Intel have done some great things with multimedia in the consumer market and their Next Unit of Computing (NUC) is up there with them. I reviewed the DN2820FYKH as a suitable media PC back in 2014 and have returned to do a mini review on the newer Intel NUC Mini PC NUC5PGYH.
Apart from newer hardware, the most significant change from previous models is that the NUC5PGYH kit is no longer barebones, it now includes 32GB flash storage and Windows 10. The NUC5PGYH has a street price of approximately AUD$370-399 at time of writing.Intel NUC NUC5PGYH features:
|Processor||Intel® Braswell Pentium N3700 (2.40 GHz Quad Core , 6W TDP)|
|Memory||2GB DDR3L SODIMM (1.35V, 1333/1600 MHz, 8GB maximum)|
|Graphics||Intel® HD Graphics|
|Video Outputs||1 x HDMI
1 x VGA
|Audio Outputs||Up to 7.1 surround audio via HDMI
1 x Headphone/Microphone jack on the front panel
1 x Headphone/TOSLINK* jack on the rear panel
|USB||2 x USB 3.0 (rear)
2 x USB 3.0 ports (front, 1 x charging capable)
2 x USB 2.0 (internal)
|Infrared||Consumer Infrared sensor on the front panel|
|Storage||32GB eMMC on-board|
|Storage Expansion||1 x Internal SATA3 support for 2.5¨ HDD/SSD (up to 9.5mm thickness)
1 x SDXC slot with UHS-I support on the side
|Wireless Networking||Intel® Wireless-AC 3165 M.2 2230 add-in card, wireless antennas (IEEE 802.11ac, Bluetooth* 4, Intel® Wireless Display)|
|Dimensions||115mm x 111mm x 51.6mm|
|Power Adapter||19V, 65W wall-mount AC-DC power adapter|
|Operating System||Pre-loaded with Microsoft Windows® 10 Home 64-bit|
The quad core mixed with gigabit ethernet or wireless AC should give us more than enough power for 4K video playback. One point of concern is the 2GB of memory, I can’t remember the last time any modern version of Windows ran well with only 2GB.
The Intel NUC Mini PC NUC5PGYH performed reasonably well under the Cinebench benchmarks.
CrystalDiskMark shows the performance of the eMMC to comparable to SATA3 SSDs we’ve seen in the past. Definately value for money.
The first test involved streaming HD content from YouTube.
The second video playback was performed using Kodi 15.2 as the media client. 1080P and 4K content was streamed from a QNAP TS-653 Pro over ethernet.
It’s great to finally see Intel produce a NUC that is literally plug and play. Apart from a remote control and media software (freely available e.g. Kodi) nothing else is required once the NUC5PGYH has been setup. During the setup process you do need a keyboard/mouse but beyond that, with the right media software you should be able to operate the NUC with just a remote.
The Intel NUC NUC5PGYH is an extremely capable media device. In our tests, YouTube HD (full screen) and 1080P/4K streaming with Kodi playback was flawless though we did come dangerously close to running out of memory. By today’s standard 4GB memory and 32GB storage is quite low and Intel should consider increasing these with future models.
Overall, the NUC5PGYH represents great value for money. It has a solid build, offers room for storage expansion and the memory is upgradable. I’ve been needing to replace an old Mac Mini in my media room for some time now, I think I just found the device I’m looking for.