A look at Intel’s ‘Ghost Canyon’ NUC, a modular desktop gaming PC

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Intel has released the latest version of its Next Unit of Computing (NUC) lineup at CES 2020. The Intel NUC 9 Extreme Kit (and Compute Element) or the Ghost Canyon NUC brings a welcome modular upgrade from the previous version.

Although the NUC 9 is bigger than the previous one, it is still a mini-desktop gaming PC. However, it’s big enough to fit a desktop graphics card inside it. And by featuring modularity, it becomes future-proof.

Intel says that the Ghost Canyon is meant for enthusiast and AAA gaming, and also for content creation. It’s capable of supporting an unlocked Intel Core i9 processor (Intel Core i9-9980HK). For ports, it has two Thunderbolt 3, two Intel Gigabit LAN, HDMI 2.0a and four USB 3.1 Gen2 ports and an SDXC card slot. It also supports Intel Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5 with dual built-in antennas. There are two M.2 slots for NVMe storage and support for up to 64 GB of dual-channel RAM.

While Intel will be selling the NUC 9 Extreme this March as a barebones system (read: bring your own OS, memory, storage, and GPU) starting at around $1,050 with a Core i5 module, $1,250 for Core i7, or around $1,700 for the flagship Core i9, it won’t be the only company pushing the idea. Razer and Cooler Master have both confirmed they’ll be selling their own complete turnkey gaming rigs later this year based on the NUC Element module, but with standard SFX power supplies and room for larger graphics cards than Intel’s own box, as well as their very own distinct NUC Element enclosures. You’ll be able to buy Intel’s board separately and stick it into one.

Both Cooler Master and Razer are notable partners because they’re new to the desktop market; Intel’s move means a PC parts vendor can now sell entire computers.

Plus, Intel says other vendors are signing up to sell its own Ghost Canyon box as a complete system as well — and there’s even a second version of the NUC, dubbed Quartz Canyon, that’ll offer Intel Xeon processor modules to businesses that need them.

Source: First Post, TheVerge


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