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Intel NUC 8 VR (NUC8i7HVK) Review: Core i7, AMD Vega Meet in Hades Canyon

Far Cry Primal, GTA: V, Hitman

Far Cry Primal

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Far Cry Primal is more graphics-intensive. As a result, we see a big gulf form between the NUC 8 VR and our desktop configurations.

Again, simply overclocking the GPU and HBM2 provides the best results. Intel's NUC is smooth enough to consider playable by our subjective measure, and the frame time variance measurements are encouraging. Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1060, not bottlenecked by CPU performance, is just quite a bit faster.

Grand Theft Auto V

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Grand Theft Auto V responds best to GPU overclocking, unsurprisingly. But even the stock configuration is surprisingly capable under the game's Ultra preset.

Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1060 continues to scale as we swap out for faster CPUs. However, we only average one frame per second higher after overclocking the NUC's Core i7-8809G. Graphics still looks like this platform's bottleneck.

Hitman

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The NUC also fares surprisingly well in Hitman. Intel's little powerhouse may disappoint some enthusiasts for its tendency to show up at the bottom of our charts. But in light of the hardware we're using to compare, it's impressive that Intel has a small form factor system able to hang in the same conversation.

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  • rgd1101
    Should the dedicated gpu be a 1030 or 1050, not a 1060.
    Reply
  • AgentLozen
    I would liked to have seen it compared to the 1050Ti also. I imagine that the Intel 8809GH performs right between the two of them but I would like to see the benchmarks just to be sure.

    For $1000, how much do you get with this box? A case, power supply, motherboard, GPU, and CPU. You need to supply several hundred dollars in components to finish it off. The performance is decent, but not great compared to a i3 8350K + GTX 1060. So what advantage does this offer over building your own MicroATX computer?

    You could argue that graphics cards are over priced right now but what happens when they come down in price? The NUC8i7HVK would be REALLY cool if the final price of a complete system was $1000, but I feel like it doesn't offer enough as it is right now.
    Reply
  • Gigahertz20
    I've built two Intel NUC's for family members in the past couple of years and they love them. Fast, quiet and so far reliable. They don't game at all which is why I convinced them to buy them. I'm not sure if this NUC is going to be popular at all though at $1,000 barebones. Who is going to buy it? The gaming performance of this NUC is nothing special, gamers and enthusiasts are going to stick with desktops, alot of people are just waiting for the cryptocurrency craze to die down so we can get video cards at decent prices again. If that takes another year or 2 so be it.

    Your average person that just needs an office computer won't buy this at $1k, you can get a much cheaper NUC and throw in a SSD and that will work fine. Why pay a premium for a cute little powerful box, if you want small and portable you can get a laptop for cheaper. If they would have priced this at $600 barebones it would have been much more appealing to your average user that might want to play the occasional game at 1080P.
    Reply
  • Eximo
    There are i7-7700HQ laptops with GTX1060 for comparable prices.

    Great product, pricing is just too off to make sense. For this money I would look at ASRock's STX form factor.
    Reply
  • bit_user
    I wish they sold standalone Vega 24 dGPUs as a replacement for the RX 560.
    Reply
  • bit_user
    20839276 said:
    Should the dedicated gpu be a 1030 or 1050, not a 1060.
    Except:
    Intel claims its new chips should serve up similar graphics performance as Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q.

    However:
    Test System & ConfigurationGigabyte GeForce GTX 1060 G1 Gaming 6G
    So, it seems the legit complaint is that they used a standard GTX 1060, instead of something closer to the Max-Q model. Here's how they compare:

    http://gpuboss.com/gpus/GeForce-GTX-1060-Max-Q-vs-GIGABYTE-GeForce-GTX-1060-G1-Gaming


    I think the Quadro P2000 would be pretty close to the GTX 1060 Max-Q:

    https://www.nvidia.com/content/dam/en-zz/Solutions/design-visualization/documents/Quadro-P2000-US-03Feb17.pdf

    But, it's not a perfect match, and it would make for a slightly awkward comparison, probably raising more fuss than the card they chose. Still, they should've at least used a slower GTX 1060, like one of the ITX-friendly single-fan cards.
    Reply
  • bit_user
    20839877 said:
    You can get a laptop with a 1060 for around $1000 all-in. It costs even less for a 1050ti which I agree seems closer in performance.
    ... something about equating desktop and laptop GPUs.
    Reply
  • zodiacfml
    Glad to see products though I want to see even more such as integrated RAM.

    I wonder how AMD APUs would fare with HBM memory available to its CPU and GPU.
    Reply
  • FD2Raptor
    20839276 said:
    Should the dedicated gpu be a 1030 or 1050, not a 1060.

    The dedicated comparison should have been the RX 570/580 4GB GDDR5 to remove any nvidia vs amd optimizations difference from the equation.
    Reply
  • redgarl
    The GPU is really similar to a RX 570. Well, it is impressive for an IGPU. I am surprised AMD is not doing anything for that market on mobile.

    Probably next year with Zen 2.

    20841016 said:
    20839276 said:
    Should the dedicated gpu be a 1030 or 1050, not a 1060.

    The dedicated comparison should have been the RX 570/580 4GB GDDR5 to remove any nvidia vs amd optimizations difference from the equation.

    I totally agree. As of now it is impossible to know what this VEGA 11 chip really is in comparison to APU.

    Reply