Adata's first desktop PC is a 5-liter NUC with integrated graphics

(Image credit: Adata)

We were fairly impressed with Adata's first foray into gaming PCs, which began a few months ago with the XPG Xenia 15, a genuinely impressive laptop with better-than-expected battery life. For its followup act, Adata is trying its hand at a mini PC with its new XPG Gaia.

The Gaia is based on Intel's NUC 9 Extreme Kit, or otherwise known as Ghost Canyon. That is not necessarily a bad thing, just perhaps a bit uninspired for Adata's introductory desktop.

Built for "gamers, esports pros, and tech enthusiasts," Adata appears to have simply taken the Ghost Canyon NUC and stuffed its own brand memory and storage inside, then slapped an XPG logo on the front. The result is a compact 5-liter PC that should be relatively fast out of the box, though gamers, esports pros, and tech enthusiasts will undoubtedly want to add a discrete GPU.

The system is built around an Core i9 9980HK processor, a relatively meaty 8-core/16-thread chip with a 2.4GHz base clock, 5GHz boost clock, and 16MB of L3 cache. This also provides the graphics, by way of Intel's UHD 630 GPU (24 execution units, 350MHz to 1,25GHz clockspeed). That's fine for playing less demanding games like League of Legends, but is not going to cut it for more graphically intensive titles (Notebookcheck has a nice rundown of benchmarks).

One of the neat things about the Ghost Canyon NUC is that it can fit a discrete graphics card up to 202mm (7.95 inches) in length. There are even graphics cards designed specifically with the Ghost Canyon NUC in mind, like the Asus Dual GeForce RTX 2070 Mini OC Edition.

Your next machine

(Image credit: Future)

Best gaming PC: the top pre-built machines from the pros
Best gaming laptop: perfect notebooks for mobile gaming

As far as what comes with the Gaia, in addition to the 9980HK CPU, Adata ships it with 32GB (2x16GB) of DDR4-3200 "sorted" RAM (undoubtedly from its own stock) and an XPG SX8200 Pro SSD, a fast storage drive rated to deliver read and write speeds of up to 3,500MB/s and 3,000MB/s, respectively. Adata does not mention the capacity, so it's likely there will be multiple SKUs with different storage allotments.

The system also boasts Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) and Thunderbolt 3 connectivity, and is powered by a 500W PSU that is 80 Plus Platinum certified.

I've reached out to Adata for information on pricing and availability and will update this article when I hear back.

Paul Lilly

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).