The presentation of the new Intel processors with Radeon RX Vega M chips raises an interesting alternative for small format PCs, laptops and convertibles, and those responsible for Intel have wanted to demonstrate what is possible to do with these SoCs.
They have done it with the new prototypes of the Intel NUC, which adopt a very small format for a traditional desktop PC but take advantage of these chips offer hardware benefits and really promising features. This reference design could soon be used by manufacturers who have here an example of how far you can get with these new solutions.
A lot of power in very little volume
The presented prototypes, codenamed “Hades Canyon”, are the NUC8i7HVK and NUC8i7HNK, which share specifications except for one detail: the first is the most powerful and has an Intel Core i7-8809G, while the second has a Intel Core i7-8705G somewhat reduced in the performance of its graphics.
While the first of these processors has a Radeon RX Vega M GH with a power of up to 3.7 TFLOPS, the second is based on the Radeon RX Vega M GL that reaches 2.6 TFLOPS maximum.
These models are somewhat wider and taller than the NUC “Skull Canyon” that was introduced in 2016, but these new chips and those CPUs (which work at 3.1 GHz as standard but can reach 4.2 GHz with the Turbo activated ) represent a very important qualitative leap with respect to previous models.
More compact, and still very powerful
The gain in volume (33 liters against the 1.2 of the NUC), and consumption (more than 400W plus the 210 W of the other components compared to 230 W + 100 of the NUC and its graph) adds to that advantage to be able to take it anywhere easily if we need it.
In fact, when comparing these teams with two teams of previous generations, the differences were obvious both in general purpose and creative tasks and in the purely graphic section, as can be seen in the image.
To these benefits are added the rest of hardware specifications that complete the equipment. In the field of connectivity we are especially well served, because on one of the sides we have two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 3 interface, two gigabit Ethernet connections, two Mini Display Port, four USB 3.1 ports, and HDMI connectors and headphones.
To this we add the front ones: an additional USB-C port, another USB 3.0, another USB for charging, a more HDMI port, another headphone jack and even an SDXC slot. And inside, even more options for USB connectors and two slots for SSD M.2 drives.
Availability and price of the new Intel NUC
As usual, Intel sells this equipment “raw” and with the basic configuration (processor and little else) for you to add components such as memory and storage. The prices of the NUC8i7HNK and NUC8i7HVK are of 799 and 999 dollars, and in Intel they affirm that they will be available during the spring of 2018.
Not only that: as we said, are an example of how far you can get in the field of small-format PCs with these new chips that combine the latest Intel processors with graphics AMD Radeon RX Vega M.