Back in January, Intel had provided us with information about the Skull Canyon NUC based on a Skylake H-Series CPU(with Iris Pro Graphics). Today, at GDC 2016, Intel made the specifications official. Pricing and availability information was also provided.

The key aspect that was not revealed before was the dimensions. The Skull Canyon NUC (NUC6i7KYK) will come in at 216mm x 116mm x 23mm, with the volume coming in at just 0.69L. For comparison, the Skylake NUC6i5SYK (non-2.5" drive version) comes in at 115mm x 111mm x 32mm (0.41L), while NUC6i5SYH (2.5" drive bay-enabled) one is 115mm x 111mm x 48mm (0.61L). The rest of the specifications are outlined in the table below:

Intel NUC6i7KYK (Skull Canyon) Specifications
Processor Intel Core i7-6770HQ
Skylake, 4C/8T, 2.6 GHz (Turbo to 3.5 GHz), 14nm, 6MB L2, 45W TDP
Memory 2x DDR4 SO-DIMM (2133+ MHz)
Graphics Intel Iris Pro Graphics 580 (Skylake-H GT4+4e with 128MB eDRAM)
Disk Drive(s) Dual M.2 (SATA3 / PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe / AHCI SSDs)
Networking Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260 (2x2 802.11ac - 867 Mbps + Bluetooth 4.2)
Intel I-219V Gigabit Ethernet
Audio 3.5mm Audio Jack (Headphone / Microphone)
Capable of 5.1/7.1 digital output with HD audio bitstreaming (HDMI)
Miscellaneous I/O Ports 1x Thunderbolt 3 / USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C
4x USB 3.0 (incl. one charging port)
1x HDMI 2.0, 1x mini-DP 1.2
Consumer Infrared Sensor
Operating System Barebones
Pricing $650 (Barebones)
$999 (Typical build with 16GB DDR4, 256GB SSD and Windows 10)
Fact Sheet Intel NUC6i7KYK GDC Fact Sheet (PDF)

Note that the HDMI 2.0 output is enabled by an external LSPcon (not Alpine Ridge). So, we will definitely have 4Kp60 output with HDCP 2.2 support over the HDMI port, making it suitable as a future-proof HTPC platform. From a gaming perspective, the availability of Thunderbolt 3 enables users to add an external graphics dock like the recently announced Razer Core eGFX module. Note that any external GPU will be able to talk to the CPU only over a PCIe 3.0 x4 link (which should be plenty in almost all cases).

The Skull Canyon NUC will be available to pre-order on Newegg next month, with shipping in May 2016.

Source: Intel

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  • Valantar - Friday, March 18, 2016 - link

    So much for commenting from my phone. Apparently NVME isn't in its dictionary :P
  • nerd1 - Friday, March 18, 2016 - link

    I don't understand both usage scenario you mentioned. If someone is getting into PC gaming, a full tower is vastly cheaper and more future-proof. And NUC for lan party? I don't think anyone will bring own monitor, keyboard and GPU dock around. A gaming laptop is much better overall for that purpose (and cheaper)

    I do enjoy NUC products for nice onboard computing platforms, and may get one soon, but not for gaming.
  • Murloc - Sunday, March 20, 2016 - link

    you don't need more than this to play LoL.
  • lordmocha - Thursday, March 17, 2016 - link

    The article states "So, we will definitely have 4Kp60 output with HDCP 2.2 support over the HDMI port, making it suitable as a future-proof HTPC platform.".

    However I would say that is far from the truth as Skylake does not support full fixed function hardware decoding of HEVC Main10 (the standard in UHD blurays). We will have to wait for the Kaby Lake version to actually have a future proof HTPC machine.

    So the paring of this with an external GPU could provide HEVC Main10 hardware decode, or could allow you to play more intensive games.
  • gundamf90 - Thursday, March 17, 2016 - link

    Skylake do support HEVC Main10 via DXVA; however, not sure it is full fixed function hardware or use mostly GPU for the acceleration.
  • lordmocha - Friday, March 18, 2016 - link

    Skylake can do Main10 in hybrid mode, it is not full hardware decodig.
  • CaedenV - Thursday, March 17, 2016 - link

    It isn't a laptop, you don't need full fixed hardware support to make it work. A lot of this can be done in software without needing to worry about the battery life hit.
  • lordmocha - Friday, March 18, 2016 - link

    Hello. The spec for UHD Blu-ray is Main10 up to 128mbps and 60fps. You obviously haven't tried to decode an equivalent file. Try jellyfish-140-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv from and you'll see even with hybrid decode a Skylake CPU (even 6700k) is not able to playback the file smoothly. Therefore the full fixed function hardware support is required to playback UHD Blu-rays.
  • lordmocha - Friday, March 18, 2016 - link

    Hevc Main10 at those bitrates is just too intense, it's about being able to play them back smoothly in the first place, let alone being concerned about power usage.
  • tipoo - Thursday, March 17, 2016 - link

    128MB L4 usually makes up for the 8MB-6MB L3 cache shrink

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