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Asus Finally Officially Announces Strix GTX 980 Ti With Triple-Fan Cooler

It's been a bit of a wait since we first saw it at Computex, but Asus finally unveiled the juicy details about its all-new Strix GTX 980 Ti graphics card. This card brings a couple of firsts to the table, but most of the attention is drawn to its cooler.

The Strix GTX 980 Ti comes with a new DirectCU III cooler. This cooler is inspired by design cues from the older DirectCU coolers and is themed with the Strix styling. As such, it has a large heatsink and a handful of heatpipes, two of which are a respectable 10 mm thick, and a triple-fan 0-dB airflow design. When the graphics card is below 65 C, the fans simply won't spin, resulting in quiet operation when idling or with less intensive loads. Of course, the cherry on top is that the side of the cooler has Strix LED lighting, which can be adjusted with various lighting effects.

The PCB of the graphics card is new as well and features a massive 12+2 phase Super Alloy II power delivery circuit. It was built using Asus' industry-first Auto-Extreme fully automated PCB manufacturing process. You can read more about the Auto-Extreme manufacturing here.

Such a PCB design has allowed Asus to bring the GPU clocks up quite high. In OC mode, the GPU runs at a base clock of 1216 MHz, and will typically boost up to around 1317 MHz so long as it is possible within the power and thermal envelopes. The 6 GB of GDDR5 memory is clocked at an effective frequency of 7200 MHz.

Of course, the card isn't exactly what you'd call compact. To keep the card from bending throughout its lifetime (and for aesthetic purposes, of course), Asus equipped the backside with a strengthened Strix-themed backplate and a "GPU Fortifier."

To play around with the card, Asus offers a free download of its GPU Tweak II software, which you can use for quick-and-dirty overclocking, or more fine-tuned overclocking depending on how much patience you have. Additionally, Asus includes a one year license for the XSplit Gamecaster premium software to stream gameplay on-the-fly.

Asus did not reveal pricing, but the card will be on shelves at major retailers this month.

Follow Niels Broekhuijsen @NBroekhuijsen. Follow us @tomshardware, on Facebook and on Google+.

  • Quixit
    ASUS's Strix marketing is really silly. It started out as a mid-range line with parking fans at idle and now they just plaster it on everything so it means nothing. They have Strix headphones now!

    They really should have kept the Matrix naming for the high-end cards, at this point ASUS Strix is like Samsung Galaxy, superfluous branding that everyone totally ignores.
    Reply
  • TechyInAZ
    Again, ASUS delivers a great product! Can't wait for reviews on this card.

    WOW, that's a massive overclock. It's very hard to reach those clock speeds on those huge chips.
    Reply
  • eklipz330
    why don't they add grooves to the backplate to increase surface area? when you put the card in, the backplate usually faces up too, so it makes sense that the heat is transferring on to it. anyone?
    Reply
  • Calculatron
    Backplates are more for stability, than for heat dissipation; they make for very poor heatsinks.
    Reply
  • ohim
    Though i own 2 ASUS products, (MB and soundcard) i`m actually amazed about how many people buy their products. Beside manufacturing their products ASUS is really terrible at drivers ( good thing Nvidia and AMD are responsible for the GPU) but on soundcards they have about 0 support, you get the initial driver release and if you`re lucky you might get a beta one, as for forum support is inexistent. For a company as big as them their support is total crap.
    Reply
  • jasonelmore
    Though i own 2 ASUS products, (MB and soundcard) i`m actually amazed about how many people buy their products. Beside manufacturing their products ASUS is really terrible at drivers ( good thing Nvidia and AMD are responsible for the GPU) but on soundcards they have about 0 support, you get the initial driver release and if you`re lucky you might get a beta one, as for forum support is inexistent. For a company as big as them their support is total crap.

    maybe on sound cards, but their motherboard support is excellent.. Running Devils Cayon on a Z87 Board atm
    Reply
  • soldier44
    Love the backplate.
    Reply
  • Outlander_04
    ASUS's Strix marketing is really silly. It started out as a mid-range line with parking fans at idle and now they just plaster it on everything so it means nothing. They have Strix headphones now!

    They really should have kept the Matrix naming for the high-end cards, at this point ASUS Strix is like Samsung Galaxy, superfluous branding that everyone totally ignores.

    They seem to be selling a lot of them . I'd say the marketing was working pretty well
    Reply
  • semiroundboss
    Strix DCU 3 is looking very nice. Will have to get a Strix Fury.
    Reply
  • SamSerious
    why don't they add grooves to the backplate to increase surface area? when you put the card in, the backplate usually faces up too, so it makes sense that the heat is transferring on to it. anyone?

    Then it would get really bulky, especially in SLI setups. Or if you happen to have a miniITX board with the cpu socket closer to the PCIe x16 Slot than normal.

    But yeah, it could definitely improve the heat dissipation even further. After i broke a 4870 by mounting a selfbuilt combination of a massive thermalright cooler and a 12w ebmpapst fan onto it, i really appreciate the stability a backplate gives to the pcb and the whole card.
    However, nothing reaches the old GTX280 reference coolers. These cards were made like a brick and the radial fan was surprisingly quiet at low speeds. Plus ALL of the hot air went throught the air vents on the PCI bracket and didn't stayed inside your PC. And that cards drained up to 230w..
    Reply