AMD developing barebones PC kit to take on Intel NUC platform

AMD is prepping a barebones PC kit competitor to Intel's NUC series. (Source: AMD)
AMD is prepping a barebones PC kit competitor to Intel's NUC series. (Source: AMD)
Intel’s NUC barebone kit computers have been popular with tech enthusiasts since they launched back in 2013. Ever since then it’s been a wait and see game to see whether AMD would launch a competitor, but it now looks like that wait is over.
Sanjiv Sathiah,

Fans of Intel’s NUC barebone PC kits have been happily putting them together and upgrading them since 2013, but AMD hasn’t been among the direct competition. It is true, however, that AMD hasn’t been absent from the scene as its chips have been used by small form factor (SFF) makers like ASRock that have used AMD’s chips. With AMD on the ascendancy following the launch of its hugely successful Ryzen chips it looks like it has finally got the resources it needs to enter the market with its own barebones PC kits.

According to Fanless Tech, AMD has been hard at work on its new line of SFF PC line and, unlike the ASRock’s latest AMD models, these won’t be embedded Ryzen processors, but will feature higher power parts. Intel’s top-of-the-line Hades Canyon NUC models come with 8th gen Core i7 quad-core chips with a TDPs up to 100 W. Ironically, these also feature AMD’s Vega discrete mobile graphics integrated on the same die, which marks a rare collaboration between the two erstwhile competitors.

With Intel moving very much into developing its own discrete GPUs, it is likely to be the first and last time the two companies collaborate on a NUC – especially now that AMD is going to head-to-head with Intel in the SFF space. Given AMD’s specialization at developing high-powered graphics integrated on PC dies we are expecting big things from AMD’s entry into the SFF market. Intel hasn’t got any direct competition for the Hades Canyon NUC range, so the odds are that this is where AMD could be looking to make a splash.



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Sanjiv Sathiah, 2019-10- 8 (Update: 2019-10- 8)
Sanjiv Sathiah
I have been tech-obsessed from the time my father introduced me to my first computer, an Apple ][. Since then, I have grown to enjoy exploring and experimenting with any computing platform that I can get my hands on – I am the definitive early adopter! I have always been interested in how we can use technology to shape and improve our lives, most recently using it to record, mix and master my debut record, Acuity – Nature | Nurture out now on Spotify.