ASUS RoG GTX 580 Matrix Platinum Review

Author: SKYMTL
Date: July 25, 2011
Product Name: GTX 580 Matrix Platinum
Part Number: MATRIXGTX580P2DIS1536MD
Warranty: 3 Years
Purchase at NCIX:
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A Closer Look at the ASUS GTX 580 Matrix Platinum

Unlike nearly every other card we have seen in the past, ASUS ships their Matrix Platinum in what looks like a motherboard box. You’ll likely pay a small fortune for shipping but it does come with more than enough interior padding to guarantee the card’s safe arrival.

In terms of accessories, there really isn’t anything to write home about with a pair of PCI-E power adaptors and a DVI to VGA adaptor being pretty standard fare. ASUS has also included an ROG case badge and an extra long SLI cable since the Matrix occupies a full three slots.

So here we have it; the ASUS GTX 580 Matrix and it sure is one unique card with a triple slot heatsink and the usual black / red ROG colour scheme as seen on their gamer-grade motherboards. Unfortunately, as with all custom graphics cards, beauty is all in the eye of the beholder so some may think this design looks absolutely hideous. We happen to love it.

The DirectCu II heatsink is an absolute beast with a slightly cantilevered layout which is capped by a pair of downwards-pointing fans. Unfortunately, while ASUS’ design promises extremely low temperatures there is one major drawback to the particular iteration of the DIrectCu II: its triple slot height could interfere with multi card setups. This shouldn’t cause an issue for those of you with motherboards featuring the necessary PCI-E slot spacing but just make sure you check before buying a pair of Matrix cards.

Along the Matrix’s outer side ASUS has installed a backlit logo but this isn’t your typical aesthetics only “bling” since the LEDs change colour as the GPU load increases and decreases. Granted, a case window is necessary if you want to watch this lightshow but it is a nifty addition nonetheless.

In order to ensure ease of design, the GTX 580 Matrix has been broken down into five distinct elements: the primary PCB, a ventilated aluminum backplate, an aluminum VRM heatsink, the main aluminum and copper fin array and finally the shroud which houses the fans.

The main heatsink consists of five copper heatpipes which make direct contact with the GPU core’s IHS and run up into both fin arrays. These arrays are each paired up with a dedicated fan to ensure optimal cooling efficiency. Supposedly ASUS has been able to achieve a 20% temperature reduction and a 600% airflow increase over the reference design. Whether or not this bears out in real world testing remains to be seen.

We all know that dust is a constant problem within a computer case and it can shorten the life of certain components like fans and power supplies. ASUS has implemented what they call a “dust proof fan” which is basically a hub design that ensures dust does not enter the bearing area which will in turn extend the fan’s lifespan. With this feature it is claimed that the fan’s life will be extended by nearly 10,000 hours.

Quite a bit of time and effort has gone into this card as evidenced by the high quality machining on the backplate and VRM heatsink.

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