Xeon E or Core i7 vPro chip.
If you like the idea of the tiny NUC barebones desktop PC, but want more performance and the option of adding a graphics card, Intel looks set to deliver exactly that with its next-generation Quartz Canyon NUC.
As you can see, the brochure advertises a new NUC which runs either an 8-core Xeon E or a 9th generation Core i7 vPro processor. The case is larger not only to allow these higher performance chips to be cooled, but also because Intel is allowing the addition of a graphics card. Although the brochure states “high-end desktop graphics cards” will be supported, the 500W power supply will limit the choice somewhat.
Other features the leaked brochure gives away include dual Thunderbolt and dual Ethernet ports as well as support for Intel’s Optane memory and ECC RAM. Wireless connectivity is catered for by Intel’s Wi-Fi 6 AX200.
Squeezing an octa-core processor with either eight or 16 threads into such a small case could prove every popular with a wide range of users. Office environments working with graphically intensive assets, for example CAD, or even eSports gamers who want a high-performance desktop that’s very easy to carry around may show an interest.
We don’t know when this Quartz Canyon NUC will appear, but it could be before the end of the year. There’s also an opportunity for a company such as Gigabyte who sells the NUC-like Brix range to offer its own take on the Xeon NUC if Quartz Canyon proves popular.