ASUS GTX 580 Matrix Platinum
The ASUS GTX 580 Matrix Platinum is a rather interesting product as we’ve seen today. As part of the Republic of Gamer lineup, it is by definition an extreme product. The included accessories are extensive as we’ve come to expect from the ROG series, and hardware features are extreme with an aggressive design style, a cooler than keeps temperatures lower than the reference card, a safe mode button to prevent catastrophy during flashing episodes, unique lighting effects that are especially extreme, voltage tweaking ability, and quality components that knock the socks off the stock Nvidia card.
Tthe GPU Tweak software brings features that are virtually unheard of, such as memory timings tweaks that can be done in conjunction with voltage adjustments as well, allowing users to overclock this card on fly, even with Hotkey adjustments. This works hand-in-hand with the beefed-up hardware components that can handle the extra punishment, maintaining better voltage regulation and lower temperatures. The GPU Tweak interface is very robust and a significant improvement from the Smart Doctor utility.
This variant of the DirectCU II heatsink resulted in a modest drop of 8°C, but we’ve seen better. The byproduct of this heatsink is it is utterly massive, taking up three slots, as it’s the biggest single-GPU heatsink we’ve ever seen. You’ll need a spacious case to fit this behemoth inside. And if you are privileged enough to have the space for two? Well then, you are our hero and we salute you.
In terms of performance, the 580 Matrix Platinum is a very fast card, but it’s not the fastest out there since it comes with only a modest overclock, which is slightly disappointing considering this is a premium ROG product. That being said, the voltage tweaking capabilities do allow the card to be pushed further, but the chip and memory aren’t binned so the reality is you won’t overclock this card much higher than a "regular" ASUS GTX 580 that can also handle voltage increases. The Matrix does come with the added features that allow plenty of tweaking, monitoring, and the outrageous lighting effects that would certainly be the topic of discussion at a LAN party. Of course, you are paying a premium for these added features.
Lastly, that brings us to value. At a price of approximately $530, the GTX 580 Matrix Platinum is competitively priced amongst other custom cards. We were expecting a higher price tag, but considering the features you get here, this is reasonable if you want something unique that’s built like a tank. Some may not want to spend the extra cash for the flash, but consumers who gravitate to ASUS ROG products aren’t your typical spendthrift gamers.
If you want a very fast card that’s built to last and comes with a boatload of features, then you can’t go wrong with the ASUS GTX 580 Matrix Platinum.
The Pure Point: Innovative and outrageous, the ASUS GTX 580 Matrix Platinum is a great choice for gamers and enthusiasts that want speedy and flashy.