You may recall around ten months ago that Shuttle released a pack of NUC competitors called the XPC nano NC02U series. No? Well that's alright, because today we're here to tell you about the XPC nano NC03U series. The new mini-PCs are fundamentally unchanged from the previous version, but Shuttle's swapped out the Skylake chips in those for the latest Kaby Lake hotness from Intel.
The swap results in clock speed upgrades and potentially lower power draw across the range. The bottom-end NC03U model trades up from a Celeron 3855U to a Celeron 3865U, gaining 200 MHz in the process. The NC03U3 steps up to a Core i3-7100U from last gen's Core i3-6100U, earning 100 MHz. The Core i5-equipped NC03U5 boosts its Core i5-7200U a full 300 MHz higher than the NC02U5's Core i5-6200U. Finally, the range-topping NC03U7 justifies its price a little better with a Core i7-7500U that boosts all the way to 3.5 GHz—a full 400MHz higher than the i7-6500U in the previous model. Obviously, the new machines get all of the ancillary benefits that come with the new platform like a hardware-accelerated HEVC codec and 4K Netflix support.
Besides the new CPUs, these machines have almost no other changes. That isn't a bad thing, though. You still get a mini-PC measuring only 5.5" x 5.5" x 1.7" (or 14 cm x 14 cm x 4 cm). For peripheral and networking connectivity, there are HDMI and DisplayPort outputs, one each of USB 3.0 Type-A and Type-C ports, two USB 2.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet connectivity, a card reader, and even an old-school RS-232 port. The machine can take a 2.5" drive up to 15 mm in height, and there are also two M.2 sockets inside—although one is occupied by the 802.11ac wireless adapter. Shuttle sells the NC03U series as barebones models, so make sure you grab a couple of DDR4 SODIMMs to stick in it.
The package includes brackets for mounting the little PCs on the back of a monitor, as well as an aluminum stand so that you can set them upright on a desk. The machines doen't appear to have popped up in the US yet, but Shuttle says that the NC03U should run 148€ ($169), the NC03U3 ought to be 334€ ($380), the NC03U5 will go for 407€ ($464), and the high-end NC03U7 should cost 534€ ($608) when they hit your favorite e-tail location.
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