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Reviewed: ASUS ROG Matrix GeForce GTX 980 Ti

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Shawn Baker

Page 1: Reviewed: ASUS ROG Matrix GeForce GTX 980 Ti

asus gtx980ti matrix logoIt usually takes some time for manufacturers to showcase their high-end GPU models. Almost six months after launch, ASUS has finally presented its high-end ROG Matrix GTX 980 Ti. With an emphasis on performance and efficient cooling, ASUS intend to stand out in a market that has been flooded in the last few months. Let’s find out today if they can!

ASUS offer a total of six different GTX 980 Ti models with the least interesting being the reference model. Not too long ago we saw an emphasis on cooling with the companies Strix version while recently two brand new models have been released. The ROG Matrix GTX 980 Ti and ROG Matrix GTX 980 Ti Gold Edition, with the former on hand today and the latter achieving the highest GPU clock on the market.

ASUS ROG Matrix GTX 980 Ti GeForce
ASUS ROG Matrix GTX 980 Ti GeForce

In the various models of the GTX 980 Ti, there’s recently been a clear trend towards water-cooled solution. Two recent additions that pop to mind include the Inno3D GTX 980 Ti Black iChill Accelero Hybrid S and Corsair Hydro GFX. This helps maintain a solid boost clock. Whether the massive DirectCU cooling can compete, we’ll find out today.

GPU Architecture

By now we’ve got a very good idea of what’s going on with the powerful GM200-GPU. Based on Maxwell architecture, the 28nm chip carries a total of 8 billion transistors. Compared to the slightly higher end GTX Titan X, two Maxwell streaming multiprocessors have been disabled. A total of 2816 Shader Units, 176 texture units and 96 ROPs are seen. The 6GB of GDDR5 sits on a 384-bit memory bus.

The ASUS ROG Matrix specifications of the GeForce GTX 980 Ti at a glance
model ASUS ROG Matrix GTX 980 Ti GeForce
Street Price $709.99
Homepage www.asus.com
Technical specifications
GPU GM200 (GM200-310-A1)
Manufacturing Process 28 nm
Transistors 8 billion
GPU Clock Speed (Base Clock) 1,190 MHz (gaming mode)
1,216 MHz (OC mode)
GPU clock (Boost Clock) 1,291 MHz (gaming mode)
1,317 MHz (OC mode)
Memory Clock 1,800 MHz
Memory Type GDDR5
Memory Size 6 GB
Memory Interface 384 Bit
Memory Bandwidth 345.6 GB / s
DirectX Version 12
Shader Units 2,816
Texture units 176
ROPs 96
Typical Board Power 250 Watt
SLI / Crossfire SLI

In addition to the cooling, the factory overclock is the other major feature from the ROG card. While NVIDIA provides a default clock of 1,000 MHz, ASUS has pushed this up to 1,190 MHz. This goes even further in OC mode with a clock of 1,216MHz. Far more important is the boost clock which moves from the default 1,075 MHz to 1,291 MHz and 1,317 MHz respectively. ASUS has also taken the time to boost the memory clock slightly from 1,750 MHz to 1,800 MHz.

Being a GTX 980 Ti means we’ve got the obligatory 6 GB of GDDR5 video memory, as we just mentioned, ASUS has bumped the clock of this slightly to 1,800 MHz. The 384-bit wide memory interfaces offers bandwidth of 345.6 GB/s.

Comparison of temperature and clock
Game Temperature Clock
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 72°C 1,417 MHz
Battlefield: Hardline 71°C 1,405 MHz
Grand Theft Auto IV 72°C 1,405 MHz
Far Cry 4 72°C 1,392 MHz
Total War: Attila 71°C 1,392 MHz
Metro: Last Light Redux 71°C 1,417 MHz
Tomb Raider 72°C 1,405 MHz
DiRT Rally 71°C 1,405 MHz
Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor 72°C 1,417 MHz

As we’ve mentioned so many times before, the Boost clock offered by companies is just the minimum. Thanks to solid cooling solutions from companies we see that number come in higher. In the case of the ASUS card we’re looking at today, the maximum Boost clock bounces between 1,392 MHz and 1,417 MHz at a temperature range of 71c to 72c. By comparison, the Inno3D GTX 980 Ti Black iChill GeForce Accelero Hybrid S reaches a boost clock of 1,443 MHz and the Corsair Hydro GFX come in at 1,392 MHz. Many air-cooled versions of the GeForce GTX 980 Ti move between 1,340 and 1,400 MHz between – with little surprise, the ASUS ROG offering sits at the top end of that number.

GPU-Z screenshot for ASUS ROG Matrix GTX 980 Ti GeForce
GPU-Z-Screenshot for ASUS ROG Matrix GTX 980 Ti GeForce

Looking above at the GPU-Z screenshot, we can see all the information we just mentioned is confirmed.