Intel NUC's - Worth It?

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Derek Semeraro
Posts: 124
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:49 am

Intel NUC's - Worth It?

Post by Derek Semeraro » Tue May 01, 2018 6:08 pm

Advantages of NUC's:
* They are very compact and portable, more so than most options in the limited ITX market
* They are much simpler to build than a regular desktop PC because it's mostly built already.

Disadvantages of NUC's:
* Performance is inferior to regular desktop PC's, but the price is not any cheaper
* Limited room to customize, expand, replace parts or upgrade (for the mid-long term)

To the disadvantages, I also want to add the marketing for these NUC's is very deceptive. These are laptops - not desktops. Intel markets their $500 NUC as an i7, but it's a laptop i7. It only has two cores and benchmarks show its 20% weaker than the i3-8100 (a desktop i3). They also only take SO-DIMM laptop RAM. Additionally, the marketing of the materials on retailer websites says it supports SSD's and RAM but does not include them. Many are aware of this, but it's not hard for some buyers to misread and think they're getting a full computer. Intel also claims some of their NUC's come with 16 GB Optane memory. It's a storage drive - not RAM. Some buyers may easily confuse "16 GB Memory" to be RAM because RAM often comes in 16 GB sizes whereas storage often does not.

Overall, the purpose of building a desktop, for many, is to do tasks that a laptop can't do. NUC's inferior to the versatility of the laptop. as well as the power of a desktop, but there's a market out somewhere for them.

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