Asus launches NUC 14 Pro+ powered by Meteor Lake CPUs — Core Ultra 5 125H, 512GB SSD, and 16GB RAM for $860

Asus NUC 14 Pro+ for Home and Office use with NPU-infused Intel Ultra series Meteor Lake CPUs
(Image credit: Asus)

Asus has released the all-new NUC 14 Pro+ to its mini-PC line, with the choice between Intel Core Ultra 9, 7, or 5 CPUs. The notable upgrade over the NUC 13 Pro is its Intel Ultra series Meteor Lake CPUs, which now come with an integrated NPU for local generative AI processing. These are available as a barebone kit, where you must buy your own M.2 storage and RAMs and a complete build weighing 800 grams.

This NUC is marketed towards home and office use and relies on generative AI for content creation and productivity. The CPU choices are between Intel Ultra 7 155H, Ultra 5 125H, and Ultra 9 185H. The prebuild has two additional CPUs with vPro—the Ultra 7 165H and the Ultra 5 135H. Depending on the build, it will be bundled with a 120-watt or 150-watt power adapter.

It has a compact design compared to the tall chassis variant, with an anodized aluminum casing in a slightly more significant 5 x 4-inch form factor (as opposed to standard 4x4 casings) due to the integrated cooling systems it uses. The extra space allowed for cramming in three 6mm heat pipes with a double-sided heat exchanger and a fan for airflow. Asus is advertising as a measure to ensure cooling needed to ensure uninterrupted operation during generative AI workloads.

For graphics, it uses the integrated Xe and provides 4K support through up to quad 4K monitors. This support is possible via two of its Thunderbolt 4 ports in the rear, which have DisplayPort 1.4 integration, and two HDMI ports. Two SO-DIMM slots for DDR5-5600 are up to 96 GB for memory expansion. For networking, it has one 2.5G Ethernet port with an Intel I226V controller, Wi-Fi GE+ 2x2 with Wi-Fi sensing, and Bluetooth 5.3.

One of the neat additions is the toolless design, which allows you to easily access its internals and build a barebone system or upgrade it a little more easily. For storage, it allows two M.2 NVMe SSDs—2280 for PCIe x4 Gen 5 drives and 2242 for PCIe x4 Gen 4.

The omission of a 3.5mm audio jack is peculiar while advertising audio output via HDMI in its place. It's uncertain why Asus would not include an audio controller and, hence, a 3.5mm jack, which would allow TRRS earphones/ headphones with an integrated mic to be used, especially for a mini PC aimed towards home or business use. Other I/O options are adequate for many users.

Apart from having a smaller form factor, it might be difficult to ignore other alternatives once you choose your preferred CPU, storage, and RAM options and weigh its offerings and final price against what you would get with a custom-built mini-ITX system, including more I/O options and audio jacks.

The NUC 14 Pro+'s pricing starts at $860 with the Core Ultra 5 125H, 512GB SSD and 16GB RAM. Meanwhile, the Core Ultra 7 155H model with a 1TB SSD and 32GB RAM sells for $1,160, and the top Core UItra 9 185H SKU with 1TB SSD and 32GB RAM will set you back $1,239.

Roshan Ashraf Shaikh
Contributing Writer

Roshan Ashraf Shaikh has been in the Indian PC hardware community since the early 2000s and has been building PCs, contributing to many Indian tech forums, & blogs. He operated Hardware BBQ for 11 years and wrote news for eTeknix & TweakTown before joining Tom's Hardware team. Besides tech, he is interested in fighting games, movies, anime, and mechanical watches.

  • usertests
    I'll buy that for $150 in the future.
  • Dragos Manea
    Are you kidding me? Ewwww brother what is this.....Ewwwwww.
    Asus, drop a few hundreds of dollar and you got the right price.