ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review

ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review

Ahhhhhh! The most expensive single-card solution for computer gaming graphic is here! πŸ™‚ You can imagine the smile on my face when I got hold of it! The GTX280 is as much a dream to some people, just like how others dream of owning a Lambo, or Jessica Alba, or a Hasselbad….. or…. or…. the list goes on, so you better read on because the ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB is not your ordinary GTX280 card, it comes pre-overclocked!

The Appearance

The first thing that came to my mind was … UGLY (yes, it’s in CAPITAL letters and BOLD for a reason). Don’t get me wrong, the card is of sleek black plastic that resembles that of the reference cooler for nVidia cards which looks great on it’s own but the choice of having purple tone military camouflage with that ancient sexy warrior just doesn’t make sense.

Remember the one girl on the ASUS EAH3870X2 1G Graphic Card Review I reviewed? It was still alright on the 3870X2, it was feminine but the background was well matched. As for this one? Blueeekk.

But seriously, like who cares about the look? :mrgreen: I for one couldn’t be bothered as long as it works. πŸ˜€ Nevertheless there are people who are particular over card design so ASUS should take note on this.

ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review
ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review
ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review

Now enough of the criticism over the artwork and look at the other aspects of this card.

As I mentioned earlier, it comes with a sleek black covering, but it’s not just for the top but all over the card. Nicely curved grilles are found all over the card to give it a neat look yet help in heat dissipation.

The PCI-E power connector slots situated on the top side of the card, making it easier to mount the PCI-E power connector. You’ll need a 6pin and 8pin PCI-E power connector to work this baby.

One thing to note is how they covered the SLI and SPDIF connectors with a rubber piece, I love that touch, I find it very neat.

Besides the 2x DVI and 1x S-video output socket, this card also comes an SPDIF output.

The Bundle

– 1 x DVI to D-Sub adaptor
– 1 x HDTV-out cable
– 1 x Power cable
– ASUS Utilities & Driver
– CD Leather Wallet
– Leather mousepad (this item is not stated on the website)

Card Details

Here’s a summarized detail of the card.

GPU Code Name GTX200
Memory Type DDR3
Memory Bandwidth 512-bit
Memory Capacity 1024MB
Core Clock 670Mhz
Memory Clock 1215Mhz (2.43Ghz DDR)
Shader Clock 1460Mhz

ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review

More details at the official product page

The ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB is also a pre-overclocked GTX280, running at 670 / 1215 instead of the reference 602 / 1107.

Test Setup

The computer setup used for this review.

Processor Intel CoreΓ’β€žΒ’2 Duo E7200
Graphic Card ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB
RAM 2x 2GB OCZ DDR2 PC2-8500 Reaper HPC Edition
Motherboard Albatron PXP35
Cooler Sunbeamtech Core-Contact Freezer Heatsink
Monitor 20Ò€³ Dell Ultra-sharp Wide-screen LCD
Operating System Windows Vista Home Basic 32bit
Driver Version GeForce 177.41

The Performance

All tests were done with 4xAA, with 16xQ CSAA when possible.

ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review
ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review
ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review

I decided not to use 3dmark06 anymore due to the crappy nature of Futuremark’s 3dmark06 where the scores are easily influenced by processor speed.


Graphic Detail : Maximum at 1680×1050

Card Average
ENGTX280 (4xAA) 144
3870X2 (4xAA) 103

World In Conflict

Graphic Detail : Maximum @ 1680×1050

Card Average
ENGTX280 (4xAA) 43
3870X2 (4xAA) 26
ENGTX280 (16xQ CSAA) 42

Company Of Heroes : Opposing Fronts

Graphic Detail : Maximum @ 1680×1050

Card Average
ENGTX280 (4xAA) 56.7
ENGTX280 (16xQ CSAA) 59.3
3870X2 (4xAA) 58.3

Lost Planet : Extreme Condition

Graphic Detail : Maximum at 1680 x 946

Card Snow (Average) Cave (Average)
ENGTX280 (4xAA) 83.6 71.9
3870X2 (4xAA) 28.8 39.2
ENGTX280 (16xQ CSAA) 64.4 56.3


Graphic Detail : Maximum @ 1680×1050

Card Average
ENGTX280 (4xAA) 23.91

The performance is impressive. The record set by 3870X2 just less than half a year back is now comfortably beaten even my a single card solution.

Operating Temperature

The card runs at around 45°C on idle and around 74°C on load. Readings were taken when ambient temperature was around 25°C.


It’s a really nice card, if you’re all out about framerates and don’t care a bit about money spent or price:performance (a.k.a. VALUE FOR MONEY) then by all means, get this card!

ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review
ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review
ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review

Being a single card solution also mean that you need not worry whether your game supports multi-GPU, such as the 3870X2 and the 9800GX2.

The ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB currently retails at around RM 1,999. There are no games or additional software in this package either.

goldfries recommended

26 thoughts on “ASUS ENGTX280 TOP 1GB Graphic Card Review

  1. I daresay that this card looks bulky. And not even just a little. Having the opportunity of at least seeing/touching/rubbing-face-on one first hand, its even bigger than the pictures can convey.

    This card looks to be able to transform into an Autobot and beat the living daylights outta lesser graphics cards.

  2. @goldfries,

    isn’t this supposed to go head-to-head with 2 x 4870 CF-ed instead of 3870X2, although 3870X2 is single-card solution, and there is yet a 4850X2 or 4870X2…

  3. @fatty – yes

    @mud – more or less the usual size of the usual higher range card. πŸ™‚

    @marx – don’t you think I would’ve done so if I have those other cards with me? :mrgreen: I’m limited by what I have la. The best comparison I could put is with the best ATI card I have so far. Anyway, I think I’ll throw in the HD4850 benchies. πŸ˜€

    please also understand that the 3870X2 was thrown in for comparison, not for head-to-head who is better like my 8600GT vs 2600XT article. πŸ˜€

  4. @goldfries,

    ha ha, my bad… why haven’t i though of that πŸ˜› anyway is it possible for u to put in also sort of a scale for bang-for-the-buck (1-10 maybe)? that should make a clearer indicator for everybody.

    btw, is the mammoth GTX260/280 more than just a gfx card? the transistor count is insanely high. i wonder what else can it be used for?

  5. Yo goldfries , happy to see your review on this monster card…
    This card quite good..

    when you upgrade your processor ?
    1MB L2 Cache seems dont impressive , no ? :p

    Faster change to E8400 and get better fps improvement :p

  6. @phonenumber – i’m limited in funds la.

    @aaron – yes it is. πŸ™‚ there are plenty cost effective solutions, this is not one of them.

  7. Bro goldy, the FPS is definitely bottlenecked by pentium dual core. hope intel saw this post and sponsor one unit of QX9770 haha

  8. lol phonenumber… πŸ˜€
    just call me digiboy or whatsoever πŸ˜›

    uhm… goldfries dont need Intel sponsor la… some big company will auto give him one day πŸ˜€

  9. If I am not mistaken, Nvidia has been slashing prices repeatedly for these graphic cards in order to stimulate demand.

    Also, those who bought it earlier can get rebates from some companies.

    It’s ironic that these days high end GPUs cost more than any components for a computer.

  10. @Ken, ya, with RM2K, we can buy very decent computer components without a gpu.
    somore, gpu is even hotter than cpu, gosp! :X

  11. The review was great. Maybe you could have compared it to something mid-end, such as the 9800 GTX, so one would know how much performance increase it offers (Since it is ~ 2 times the price of the 9800 GTX after all).

    On a side note – @Ken

    Unfortunately the BFG/EVGA/XFX rebates are only valid in the US so tough luck for us Malaysians.

  12. i have read that this card is DX10.1 compliant ? but Nvidia says that they have not produced a 10.1 compliant card yet just 100% DX10 cards, has asus added 10.1 to the card or have they just thought because its a dx10 card it will also support 10.1 now i’m all confused πŸ™‚

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