Asus GTX 285 Matrix - Fastest Single GPU Card Out there?

Videocards/VGA Reviews by leeghoofd @ 2009-08-17

I was intrigued by this card and decided to put it head to head, not with all video cards out there, but against its reference design twin brother. I have been using a GTX 285 since its release and have been a pretty happy camper. But what extras this Asus card has to offer you want to check out!

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Introduction, specifications and first pictures

Madshrimps (c)

ASUS, a technology-oriented company blessed with one of the world's top R&D teams, is well known for high-quality and innovative technology. As a leading provider of 3C (computers, communications and consumer electronics) total solutions, ASUS offers a complete product portfolio to compete in the new millennium. In 2006, the company shipped 55 million motherboards, which means one in three desktop PCs sold last year was powered by an ASUS motherboard. Our 2006 revenues reached US$16.5 billion, and is expected to garner US$23 billion in 2007. ASUS products' top quality stems from product development. It's like learning Chinese Kung-Fu; one must begin with cultivating the "Chi" and inner strength. Besides innovating cutting-edge features, ASUS engineers also pay special attention to EMI (electromagnetic interference), thermal, acoustics and details that usually go unnoticed to achieve complete customer satisfaction. ASUS notebooks are the first TCO'99-certified notebooks worldwide. The requirements for this honor include radiation emission control, energy (battery consumption), ecology (environment friendly) and ergonomics. To succeed in this ultra-competitive industry, great products need to be complimented by speed-to-market, cost and service. That's why all 100,000 over employees of ASUS strive for the "ASUS Way of Total Quality Management" to offer the best quality without compromising cost and time-to-market while providing maximum value to all customers through world-class services. With unyielding commitment to innovation and quality, ASUS won 2,168 awards in 2006, meaning on average, the company received over 5 awards everyday last year.

Previous reviews containing Asus videocards:

  • 10 Geforce 8800 GTS 320Mb Video Cards Compared
  • NVIDIA 7950 GT Roundup - Speedbump to High End
  • Low to Mid-Range PCIe Video Card Roundup
  • Asus Extreme N6600GT Review - SLI on a Budget


    The Nvidia GTX 285 has been released a long time ago and still remains one of the fastest single GPU cards out there. Friend and foe were surprised that Asus released yet another model in their GTX 285 lineup, since newer GPU's have been announced for Q3. Being known for their ROG (Republic of Gamers) motherboard lineup, where Asus blends looks with special added features, components and adds extra OC ability. Know they seem to add graphic cards to that lineup too... With the release of the limited edition MARS card, which SLI'ed 285 GPU's on one PCB, yet Asus had still something else up their sleeves. The latter being the card we are going to review today; the MATRIX GTX 285 HDTI/1GD3.

    First the marketing chitchat and compared specifications:

    Madshrimps (c)
    (Click to enlarge)

    Madshrimps (c)
    (Click to enlarge)

    On the left we got the stock specs of the 285 cards, on the right the Matrix model. At first glance not much difference, hold your horses though... there's more, loads more.


    Madshrimps (c)

    Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c)
    (Click to enlarge)

    To sum it up what did Asus here to make this card stand out from the crowd ? To start with, they deviated from the reference design (which really has to be applauded) Secondly, Asus enhanced the cooling and PWM circuitry. There's a build in a chip that allows monitoring, speed and voltage adjustments via a software tool called Itracker2. Last but not least they included a feature that allows you to burn ya settings into the card's Vbios. With the I-tracker2 software you can switch between the 4 preset modes and the 4 do it yourself modes. Eg, when you found a good setting for daily clocks, one for benching, folding@home etc...

    The packaging contains only the necessary ; the card, HDMI connector, digital vs analogue converter, sound cable, PCI-E power connector, the installation software bundle ( no games here lads ) and a leather CD/DVD map.

    Let's have a look at the card itself ->

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    Comment from Massman @ 2009/08/17
    Too bad it's not possible to put this one under LN2; I'm pretty sure I'd get the memory to bench at 1600MHz with added cold