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Asus Mars 760 Review: Two GPUs In SLI; One $650 Graphics Card

Test System And Benchmarks

Again, I didn't have access to any of Chris' GeForce GTX 780 Tis, so I tuned a GeForce GTX Titan to approximate its performance in our benchmarks. With a 384-bit memory interface, the Titan offers the same amount of bandwidth as the 780 Ti with matching clock rates. Where you'd notice a difference is overrunning the 780 Ti's 3 GB of memory. The GPU overclock is trickier since the Titan's GK110 has one of its SMX partitions disabled. I tried to compensate with an approximate clock rate increase. At any rate, the match-up isn't exact, but it's close.

Otherwise, I have a GeForce GTX 690, a Radeon R9 290X, a Radeon HD 7990, and two Radeon HD 7950 Boost cards in CrossFire to show a broad range of competition for the Mars 760.

I'm generating two sets of benchmarks. In the first one, I have a single QHD panel with a native 2560x1440 resolution. The second set employs three FHD screens at 5760x1080.

Test System
CPUIntel Core i5-2550K (Sandy Bridge), Overclocked to 4.2 GHz @ 1.3 V
MotherboardAsus P8Z77-V LX. LGA 1155, Chipset: Intel Z77M
NetworkingOn-Board Gigabit LAN controller
MemoryCorsair Performance Memory, 4 x 4 GB, 1866 MT/s, CL 9-9-9-24-1T
GraphicsAsus Mars 7601006 MHz GPU, 2 x 2 GB GDDR5 at 1501 MHz (6004 MT/s)GeForce GTX Titan837 MHz GPU, 6 GB GDDR5 at 1502 MHz (6008 MT/s)also tested at overclock to simulate GeForce GTX 780 Ti: to 994 MHz GPU, 6 GB GDDR5 at 1750 MHz (7000 MT/s)GeForce GTX 690915 MHz GPU, 6 GB GDDR5 at 1502 MHz (6008 MT/s)XFX Radeon R9 290X1000 MHz Peak GPU Clock, 4 GB GDDR5 at 1250 MHz (5000 MT/s)2 x Radeon HD 7950 Boost in CrossFire850 MHz GPU, 2 x 3 GB GDDR5 at 1250 MHz (5000 MT/s)XFX Radeon HD 7990950 MHz GPU, 2 x 3 GB GDDR5 at 1500 MHz (6000 MT/s)
Hard DriveSamsung 840 Pro, 256 GB SSD, SATA 6Gb/s
PowerXFX PRO850W, ATX12V, EPS12V
Software and Drivers
Operating SystemMicrosoft Windows 8 Pro x64
DirectXDirectX 11
Graphics DriversAMD Catalyst 13.11 Beta 9.5, Nvidia GeForce 332.21 WHQL

We've almost completely eliminated mechanical storage in the lab, and instead lean on solid-state drives to alleviate I/O-related bottlenecks. Samsung sent all of our offices 256 GB 840 Pros, so we standardize on these exceptional SSDs.

Naturally, discrete graphics cards require a substantial amount of stable power, so XFX sent along its PRO850W 80 PLUS Bronze-certified power supply. This modular PSU employs a single +12 V rail rated for 70 A. XFX claims that this unit provides 850 W of continuous power (not peak) at 50 degrees Celsius (a higher temperature than you'll find inside most enclosures).

Benchmark Configuration
3D Games
Metro: Last LightVersion 1.0.0.14, Built-in Benchmark, FCAT
Grid 2Version 1.8.85.8679, Built-in Benchmark Scene D6, FCAT
Assassin's Creed IV:Black FlagVersion 1.05, Custom THG Benchmark, 40-Sec, FCAT
Battlefield 4Version 1.0.0.1, Custom THG Benchmark, 90-Sec. Fraps
BioShock InfiniteVersion 1.1.24.21018, Built-in Benchmark, FCAT
  • AMD Radeon
    i would like to see dual GTX 780 Ti in one card
    Reply
  • vinhn
    @AMD Radeon, everyone would like to see it, not everyone would buy it, the market knows that, there's a reason why they would rather release the dual 760 rather than a 1600$ dual 780 Ti.
    Reply
  • Immaculate
    Why an i5-2550K?
    Reply
  • blackmagnum
    Bring on the Kepler cards already.
    Reply
  • vertexx
    I'm not sure why you would even publish this review without a 780ti in the comparison.
    Reply
  • Shneiky
    It was actually disappointing that there was no regular 760 SLI in there. It would have helped to see if the Asus's solution gives better results then regular 2 760s.
    Reply
  • bemused_fred
    Looking at the way that various card configurations bounce around in the charts, with the ranking of cards varying from page to page, the only thing I'm taking away from this article is not to bother with dual-GPU set-ups. It seems their performance is entirely decided by how well-optimised the games are for Nvidia or AMD, and not their actual specs.
    Reply
  • Raheel Hasan
    Too high price only $30 below 780ti, it should be around $550.
    Reply
  • Adroid
    I'm confused why the 780 and 770 aren't shown here - especially since the 780 is at the same price point.
    Reply
  • Au_equus
    without the gtx 780 ti, you are missing half the article, as ASUS, according to the price, was presenting this card as an alternative to the 780 ti at its price/performance. I stopped reading after the first BM.
    Reply