The DirectCU II cooling system means my gaming PC won't have to sound like a jet taking off when I want to play a game. Maybe then I could actually hear the footsteps of an approaching enemy behind me instead of the roar of my video card's fan.
Gentlemen, we can build it. We have the technology. We have the capability to build the world's best mainstream card. The Asus GTX 660Ti will be that card. Better than any mainstream card before. Better, quieter, faster.
Better: DIGI+ VRM with 6-phase Super Alloy Power technology
Yeah... Let's talk about this for a second shall we.
First of all, Feature sets on graphics cards are fairly limited by the GPU manufacturer. Case in point are the things that matter at at the chip level:
OpenGL Support: 4.2 confirmed, 4.3 maybe
OpenCL Support: 1.1 confirmed, 1.2 maybe
RandR support: The may drivers finally brought Nvidia's driver in line with RandR 1.3
2D/3D Downclocking support: what's the threshold before the fans sound like a dustbuster?
Second thing: Physical feature sets also tend to be limited:
DVI support: Check
HDMI support: Check
Display port: Check
VGA over DVI: Check
Number of PCI slots: looks like 2 based on the DVI slot positioning
The big question is how quiet and effective the fan itself is going to. The pictures indicate a central core based on heatpipes that is capped by two fans. The specification lists the card at 5" high, so it's likely those are two 120mm fans. That should make for a low-noise profile even when running at full clocks.
The performance is still a really big question. While Asus references a real-world benchmark, Unigine Heaven, needed details are not revealed. Yes, 40+ frames per second in Unigine 2.5 in 1920*1200 certainly looks impressive. However, the processor is not revealed, the amount of tessellation is not revealed, the type of Anti-Aliasing is not revealed, and nor is the Graphics API specified as Legacy-DirectX or Modern-OpenGL.
This can make a huge difference considering that Nvidia's multi-threaded OpenGL driver is significantly faster than Nvidia's Legacy-DirectX driver according to Valve. This can also make a difference in Unigine where forcing a benchmark under DirectX mode causes all assets to be reloaded (quick flash of the loading screen), where-as the OpenGL mode drops straight back from where-ever you were on the map to the start of the benchmark.
Thing is, I've got an older I7 920 with a Radeon 7770 right here. If I set my options to OpenGL API, Tessellation normal, 16-AF, and Multi-Sample 4x AA, I get a maximum fps of 43.6, average of 23, and minimum of 8. If all I tell you about is the maximum of 43 frames per second, I can make my 7770 here sound better than it is: http:///zgp-7770-uni-heaven-hocp
* * *
Now, why would I want one of these cards?
Well, quite frankly, because I don't have one and wasn't intending to buy one. Nvidia and Asus are notorious for ignoring /Linux journalists with product-seeds and dodging every /Linux question they can. Fine, when I have money to spend on new hardware, I'll spend it on companies that don't give me a middle finger because the people who read me use /Linux systems.
Now if Asus cares to make supporting /Linux users a feature that they offer for this new card? Fine, then that would be something worth talking about.
I have been happily using Asus products for almost 20 years now because I consider quality over everything else when it comes to building a computer. Working in the retail market, I have happily been telling people about my experience and guiding them to everything from Essentio desktops, to ROG laptops, to the sleek and powerful Zenbook, and even the Transformer. In recent years Asus has continued to amaze me with some of their high end hardware, most notably their graphics cards.
After extensive research I have learned that the dual slot DirectCU II cooler is the best on the market right now. It runs quieter than the competition, dissipates more heat, and helps provide for greater efficiency overall; combine this with the custom PCB on Asus non-reference cards and you have a piece of hardware that any enthusiast would happily own. The new Digi+ VRMs keep the power clean and precise, the GK104 with 1344 CUDE Cores delivers power and performance, DirectCU II keeps everything cool, and the Asus logo stands for quality of workmanship and guaranteed long life of your investment with a 3 year parts and labor warranty if the need arises.
If selected, I would be honored (and excited) to try out this new equipment. Thank you for your consideration.
"What features the new ASUS GeForce GTX 660Ti DirectCU II has that will benefit my gaming and hardware enthusiast experience?" you say?
Hereafter the ASUS GeForce GTX 660Ti DirectCU II will be referred to as "The Beast", as it's more fitting.
- I have three Dell U2412M displays in the mail to replace a Samsung 2243BWX. The Beast not only has the connectivity to support these displays, it has the raw power to drive the latest games on them. Clocking in at 22 to 27% above stock speeds, this is going to absolutely shame my 5850.
- Should any game need a subtle boost, the GPU Tweak software will let me overclock The Beast to new heights! Not only can this support in-Windows overclocking, including voltage changes, it can support BIOS upgrades. The Beast can take full advantage of this tweaking as it is fully loaded with cherry picked components including binned Kepler chips, Super Alloyed Powered 6 phase power design, Super Alloyed Powered Caps and MOSFETs. Should any game need a substantial boost, there's always room for one, or two, more Beasts to join the party. (Gotta love that three-way SLI!)
- All the bells and whistles aside, I still have to pay my bills. The Beast actually is going to help me out here too! Running with a svelte max power consumption of 150W my pocket is going to stay a bit greener!
- The best feature about The Beast is that it's ASUS! I know that if I buy it now, it'll still work like a champ in three plus years - just in time for the next upgrade!
Better cooling which equals longevity(and stays cool even in my toaster box case), DX11 for the newest games, Higher frame-rates for those high resolution displays, more GPU processing power than previous generation Nvidia graphic cards.
Hmm... does one need a reason to upgrade to the hottest (figuratively), coolest (both literally and figuratively) new graphics card on the market? I think not! But rules is rules. Soz, here are some reasons: DX11 goodness, PhysX goodness, Folding@Home (for the [H]orde!) goodness, and general yummy graphics on the latest & greatest games!
In recent years, there hasn't been a big performance gain from generation to generation. As a casual game who rocks a gtx 560, the performance of a gtx 660ti Direct CU is literally a 100% increase over a gtx 560. The price is a 25% or less than the gtx 670 and has 90%+ the performance. It's simply the best buy of 2012.
With the extra cooling from the DirectCU II Thermal Design my setup would run cooler meaning better overclocking on the NVIDIA Kepler GeForce® GTX 660 Ti GPU which would make my rig run just as good as a 670, ot 680. Games I currently play would look stunning with the dx 11, also look realistic with PhysX , TXAA antialiasing, and Adaptive Vertical Sync
and with the Super Alloy Power that can provide 2.5 longer lifespan I would use the card for years to come .
It is a bit of a struggle to compare this card to the only Asus product I own. My netbook has served me well the years and I would expect this card to do the same. Unlike the netbook it would be fast as hell and OC like a devil.
I really like the build quality of their graphics cards.
Some key features that caught my eye are:
Super Alloy Power - Longer life and cooler operations compared with competitors. Stable power also allows better headroom for overclocking.
DIGI+VRM - Similar to the ones found in Asus motherboard, it provides better power efficiency and better overclocking. My Asus motherboard is rock solid!
DirectCU II - Heat is one of the biggest problems in these next-gen graphic cards and keeping them cool is definitely a priority. Similar to the older cards, Asus' DirectCU II keeps the card really cool allowing more headroom for overclocking without being really loud.
GPU Tweak - This new graphical interface allows easier overclocking and tweaking the cards to your needs, such as fan speed, clock speed and voltage adjustment for higher overclocking. This could definitely replace EVGA precision that I currently use.
Other features are same as before, DX11, reliability, customer support.
These would definitely help me achieve a higher 3DMark score and max out all my games with multi-monitor set up.
ASUS is my go-to brand for monitor and graphics card needs. ASUS' cards have all the top notch features such as:
-Cooling design- ASUS' cooling design keeps the card very cool without keeping your fan at 70%+. This increases the life of your card saving you money in the long run.
-ASUS reliability and customer service.
And, not to mention, ASUS cards just look bad ass.
having a new 660Ti video card would greatly improve my gaming. Right now, I have a GTX8900 video card. This, now, low rank card limits how detailed and large I can play games produced in the last decade. Having a new card like this would allow me to play games larger than 1280 and in high detail. I could actually begin to see things that everyone else takes for granted.
I could say much more the same if my motherboard was upgraded to a new ASUS Maximus V Formula motherboard. I would be able to pipe some gaming-love through the much fatter pipes. I'd have to quit my job instead of being fired due to my new found dedication to gamingasm.