When Asus first unloaded the EN7800GT on an unsuspecting world, enthusiasts marvelled at the sheer size of the product and the improvements it delivered. It arrived in special boxing and had KitGuru nipping to the local pro-tech store for a new PSU. Several generations and a massive R&D investment later, Asus is ready to unveil the ARES 5970. We’re weak. Give it to us. Give it to us now!
In the same way that everyone accepts that the GTX480 is the fastest GPU on the market, no one argues that the Radeon HD 5970 is the fastest card ever made.
But is it as fast as it could be? We know that the dual-5870 clocks were stifled when it first left the factory and keeping any dual-GPU cards cool is this day and age is a harsh test of your cooling prowess. Against that background, products like the CoolIT Omni have found favour. But why can’t the manufacturers solve the airflow/noise/performance equation for us and just deliver the stunning performance we crave?
Well, according to our initial investigations, Asus has delivered. In the form of ARES.
Like seeing your first bubble, the design of the ARES is so obvious that you can’t believe it hasn’t already been done. The Asus styling team have gone into full force and the ARES has a stripped down, effective, beauty that you have to admire.
With 3,200 stream processors, memory chugging along at 4.8GHz, a pair of 850MHz cores and a staggeringly effective/quiet cooling solution, this is about as serious as it gets.
Just as the GTX480 was about to step into the ring, it seems Radeon ‘Iron Mike’ 5970 has taken a new course of steroids. Will the bar be lifted too high for GTX490 to try?
Initial testing shows a massive boost to performance scores. We’ll go into detail later, but here’s some 3DMark Vantage action to stimulate your nads:-
Beating the fastest card in the market by 25% is amazing. But it also DROPS the noise levels while increasing airflow significantly:-
KitGuru says: Without putting it into the same i7-980 rig as the GTX490 and seeing how these two play together, we cannot pass any kind of judgement. But we like it fast. We like it cool. We like it quiet. And we like it to keep on banging for a long, long time. On these counts, ARES seems to have RAMmed the important points home.
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