Intel has formally unveiled its NUC 13 Extreme gaming PC that can pack up to a Core i9-13900K processor and a triple-slot GeForce RTX or Radeon RX graphics card to bring together extreme performance and relatively compact dimensions. In addition, the codenamed Raptor Canyon machine also boasts decent upgradeability and connectivity that one comes to expect from a modern gaming PC.
While Intel’s NUC systems were initially meant to be compact, in recent years, Intel parted ways with the original concept in favor of performance. Indeed, the Intel NUC 13 Extreme is a ~14-liter machine (opens in new tab) that can be equipped with the company’s top-of-the-range Core i9-13900K processor with eight high-performance cores, and 16 energy-efficient cores, up to 64GB of DDR4-4800+ memory, three M.2-2280 SSDs with a PCIe 4.0 interface, and one 3.5-inch or two 2.5-inch hard drives (or SATA SSDs).
Perhaps the most important thing for gamers is that Intel’s NUC 13 can accommodate a graphics card with a triple-slot cooler up to 313 mm long and consumes up to 450W of power (using one 12VHPWR connector or three eight-pin auxiliary power connectors). We do not know whether Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 4090 Founders Edition (304 mm long) fits into Intel’s new system, but it looks like the box can house ‘tall’ graphics cards, so chances are that this board will fit in. In any case, the NUC 13 Extreme is ready for the best graphics cards available today.
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As with all recent NUC Extreme PCs, the compute element of the system can be eventually upgraded to bring in a new CPU and faster memory, storage, and connectivity. Meanwhile, the system is equipped with a 750W 80Plus Gold-badged SFX 12VO internal power supply. However, since such PSUs are not widespread in retail, this cannot be upgraded.
As for connectivity, the NUC 13 Extreme compact PC has almost everything that fully-fledged desktops do, including a Wi-Fi 6E + Bluetooth 5.2 adapter, two LAN connectors (2.5GbE and 10GbE), two Thunderbolt 4 ports, six USB 3.2 Gen2 Type-A connectors on the back, two USB 3.2 Gen1 Type-A connectors on the front, one USB 3.2 Gen2x2 Type-C on the front, four display outputs (three DP, one HDMI) driven by built-in Intel UHD Graphics GPU, 7.1-channel audio subsystem, and a 3.5-mm TRRS port for headsets on the front panel.
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Since it can integrate Intel’s Core i9-13900K and high-end graphics boards, Intel’s NUC 13 can rival gaming desktops (especially compact ones like Falcon Northwest Tiki) designed for gaming. However, full-sized desktops will still have the edge over Intel’s NUC 13 Extreme. The machines that come in large tower chassis can pack in high-capacity 3.5-inch hard drives, a high-end PSU, more add-in cards, and even an optical disc drive (ODD) in some cases. Yet, those systems are significantly bigger and perhaps more expensive.
The pricing of Intel’s NUC 13 Extreme will range between $1,179 for a Core i5-13600K-equipped barebones and $1,549 for a Core i9-13900K-equipped barebones. In addition, companies like SimplyNUC will offer pre-assembled machines using Intel’s NUC 13 Extreme.