From a strategic standpoint, Intel is intentionally not in the business of making money from selling systems. And for good reason, as doing so — at least on any kind of consistent basis —would alienate its OEM customers, whose existence does depend on making money from selling systems. However, to help seed demand, especially for novel products, Intel will create reference system designs as it deems necessary. Recently, it’s done that with a workstation-market-relevant slant on its NUC (Next Unit of Computing) mini PC.
|Intel’s NUC Pro 9: a mini that passes the workstation litmus test (Source: Intel)
The company’s NUC 9 Pro passes our litmus test to qualify as a workstation, offering Xeon class CPUs, as well as options for low-profile Nvidia Quadro GPU add-in cards (base graphics is Intel’s integrated UHD graphics). To date, no major OEM has picked up the NUC Pro (at least not as-is including branding), though it essentially fits as another mini Entry 1S model in the workstation spectrum.