Intel is already prepping its next-gen successor to the Phantom Canyon NUC known as NUC 12 'Serpent Canyon' which would offer
12th Gen Alder Lake CPUs
Xe-HPG based DG2 graphics chips
Intel NUC 12 'Serpent Canyon' Mini PCs To Rock Alder Lake H45 CPUs & Up To 16 GB Xe-HPG DG2 Discrete GPUs
In a slide that was leaked over at
), it can be seen that the enthusiast variant of the NUC 12 series which will be known as Serpent Canyon, will be replacing the NUC 11 series. The PC will offer two key components, a brand new CPU architecture in the form of Alder Lake and a new in-house GPU option in the form of Xe-HPG powered DG2.
Intel Xe-HPG DG2 GPU Spotted With Performance On Par With A NVIDIA GTX 1660 SUPER
The NUC 12 'Serpent Canyon' series will come in three flavors, the top variant will feature an Alder Lake Core i7 CPU with up to 16 GB Discrete graphics. This will be followed by a Core i7 variant with up to 12 GB Discrete graphics and finally, we have the entry-level Core i5 variant with an 8 GB GPU. Leaked specifications for Xe-HPG DG2 SKUs confirm that 16 GB, 12 GB and 8 GB GPUs do exist so that's what we are going to end up getting in the next-gen Mini PCs from Intel.
Now it isn't explicitly mentioned which GPU the NUC 12 will be offering but considering that the Mini PC launches next year, it is pretty much confirmed to offer Intel's Xe-HPG based DG2 GPUs. The discrete graphics will offer HDMI 2.1, Mini DP 2.0, and DP 2.0 outputs. As for the rest of the specifications, it looks like the Intel Alder Lake CPUs will be attached to dual-channel DDR4-3200 SODIMMs (1.2V) with up to 64 GB capacities. This confirms that Alder Lake CPUs will have support for both DDR5 and DDR4 memory baked within their memory controller.
In terms of I/O, the NUC 12 will rock support for 2 Gen 4x4 and 1 Gen 3x4 (2280) M.2 drives, the Optane Memory M10/H10 solution, front and rear Thunderbolt 4 ports, Intel 2.5GbE (i225-LM) for LAN, Intel Wireless-AX411 (Bluetooth 5.x + WiFi 6E), a total of 6 USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports & 2 USB 2.0 ports (internal headers), a 3.5mm headset jack, 7.1 channel digital audio via HDMI or DP ports, a beam-forming, quad-mic array with Alexa support and a power input for 19V (230/330W) C13 AC power plug.
As for the design, Intel will keep the Skull logo featured on the NUC 12 and will be RGB-lit plus users will have the option to replace it and customize it themselves. A Vertical stand would be included in the package along with a 3-year warranty. Currently, there are no Alder Lake CPU configurations that have been mentioned but we will know in the coming months as we get closer to launch.