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Asus reveals Mars II dual-GeForce GTX 580 card

Asus reveals Mars II dual-GeForce GTX 580 card

The latest ROG offering from Asus looks like the fastest graphics card on the planet on paper.

Asus has revealed the latest addition to its Republic of Gamers range today, with the ludicrously over the top Mars II graphics card. Replacing the dual-GPU GTX 590 3GB at the top of the Nvidia tree, the card features two Nvidia GeForce GTX 580 GPUs, both overclocked to 782MHz. Each GPU has the usual 1.5GB of GDDR5 memory, which operates at the default 4.008GHz (effective).

Asus says that the Mars II has ‘22 per cent faster performance than reference’ in comparison to a stock GTX 590 3GB. However, as the GPU configuration of the Mars II is an un-official one, it may require a special driver - previous cards of a similarly unofficial design have suffered from such issues. We’ll have to see when we get our hands on the card and run it through our test suite.

We can’t argue with some of the other hardware aboard the card, from the three 8-pin PCI-E power connectors to the chunky triple-slot custom cooler. With other single-GPU cards requring triple-slot coolers, the triple-slot size of the cooler is reasonable. The card is 13in (330mm) long and 6.2in (157mm) wide, so you’ll need a large case.

Asus reveals Mars II dual-GeForce GTX 580 card *Asus reveals Mars II dual-GeForce GTX 580
Click to enlarge

The cooler uses Asus’ DirectCU II design, to produce ‘60 per cent greater airflow and [be]20 per cent cooler than reference.’ The cooler incorporates two 120mm fans that ‘move up to 600 per cent more air than the reference GTX 590 design.’ A Turbo fan button instantly ramps the fan speed to 100 per cent, for heavy overclocking sessions. We can’t see how many heatpipes are included, but there is 21-phase power delivery under the cooler that uses ‘Asus Super Alloy Power technology, which utilizes a special alloy mix for power delivery components that resist heat and material fatigue far beyond the norm.

There’s no word on pricing or availability yet, but is that a reason to stop being excited about the Mars II, or are you going to wait for some benchmarks before you start saving? Let us know in the forum.

41 Comments

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sp4nky 19th August 2011, 17:18 Quote
I hope it's sturdily built because I don't fancy that hanging upside down from a PCI-E slot. Also, is it PCI-E 2 or 3?
Gigglebyte 19th August 2011, 17:33 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by sp4nky
I hope it's sturdily built because I don't fancy that hanging upside down from a PCI-E slot. Also, is it PCI-E 2 or 3?

The spec on scan.co.uk says that it is 2.0.

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/3gb-asus-gtx-580-limited-edition-x2-40nm-4008mhz-gddr5-gpu-782mhz-2x512-cores-dl-dvi-dp-hdmi
Killbz 19th August 2011, 17:35 Quote
Take it apart! take it apart!
mjm25 19th August 2011, 17:37 Quote
£1200 inc VAT! F*ck!
Killbz 19th August 2011, 17:37 Quote
They are already up for preorder on my local pc store.. for the princely sum of $1699
xMathiasD 19th August 2011, 17:37 Quote
bindi! go get the hammer!
will_123 19th August 2011, 17:41 Quote
£1000+ for the card...who pays that..?
mattbailey 19th August 2011, 17:50 Quote
Can it run Crysis?
rollo 19th August 2011, 17:55 Quote
no dout it can lol
Madness_3d 19th August 2011, 17:55 Quote
Don't see why It'd need special drivers given it's just a 590 with higher clocks. Unless Asus have changed the Name the card presents to the drivers, which would mean surely you could just mod the .ini files to add MARS II in.

& @Bit-Tech guys, Please don't review this like it's a part of nvidia's lineup. It's SLI inside which you hate so I know you'll slate it for that, but this is the 911 GT3 to the GTX 590's 911. It's meant to have stripped out seats and stripped out features, or in this case, draw more power, produce more heat, run noisily, and require some enthusiast knowledge to get the most from. That's the point of it
Quote:
Originally Posted by mattbailey
Can it run Crysis?

I'm sure at sensible resolutions it'll oblitterate it much as SLI 580's does, You can bring every card to it's knees eventually if you keep upping the res, it'll either start to run out of resources or RAM
Skiddywinks 19th August 2011, 17:59 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Madness_3d
Don't see why It'd need special drivers given it's just a 590 with higher clocks. Unless Asus have changed the Name the card presents to the drivers, which would mean surely you could just mod the .ini files to add MARS II in.

I think it's in reference to the fact the last Mars sucked balls most of the time, simply because you can't just throw together two cards and expect it to work.
TwiZtah 19th August 2011, 18:00 Quote
This ain't no news, the Swedish site Sweclockers.com has already reviewed these, in SLI!
GiantKiwi 19th August 2011, 18:18 Quote
Any normal user who takes one of these over say a 580 sli setup, deserves a hard slap.
M7ck 19th August 2011, 18:20 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GiantKiwi
Any normal user who takes one of these over say a 580 sli setup, deserves a hard slap.

Why?
Mraedis 19th August 2011, 18:23 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by M7ck
Why?

Driver issues, it's bound to happen, and it's bound to be abandoned after a while whereas older reference cards usually receive minor updates still.
Paulg1971 19th August 2011, 18:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwiZtah
This ain't no news, the Swedish site Sweclockers.com has already reviewed these, in SLI!

trouble is i can't read swedish so its news to me
TwiZtah 19th August 2011, 19:00 Quote
Yeah, my point was, why are they so late with these news when a SWEDISH site already reviewed them?
M7ck 19th August 2011, 19:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwiZtah
Yeah, my point was, why are they so late with these news when a SWEDISH site already reviewed them?

As they are a limited edition cards I guess it is up to Asus as to whom they send review cards.
Ayrto 19th August 2011, 19:16 Quote
So why would someone buy this over (say) Sli'ed 580s- 3GB version ones, that can be watercooled and have guaranteed driver support, unlike this non reference outing?
MjFrosty 19th August 2011, 19:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Madness_3d
Don't see why It'd need special drivers given it's just a 590 with higher clocks. Unless Asus have changed the Name the card presents to the drivers, which would mean surely you could just mod the .ini files to add MARS II in.


It's not special. It's supposed to be. That's why it's limited, but it's not. The benchmarks that have come out aren't all that great. I'm sure drivers will sort that in time, but honestly? Who would buy a hugely expensive 580 sandwich now? They've very much nearly done their life span.
Ayrto 19th August 2011, 19:29 Quote
Scan will stock them http://www.scan.co.uk/products/3gb-asus-gtx-580-limited-edition-x2-40nm-4008mhz-gddr5-gpu-782mhz-2x512-cores-dl-dvi-dp-hdmi.... £1200 .....so you could get 2 580 3GB Gainward Phantom cards and EK waterblocks for them, for roughly the same price.
Omnituens 19th August 2011, 20:05 Quote
I'LL TAKE EIGHT!

seriously though, I'll have one if Asus gives me one... for long term testing reasons... yeah...
Paradigm Shifter 19th August 2011, 20:38 Quote
For such an OTT card, it really needs 6GB of VRAM, so that each GPU has access to 3GB. Then it might be a half-decent proposition for Surround gaming. That's the only place modern high-end cards struggle.
Bloody_Pete 19th August 2011, 20:47 Quote
TBH Asus have done some magic, as it only needs 3 8-pin power connectors (!) when 2 standard 580's would need 4...
bob_lewis 19th August 2011, 21:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paulg1971
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwiZtah
This ain't no news, the Swedish site Sweclockers.com has already reviewed these, in SLI!

trouble is i can't read swedish so its news to me

You could always use Google translate... Even if you just look at the numbers there's some farily eyebrow raising results on show. OC'd Mars II's in SLI max power draw is 1354W...!
Snips 19th August 2011, 21:33 Quote
I like it!!!!

D'you think they will let you take this one apart this time?
leexgx 19th August 2011, 22:09 Quote
I agree 2x 580 3gb (water cooled if you must but not really needed with the ASUS version) would be an better buy if you had multi monitor setup

but mars cards are for extreme setups (benchmarks )
Christopher N. Lew 19th August 2011, 23:31 Quote
£1200 !! Think I'll wait until one appears on eBay.
meandmymouth 20th August 2011, 00:02 Quote
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mNrGs7ZifVw

Really good at showing it's sheer size!
sp4nky 20th August 2011, 07:56 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by meandmymouth
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mNrGs7ZifVw

Really good at showing it's sheer size!

Nice video. I thought the GTX 590 was quite long but the MARS really takes that biscuit. Not only is it deep (3 slots) but it also seems very tall. I doubt there would be many cases that could accommodate it.

What really surprised me is how quiet it is, though. The guy on the video didn't appear to be wearing a microphone and was perfectly audible whereas the MARS card appeared to be silent.
salesman 20th August 2011, 20:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by sp4nky


Nice video. I thought the GTX 590 was quite long but the MARS really takes that biscuit. Not only is it deep (3 slots) but it also seems very tall. I doubt there would be many cases that could accommodate it.

That's what she said.
M7ck 20th August 2011, 21:08 Quote
outlawaol 20th August 2011, 21:26 Quote
That is a monster of a card...

It'll be interesting when someone manages to SLI those beasts together...
dickiedum 20th August 2011, 23:40 Quote
What a monster of a card, in a good way. Would i buy one? Yes for two reasons, one it looks good and two, it will match my Maximus Extreme.
Would i rather buy a generic mobo which does the job or as i have done buy an overpriced flashy one?
Mind you as i start Uni in September i could always use my student loan. I doubt i could justify the cost to my long suffering wife though.
micropage7 21st August 2011, 02:08 Quote
looks nice, i love the color and the fans of course
Woollster00 21st August 2011, 02:48 Quote
Why would anyone buy one of these over an ati 5970 yep i know it's old but i doubt the performance of this card is majorly better.
jimmyjj 21st August 2011, 19:27 Quote
Like the last Mars it is an engineering showcase and publicity stunt - and respect for that.

No sane person would buy one though, surely.
Fujukami 21st August 2011, 21:50 Quote
Given an infinite amount of money...I'd go for 4 of these puppies!

On a more seriouse note however, 1200 quid is (even in this case) unjustifyable.
nbaprophet 22nd August 2011, 08:17 Quote
This is not what I had expected. I mean the card costs more than 2 580 but it cannot deliver nvidia surround because you are limited 2 only 2 active display outputs. I love the ROG lineup but this is too much, this is only made for bragging rights.
nbaprophet 22nd August 2011, 08:19 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by nbaprophet
This is not what I had expected. I mean the card costs more than 2 580 but it cannot deliver nvidia surround because you are limited 2 only 2 active display outputs. I love the ROG lineup but this is too much, this is only made for bragging rights.
Sry you could buy 3X580 so...........
lizoron 27th August 2011, 07:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by sp4nky
I hope it's sturdily built because I don't fancy that hanging upside down from a PCI-E slot. Also, is it PCI-E 2 or 3?

this graphics card comes with a stand for the third pci slot to help stability for the weight. pci-e 2 btw
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