July 19, 2024

Mini computer ASUS NUC 14 Pro review

ASUS NUC 14 Pro is a powerful and compact mini PC that delivers desktop-class performance in a pocket-sized size. ASUS has taken over Intel’s popular NUC (Next Unit of Computing) line, the NUC 14 Pro promises to meet the needs of professionals, power users and technology enthusiasts who are looking for a Flexible and mobile computing solutions. With the latest Intel Core Ultra processors and a host of configuration options, this mini PC has the potential to be a game-changer for those who demand performance and versatility in a small device. compact.
 

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A while ago, I also got my hands on the ASUS NUC 14 Pro . But because time was relatively rushed, I didn’t experience too much, especially in terms of performance. Therefore, I contacted ASUS to experience this mini PC more closely. And this article will be more detailed and more accurate.

ASUS NUC 14 Pro

CPU: Intel Core Ultra 5 125H / Ultra 5 135H / Ultra 7 155H

Graphics: Intel Iris XE / Intel Arc

Memory: 2 x SO-DIMM DDR5-5600MHz, up to 48GB

Storage: 2 x M.2 2242 PCIe x4 , 2 x M.2 2280 PCIe Gen 4×4, 1 x SATA 2.5”

Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.3, Intel Wi-Fi 6E, 2.5Gb Ethernet

Front I/O: 1 x USB 20Gbps Type-C, 2 x USB 10Gbps Type- A

Rear I/O: 2 x Thunderbolt 4 USB Type-C, 1 x USB 10Gbps Type-A, 1 x USB 2.0, 2 x HDMI 2.1

Dimensions: 117 x 112 x 54(mm)

Perfect design and quality

I have already mentioned this issue in the article in hand, so this section will be quick and brief. NUC 14 Pro maintains the compact design typical of the NUC series, with dimensions of only 117 x 112 x 54mm. The chassis is made of sturdy plastic, although some users may prefer a more premium metal design, the plastic construction helps reduce the weight to 1.2kg, making it easy to carry, while still providing feels durable and withstands the rigors of frequent travel.

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NUC 14 Pro has a rich range of connection ports, but does not have a 3.5mm jack and DisplayPort. The

NUC 14 Pro’s connection port is very impressive, with the front providing two USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports and one USB 3.2 port. Gen 2×2 Type-C. The back panel houses a range of connectivity options, including two Thunderbolt 4 ports, additional USB Type-A ports, two HDMI 2.1 output ports, and a 2.5Gbps Ethernet port. Wireless connectivity is handled by Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2.

One thing worth noting is the lack of an audio jack, which may disappoint users who rely on wired headphones or speakers. DisplayPort is also not available. Additionally, while the NUC 14 Pro offers tool-free access to the internals, the process can be a bit complicated, requiring a flat-head screwdriver to unlock the bottom panel and careful handling. handle the fragile ribbon cable that connects the bottom panel to the mainboard.

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Performance

NUC 14 Pro is available with options with a range of Intel Core Ultra processors, from the Core Ultra 5 125H to the top-end Core Ultra 7 165H. The review version has a 16-core, 22-thread CPU, delivering outstanding multi-threaded performance, suitable for demanding workloads and even AI applications. Combined with up to 48GB of DDR5 memory and multiple storage options, including two M.2 slots and a 2.5-inch SATA bay, the NUC 14 Pro is well equipped to handle a variety of tasks.

Intel ARC integrated graphics with 8 Xe cores are a significant upgrade over previous generation Iris Xe graphics, delivering a boost in graphics performance. While it may not be comparable to a discrete GPU, it is capable of handling daily tasks, multimedia entertainment, and even some light gaming.

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PCMark 10

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CineBench R23

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GeekBench ML with machine learning tasks

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GeekBench 6 CPU

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GeekBench 6 GPU

In tests, the NUC 14 Pro excels in both single-core and multi-core performance. It scored an impressive 6,042 in PCMark 10, which simulates real-world productivity tasks, and 1,748 (single-core) and 16,575 (multi-core) in CineBench R23. Even though gaming performance is limited by the integrated graphics, the NUC 14 Pro can still handle casual games like League of Legends or CS:GO and multi-monitor setups with ease.

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The temperature level of the CPU and board fluctuates between 75-80 degrees Celsius with moderate tasks, and reaches over 90 degrees Celsius when benchmarking.

Thermal performance is quite good, with a compact chassis and internal fans to help control temperature under heavy load. However, the fan can become noisy when performing intensive tasks, which may be a concern for users who need to work in quiet environments.

Ability to upgrade and expand

One of the strengths of the NUC 14 Pro is its upgradeability. Users can easily access the inside to upgrade RAM (up to 96GB) and storage (two M.2 slots and one 2.5-inch SATA bay). The process isn’t completely tool-free, however, and the flimsy ribbon cable connecting the bottom panel to the mainboard requires the user to handle very carefully.

It’s worth noting that the second M.2 slot is limited to the smaller 2242 size, and neither slot has heatsink support, which can affect thermal performance under heavy, sustained tasks. .

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SSD speeds in the model that ASUS sent me to experience

The inclusion of Thunderbolt 4 is a welcome addition, allowing for high-speed data transfers, external GPU support, and multi-monitor setups. The optional daughterboard adds a second LAN port and another USB Type-A port, further expanding connectivity options.

The price of ASUS NUC 14 Pro varies depending on configuration, with the configuration version I review (Intel Core Ultra 7 165H, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD). Despite being at the higher end of the mini PC market, the inclusion of Thunderbolt 4, a powerful Core Ultra processor, and diverse upgrade options help the NUC 14 Pro remain a good value for the money. go out.

However, the NUC 14 Pro faces stiff competition from brands like Acemagic, GMKtec, which offer mini PCs with similar specifications at lower prices. Some competitors feature metal chassis and a more streamlined upgrade process, putting pressure on ASUS to improve the design and value of the NUC 14 Pro.

The inclusion of Thunderbolt 4 is a welcome addition, allowing for high-speed data transfers, external GPU support, and multi-monitor setups. The optional daughterboard adds a second LAN port and another USB Type-A port, further expanding connectivity options.

The price of ASUS NUC 14 Pro varies depending on configuration, with the configuration version I review (Intel Core Ultra 7 165H, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD). Despite being at the higher end of the mini PC market, the inclusion of Thunderbolt 4, a powerful Core Ultra processor, and diverse upgrade options help the NUC 14 Pro remain a good value for the money. go out.

However, the NUC 14 Pro faces stiff competition from brands like Acemagic, GMKtec, which offer mini PCs with similar specifications at lower prices. Some competitors feature metal chassis and a more streamlined upgrade process, putting pressure on ASUS to improve the design and value of the NUC 14 Pro.

Conclusion

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ASUS NUC 14 Pro is a powerful and versatile mini PC that caters to professionals and power users looking for a compact, travel-friendly workstation. Its strong performance, excellent connectivity, and upgrade options make it suitable for productivity, content creation, and light gaming.

However, the plastic build, relatively complicated upgrade process, lack of an audio jack, and high price may make some potential buyers hesitant. While the NUC 14 Pro may not be the best value option available, its powerful Intel Core Ultra processor and Thunderbolt 4 support make it an attractive choice for power users. prioritize performance and connectivity in a compact device.

Overall, the ASUS NUC 14 Pro is a solid offering in the mini PC market, offering a balance of performance, features, and portability for those willing to invest in its capabilities. As ASUS continues to refine its NUC products, we can expect to see improvements in build quality, ease of upgrades, and more competitive pricing to solidify its position as a leader. leader in the mini PC field.

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