Intel's Bean Canyon NUCs have been subject to a number of leaks, notably from FanlessTech. However Intel has finally made things official with a detailed technical product manual for all the members of the Bean Canyon NUC family. From an I/O perspective, the Bean Canyon NUCs look very similar to the Baby Canyon NUCs. However, the internals have gone in for a significant revamp, thanks to the Coffee Lake processors (CFL-U) inside. The updates include:

  • 28W TDP processors across all SKUs, with true quad-core / octa-thread options
  • Iris Plus Graphics 655 with 128MB eDRAM across all SKUs
  • Intel Wireless-AC 9560 with Bluetooth 5.0 WLAN module
  • USB 3.1 Gen 2 (10 Gbps) support on all external Type-A ports

While most of the Baby Canyon NUCs came with a 15W TDP processor - either in a "2+2" or "2+3e" configuration - all the Bean Canyon models (NUC8BE) sport 28W TDP processors (that can be configured to run with a lower TDP of 20W, if needed). The 28W TDP allows all the models to come with Iris Plus Graphics 655 with 128MB of eDRAM as the integrated GPU. This makes "2+3e" CPUs the new baseline, while even more powerful "4+3e" CPUs are now an option.

Since these are U-series processors, the PCH is on-package with the rest of the CPU. The move to the Cannon Point-LP integrated PCH allows for four USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports that are present as Type-A ports in the front and rear of the chassis. The CFL-U come with the new Integrated Connectivity feature (CNVi), where the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth MAC and other functional blocks are put inside the processor. The CRF (companion RF) module completes the Wireless-AC 9560 by implementing the signal processing, RF, and analog functions.

The Intel Wireless-AC 9560 is a significant upgrade over the Wireless-AC 8265 in the Kaby Lake NUCs. It comes with Wave 2 features, including support for 160 MHz channels and downlink MU-MIMO. The 2x2 WLAN module is theoretically capable of 1.73 Gbps bandwidth. It also integrates dual-mode Bluetooth 5 support.

Intel Bean Canyon NUC PCs (Non-Optane SKUs)
CPU Core i7-8559U
2.7 (4.5) GHz
28 W TDP
Core i5-8259U
2.3 (3.8) GHz
28 W TDP
Core i3-8109U
3.0 (3.6) GHz
28 W TDP
Graphics Intel Iris Plus Graphics 655
PCH Intel Cannon Point-LP for Coffee Lake-U
Memory Two SO-DIMM slots, up to 32 GB of DDR4-2400
2.5" bay 1x2.5"/9.5mm bay, SATA3 None 1x2.5"/9.5 mm bay, SATA3 None
M.2 Slot Up to M.2-2280 SSD with SATA3 or PCIe 3.0 x4 interface
Wi-Fi/BT Soldered-down Intel Wireless-AC 9560(802.11ac 2x2 + BT 5.0) with WiDi support
Ethernet Intel I219V Gigabit Ethernet controller
Display Outputs DisplayPort 1.2 via USB-C connector
HDMI 2.0
Audio 3.5 mm TRRS audio jack
7.1 channel audio output via HDMI or DP
1x Thunderbolt 3 Type-C (40 Gbps) (USB 3.1 Gen 2 and Display Port functionality included)
USB 4 USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A (10 Gbps), one with charging
Other I/O MicroSDXC card reader with UHS-I support
One infrared receiver
Size (mm) 115 × 111 × 51 115 × 111 × 31 115 × 111 × 51 115 × 111 × 31
PSU External, 65 W

Intel continues to use a LSPCon on board to convert the Display Port 1.2 output of the processor to a HDMI 2.0 port with HDCP 2.2. Unfortunately, stereoscopic 3D will not be supported. The good news is that the Thunderbolt 3 USB Type-C port on all the models will also support 4Kp60 displays with HDCP 2.2. All versions of the Bean Canyon will support Thunderbolt 3 (unlike the Core i3 version of the KBL-U Baby Canyon that restricted the Alpine Ridge Type-C port to USB 3.1 Gen 2 only in the firmware).

Similar to the previous NUCs, Intel plans to sell both kit (NUC8iXBEK / NUC8iXBEH) and board versions (NUC8iXBEB) of the different configurations. Note that the BEK does not support a 2.5" drive, while the BEH SKUs do. System builders using the BEB SKUs can opt to operate the processor in the cTDP down (20W) mode if adequate cooling is not available. Intel also plans to offer pre-built systems with Optane, as described below.

Retail availability is expected to be in early August. Pricing details are yet to be made available.

Source: Intel (PDF)

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  • Nsummy - Wednesday, July 25, 2018 - link

    The headline is a little misleading. This isn't an "official launch." All of this info was taken from a PDF full of technical specifications that was intended for system builders and OEM companies.
  • MattMe - Wednesday, July 25, 2018 - link

    I woulnd't say it's super niche at all. It's aimed at corporate deployments, for which it's perfect. Particularly now it's 4c/8t. It's been a growing market since 2014 and I doon't see any reason why it won't continue to grow.

    I'd bet for most typical business users (excluding media or power users) they're a perfect use case. Why bother with a huge tower taking up space when you can mount one of these on the back of a screen. Excellent performance, security, and impressive IO all in a tiny box.

    I'm convinced.
  • Icehawk - Wednesday, July 25, 2018 - link

    I agree, I have been pushing for mini PCs (Dell 3060) at work for our retail stores - why waste space for an empty box?
  • nico_mach - Wednesday, July 25, 2018 - link

    A hobbyist box that you have to add RAM and SSD to manually is for corporate deployments? Really?
  • ganeshts - Wednesday, July 25, 2018 - link

    You do understand that there are VARs (like SimplyNUC) who kit them out for mass deployment, right?
  • Dug - Friday, July 27, 2018 - link

    Yes, and a very good idea. SKU's of retail products are commonly reconfigured by the distributor like CDW for large orders anyway. In our case we have our laptops ordered with more memory because Lenovo doesn't have a SKU with the memory we want. Then we have them install our image before they ship. Saves us time and money.
  • imaheadcase - Thursday, July 26, 2018 - link

    What are you smoking? These are perfect for small entertainment hubs or work hubs at business. They sell really well.
  • imaheadcase - Thursday, July 26, 2018 - link

    Not only that, but they run KODI like a champ, perfect SFF to put next to TV to stream all downloaded content.
  • imaheadcase - Thursday, July 26, 2018 - link

    Forgot to add they stream 4k just fine before someone spouts off some bullshit saying they can't. YOu don't need a lot to stream 4k despite what people think.
  • K_Space - Monday, July 30, 2018 - link

    ...and with support for HDCP2.2 -finally- I'm sold!

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