Asus now manages Intel’s NUC designs after the previous owner exited the market. But the celebrated NUC Extreme has been permanently KO’d, leaving fans without the ability to pair the hardware with full desktop-powered GPUs.
The ROG NUC showcased at CES is Asus’ new offering for gamers, packing high-powered laptop components up to a Core Ultra 9 CPU and an RTX 4060 or 4070 mobile GPU into a small barebones desktop. However, Asus has confirmed that the company has no plans to revive the NUC Extreme line.
Starting with the ninth generation based on Coffee Lake, the Extreme variants of the NUC design allowed for a removable, upgradable NUC Compute Element combined with PCIe slots for a full-sized desktop GPU. But the expansion in size with the 11th and 12th-gen NUC Extreme models, making them comparable in size to Mini-ITX cases, may have contributed to the demise of the NUC Extreme. Without a new NUC Computing Element from Intel, Asus has chosen to stick with laptop parts for its ultra-small designs.
For those looking for maximum PC gaming power in a compact size without sacrificing CPU and GPU upgrade options, an ITX build seems to be the best option for now.