Intel recently made its graceful exit from the NUC business, passing the reins to its partners. Asus, in particular, has obtained a non-exclusive license to manufacture current and future NUCs. As a result of this agreement, a ROG NUC may be on the horizon, substituting Intel's NUC Extreme lineup.
According to Italian news outlet Bits and Chips' sources, Asus has already started development on a ROG NUC to supersede Intel's NUC 13 Extreme (Raptor Canyon) mini-PC. As the model name implies, Raptor Canyon leverages 13th Generation Raptor Lake processors. Therefore, it's logical that Raptor Canyon's successor, the ROG NUC, will tap into Intel's upcoming 14th Generation Meteor Lake chips.
Intel has purportedly canceled desktop Meteor Lake so the ROG NUC will likely use a mobile Meteor Lake chip, unlike Raptor Canyon, which features Raptor Lake K-series SKUs, including the Core i9-13900K, Core i7-13700K or the Core i5-13600K. Bits and Chips believes that Asus will utilize a hybrid cooling solution to cool the Meteor Lake processor inside the ROG NUC. It sounds overkill, given that rumors claim Meteor Lake allegedly arrives in 35W and 65W. Meteor Lake benefits from the new Redwood and Crestmont cores, but the question remains whether it can compete with a Raptor Lake 125W K-series part.
Raptor Canyon has enough space for a triple-slot, 12-inch graphics card, and it looks like the ROG NUC will retain the feature. The Italian publication alleges that Nvidia's latest GeForce RTX 40-series (Ada Lovelace) graphics cards will do the heavy lifting in the ROG NUC. The publication mentions the possibility of a GeForce RTX 4070, but it's uncertain if that's the top SKU the ROG NUC will offer. Something like a GeForce RTX 4090, a 450W graphics card, may be too hot for a mini-PC to handle. If any vendor can find a way to cool a mammoth inside a mini-PC, it's Asus considering the company's expertise and experience in manufacturing mini-PCs, graphics cards, and cooling solutions.
Bits and Chips' report describes the ROG NUC with a futuristic design and lots of RGB lighting. Due to the lack of photos or renders, we'll have to take the news outlet's word for now. Asus products are typically pricier than the competition. The mini-PC will likely carry the "ROG tax" since it's using Asus's elite ROG branding.