After years of delays, Intel began shipping its first 10nm processors in large volumes this fall. And if the Core i7-1065G7 processor in the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 I just finished reviewing is anything to go by, it looks like the new Ice Lake chips may have been worth the wait… at least if you get one of the top-of-the-line chips with Intel Gen11 graphics.
But Ice Lake wasn’t actually Intel’s first crack at 10nm chips. Last year the company shipped a smaller quantity of 10nm Cannon Lake processors.
And by smaller quantity, I mean there was only ever a single Cannon Lake processor. It wasn’t very powerful. And it only shipped in a handful of devices — including the Intel Crimson Canyon” NUC mini-desktop computers.
Now Intel is discontinuing Crimson Canyon just over a year after it was first released.
The news comes from an Intel product update notice issued last week (PDF link), which notes that the company will continue shipping Crimson Canyon NUC units to customers until February 28th, “while supply is available,” indicating that the company probably won’t put much effort into restocking inventory once it runs out.
Customers who already have a Crimson Canyon NUC or have already placed orders will only have until December 27th, 2019 to cancel their orders or return their computers.
I suspect demand wasn’t ever even as high as the limited supply for these systems. The only things they really had going for them were the fact that they were some of the first computers available with 10nm Intel processors — but since those Core i3-8121U offered few advantages over other 8th-gen U-series chips, there wasn’t much reason to choose a Crimson Canyon NUC over other mini computers.
If you’re in the market for a strange piece of computer history, you can pick up a Crimson Canyon NUC with an Intel Core i3-8121U processor, AMD Radeon 540 graphics, 8GB of RAM, a 1TB hard drive and Windows 10 Home from Amazon for $540. But I wouldn’t recommend it.
SimplyNUC is also offering a build-your-own-configuration version of Intel’s Crimson Canyon NUC with prices starting at $714.