ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

We’ve had Maxwell-based nVidia GPU populating the mid / low range market for quite a while now and with the GTX 970 and GTX 980, nVidia’s move on the high-end market is nothing short of amazing – top-dollar performance at far less power consumption compared to the competitors.

ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

The Strix GeForce GTX 970 marks ASUS’ entry to the arena, bearing its new STRIX brand that’s geared towards gamers.

The card carries the signature OWL look, 2 large fans that stops on idle.

ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

The Strix brand appears yet again.

ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

The heatpipes stretch across the front portion of the graphic card, and as you can see the GTX 970 requires only a single 8-pin PCI-E power connector.

ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

The ASUS branding at the bottom, on the heatsink shroud and the PCI-E area.

ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

At the back, 2 DVI ports, a HDMI port and a DisplayPort

ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Did you notice that the ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 has a very high profile PCB?

Just take a look at the photo above again, and then take a look at the photo below.

ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Notice how the PCB stretches beyond the height of the PCI-E bracter / IO port area?

Oh yeah and that’s a sweet looking back plate, isn’t it?

For more details, please visit the official product page.

Here’s the GPU-Z info for the card.

ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 OC DirectCU II 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Test Setup

ProcessorIntel Core i5-4670K
RAMADATA XPG V3 2400 MHz (8GB Kit) DDR3 Overclocking RAM
MotherboardGigabyte GA-Z97X Gaming 3
CoolerNZXT Kraken X31
MonitorDell U2414H
Power SupplyFSP AURUM 92+ 650W Power Supply Review
CasingNZXT S340
Operating SystemWindows 7 64bit

Benchmark

Here we go!

Metro 2033

Metro 2033

Card1080p (avg)
ASUS STRIX GTX 97099
ASUS GTX 77075.5
ASUS Striker GTX 76062.5
ASUS GTX 67055.0
ASUS Radeon R9 280X76.5

Unigine Heaven 4.0

Heaven 4.0

Card1080p (avg)
ASUS STRIX GTX 97077.2
ASUS GTX 77056.1
ASUS Striker GTX 76046
ASUS GTX 67048.5
ASUS Radeon R9 280X59.5

For upcoming reviews, I’ll be replacing the Metro 2033 benchmark with Metro Last Light, and I will be using Bioshock Infinite as an additional benchmark.

Metro Last Light

Card1080p (avg)
ASUS STRIX GTX 97078.5

Bioshock Infinite

ASUS STRIX GTX 970114.07

Strangely the average framerate remains at 58.4 despite vsync disabled. The maximum framerate was certainly beyond that but I’m just surprised to see the same figure as the one on GTX 760.

Temperature

Furmark Burn-in Test was used to stress the card. Fan settings are at Auto. Room set to ~25c.

Below is the full load details.

CardIdle(°C)Load (°C)
ASUS STRIX GTX 9706568

The STRIX cooling system was amazing, when on idle the cooling system is passive, this means the fan is not moving at all and the temperature stays at a good 65°C. On load, the fan spins but stays quite silent.

Unlike the previous generations of nVidia GPU, the Maxwell core runs far cooler due to the lower power consumption, this allows it to spin at far lower RPM and still being able to retain the cooler under 70°C despite the Furmark Burn-in test.

Power Consumption

Here’s what the power draw of the card is like. Power consumption reading was taken from the watt-meter, actual power draw by the entire system from the wall point. Seeing that it’s a 92% power efficient PSU that I’m using on the rig, the actual power draw will be estimated on the right most column.

CardWattageEstimated Draw (Actual)
Furmark Burn-in241222
Unigine Heaven 4.0217200
[email protected]180166
Idle5046
Idle without GPU3633

Factoring the other components and the possible load that they undergo, the ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 is estimated to consume slightly above the 150w TDP as stated on the GTX 970 specs page, which is understandable as the power draw will be higher than stated due to the fans and that it’s an overclocked product.

Compare that to the R9 280X that’s priced similarly around this point of time last year, the GTX 970 offers some 33% performance gain while consuming only about 60% of the power. 🙂 That’s great news to the consumer!

The Verdict

The ASUS Strix GeForce GTX 970 retails for a whopping RM 1,499 – quite a steep price to pay for a GTX 970 card but I guess that’s what you have to fork out for a good cooler that’s a silent performer.

For what it’s worth – you’re paying for both the card of excellent build quality, it comes with a back plate, and it comes with a superb silent cooling system. It comes with 3-year warranty and you get nVidia’s touch like Shadowplay and G-sync technology, just to name a few.

goldfries recommended

goldfries rated this product :