Asus' Dual-GTX 480 "MARS II" Card is Out of this World

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News Posted: Mon, Jul 19 2010 1:10 PM
Forget about the heat, noise, or cost. For those who have to have the fastest single-GPU videocard on the planet, Nvidia's GTX 480 takes the crown. The discussion gets a little more interesting, however, when you start talking about the fastest videocard around, a distinction that belongs to AMD's dual-GPU HD 5970. At least for now.

Say hello to Asus' MARS II graphics card, the unannounced, unconfirmed, yet delightfully leaked card that packs not one, but TWO GTX 480 chips under a single hood.


Asus isn't willing to divulge any details on the upcoming card just yet, but that's okay, because a picture is worth a thousand words, right? There's an internal SLI connection between the two GPUs, which are situated on opposite sides of the card. Also visible are three 8-pin power connectors, which tells us this thing is going to sip some serious juice. And if our math is up to par, this thing will come crammed with 960 CUDA cores.

Other than that, we'll have to wait until Asus is ready to officially let the cat out of the bag.
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AKwyn replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 1:28 PM

Man, ASUS has done it again. First dual Radeon HD 5870's and now this? It's like a gamer's wet dream. I wonder how they're going to cool this baby though, maybe they're going to do the same thing as they did with the ARES and add a custom cooling solution to it with copper blocks and a fan in the middle.

 

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slugbug replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 1:29 PM

Another $1200 video card?

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slugbug:

Another $1200 video card?

Most likely a lot more than that as even Nvidia has announced that they aren't touching the dual card setup for now.  Eitherway if this is GF100 or GF104 that is pretty damn impressive on Asus engineering team.

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AKwyn replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 1:49 PM

GTX480 is a GF100 so it's sure to produce a lot of heat and consume a lot of power. Hence the 3 power points. Also NVIDIA hasn't entirely abandoned the dual card setup, they're working on one based on the new GF104 architecture so don't give up hope yet!

 

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Inspector replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 2:09 PM

Wow asus, you always impressing people! Now lets see whos going to afford to buy it... Its sounds awesome and but will it perform as it says?

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CHolt replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 4:00 PM

Are they gonna make a Mobility version of this? Hahahahaha. Just kidding.

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acarzt replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 4:17 PM

News:
 when you start talking about the fastest videocard around, a distinction that belongs to AMD's dual-GPU HD 5970. At least for now.

That distinction actuall belongs to the ARES.

But back to the card... This thing is probably going to be super expensive... but i'm excited to see what it can do!

Make sure you guys get 2 so you can run it in SLI HH!

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Chainzsaw replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 5:09 PM

Nice video card. Is there even a processor fast enough to feed these types of cards? The Ares, or the Mars 2 (when it comes out)? I mean properly.

Also one more thing. I'm sick of companies making these massive video cards. Why can't they try and pair say... 2 radeon 5850's or 5770's, and make the card smaller than these beasts. They need to make video cards the size of the voodoo 2. That or switch these damn GPU's to socket based, instead of slot based.

Hell I wonder how 3 5770 video cards in one card would do. Then again...it would probably get massive.

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acarzt replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 6:35 PM

CPUs have no problem pumping data into video cards currently.

I don' t know why you guys keep thinking there is a CPU bottleneck.

I have yet to see any recent benchmark exhibit a CPU bottleneck.

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You still have wet dreams Taylor? Might be time to see a doctor.

Duals have always been better! I am sure as soon as these come down in price, they will come out with one twice as powerful with a single.

Either way to begin with, if the starting price is competitive with ATI then people will clamor for these!

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AKwyn replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 9:56 PM

It's a fact that Duals are better but they'll always remain expensive unless you spring for the last-last-gen model. I've seen 3870 X2's on eBay going for absolutely nothing.

 

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acarzt replied on Mon, Jul 19 2010 10:39 PM

TaylorKarras:

I've seen 3870 X2's on eBay going for absolutely nothing.

Cuz that's what they're worth! Bazinga! lol I keed I keed.

Duals are usually pretty awesome... but also pretty expensive. Mine was $500 back when I bought it...

If I could do it all over again... I wouldn't have bought it lol I would have picked up a pair of 260s and a 250 for the same price lol Or a pair of 275s and got more Performance for similar price. Even 3 250s would have been more powerful.

If I buy any cards for the current gen... they will be 460s.

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3vi1 replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 12:28 AM

>> Are they gonna make a Mobility version of this? Hahahahaha. Just kidding.

ROFL!

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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boomer123 replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 10:29 AM

bwhaha. yea lets forget all the heat, power, cost of this card. This card probably NEEDS watercooling setup. >_> i hope nvidia doesn't dissapoint again. Their 480 was crap and overheated. THe 5970 even did better with 2 gpu in it.

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Chainzsaw replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 11:01 AM

I beg to differ, acarzt.

Unless you actually overclock (which most people don't do) there WILL be a bottleneck with the CPU, especially with a card like the ARES. Try to max out the resolution on most newer games, and turn the details settings to the maximum. Any resolution above 1080P the CPU will start to struggle. Don't believe me? Check out the review of the ARES on this website:

http://hothardware.com/Reviews/Asus-ARES-Dual-Radeon-HD-5870-4GB-Review/?page=8

This is with a Core i7 3.2Ghz (965) processor.

The reason why this is, is because games have still not been 100% optimized yet for multi-core processors. Unless the C i 7 was overclocked to 4.0 Ghz, then I would say there would be no CPU bottleneck.

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realneil replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 11:57 AM

Yep, I agree, use one of these in the winter and you'll be able to not use the house's central heating unit and still be comfortable.

In the summer, you'll bake.

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acarzt replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 6:02 PM

That is not what a CPU bottleneck looks like....

When you have a CPU bottleneck... The FPS would be the same on the most powerful and the weaker cards across the board.

When the Video Card is the bottleneck you see varying FPS dependent upon the power of the video card... which is what you see here.

Also if you look at ALL of the other benchmarks you can see how varied the FPS are. L4D2 almost mimics a CPU limitation between the 2 fastest cards. But rest asured... there is no CPU limitation.

"Games have still not been 100% optimized yet for multi-core processors"

This is an Game Engine limitation... not a CPU limitation. Also L4D2 supports Multi-core processing.

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acarzt replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 6:02 PM

This article illistrates a CPU and GPU limitation

http://www.viperlair.com/articles/archive/editorials/bottlenecks.shtml

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CHolt replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 6:54 PM

What kind of PSU would you need to power a quad-sli setup with these cards? Do they have 2000w PSU's? Why don't they come out with 24-pin connectors for GPU's? Everyone who has one of these cards will never be able to use a mid-tower case again.

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acarzt replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 8:51 PM

You wont need a 2K watt PSU.

1k should be able to handle it.

Also this doesn't look much longer than your typical high end video card so you should have no problem using it in a mid tower. Full towers are really just taller anyway.

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CHolt replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 9:44 PM

1k PSU could handle 4 of those?

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AKwyn replied on Tue, Jul 20 2010 9:49 PM

boomer123:

bwhaha. yea lets forget all the heat, power, cost of this card. This card probably NEEDS watercooling setup. >_> i hope nvidia doesn't dissapoint again. Their 480 was crap and overheated. THe 5970 even did better with 2 gpu in it.

You're forgetting we're dealing with ASUS here. The heat issues can be migrated with a aftermarket cooler and even though the GTX480 sucks up a lot of power, it succeeds in two things, tessellation and god rays.

You also forgot about the GTX 460 which does suck up less power and produces less heat then the GTX480, that is NVIDIA's redemption, if you weren't such an ATI fanboy, you would notice that by now.

 

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acarzt replied on Wed, Jul 21 2010 12:36 AM

You can't run 4 of these in 1 system. You can run up to 2.

And at the most you might have to step up to a 1.2k watt PSU.

It's gonna draw a lot of power.... but not as much as you think.

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slugbug replied on Sat, Jul 24 2010 12:30 PM

Reminds me of some of the stuff Galaxy was showing a few months back. Like a single slot GTX 480.

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acarzt replied on Sat, Jul 24 2010 6:19 PM

heh... what would be sweet to do a 7-way SLI with single slot GTX 480s lol

Yea... i'm a dreamer lol

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