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Alder Lake and Arc Amalgamate in NUC12 Fanatic

Intel formally unveiled the ultimate member of their Alder Lake-based NUC12 household earlier this week. The NUC12 Fanatic (just like the three earlier Fanatic NUCs) caters to the gaming / creators market on the lookout for a small form-factor machine with a discrete GPU.

As a refresher, Intel created the NUC Fanatic class again in 2016 with the introduction of the Cranium Canyon NUC (NUC6i7KYK). With a 4″ x 5″ motherboard, it had a barely bigger footprint in comparison with the standard NUCs. Nevertheless, the elevated measurement allowed the incorporation of a 45W TDP processor with elevated graphics flex. The second technology Hades Canyon moved to a barely bigger board (5.5″ x 8″), whereas retaining the economic design of the Cranium Canyon NUC. It used the Kaby Lake-G processors with a Kaby Lake processor and an AMD GPU packaged collectively (with a complete TDP funds between 65W and 100W). The NUC11 Fanatic (Phantom Canyon) went for a extra conventional gaming notebook-type structure with a Tiger Lake-U Core i7-1165G7 and a NVIDIA RTX 2060 laptop computer GPU.

The NUC12 Fanatic retains an analogous structure. The important thing distinction lies in the truth that that is first NUC to make the most of Intel’s Arc discrete GPU. The specs of the GPU are far more highly effective than the NVIDIA RTX2060, and this has resulted in a redesign of the cooling answer in addition to the chassis dimensions in comparison with the NUC11 Fanatic.

Just like the Phantom Canyon household, Serpent Canyon can even are available in two varieties – a barebones model, and one other with a 1TB SSD / 16GB of DDR4-3200 RAM / Home windows 11 House pre-installed. The SKUs make the most of the Intel Core i7-12700H pocket book processor and the Intel Arc A770M discrete GPU with 16GB of VRAM.

The NUC12 Fanatic sports activities a wealthy set of I/Os. There are two Thunderbolt 4 ports (one within the entrance and one within the rear) that additionally carry the show output from the Intel Iris Xe Graphics within the Core i7-12700H. Two USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A ports and a SDXC UHS-II slot, together with an audio jack and a quad-microphone array spherical out the entrance panel. On the rear, we have now an audio output jack (supporting TOSLINK), a single 2.5 Gbps LAN port, 4 USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A ports (with a hub chip behind), and the show outputs (1x HDMI 2.1 4Kp60 and 2x Show Port 2.0 (1.4 licensed)) from the Intel Arc A770M.

The desk under compares the specs of the flagships within the final three generations of Fanatic NUCs.

Intel Fanatic NUCs
Mannequin Serpent Canyon

Phantom Canyon

Hades Canyon

CPU Intel Core i7-12700H

Alder Lake, 6P + 8E / 20T

4.7 GHz (P) / 3.5 GHz (E)

45W TDP (As much as 115W)
Intel Core i7-1165G7

Tiger Lake-U, 4C/8T

2.8 – 4.7 GHz

Intel Core i7-8809G

Kaby Lake, 4C/8T

3.1 – 4.2 GHz

100W Bundle TDP
GPU Intel® Intel Arc A770M 16GB GDDR6 @ 1.65 GHz (Discrete) NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 6GB GDDR6 (N18E-G1-B Pocket book Class 115W) @ 1.285 GHz (Discrete)

Intel® Iris® Xe Graphics (96EU) @ 1.3 GHz (Built-in / On-Die)
Radeon RX Vega M GH 4GB HBM2 @ 1.19 GHz (Discrete / On-Bundle)

Intel® HD Graphics 630 @ 1.1 GHz (Built-in / On-Die)
Reminiscence 2x DDR4-3200 SODIMMs

1.2V, 64GB max.
2x DDR4-2400+ SODIMMs

1.2V, 32GB max.
Motherboard 7″ x 8″(Customized) 5.5″ x 8″ (Customized)
Storage 2x M.2 22×80 (key M) PCIe 4.0 x4 NVMe SSD (CPU-attached)

1x M.2 22×80 (key M) SATA3 or PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe SSD (by way of PCH)
1x M.2 22×80/110 (key M) PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe/AHCI SSD

1x M.2 2280 (key M) SATA3 or PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe/AHCI SSD
2x M.2 22×42/80 (key M) SATA3 or PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe/AHCI SSD
I/O Ports 2x Thunderbolt 4 Quick-Charging (entrance + rear)

1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A (entrance)

1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A Quick-Charging (entrance)

4x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A (rear)

1x SDXC UHS-II Card Slot (entrance)

CIR (entrance)

1x SATA III Energy + Information Inner Header

2x USB 2.0 Inner Header
2x Thunderbolt 3 (rear)

4x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Sort-A (rear)

1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A (entrance)

1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-C (entrance)

1x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Sort-A Quick-Charging (entrance)

1x SDXC UHS-I Card Slot (entrance)

CIR (entrance)

1x SATA III Energy + Information Inner Header

2x USB 2.0 Inner Header
Networking Intel Killer Wi-Fi 6E AX1690i

(2×2 802.11ax Wi-Fi inc. 6 GHz + Bluetooth 5.2 module)

1 × 2.5 GbE ports (Intel I225-LM)
Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201

(2×2 802.11ax Wi-Fi + Bluetooth 5.1 module)

1 × 2.5 GbE port (Intel I225-LM)
Intel Twin Band Wi-fi-AC 8265

(2×2 802.11ac Wi-Fi + Bluetooth 4.2 module)

2 × GbE ports (Intel I219-LM + Intel I210-AT)
Show Outputs 2x DP 2.0 (1.4 licensed) (by way of Thunderbolt 4 Sort-C, iGPU)

1x HDMI 2.1 (as much as 4Kp60) (rear, dGPU)

2x DP 2.0 (1.4 licensed, dGPU)
2x DP 1.4a (by way of Thunderbolt 4 Sort-C ports, iGPU Show Pipe)

1x mini-DP 1.4a (rear, dGPU, as much as 8Kp60, MST)

1x HDMI 2.0b (rear, dGPU, as much as 4Kp60)
1x HDMI 2.0a (entrance, dGPU)

1x HDMI 2.0a (rear, dGPU)

2x mini-DP 1.3 (rear, dGPU)

2x DP 1.3 (by way of Thunderbolt 3 Sort-C ports, dGPU)
Audio 7.1 digital (over HDMI and DisplayPort)

L+R+mic (entrance)

L+R+TOSLINK (rear)
Audio Codec Realtek ALC274 Realtek ALC700
Enclosure Steel and plastic

Kensington lock with base safety
Energy Provide 330W (19V @ 16.9A) Adapter 230W (19V @ 12.1A) Adapter
Dimensions 230mm x 180mm x 60mm / 2.5L 221mm x 142mm x 42mm / 1.3L 221mm x 142mm x 39mm / 1.2L
Miscellaneous Options Vertical stand included Vertical stand and VESA mount included VESA mount included
Lid with customizable RGB LED illumination behind user-replaceable masks

CEC assist for HDMI ports

Entrance-panel CIR assist for IR remotes

Standing LEDs in entrance panel

Beam-forming microphone array

3-year guarantee

The block diagram under provides some insights into the design of the system in relation to the I/O capabilities.

Regardless of the Arc A770M supporting a PCIe 4.0 x16 hyperlink to the host processor, the Serpent Canyon configuration retains the connection at x8. Each PCIe 4.0 M.2 2280 slots are CPU-attached ones. The SD card slot is linked by way of a PCIe lane as a substitute of USB – this could permit most doable efficiency for various SD playing cards. Whereas the official specs point out that the slot is UHS-II, the technical product specs doc additionally signifies SD Specific assist. This relies on the precise SD controller getting used within the board, and we have now reached out to Intel for clarification. Three of the 4 Sort-A ports within the rear are enabled by a 1:4 Gen 2 hub, which isn’t very best by way of bandwidth sharing. Nevertheless, the supply of further ports is all the time welcome. On the show entrance, the entrance Thunderbolt 4 port can assist a show bandwidth of round 17 Gbps, whereas the rear port can assist as much as 35 Gbps.  With multi-stream assist on the Sort-C port, the system can drive a complete of six diifferent shows – 5 at 4Kp144 (DP/Alt-DP) and one at 4Kp60 (HDMI). Two 8Kp60 shows may also be pushed utilizing a multi-cable / -port answer.

Intel additionally offered a whole teardown image together with the press launch. The mixed cooling answer for the CPU and dGPU with the thermal shroud and warmth pipes is clearly seen. Whether or not this answer aids in / allows efficiency tuning by way of the Intel Deep Link Dynamic Power Share characteristic stays to be seen in hands-on analysis.

General, the Serpent Canyon NUC is a big step-up for Intel. Shifting to a completely in-house answer for each the CPU and dGPU in a small form-factor moveable machine will allow the corporate to realize a bigger share of the gaming / creator methods / eSports whole addressable market. Primarily based on paper specs, the extent of integration and gaming prowess within the NUC12 Fanatic ought to be properly past what has historically been doable on this kind issue. On the pricing entrance, the Mini-PC model with pre-installed OS will are available in at $1350, whereas the barebones model may be bought for $1180 later this month. These numbers roughly observe the introductory pricing for previous-generation Fanatic NUCs.

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