ASUS Mars II review -
The product reviewed today originates from ASUS, let's have a peek at what they shipped in shall we?
Aaah what's a review from Guru3D without a box shot, typically I say "so you know what to look for in the stores". But today, that phrase won't fly. Changes are close to NIL you'll ever see one in the stores as with a volume of a 1000 pieces worldwide... these things still sell like a cheap hooker in Las Vegas.
A snug but most of all sturdy package. You'll receive one ROG flavored card and PEG power (8-pin) converters. Next to that a manual and drivers. For a 1300 EUR product the bundled items are remarkably scarce to be honest. Come on ASUS, at least throw in a game...
The card itself is roughly 12-inches long, that's give or take, 31cm in the metric system. That means you will be needing a chassis that can actually fit this card length wise.
Power connectors are located at the top side to give you a little extra room to play around with. The card obviously, as you can see, is 100% custom designed in fact the only thing that ASUS didn't touch where the two NVIDIA GPUs they needed.
We weighed the card as it is disproportionably heavy... seriously heavy. It weighs 2.37 kilograms, or 5 pounds / 3.75 ounces for those in the US. That's too heavy for a PCIe slot with a card mounted in that 90 degree angle. Should you pop the card in and you have not secured it with a screw... it would prolly rip out and bend the actual PCIe slot.
ASUS knows this and delivers PCIe graphics slot support brackets, so you won't damage the slot and card hanging there in the 90 degree angle.
It has everything to do with that massive 3 slot cooler. Notice by the way that the outer shell if the card is styled after the ROG design that was implemented on the rampage III series motherboards as well. it's probably a nice fashion statement to pair it with the Rampage III Extreme or even better the R3E Black edition.
Yep, you can get your total g33k-fr33k on alright... Wicked.
We've seen the original brutal Mars, the exemplary ARES but ASUS is at it again with the all new Mars II, yep that's right. The x-factor products makes it prodigal return to manage a little bump and grinding. Money aside, the dual-GPU product tested today is uber cool though. It's the stuff that make my digitized ticker go tick a little faster -- and once you have it in your hands, you'll make a nervous giggle. Ah well, talk is cheap, have a look and then we'll head onwards into the review of the Lucifer of graphics cards.
ASUS MARS review
If you have been living under a rock and don't know what the ASUS Mars is .. let me give you an easy breakdown. You take two GeForce GTX 285 graphics cards, stick 4 GB of memory on there (2GB per GPU), sandwich them, SLI them up, market it as MARS, slap a limited edition label on there and make only a 1000 units. That in a nutshell is the product we'll be testing today. So without making a long and boring introduction, let's pop one of these little frackers into our finest test system and see where it ends up performance wise .. will this really be the fastest graphics card in the world anno September 2009 ?