Whether you’re an avid or a professional gamer, you need a powerful PC to build your gaming rig. Intel thinks so too. The brand recently introduced Intel NUC 11 for gaming. While the previous generations of NUCs were a workstation alternative, this version is more appealing to gamers. Here is a detailed review of Intel NUC 11 Enthusiast.
What is Intel NUC 11 Enthusiast?
Intel NUC 11 is a mini-budget PC designed to deliver a high-end gaming experience. It features a core i7 processor 1165G7 (eight cores) and gives a maximum boost clock of 4.7GHz. Despite the small size, this model comes with cutting-edge features common in larger gaming rigs. You can also upgrade your PC by adding more RAM and storage.
New Unit of Computing (NUC) is a brand designed to push innovation to the next level. This model comes with wired and wireless options – there are two thunderbolt ports and offers the fastest generation Wi-Fi. This means that gamers can play video games anyplace, anytime.
Is Intel NUC 11 Enthusiast good for gaming?
NUC 11 is perfect for gaming, thanks to the massive storage and discreet graphics card. It comes with six Gen 2 USB ports that provide ample interface to game controllers, racing pedals, and a keyboard. You can even add a graphic tablet. This is what you need to dominate the competition.
Besides the slim design, this unit comes with features that suit the needs of professional gamers. For instance, the RGB panel is customizable to help you play games across four screens. That’s not all. Intel NUC for gaming delivers phenomenal performance from the Intel core i7 processor. Along with the CPU’s performance, gamers can connect 4K and 8k displays.
Intel NUC 11 is one of the most powerful gaming PC that packs enough punch for its size. Unlike other mini PCs, this model has a flexible display output and gives discrete GPU power. This unit also excels in the graphics performance department. You’ll have no problems playing Far Cry 5 well past 60 fps in 1440p. Needless to say, if you’re looking for game titles above 60 fps, this is the best gaming mini PC.
The NUC 11 system is designed for gamers who want a combination of flexible connectivity and riveting visuals. So no matter how intense the gameplay gets, you can be sure the PC won’t heat your room. That comes with NUC 11 is the innovative thermal design – it guarantees whisper-quiet operation. You can also customize the RBG panel to create a unique design.
Is Intel NUC 11 Enthusiast upgradeable?
Intel NUC 11 comes with two internal USB 2.0 headers that allow for expansion capabilities. Keep in mind that all ports feature individual power control. You can also upgrade the memory that meets the system requirements. In addition, users can upgrade the OS by following the minimum hardware requirement. This model is compatible with Windows 10 and Windows 10 IOT enterprise.
For anyone who wants to upgrade to NUC 11, it is important to note that this machine is easy to get into. You need a small screwdriver and a hex wrench to remove the eleven screws. After the upgrade, make sure you get everything in order before you close the lid back. If you’re not careful, you may find yourself trapped in a loop of screwing and unscrewing. To swap your graphics card, you just flip up the entire top since the top pivots on a hinge.
Those who want the barebones Kit version should be ready to invest a few hundred dollars. Other expansion capabilities are:
- Front panel header with 5Vsby2A or Vcc51A
- A pre-punched bracket for adding I/O ports and 1DB9 port
Why choose Intel NUC 11 Enthusiast?
Intel NUC 11 excels in many areas from compact size to efficient power consumption. It performs better than the traditional desktop, thus ideal for gaming. Here are the other reasons why you should choose NUC 11 Enthusiast.
In many ways, NUC 11 resembles the NUC 9 but comes with a black chassis. The air gets through the mesh side panels and then expelled through the 99mm fans. On the front of the case, you’ll find an SD card slot, headphone jack, and USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports. The backside has two Thunderbolt 4 ports, a 2.5G Ethernet jack, and HDMI 2.0b.
This model features a sleek design, so it takes less desk space. The body measures 5.6 inch by 8.7 inch by 1.7 inches. Since the HDMI and USB ports are the core selling points, you can hide the unit on your VR play space. You can also stick it to a wall, mount it behind a TV, or place it on any other home media device.
Don’t be deceived by the low-slung black finish – this PC has some touches underneath. The overall build quality of NUC 11 is par excellence.
Intel NUC for gaming comes with the latest Intel Core i7 processor (up to 4.7GHz), 16GB RAM, 512 Solid State Storage, and Windows 10 Operating system. Other features include:
- Base CPU frequency 2.8 GHz
- Cores and threads – 4 cores and 8 threads
- Maximum memory – 64 GB
- Networking – Intel Wireless –AX201
- Maximum resolution – 7680 by 4320
- Graphics - NVIDIA RTX2060
- Front and rear Thunderbolt port with 5V fast charging profiles
- HDMI 2.0b and mini display ports that support up to four monitors. It allows for virtual display or headless display.
Connectivity and Ports
NUC 11 comes with the following ports:
- 3.5 mm mic in
- Two USB 2.0 ports
- One display port 1.4
- 3.5 mm audio out
- USB 3.2 Type-A
- HDMI 2.0b for remote and headless virtual display
If you want to take your gaming to the next level, the NUC 11 guarantees phenomenal performance no matter how intense the gameplay gets. You can connect up to 4 monitors using the high-speed ports and the discrete graphics guarantee uncompromised visuals. Users can also enjoy bandwidth communications Bluetooth 5, Intel Wi-Fi 6, and 2.5GB Ethernet. Intel NUC 11 also excels in terms of design and supports a full-size graphics card. It’s sleek and won’t heat the room. This unit qualifies for 24/7 gaming and is backed by a three-year warranty. If you’re looking for a gaming mini PC that offers cutting-edge features, Intel NUC 11 is a sure bet.