Coffee Lake i3 NUC Review (NUC8i3BEH)
The Coffee Lake NUC a.k.a. the Bean Canyon NUC has been coming for a long time. The development versions have been out almost half a year ago as I spoke to a SW developer who had had one since early summer. Finally, in October the Coffee Lake i3, i5 and i7 NUCs have hit the shelves. We start by looking at the Coffee Lake i3 NUC which sits on the low end of the range. What I have here is the NUC8i3BEH model, but there’s also a slightly more compact unit (case height is lower) without the 2.5″ SATA drive slot. That one goes with the product name NUC8i3BEK.
- Intel Core i3-8109U CPU (Coffee Lake), dual-core with hyperthreading, up to 3.60 GHz, 28W TDP
- Integrated Intel Iris Plus Graphics 655 GPU, up to 1.05 GHz, 128 MB eDRAM
- RAM: 2x DDR4-2400 SO-DIMM, 1.2 volt, 32 GB max.
- SSD: 1x 22×80 (22×42 also supported) M.2 SSD slots for SATA or NVMe SSD
- HDMI 2.0a port, 4k support with HDR
- USB Type-C port that provides USB 3.1 Gen2 (10 Gbps), Thunderbolt 3 and DisplayPort 1.2 capabilities
- 4 USB 3.1 Type-A (the normal one) ports (2 front, 2 rear)
- Intel gigabit Ethernet Adapter
- Intel Wireless-AC 9560 WiFi adapter with Bluetooth 5.0
- 3.5 mm front audio jack for stereo + microphone
- Consumer infrared receiver
- Dual microphone array
- SDXC card reader
- Dimensions: 117 mm x 112 mm x 51 mm (4.6″ x 4.4″ x 2.0″)
- 90W power adapter
Full technical product specifications are available as PDF.
Intel’s product brief is available here as PDF.
The Coffee Lake NUC is delivered as a barebones unit. This means there’s no operating system, memory or an SSD drive installed. You’ll need to buy them separately and install yourself or buy from a vendor that does it for you. It’s not that difficult to install the components yourself though. You will need to bring a DDR4 SODIMM memory module or actually ideally two of them for multichannel operation. Furthermore you’ll need some form of storage. The NUC8i3BEH model has a slot for a 2.5″ SATA drive, whereas the more compact NUC8i3BEK model does not. Both models have an M.2 slot that can be used with NVMe or SATA SSD drives. On NUC8i3BEH you can even install both an M.2 and a SATA drive.
In addition to the NUC itself, inside the box you’ll find a the power brick, a power cable, a VESA mounting plate, some screws for the VESA mount, quick start brochures and advertisement material as well as an Intel inside sticker.
The connectivity on this NUC is what we’ve seen before. The front panel has two USB ports, out of which one is charging-capable and line-out/headphone connector. In addition to these ports there’s also the power button, microphone array and an infrared receiver.
Both sides of the NUC now feature a mesh vent for air intake. On the left side there’s also a slot for SDXC card and the Kensington lock.
The back panel has the usual connectors. There’s a 19V DC jack, a HDMI 2.0a connector, gigabit Ethernet port, two USB 3.1 Type-A ports and a single USB Type-C port.
In order to assemble your NUC you’ll the RAM and an SSD drive as I mentioned. You could also use a conventional 2.5″ hard drive, but maybe don’t. Just don’t.
You’ll need to start by removing the bottom cover by unscrewing the 4 screws on the bottom plate. The bottom plate also houses the slot for the 2.5″ drive. When you have the bottom cover out of the way, you can insert your RAM into the slots as well as the drive. That’s all you need to do. I plugged in my trusty 2×4 GB HyperX DDR4-2400 CL14 (HX424S14IBK2/8 is the exact model and it costs Price not available on Amazon) in and used a relatively inexpensive AData XPG SX7000 NVMe M.2 SSD drive as well. Those RAM modules have probably been in more NUCs than I can recount!
Mainboard and Cooling
Normally you don’t need to detach the mainboard from the case but I wanted to do so, as I wanted to see the updated cooling solution on the other side of the mainboard.
As you can see, on the other side there’s a much larger diameter fan (80 mm in this NUC) than previously was used on the Core NUCs. This is good news because large fans can move more air without spinning so fast. This in turn means less noise and noise is what some might remember the previous generation Kaby Lake NUCs from.
I detached the fan to find the copper heat pipe under the fan.
And finally you’ll find the CPU under the heat pipe. There’s quite a generous amount of cooling paste applied between the CPU and the heat pipe. A bit too much for my liking even, but seems to work ok though.
Finally, if you look close enough you can see the MegaChips MCDP2800 LSPCon chip that converts the internal DisplayPort 1.2 signal into HDMI 2.0a signal. I know this will be a disappointment for some as Intel had some problems with the LSPCon chips a couple of years ago and they did get some bad rep out there. The LSPCon and the GPU in NUC8i3BEH/NUC8i3BEK support HDR. The firmware version of the LSPCon was 1.73.
The BIOS options on this NUC are fairly typical for these units. The fan control options do let you switch off the fan completely if the CPU is not getting too hot. Also, there are limited HDMI CEC features here that allow you to switch on/off the TV or NUC automatically. The above gallery shows you the different pages in the Intel Visual BIOS. BIOS version 0048 was used for this review.
Keep reading for some performance benchmarks!
Good review, I have a friend that got rid of his old desktop computer a month ago and I talked him into getting a NUC instead of getting another desktop. He doesn’t play games, just web browsing/office productivity software and basic use stuff. He wants it to be super fast and last for years to come. I was thinking of having him get the i5 model but do you think he would notice a difference with i7 model? For future proofing I was thinking of i7 but I’m hesitant since I don’t know how loud i7 is compared to i5. We want it to be quiet as possible, was hoping for a review of i7 to see if it gets super loud like previous i7 nuc models.
Thanks for the comment Jason! I haven’t got the i7 yet, but I’ve heard that it’s surprisingly quiet as well. To be honest, I don’t expect much difference between the i5 and the i7 (both are quad core 28W TDP CPUs with the same GPU).
Hi… I am thinking of getting a NUC8i3BEH to be used with a dual boot fedora 31 and Ubuntu … All I use on my pc now is Ubuntu mainly… Need it for email and web surfing and playing the native linux games like minetest , retropie and xonotic… Will the i3 version be quick enough to handle my needs…. plan to use 2 x 8gb ram and a evo 970 m.2 drive…
Thank You for the perfect review.
Thank you for taking the time to leave your comment.
Great review! I’ll make a trip to USA next week and I’m considering buying the i5 beh version for a htpc, but it seems that it isn’t really available. This i3 version would do just fine, according to your tests! Btw, do you know if the i5 beh will be available any time soon?
The i5 model indeed seems to be quite difficult to obtain still. I guess that’ll come next month though. You could always buy the i7 instead. :) That’s readily available on Amazon: https://amzn.to/2POF2D0 (The i5 is also listed there but at a higher price than the i7… go figure).
Thanks for the reply! I believe the ridiculous price for the i5 is just because no one else is selling them! Crazy! The i7 would be way overkill for my needs and the price difference would be almost the cost of a 500 Gb m2 and 8 Gbs of RAM. I just need a tiny HTPC, 4k capable and HD audio passthrough and the NUC units have an unbeatable WAF.
I’ll keep my fingers crossed for the i5 to be available next week at recommended price, otherwise the 8th gen i3, that outperforms the 7th gen i5, will be the one!
Amazon has the slim model NUC8i5BEK ready for shipping at $395: https://amzn.to/2R9Udqt . Of course if you were planning to install a large SATA drive for media that does not work too well… I’ll be getting one later this week, so can get the results out pretty soon. :)
Thank you for testing video playbak. What were the max rpm’s of the fan during max load 52W?
Actually I did not find a way to display the fan speed in Windows. Open Hardware Monitor, Speedfan or Intel Extreme Tuning Utility did not show the fan speed. Not sure what was the issue there as usually it’s been ok with other NUCs. Maybe the fan controller is new and not supported yet…
Have you tried HWiNFO? https://www.hwinfo.com/download.php
Tried right now, no fan speed information there either.
With the AIDA64 Extreme beta http://download.aida64.com/aida64extreme_build_4828_v7htw2bygd.zip you see the rpm’s of the fan.
I have read elsewhere, that with some Megachips type DP converters on-board they were able to get FHD 3D MVC working properly. Not sure if it’s the same chip that Intel have used previously on their -failing- NUC’s, so a test would be nice…
Great review! Exactly what I was looking for so thank you :)
There don’t seem to be any other thorough reviews for these Bean Canyon NUCs yet.
I am definitely going to get one but I live in Japan where they are not available yet so I was thinking to import from Amazon US.
I can’t decide between the i3 or i5 (BEK versions). i3 is dual core but has high base freq. whereas i5 is quad-core but lower base freq. Which would you recommend for my usage (browsing, YouTube videos, htpc, office, programming occasionally)?
i5 seems to be about $100 more expensive compared to the i3. Not sure it’s worth it…
Thanks for the comment! Hard to say really. I see the i5-8259U has a passmark CPU score of 11020 which beats the i3-8109U (score 6246) with a significant margin. So it depends if you really need more power than what the i3 is able to deliver. The i7-8559U coincidentally has a Passmark score of 11994, so not that much more than the i5…
Thanks again. Yeah, the i7 is kinda pointless for me. I guess I’ll go for the i5 as the i3 seems impossible to get right now for me.
The base frequency depends on the TDP and TDP depends on the thermal solution. In BIOS you can enable/disable hyper threading and turbo boost select the number of physical cores change power limits. In other words you can transform i5 in to i3 and even have better efficiency. You have to look at it this way – from the produced chips i5 is just a better silicon than i3.
To the OS i3 looks like 4 core processor. But those cores are logical ones – not as fast as physical. Hyper thread uses unused resources of the physical core. there is a chance that the OS dispatches important work on a slower hyper thread. And if all the resources of the physical core are in use then it becomes hot.
So if your work load is not threaded a lot it is better to disable HT to have best singe thread performance at given frequency (you can restrict it in the OS power plan settings). But on an i3 it is better to have HT enabled. On an i5 if you disable HT i expect you will have better performance at lower power consumption (less noise). And if you leave HT enabled on i5 you will have much better multi threaded performance.
For thermally constrained situations for long multi threaded loads it is better (more efficient) to run at lower frequency on more threads (HT on) because at lower frequency you can have lower voltage and Power = C.F.V.V where C – constant F – frequency V – voltage.
The lower base frequency of the i5 guaranties 28W long term consumption while 8 threads are executing at 100% load.
But if turbo boost and HT are enabled you will have higher power draw, and if you can dissipate it while maintaining CPU Temps below 85 deg C then it is ok (if you didn’t exceed the power and current limits: https://www.anandtech.com/show/13400/intel-9th-gen-core-i9-9900k-i7-9700k-i5-9600k-review/21). Of course to dissipate higher power draw you will have to increase the volume of the air going through the heat sink – rpm of the fan which will lead to higher (and higher piched) fan noise.
i3 base F = 3.00 GHz max Turbo F = 3.60 GHz 4MB L3 cache GPU max F = 1.05 GHz
i5 base F = 2.30 GHz max Turbo F = 3.80 GHz 6MB L3 cache GPU max F = 1.05 GHz
i7 base F = 2.70 GHz max Turbo F = 4.50 GHz 8MB L3 cache GPU max F = 1.20 GHz
So is it worth it? I don’t now.
If you have multithread load then maybe yes.
Is i3 enough for simple desktop use? Yes.
Are these future proof?
After 1 – year they will still work but will look old. 10nm and 7nm chips are expected to have 50% power consumption for the same productivity. TV with HDIM 2.1 are expected and here you don’t have DP 1.4. With HDMI 2.0a you can’t have 3840x2160p at 60 Hz 10bit RGB. You can only have 8 bits with dithering per RGB.
If you buy i3 now and upgrade in 1 year then you must consider reusing some parts. What OS are you using? If only Linux then ok. But if you use Windows then you have to buy it again or buy retail now and later (or in case of bad unit and have to RMA) reuse it. Then on the old PC you can put LibreELEC hopefully HDR will be working by then.
You have to decide.
Wow! Thank you very much for all the info. Very interesting. I didn’t realise you could configure so much in the BIOS.
The i5 seems more versatile so I’ll go for that. I’ll have to consider my usage and tweak the config until I get it how I like.
I will be running Windows 10 Pro (I already have a retail license that I migrate from machine to machine every few years).
Thanks again :)
Glad I can help.
From windows you can use Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility (Intel® XTU)
How does this compare to Zotac ZBOX C Series for HTPC?
Does anyone know if the cooling is the same for the high (beh) and the low (Bek) versions?
Yes, the mainboard is the same and the cooling is part of the mainboard. The only difference is the higher enclosure for the BEH model. The drive bay is on the other side of the mainboard vs. the cooling solution.
Got an 8i5bek and, while I haven’t opened it, the results shown in this review match mine: it’s silent. Much more silent than my nuc5i5ryh i had before that.
Thanks for taking the time and making this extended review. You convinced me to buy the i3 model for a HTPC.
I placed a link to your review on the KODI hardware forum. If you do not want that, please let me know, I’ll remove it then.
Thanks for the comment! It should make a nice HTPC. And thanks for linking to the post as well!
FYI: The score for PassMark CPU performance test for the NUC8i5BEK was 7589. https://www.passmark.com/baselines/V9/display.php?id=109619744937
Interesting. If you look at https://www.passmark.com/baselines/V9/display.php?id=109408257104 or https://www.passmark.com/baselines/V9/display.php?id=109337446203 you’ll see much better figures. I wonder what’s the difference. Hopefully the 7589 result is bogus. :) But yes, I should get a i5 NUC in a couple of days. Will let you guys know.
Can confirm that the i5 will get 11k+ in Passmark CPU test. Just ran it on NUC8i5BEK and the result was indeed 11312. More details later. :)
thank you! hmm…so there must be something wrong in my setup…
1xG.Skill RipJaws SO-DIMM Kit 8GB, DDR4-2400, 1xSamsung SSD 970 EVO 500GB, M.2
Windows 10 prof. 64Bit
Anyone has an idea what’s wrong?
Is the RAM two 4 gig sticks or one 8 gig? I’m thinking if you have dual channel enabled or not… You can check that easily with HWinfo. Also, you could try resetting the BIOS settings to their defaults, just in case.
of course i use 2 DIMMs. Reset BIOS has no effect. I use the recalled Windows 10 1809 17763.1. could it be that? All other benchmarks (eg Cinebench) do not show these deviations.
May be there are differences between runs. At the beginning when the NUC is cold it will use turbo boost more. If you load it for long it will reach high temperature and will go to 30W TDP (LP1). Also if the ambient temperature is high it will happen more quickly.
no, the difference is much to big and I watched the process…no throttling, no high temperatures, nothing. What shold I do, to clarify that?
Single-Core Score: 4773
Multi-Core Score: 16886
and I think that is pretty good.
FWIW, that Geekbench result is in line with what I got on the i5.
:) thank you! you made my day.
Nice review – thank you, Olly!
Thank you for the comment Vyacheslav!
Yes, that is a very big difference and I don’t know the reason so I am glad, that you clarify next time. Thank you!
Hello and thanks for a really nice review
I am thinking about buying a NUC8i5BEH, but i have a question, is it uable with only 2.5″ drive or do you really have to use a m.2 drive?
Hope you have an answer for me
Thanks for the comment Petri! Yes, the NUC8i5BEH has a 2.5″ SATA drive slot and a slot for an M.2 drive. You can use either one or both at the same time.
Thanks very much for the review! It’s great to see the improvements in this generation. I’m in the market for an i5 or i7 – if possible it’d be really good to see the FPS for a few games on those versions for those of us who do some light gaming. Thanks again!
Hi. Thaks for the post. I should like to buy NUC8i3BEH, do you know about SSD NVME (samsung 970 evo) temperatures? I know they worm up easly and the NUC is so tiny.
Well, coincidentally I’ll get a NUC8i5BEK with a Samsung 970 EVO tomorrow, so I can tell you more a bit later. :) Never had any issues with the NVMe SSDs in NUCs though. I believe they might do thermal throttling yes, but in most real-life use cases I don’t think we’ll notice…
Here a screenshot encoding with handbrake https://abload.de/img/unbenanntaoiz3.jpg NUC8i5 with a Samsung 970 EVO NVMe. So no problem.
What is the cooling fan speed at 80°C?
If you have the chance to test I’d be curious to know whether these NUCs support BitLocker hardware encryption on that drive. The drive supports it but apparently BIOS support for hardware encryption on NVMe drives is limited at the moment. There was a long running thread at https://us.community.samsung.com/t5/Memory-Storage/HOW-TO-MANAGE-ENCRYPTION-OF-960-PRO/td-p/66475 on the subject and https://us.community.samsung.com/t5/Memory-Storage/970-Pro-M2-cannot-do-hardware-encrypt/td-p/330809 suggests Hades Canyon doesn’t currently support it.
If you have the chance to test I’d be curious to know whether these NUCs support BitLocker hardware encryption on that drive. The drive supports it but apparently BIOS support for hardware encryption on NVMe drives is currently limited. There’s a long running thread at https://us.community.samsung.com/t5/Memory-Storage/HOW-TO-MANAGE-ENCRYPTION-OF-960-PRO/td-p/66475 on the subject and https://us.community.samsung.com/t5/Memory-Storage/970-Pro-M2-cannot-do-hardware-encrypt/td-p/330809 suggests Hades Canyon doesn’t currently support it.
Tahk you both! I was looking for this.
Sorry fr the question, that might sound stupid for many of you, but I am a bit confused about hardware decoding of video formats like HEVC.
Is it performed by the graphic hardware or by the CPu itself? In the first case, as the GPU is the same for all the Nuc8 family, I might save some money buying the i3 version. If not, maybe I should buy the i5 version which could have more computational power to decode HEVC?
Thanks for any help!
As Omnium says below, all NUC8ixBEx NUCs have the same GPU and it does support HW decoding of pretty much all formats you could ask for today incl. HEVC and VP9. If you don’t need the CPU power of the more powerful versions for something else than video decoding then the i3 should suffice.
The Intel Iris Plus Graphics 655 fully supports hardware decoding of H.265/HEVC Main 10 with a 10-bit color depth as well as Google’s VP9 codec.
Very nice review! Why can’t we see some gaming tests on this nuc? The graphic chip is on pair with the old 7i7 nuc and should provide some decent numbers. I would appreciate some gaming tests and also power consumption and noise during gaming.
Here https://www.reddit.com/r/intelnuc/comments/9r9j6b/can_you_game_on_the_8th_gen_intel_nuc_nuc8i5bek/ is a video and a discussion.
Hi Jacob, I’ll write a separate article to compare the gaming performance of these Coffee Lake NUCs, just wait a few days.
Perfect, thank you!
I am interested in which Realtek ALC codes the NUC is actually using. Is it the ALC700 like in the Hades Canyon?
It’s realtek ALC233. There’s only stereo audio out from this NUC when it comes to analog outputs. Of course, via HDMI you can get out more than that in digital format.
Thank you for the review. It looks amazing; just ordered a NUC8i5BEH for $365 (after shipping) based on it looking like the supply channel is finally getting some. I can’t wait to replace my HTPC with this little mini-box.
May I ask where you ordered from? That’s a good price!
Provantage. They often sell to IT people (like a CDW does). My HP Proliant server I use at home is an open box from them, and I’ve done business with them before, and they’re top-notch.
My NUC is supposed to arrive Friday (shipped FedEx Ground; I already have my tracking number, shipped same-day Tuesday) and it is en route. They are shipping out of California.
Thank you! They are significantly cheaper there and have a lot of stock. Unfortunately they do not ship the NUCs internationally. I’ll have to stick with Amazon.
Can you please benchmark how well Photoshop CC will run on this machine, the tool is available for public download: https://www.pugetsystems.com/labs/articles/Puget-Systems-Adobe-Photoshop-CC-Benchmark-1132/
Why is the idle power consumption so much lower than what was measured in your Kaby Lake NUC review (4w vs 13.6w)? This seems odd, considering that the TDP of the Coffee Lake CPU is almost double of the previous generation.
And compare to NUC7PJYH whivh seems to be around 10w…
I am looking for a low power “server” for my home, I planed for the PJYH, but reading this review, I start to think NUC8I3…..?
I’ve been using the same wattmeter for all these tests, so I think they should be comparable. The Bean Canyon seems to be pretty optimized when it comes to the power states, as the power consumption figures at idle are really quite good…
Is it possible to change the fan with another brand? Or is it custom made?
hi it looks custom made by intel there are 4 screw holes around the cpu where as on previous nucs there was only 3 holes…
if we could swap out the fan for a large heatsink this could be fanless, iv found somebody already has same idea as me on http://www.fanlesstech.com/2018/09/alpine-nuc.html
how awsome would it be that IF you could keep your orginal nuc case then add a custon cpugpu mount and have a alpine heatsink sticking out the top but with all the corners sealed
It would look stock as if it meant to be like this! :)
What I was looking for, since now it is a 80mm fan, if it is possible to change the fan with a (probably) quieter fan, like http://www.silenx.com/quiet.fans.asp?sku=ixp-52-11.
Do you know the height of the fan?
Thank you for the detailed review. I bought the same Nuc model you tested but I can’t get YouTube HDR 4k working. Strong stutters and CPU usage jumps to 100%. Seems like it doesn’t hand the load over to the iGPU. I’m using chrome browser because it’s said that it has the best support for YouTube’s HDR mode. I hope anyone has a suggestion to solve the issue because Google didn’t provide me a working solution.
CPU usage 100% means definitely that HW acceleration is not being used and decoding is done using the CPU instead. Can you check what chrome://gpu says about hardware acceleration? I’ve actually had best HW acceleration results on the Microsoft Edge browser, even if I normally like to use Firefox… Is that any better?
Thank you for continuing to review new NUC units and including LibreELEC as a test platform! My NUC6i5 is a dedicated LibreElec box and I was looking at the new models for the upgraded USB-C and video!
hello is it possible to turn off the fans from bios? so make it fanless?
Yes! In the bios cooling settings there is also the option to set it to fanless.
This will disable the fan and all related warnings.
I wouldn’t recommend to use this setting, because the CPU can get quite warm and then definitely throttles down.
But if you set the minimum fan speed to 10-20%, it’s only audible if you put your ear directly on the fan outlet. In this case, the CPU gets about 40 degrees Celsius warm in mostly idle operation and not much warmer with low load.
The possibilities to adjust the fan to your needs are very extensive and work well.
I also experimented a lot until I found my optimal settings.
Interesting review, however I am bit suprised, that it didnt get mentioned, that the SATA Port is only SATA3 and not SATA6
Thanks for a great review. I love the NUC blog!
I was close to purchasing the previous generation last year (after reading this blog) but I was too reluctant about it after reading the fuzz about the audio debacle and the fan issues. The fan, has been my main concern.
Now, since the fan is bigger and it’s (still) possible to set it to not run (if not needed), I’m close to a purchase. It will be used as a HTPC and thus – I want it to be a silent as possibly. It will be on pretty much 24/7, be used for surfing the web, play 1080p and 4K video material and also for editing photos and video.
I want maximum muscles, but (important) to a minimum of noise. Not even noise really. Dead silent. Money is not an issue so please help me decide between the 8th generation of i3, i5 or i7.
It seems none for the moment; it’s still noisy :(
Is there any way you can run Aida64 GPGPU test and show single precision GFLOPS of GPU and CPU?
Post on aida64 forum and they’ll fix it:
Working on a build here to replace my aging HTPC, and this article and the comments have been extremely helpful. Was originally going to use an external USB drive for music data and an internal SSD for software, but am now planning to go with one 500tb SATA and one 1tb M.2 now that I know the NUC will support both. Will be using the 2x4gb memory you linked on Amazon as well. Use my existing monitor and USB out to my DAC for hooking up to my “classic” analog audio system, then add a USB optical drive for ripping and I’m cooking with gas!
Oh – the discussion on noise and threading convinced me to go with the i5 version. An extra $50 on NewEgg, but hey, I’m worth it … ;-}
Just the review I was looking for, many thanks. How does the bios show memory temperature when most memory sticks don’t have a temperature sensor? Also, I couldn’t find the cpu temperature in the bios screenshots.
Anybody wondering about relative size, old vs new, check this out:
Got the parts in and ready to build. Put the HUC up in front of my old ATX big box and the difference is fairly noticeable. ;-}
PS … that tiny thing in the blister pack to the left of the HUC is the new SSD M.2 hard drive. And I thought a standard SSD was small!
Is anyone else confused/Angry why the Power Supply is so Large? I just bought the NUC8i3BEH without reading this blog first(mistake). Its PS brick is so much larger/ two parts vs my NUC7i3BNH. I plan to return the new 8i and buy older 7i with smaller Power Supply. Any newer gens with Smaller wall wart type PS, not a brick?
A typical wall wart couldn’t handle the demand. This unit draws 28 watts, and that’s a LOT of power for an external supply. Most warts are rated in millivolts …
Bill google FSP065-10AABA NUC power supply. It’s 65w. I expected something like the FSP but for 90W. Size matters, I don’t want a PS brick half size of the computer. Or where’s the less powerful NUC with 65W Small PS?
The unit has two outputs, HDMI and USB type C, for display but the specs say support for three displays. How does it manage that with only two outputs?
You can chain DisplayPort displays in order to use multiple displays with single DisplayPort connector.
But you can do that anyway if your monitor has displayport out irrespective of video card
I hate to complain …
(well – not really – I love to complain!)
Anyway – a driver pack would have been nice, even with a barebones box? Available for download at Intel, but lot of good that will do if the NUC is the only computer handy with no comm capabilities. It’d only make sense if that was all on a USB stick … (mutter mumble)
** Oh – just to make things interesting, I used Acronis TrueImage to clone my old drive to the new one in the NUC. Surprise surprise – it actually worked! Beats the crap out of having to re-install all the software I’d been using. TI was even able to convert from my old W8/XP dual boot with nary an issue. Only “problem” was the Intel box apparently had issues with some of the AMD drivers and disabled those during the transfer. No surprise there.
Oh – here’s a link to the driver package …
Intel drivers are constantly being updated so a driver pack would be quickly outdated.
Where is cpu temp in the bios and what is VR temp?
In the first motherboard picture under “mainboard and cooling”, it seems that the left antenna socket of the wifi card got lost during disassembly!? That happened to me and now I wonder how to fix this problem (without soldering) and sacrificing the M2 slot. Any ideas?
You’ve got good eyes! Indeed, that did happen to me. I don’t think there’s a way to fix that without soldering or replacing the board. I did notice it was relatively ok with one antenna though…
I just purchased the NUC8i3BEH. I use it mainly for Kodi but also do some online streaming outside of kodi as well. I’ve found the onboard IR receiver to be lacking it it’s range. I use a Logitech harmony 550. So that being said everything worked fine but when I decide to add a FLIRC usb IR receiver I had laying around I now have a problem. The response is much better in Kodi for navigation and such but things like power toggle and some sequences I made in the logitceh remote don’t seem to be functioning with the FLIRC as the IR receiver. Not sure whaty this would be. Any ideas?
Love your blog! It has been so helpfully in planning to move to a NUC. Keep it up!
I was originally planning on going with the 8i5 NUC, but honestly, the more I read on this 8i3 the more I think it will handle everything I need. (Web, Light Dreamweaver and Photoshop and MS Office.) The only gaming I do nowadays is on the Switch with my kids.
I bought the NUC8i3BEK it’s really fast and not noisy.
But the one realy big problem i have with this unit is a software one.
The Microsoft USB 3.1 Host controller driver produce a lot of DPC / Latency.
From Intel side there is nor a driver for Win10 still support for the MS driver, so i do not know what to do.
Is it anyone who knows if it is possible to play 4k videos without hardware acceleration on in Kodi? I talk about NUC8 series. Why I ask is because when I use iptv simple client it doesn’t work properly when I have it on. I self use an old setup only problem I have is that my cpu goes up to 100% under 4k videos. And It will be very good if it is possible to play 4k videos without hardware acceleration on. Please let me know.
UHD playback requires a lot of CPU when GPU accel is turned off, so that’s that. Guess you can make a different Profile in KODI for both setup for easier switching. Other “workaround” is to use an external player launched from KODI only for 4K videos. For that you need another Player, like MPCHC and to modify the playercorefactory.xml file of KODI. Google the KODI Wiki for details.
Hi. Great review! Just wonder if this NUC can run three displays (perhaps using DisplayPort daisy-chaining) reliably? Reliability is important, given the many Dell DisplayPort MST complaints online. Thanks for any pointers!
I’m not too keen on everything soldered onto the motherboard. This makes upgraded and replacing faulty parts impossible once the warranty runs out.
Thanks a lot for this very helpful review!
How would you compare the NUC8i3BEH with NUC7i3BNH in terms of noise? Is one of the two louder?
Thank you very much for your review, Olli. I upgraded an Apollo Lake passively cooled ITX HTPC with this Intel NUC. The PC sits in our bedroom and must be silent, which it is. I can only just hear it by putting my ear flush to the side grill. For HTPC purposes, I did have to replace my PCI TV card with a USB TV card.
I rate the PC as 99% perfect. I have fitted an Intel 660p 1TB M.2 NVMe SSD and use around 50% of its storage capacity. Windows Media Center (with Windows 10/1903) works a treat.
This is why I say 99% not 100%:
There is no audio optical port to connect my Logitech Z-5500 5.1 speaker system to. Consequently I use a small USB sound card which only cost 7GBP and is hidden, but I know it is there! I guess the problem is that I am using a legacy audio system (but the sound is superb). I tried HDMI audio to my TV and then back to the Logitech via optical cable but the sound is only stereo.
I have failed to install any CPU fan speed software. In the BIOS I have set the fan speed to 1400rpm, but I would like to monitor the speed in Windows.
I have a 10+ year old USB Microsoft RC. It works great using the 10 year old receiver but when I use the PC’s IR, I find the operation weak/too directional.
The power block seems unnecessarily large – I guess that it has to support Core i7 processors too.
Over the years I have had fun overclocking (sometimes overvolting) K processors. With the NUC, I have undervolted it by 0.75/0.75/0.75. Consequently it runs 4 degrees cooler when benchmarking and does not throttle. All good fun if you don’t mind ‘wasting’ a bit of your time!
Here is a case design that I hope Intel consider. Take the ‘H’ design, remove 2.5 inch HDD support and double the height of the heat sink/fan, and fit a non ‘U’ CPU.
8I3BEK + NVME+ 16GB SODIMM = LITTLE BEAST
Does the USB-C port on this NUC support powering the NUC via Power Delivery protocol over USB with external USB-C Charger instead of provided 19.5V power adapter? If so, one could plug it into a usb-c charging monitor and literally only have one cable going to the NUC for display, power, and usb. Mount it on the back of the monitor and now you have a clean looking all in one.
No, no Power Delivery for any NUC so far.
Do you know how to use dual array microphone in Intel NUC8i3BEH ? I’m having a problem to make this microphone works.
I am now COMPLETELY puzzled… Should i buy an 8th gen NUC and will not be annoyed from the FAN NOISE? I was worried after reading this!! https://community.intel.com/t5/Intel-NUCs/NUC8i7BEH-high-fan-noise/td-p/644343
I don’t want to repeat my LENOVO mistake! https://forums.lenovo.com/t5/ThinkCentre-A-E-M-S-Series/ThinkCentre-M920-Tiny-Intelligent-Cooling-Engine-ICE-annoying-INCONSTANT-speed/m-p/5028519?page=1#5100003
I have one NUC RNUC11PAHi70000.
When it go to sleep mode, but the fan still working (rotate with low speed).
Anyone have the same this issue please?
I’ve got NUC8i3 for like one and half year now. It used to be really quiet and i am generally happy with it.
However, lately I’ve noticed that it is noisy. Unpleasantly noisy. It must have changed gradually over a period of time.
Before i could hear the fan working, from time to time, but i would have to pay attention, and the noise “timbre” wasn’t unpleasant at all. Just a hiss. Now it is whining, and it is audible all over the living room, even mu wife in the other end can easily hear it.
My first suspicion is that the fan accumulated some dust. I’d like to clean it, but don’t know how to get to it.
Will appreciate any advice.
The NUC8i3 is normally super-silent. In my case, after about 1 year, the fan suddenly started to make a rattling/grinding noise. I now have now RMA’d it to Intel for replacement.