Updated on January 2, 2014
Intel latest Next Unit of Computing (NUC) is a tiny, compact powerhouse capable of running your home theater system and more. It comes packed with Intel’s latest 4th generation Core i3 or Core i5 processors. These 4th gen processors come with integrated Intel HD graphics. The i5-4250U comes with the Intel Graphics HD 5000, not the best but still quite capable. It still supports HD video playback and video conversion and sharing. The processors will not be upgradeable because it is soldered onto the motherboard. It also doesn’t come with Intel’s VPro Technology – embedded hardware-based security and manageability that some users may seek.
4th Generation Intel NUC Key Features:
Table of Contents
4.6 x 4×4 x 1.4 inches
Intel Quick Sync Video
-Dedicated media processing in 4th generation Intel Core processors
Intel Rapid Start Technology
-Allows systems to recover from sleep mode in less than 6 seconds
Intel Smart Connect Technology
-Automatically updates email, applications and social networks even when the computer is in sleep mode
4 USB 3.0 ports
4 power cord options
1 Mini HDMI port
1 Mini DisplayPort
1/8-inch audio-headset jack
Infrared Sensor on Front Panel
The Intel NUC is a barebone kit. It does not come with memory (RAM) or storage device. But the motherboard has two SO-DIMM slots and can address up to 16GB of DDR3L/1333 or DDR3L/1600 memory (L is for low power). It has one half-length PCIe mini slot which you can use to connect an mSATA solid-state drive. It also has one full-length PCIe mini slot which can be used for an internal Wi-Fi adapter. It does come with an integrated Wi-Fi antenna in the enclosure, a heat sink and fan, and an external power brick (previously not shipped with the first generation Intel NUC).
This is an excellent PC for its size and efficiency. However, the cost for some to complete this barebone kit may turn away some of its target audience. This is Intel’s way of showing the way forward with mini PC’s.