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ASUS Matrix Radeon HD 7970 3GB Overclocked Graphics Card Review

Author: Ryan Shrout
Manufacturer: ASUS

The ASUS Matrix HD 7970 Card

After all that technology looking at the card itself is going to seem kind of boring right?  Not so much, the ASUS Matrix HD 7970 is not only technologically sound but also sexy to look at. 

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It's big, it's black and it's red.  The pair of 100mm fans give the card an intimidating look while the triple slot cooler design definitely gives it some substance. 

As I mentioned before there are two versions of the ASUS Matrix HD 7970: the base model runs at 1050 MHz while the Platinum version runs at 1100 MHz with hand picked GPUs.  While that is only a 50 MHz clock difference you should expect the GPUs that have been hand sorted on the Platinums will likely be better overclockers as well.

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A single ASUS Matrix HD 7970 not enough for you?  Good news then, ASUS will allow you to combine forces with a one or two additional cards for some truly impressive (or crazy) gaming performance.  And yes, you CAN pair this with non-Matrix cards but that would be pretty stupid.

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Large fans means quieter operation at the same airflow rates or higher airflow rates and the same noise levels.  As you'll see on our page looking at temperatures, noise and power, the Matrix HD 7970 is impressive in both regards. 

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While we have seen cards that support 6 display outputs before, they have all used mini-DisplayPort connections meaning that even to use a single or dual monitors you are going to need some adapters.  Not so with the ASUS Matrix HD 7970; you have access to a pair of DVI connections (though only one is dual-link) and four full-size DisplayPort connections.  And thanks to the third slot that the Matrix takes up you still get a full slot for hot air exhaust.

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You can see part of the DirectCU II cooler from this angle with the copper heatpipes and aluminum fins.

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The ASUS Matrix HD 7970 takes a little bit more juice with two 8-pin power connections rather than an 8-pin and a 6-pin.  Handy LED lights behind them go from red to green to let you know you have hooked up your power supply correctly.

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The back of the card has the TweakIt, Safe Mode and Turbo Fan buttons described on the previous page.  Obviously having access to them will require you to have an open system.

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The back of this beast is covered by a metal plate that is both functional (for cooling) and a nice finishing touch to look at.  If you happen to have a window on your case then you'll be greeted with the "ASUS Matrix HD 7970" text with the card installed - sweet!

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Access to the VGA Hotwire leads and the ProbeIt connections are on the back of the card as well.

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With the cooler removed you can see card's PCB in its entirety and you can tell why the Matrix design is a bit bigger than the standard options on the market - that PCB is FULL! 

December 4, 2012 | 12:35 PM - Posted by Logun

Why the disparity on Metro 2033 @ 2560x1600 with the Matrix vs the GHz Ed? 5% seems like a notable amount?

June 12, 2013 | 11:33 PM - Posted by Jamal (not verified)

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December 5, 2012 | 10:46 AM - Posted by mtcn77 (not verified)

Excuse my impatience, what version of catalyst driver have you chosen for this review?

December 5, 2012 | 04:22 PM - Posted by Ryan Shrout

Oops, I am always leaving that out!

For the AMD GPUs we were using the Catalyst 12.11 beta and for NVIDIA we tested with 306.23.

September 19, 2014 | 02:43 AM - Posted by jual rumah cikunir (not verified)

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December 6, 2012 | 12:53 PM - Posted by wilson79

awesome show love to win this card

December 6, 2012 | 06:41 PM - Posted by msu232smith

Love the show guys, big fan keep up the good work.

December 6, 2012 | 07:32 PM - Posted by bilmath76 (not verified)

Amazing post keep it up Guys at PCper

December 7, 2012 | 01:33 AM - Posted by Ivica Madjaric (not verified)

This is some monster hardware ;)

December 9, 2012 | 06:50 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Nice detailed review, keep up the good work!

December 9, 2012 | 09:06 AM - Posted by TRAVERSER (not verified)

Great review!

I was about to replace my old trusty 5870 with a 7950 and now this came along. Oh well, budget was once again wiped out cause the holidays.

December 9, 2012 | 10:48 AM - Posted by clonzelda (not verified)

Is this the Ferrari of video cards?

December 18, 2012 | 04:50 PM - Posted by Elmira Beddow (not verified)

I really like your writing style, great information, thankyou for posting : D.

December 19, 2012 | 09:46 AM - Posted by rich9cinti (not verified)

I have the Matrix 7970 Platnium for about a week now. Some moderately high overclocks at 1230Mhz/7300Mhz. Using 12.11 driver, 3DMark11 score - 11160. I still have some thermal headroom, too. Here's a link to see how I progressed.

December 19, 2012 | 09:48 AM - Posted by rich9cinti (not verified)

Oops, here's the link: http://forums.extremeoverclocking.com/showthread.php?t=367143

February 13, 2013 | 03:49 PM - Posted by Sergiu Gabriel (not verified)

This graphic card is better than MSI GTX680 Lightning ? Will be faster for rendering things like 3D Objects in Blender, video animation, effects, etc...What will be the perfect choice, the ATI or the NVidia cards for graphic design ?

February 22, 2013 | 08:45 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Screen captures were taken with onboard TURNO FAN MODE enabled ??

May 26, 2014 | 06:02 AM - Posted by Tanner (not verified)

Wow.. This looks super cool. I have nvidea card, and when i played battlefield o it, i did felt some lag at some particular points like the transition from short clips in between to the game. But the statistics of radeon is so fantastic. Thanks for the share.
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