Intel talked a little about its new high-end Core i7 NUC mini PC at CES earlier this year, but today at GDC the company revealed what the final model will look like along with its specs, release date, and cost.
The new NUC6i7KYK, codenamed “Skull Canyon,” includes a 2.6GHz (3.5GHz Turbo) 45W quad-core Core i7-6770HQ—not the fastest Skylake laptop chip that Intel can sell you, but definitely one of the fastest. The other main draws are the Iris Pro 580 GPU, which includes 78 of Intel’s graphics execution units and a 128MB eDRAM cache (compared to 48EUs and 64MB of eDRAM in the standard Core i5 NUC we just reviewed), and the Thunderbolt 3 port which also supports full USB 3.1 gen 2 transfer speeds of 10Gbps. It takes DDR4 memory, M.2 SATA and PCI Express SSDs, and comes with a built-in Intel 8260 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth adapter, just like the Core i5 NUC.
It’s got a good port selection, including a full-size HDMI 2.0 port, a mini DisplayPort 1.2 output, four USB 3.0 ports, a headphone jack, an SD card slot, a gigabit LAN port, and an IR sensor for use with remote controls. The HDMI 2.0 port ought to make some HTPC fans happy, since the standard NUCs are still stuck on version 1.4 and can’t view HDCP 2.2-protected content. And this is all in addition to the aforementioned Thunderbolt 3 port; this will be the first NUC since the original to support Thunderbolt, which opens up possibilities for external graphics cards down the line.
The standard NUCs have all looked more or less the same, port layout notwithstanding, but the Skull Canyon version is different. It’s wider and flatter (it measures 216 by 116 by 23mm), and its default lid comes with a big ol’ skull carved on it if you want everyone who sees it to know how cool you are. If you don’t like it, don’t worry, a plan matte black lid is included and swappable third-party lids are supported.
Like all NUCs, you’ll need to bring your own RAM, OS, and storage to the new NUC. The barebones model will cost around $650, and Intel claims that a “typical build with 16GB memory, 256GB SSD, and Windows 10 is estimated at $999.” You’ll be able to pre-order it on Newegg in April and it begins shipping in May.
Mar 16, 2016
Intel News Fact Sheet