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ASUS GeForce GTX 980 ROG Matrix Platinum Video Card Review

By: Anthony Garreffa | NVIDIA GeForce GPU in Video Cards | Posted: May 22, 2015 5:10 pm
TweakTown Rating: 94%Manufacturer: ASUS

Card Specifications

 

The ASUS GeForce GTX 980 Matrix Platinum video card is one of the best GTX 980s you can buy, with some of the highest overclocks performed to the GM204 core we've seen. Mixing this with the excellent DirectCU II cooling setup with a 10mm heat pipe, you're cooking with gas.

 

First, let's take a look at what we have in terms of specifications and how that compares to the MSI GeForce GTX 980 Gaming 4G LE that we looked at a couple of weeks ago, and the reference GTX 980 directly from NVIDIA.

 

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Above, we have our video card comparison chart with the ASUS card on the far left, and to the right, we can easily compare it to the MSI GeForce GTX 980 Gaming 4G LE and to the reference GTX 980 from NVIDIA.

 

 

Cooling Setup

 

ASUS has deployed its DirectCU II cooler onto the GTX 980 Matrix Platinum, which keeps one of the most overclocked GM204 cores nice and cool. The card is a work of art, with the cooler underneath quite an engineering feat.

 

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As you can see in the image above, as you begin to peel layers away from the GTX 980 Matrix Platinum, we begin to see what's going on. Once the front of the card is peeled away, we can see two CoolTech fans have been used, beneath that, we have the DirectCU II with 10mm heat pipe. Once that is removed, the PCB itself is exposed. There, we have DIGI+VRM with 14-phase Super Allow Power to the right, with a MOS heat sink next to it. On the back of the card, we have a very large aluminum back plate.

 

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ASUS details the DirectCU II cooler on its GTX 980 Matrix Platinum in considerable detail on its website, where ASUS compares it against the reference GTX 980 from NVIDIA. Comparing the GTX 980 Matrix Platinum against the reference GTX 980, the ASUS card is up to 25% cooler at 69C versus the 80C on the reference card.

 

As for noise, the ASUS GeForce GTX 980 Matrix Platinum is up to three times quieter at 25dB versus 33dB. We will do some of our own sound testing towards the end of our review.

 

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ASUS has used CoolTech fan technology which is an "exclusive hybrid and dust-proof fan technology that accelerates heat removal to ensure top-notch graphics performance that's highly stable". The CoolTech fan technology from ASUS uses a hybrid blade and bearing design that features an inner blade radial blower and outer flower-type blades, something that provides multi-directional airflow.

 

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The GTX 980 Matrix Platinum is a serious card, intended for use for normal consumers and enthusiasts, but also for the serious enthusiasts and overclockers. This means we have "Memory Defroster" technology, which is a brand new, ASUS-exclusive technology that "instantly defrosts your Matrix card's memory during subzero overclocking to ensure sustained stability". LN2 cold bugs? Not anymore.

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