Usually the PC games are formidable, since they must accommodate high-end equipment but especially their complex systems of refrigeration in order to keep the material at a good temperature. Therefore, being able to play to the maximum on a mini PC and more if it is not even ITX but in NUC format is almost utopian, but with the new generation of these mini PCs, it seems that Intel wants get there.
The new mini PC from Intel, with high-end hardware
In a leaked slide, you can see that the enthusiastic variant of the NUC 12 series, which will be known as the Serpent Canyon, will be the successor to the current NUC 11. The PC will offer two key components: the new hybrid architecture which is Alder Lake and a new internal GPU option in the form of DG2 with Xe-HPG architecture.
The NUC 12 “Serpent Canyon” series will come in three different variants, with the top-of-the-range model equipped with an Intel Core i7 processor and up to 16 GB for graphics dedicated nothing less. A variant with Core i7 and 12 GB of VRAM will follow, and finally a variant with Core i5 and a GPU with 8 GB of memory. The leaked specs for the Xe-HPG DG2 SKUs confirm that there are GPUs with 16, 12, and 8 GB of memory, so that’s what we’re going to end up getting in these next-gen Intel mini PCs.
Now, it isn’t explicitly mentioned what these mini PCs that launch next year will offer in terms of graphics, but it seems pretty clear that DG2 GPUs will be the chosen one given what there is. As for the rest of the specs, it looks like they’ll use 3200 MHz SO-DIMM format DDR4 RAM and with the option to install up to 64 GB dual channel
In terms of I / O, the NUC 12 will be compatible with the unit M.2 PCIe 4.0 and 3.0, Optane Memory M10 / H10 solution, Thunderbolt 4 front and rear ports, Intel 2.5 GbE LAN, Intel Wireless AX411 (Bluetooth 5 + WiFi 6), a total of 6 USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports and 2 USB 2.0 ports (with header internal), plus a 3.5mm audio jack, 7.1ch digital audio, HDMI and DisplayPort. All of this will be powered by an external 19V (330W) power supply.
Finally, on the design side, Intel seems to keep the skull logo that it released with the Skull Canyon years ago, and it will also have configurable RGB lighting. A vertical support will be included and the hardware will be guaranteed for 3 years, but for the moment the price and the release date are not known.