Asus Matrix 5870 2GB Video Card Review

Article Index

Performance Summary and Conclusion

Performance Summary: As we've come to expect from high-end Radeon HD 5870-based graphics cards, the Matrix 5870 performed well throughout our benchmarks. With that said, even at an ultra-high resolution of 2560 x 1600 with anti-aliasing enabled, the advantage of having 2GB of video memory was not apparent. In general, the Matrix 5870's performance was on par with the stock clocked 5870 1GB model, and it traded places with the Super Overclock GTX 470 in several tests. Zotac's Amp Edition GTX 480 proved to be a strong competitor with a measurable lead in every application we tested.

The Matrix 5870 also provided decent overclocking headroom. We saw higher overclocks from Gigabyte's Super Overclock 5870, but the Matrix beat out both the MSI and HIS 5870 cards we recently tested in this aspect. Lastly, the idle temperature we recorded from the Matrix was surprisingly high. After uninstalling iTracker 2, the card ran a full 10 degrees cooler, while lowering power consumption by 26W.

 Considering it is one of the most expensive Radeon HD 5870 cards currently on the market, and its performance is roughly the same as less expensive 1GB models, we doubt the Asus Matrix 5870 doesn't represent a great value. In fact, the $500 asking price restricts it to users with plenty of disposable income, and a taste for individuality. If you're looking for a standard 1GB 5870, there are a multitude of choices avaialable that cost well under $400. Of course, there are other 2GB 5870s available for about $500, but they all support ATI's Eyefinity 6 feature and have 6 DisplayPort video outputs. At its relatively higher price point, the Matrix finds itself in the same price range as most NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480 video cards, including overclocked models like Zotac's Amp Edition we used here. And as the testing clearly showed us, the Matrix 5870 can't keep up with the 480 in gaming performance.

In closing, we found the Matrix 5870 to be a unique card, targeting a specific type of enthusiast. Features like 2GB of video memory, the Super Hybrid Engine chip, load indicator LEDs, and dual video BIOS offer users certain advantages that other products don't. On the other hand, the Matrix commands a hefty price, which puts it out of reach of many consumers. At $499, it's difficult to make a strong argument for the Matrix 5870 from a performance perspective. In fact, there is serious competition at that price point coming from a an array of powerful GTX 480 cards, which have a marked performance advantage over Radeon HD 5870 cards. So even with all its added benefits, we think the Asus Matrix 5870's asking price is too high. Still, the Matrix is great looking card with plenty of features that cater to hardware enthusiasts. If you crave exclusivity and can envision yourself utilizing some of the unique features of this card like the voltage check points, etc., and you are willing to pay for it, the Asus Matrix 5870 is a high-quality product worth checking out.



  • Highly customized
  • Overclocking utility
  • Dual video BIOS with safe mode button
  • Rear heat exhaust
  • Eye catching load indicator LED


  • Expensive
  • High idle power when using iTracker 2


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