Our Summary and Conclusion
Performance Summary: The Intel NUC5i7RYH wasn't a barn burner in the benchmarks, but when loaded up with 16GB of RAM and a fast SSD, overall performance is very good. With its low-power dual-core processor and on-die Iris 6100-series graphics engine, the NUC5i7RYH won’t offer the same kind of performance as systems equipped with higher-powered processors or graphics cards, but for everyday computing tasks and casual gaming, it should fit the bill for users that want a tiny, but high performing system.
When we concluded our review of the lower-end Intel NUC5i5RYK, we said, "We really like the Intel NUC5i5RYK and think the combination of Broadwell and this ultra small form factor is a perfect match. These little machines are well suited to a variety of consumer and business applications." That is exactly how we feel about this more powerful version of the NUC. The NUC5i7RYH would serve users looking for a low-power desktop rig quite well. Unfortunately, the relatively loud fan in the system negates its use as an HTPC. You'd have to really crank up the volume to drown out the whine from the machine.
Pricing for this Core i7 / Iris equipped NUC5i7RYH is currently sits at about $535, which is relatively high considering the amount of CPU and GPU horsepower on board. And that’s not including an OS, drive or memory, so the price will only go up from there. We think it’s fair to expect to pay a premium for the form factor, but whether or not the price is justifiable will depend on your particular needs. If you've got the space, a mini-ITX rig with a more powerful CPU and GPU is certainly a possibility. In light of other ultra small form factor systems, however, the NUC5i7RYH is mighty attractive due to its flexible storage configuration and relatively powerful CPU and GPU.