Upcoming Ghost Canyon NUC: i9 and Discrete GPU
At CES 2020 Intel has demonstrated their upcoming modular Ghost Canyon NUC. Ghost Canyon NUC is the successor of the gaming oriented Skull Canyon and Hades Canyon NUCs. It features a modular architecture that allows you to replace the Compute Element board if you want to upgrade the CPU on your NUC. It also has a PCIe X16 slot which allows you to plug in a 8″ length GPU (max 225W).
The Ghost Canyon NUC is also significantly larger than your average NUCs so far have been as it sports a 5.0-liter case versus the 0.67-liter case on the traditional 4″ x 4″ NUCs or the 1.2 liters for Hades Canyon. Nevertheless it’s still a pretty small PC.
Intel went on to compare their Ghost Canyon with i9-9980HK + RTX 2080 GPU to an AMD Ryzen 7 3750H + RTX 2060 and concluded that their combo was 1.55x to 2.86x faster in various benchmarks including 3DMark, Hitman 2 and Civilization 6. There was also a lesser Ghost Canyon model (i7-9750H + RTX 2060) included in the comparison and it sat somewhere between the AMD system and the i9 Ghost Canyon. Of course manufacturer-provided benchmarks should always be taken with a grain of salt as they’re very likely to cherry-pick the results that make their products look good.
Connectivity looks pretty good. On the rear side we have a traditional power plug for the PSU that’s inside the chassis, 4 USB 3.0 ports, two Gigabit Ethernet ports, a HDMI connector, an audio jack and two Thunderbolt/Type-C ports. In front there are two USB ports more as well as a full-size SD card reader and an audio jack.
I’m not sure whether this computer could be classified as a NUC, but it certainly is an interesting concept that offers a bit more modularity that the NUCs before have done. It probably performs pretty well and it probably is not exactly silent. I expect to see this during Q2 of this year.