Intel’s Tiger Lake-based NUCs were delivery for neatly over a yr now. 4 product traces had been deliberate to start with – Panther Canyon for the mainstream marketplace, Tiger Canyon for the pro / trade marketplace, Phantom Canyon for gaming fans, and the Elk Bay Compute Part for embedded programs. Provide chain demanding situations were impacting availability of various fashions in several areas, however that has now not averted Intel’s companions from turning in complementary merchandise.

Akasa is a well known producer of thermal answers for computing programs concentrated on business programs in addition to house shoppers. They have got been keeping up a lineup of passively-cooled situations for Intel’s NUCs since 2013. We had reviewed their Turing case for the Bean Canyon NUC a few years again, and are available away pleasantly shocked. No longer regularly can we see a fanless case managing to stay the processor cooler than an actively-cooled answer for a similar workload, however this is precisely what the Akasa Turing accomplished. For Intel’s Tiger Canyon NUCs, Akasa carries 3 major merchandise – Newton TN, Plato TN, and Turing TN. The corporate sampled us the Newton TN for assessment with Intel’s pattern of the NUC11TNKi5.

At the Tiger Lake UCFF entrance, we had reviewed best a few programs – the ASRock Business NUC BOX-1165G7 final yr, and extra lately, the Supermicro SYS-E100-12T-H. We took the Akasa Newton TN assessment alternative to additionally carry out an in depth analysis of Intel’s personal providing – the NUC11TNKi5 Tiger Canyon NUC. The assessment beneath introduces the Tiger Canyon NUC {hardware} and main points the construct procedure for its fanless model the usage of the Akasa Newton TN ahead of going into the standard platform research. Following this, the benchmark numbers for the passively cooled configuration are in comparison in opposition to the unique NUC11TNKi5 (in conjunction with a bunch of different programs). In the end, effects from the thermal analysis of the fanless machine are offered. In combination, those supply an concept of what Tiger Lake can ship in a moderately compact fanless machine and likewise whether or not the Newton TN manages to duplicate the good fortune of the Turing.

Creation and Product Impressions

Intel’s Tiger Lake processors introduced the Willow Cove microarchitecture fabricated in a moderately mature 10nm procedure to the marketplace final yr. The focal point was once basically at the cell marketplace, however the corporate did release a set of mini-PCs in response to them final yr. The corporate segments the Tiger Lake-based mini-PCs them into other classes – Efficiency, Professional, Fanatic, and Excessive. The NUC11 Professional Equipment NUC11TNKi5 (Tiger Canyon) we’re taking a look at these days is a UCFF answer that puts a 100mm x 100mm motherboard inside of a 117mm x 112mm x 37mm chassis. The board comes with a soldered processor – the Core i5-1135G7. Belonging to the Tiger Lake-U circle of relatives, it could possibly function over a spread of configurable TDPs – from 12W to 28W. The NUC’s default BIOS settings set the PL1 (sustained) and PL2 (burst mode) ranges to 28W and 64W respectively, with the PL1 Time Window set to twenty-eight seconds.

Finish-users have the versatility to make a choice their very own garage instrument and RAM. For easiest efficiency, a PCIe 4.0 x4 NVMe SSD can be utilized, and DDR4-3200 SODIMMs are supported. Our NUC11TNKi5 pattern got here with the next parts pre-installed:

  • Samsung SSD 980 PRO PCIe 4.0 x4 NVMe SSD
  • 2x Kingston ValueRAM KVR32S22D8/16 DDR4-3200 SODIMM for 32GB of DRAM

The machine is actively cooled, with a blower fan at the underside, clear of the facet of the motherboard with the SODIMM and M.2 slots.

The specs of our Intel NUC11TNKi5 assessment configuration are summarized within the desk beneath.

Intel NUC11TNKi5 / NUC11TNBi5 + Akasa Newton TN Specs
(as examined)
Processor Intel Core i5-1135G7
Tiger Lake 4C/8T, 2.4 – 4.2 GHz
Intel 10nm SuperFin, 8MB L2, 28W
(PL1 = 28W, PL2 = 64W)
Reminiscence Kingston ValueRAM KVR32S22D8/16 DDR4-3200 SODIMM
22-22-22-52 @ 3200 MHz
2×16 GB
Graphics Intel Iris Xe Graphics
(80EU @ 1.30 GHz)
Disk Power(s) Samsung 980 PRO MZ-V8P500B/AM
(2500 GB; M.2 2280 PCIe 4.0 x4 NVMe;)
(1xxL V-NAND Gen 6 three-D TLC; Samsung Elpis S4LV003 Controller)
Networking 1x 2.5 GbE RJ-45 (Intel I225-LM)
Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 (2×2 802.11ax – 2.4 Gbps)
Audio Virtual Audio with Bitstreaming Enhance over HDMI Ports
Video 2x HDMI 2.0b
2x Show Port 1.4a with HBR3 over Thunderbolt
Miscellaneous I/O Ports 2x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A (Entrance)
1x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A (Rear)
1x USB 2.0 Sort-A (Rear)
1x Thunderbolt 4 + 1x Thunderbolt 3 (Sort-C) (Rear)
Running Gadget Home windows 11 Endeavor (22000.739)
Pricing (Side road Pricing on July 21st, 2022)
$420 (Board) + $150 (Case) + $130 (RAM) + $95 (SSD) = $795 (as configured, no OS)
Complete Specs Intel NUC11TNBi5 Specs
Akasa Newton TN Specs

The NUC bundle comprises the standard VESA mount and screws in conjunction with an integration information. A region-specific energy twine accompanies the 120W (19V @ 6.32A) adapter.

The gallery beneath supplies an outline of the equipment’s chassis and the I/O distribution. The important thing variations when in comparison to the Efficiency line of Tiger Lake NUCs (Panther Canyon) are the absence of a SDXC card reader, a HDMI 2.0b port as an alternative of a mini-DP port, an additional USB 3.2 Gen 2 Sort-A port within the entrance panel, and the restriction of Thunderbolt Sort-C ports best to the rear panel.

In comparison to the Efficiency line, the NUC11 Professional line provides respectable toughen for Linux and Window IoT, helps operation over a much wider DC enter voltage vary, has an additional interior SSD slot (M.2 2242 SATA / PCIe 3.0 x1), vPro features in make a choice SKUs, and an extended product lifestyles cycle.

The usual NUC11TNKi5 equipment above can be utilized in maximum eventualities, however there could also be use-cases that require your complete absence of any shifting portions. In business deployments, the rationale could also be the wish to steer clear of efficiency loss because of cooling potency degradation because of mud build-up. For pro creators, it can be because of the wish to steer clear of extraneous noise affecting the paintings output. The typical house client might also favor a silent machine to higher focal point at the paintings handy. For HTPCs, multimedia content material can also be loved with out distractions – a side that can be of paramount significance to audiophiles.

Historically, passively cooled computing programs have both been woefully underpowered for common function use, or carried a vital top class with regards to each value and bodily footprint. On the other hand, developments in compute efficiency in step with watt and novel passive cooling chassis designs (that don’t value an arm and a leg to mass-produce) have mixed to provide shoppers the power to create robust, but inexpensive, fanless programs. That is the place distributors like Akasa are available. For the NUC11TNBi5 (the board throughout the NUC11TNKi5 equipment), Akasa has 3 other situations, with dimensions that may fulfill nearly any deployment state of affairs:

  • Newton TN [ 176.6mm x 200mm x 53.6mm ]
  • Plato TN [ 247mm x 240mm x 38.5mm ]
  • Turing TN [ 95mm x 113.5mm x 247.9mm ]

We put the usual equipment thru our benchmarking procedure first. Following that, we disassembled the unit, and transferred the board to the Akasa Newton TN. The similar benchmarks had been processed once more at the Newton construct.

Previous to inspecting the NUC11 platform and taking a look on the comparative specs of the thought to be programs, we take a deep dive into the construct procedure the usage of the Akasa Newton TN.



Supply Through