ASUS GTX760 MARS Review

Conclusion

ASUS GTX760 MARS Review

Conclusion

It's not often that a card arrives in our offices without much of a fanfare or with much expectations attached to it. We have done a lot of single card testing recently and haven't yet tried out a pair of GTX760s in SLI, so we weren't too sure how much performance there would be. When you add to that our knowledge that two GPUs on a single PCB is never quite as good as two separate cards, but balance that with the knowledge that ASUS ROG products, and the MARS range especially, are rarely bad, then we were left entirely unsure of how it would perform.

A glance at the specifications gave us a rough idea though. 2304 CUDA Cores is the same as the GTX780, and the 1.1GHz Boost Clock certainly hints at performance around the mark of the regular GTX780. So you can imagine our surprise when rather than being a match for a stock GTX780 it, more often than not, was better than a stock GTX780Ti. A card that has us lusting after it more than almost any other item of hardware on the market.

It's not only the performance in certain tests that had us frothing at the mouth. Usually with these "two GPUs one PCB" affairs there is a point at which the necessary reduction in architecture starts to limit the performance, but the GTX760 MARS ate everything we could throw at it, whether it was the simplicity of a 3D Mark Vantage Performance test, or the extremity of a BioShock Infinite 2560x1440 gameplay session.

In terms of raw power it's unquestionably an incredible card.

There are, as there so often are with these things, a couple of flies in the ointment.

Firstly the logo on the side has been a mine of frustration for us since its introduction. On older cards we want it to just be a single colour at all times, rather than the pointless changing colour they end up being. With the MARS it's thankfully a single colour all the time, but ASUS have seen fit to make the logo a breathing one, with no way to turn it off. It's extremely distracting, even through a smoked case window. Just have it on all the time.

Secondly there is the extremely complicated issue of the price. £520 is the MSRP. Now we accept that the MARS is a custom PCB, and not a card for the mass market. There is a level of kudos in ownership that a standard card doesn't give you. The performance is equivalent to the £30 more expensive GTX780Ti. So it's certainly not stunningly over-priced in performance terms. However, two GTX760s, even ones with ASUS' DirectCU II cooler, are around £440 and will give you the same performance as we've seen here, yet if one of them dies you still have a display. Not likely these days, but something to take into account. So relative to the hardware involved it's quite expensive. Also two cards always looks better than a single one. There is just something about a pair of cards that's more visceral than a single one. Finally, whilst it might run the GTX780Ti close, when the Ti does beat the MARS it does so handily, and we're not sure that £30 saving is worth it. Some games, Company of Heroes 2 for example, don't even take a second GPU into account, so you'll have a £520 GTX760.

In short this is for a very niche audience. If you just want pure power the GTX780Ti is similarly priced and better. If you just want the most power for the least outlay you could buy two GTX760s and run them in SLI for about £100 less. But if you want something a little special, something different from the norm, then the ASUS GTX760 MARS might be just the ticket and for that reason we award it our OC3D Performance award.

          

Thanks to ASUS for supplying the GTX760 MARS for review. Discuss your thoughts in the OC3D Forums.

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Most Recent Comments

19-11-2013, 01:45:17

tinytomlogan
http://www.overclock3d.net/gfx/artic...123704949l.jpg

The latest in the MARS line from ASUS comes equipped with two GTX760 GPUs in SLI on a single PCB


Continue Reading

19-11-2013, 02:09:15

addbot
jumped straight to the conclusion, now to watch the video

19-11-2013, 03:07:08

Tobblish
Wait so this card have a total of 4gb of Vram and half of it can be used in SLI while gaming?
If you run 1440p you are going to run out of memory in some titles.

It's not enough for it's price range sadly..

19-11-2013, 04:30:17

barnsley
The conclusion makes me think it's a graphics card for hipsters.


I'd be tempted if it wasn't for the price, it'd be good for a SFF build though.

19-11-2013, 04:55:36

Xrqute
Gotta say i love the Aesthetics of the card!

19-11-2013, 05:06:48

SieB
I really like the look of this card, it looks really good.

Performance is better than I though it was going to be
It's priced fairly for the performance but you can still get 2x 760 for ~400.

19-11-2013, 05:31:00

cooperman
A tad to expencive for me i gess i will still be waiting to see what the R9 290 aftermarket cards can do outherwise its a new MSI 780 gameing card thats going to be emptyimg my wallet this christmas..

19-11-2013, 05:31:09

dodo21x
Quote:
Originally Posted by SieB View Post
I really like the look of this card , it looks really good.

Performance is better than I though it was going to be
It's priced fairly for the performance but you can still get 2x 760 for ~400.
Or 770SLI for just over 500

19-11-2013, 09:12:24

airdeano
now just from pure observation weren't the specifications of the 690 pretty dern
close to the now new MARS GTX760?

both using dual GK-104 cores, both having 2GB per core, both having 256-bit memory
band-width (512-bit total), and both had memory speed of over 6000MHz.

really what i see is the MARS GTX 760 is a better price point, better cooling option,
and better overclocking possibilities. not that the GTX 700-series has its "quirks" of
carry-over from the 600-series, but has this mimicked the same influence that the
GTX 700-series has done already, but in a more obtainable idea and better packaging?

just some quick observations without side-by-side comparos..

19-11-2013, 09:15:22

dodo21x
How much is Mars 760 again ?

19-11-2013, 09:30:06

cooperman
Quote:
Originally Posted by dodo21x View Post
How much is Mars 760 again ?
Around 520

19-11-2013, 11:11:16

piotrekhc
I can't see a point of this card..
u can get 2 EVGA 770 Superclock ACX for 540... ya 20 quid more and much more performance.
http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showpr...14&subcat=1750

If the price was 420 not 520 then ya but 520... stiupid.

19-11-2013, 11:40:28

Ghosthud1
i have to agree, they overshot the price on this one.

19-11-2013, 11:45:35

tinytomlogan
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghosthud1 View Post
i have to agree, they overshot the price on this one.
It would never have been the same price as two 760's its narrow minded to think it would have tbh.

19-11-2013, 12:04:09

Ghosthud1
Let's not jump to conclusions, a 120 premium on top of 2x760 directCUII's is the thing that erks me.

120 in my eye's should of been more around the 80 mark, let's not kid each other here as the R&D on the MARS brand is minimal at best at this point, they know what works and they just replicate it, slap a PLX on the PCB, give it a jacked up power deliver and plonk a decent cooler on. This card lacks the stigma of all the other MARS cards as it's not the absolute top performance card out there, this is the issue with asking for 120 on top of two mid ranged cards.

I just think it would be more compelling in the sub 500 region.

19-11-2013, 18:59:22

demonking
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghosthud1 View Post
i have to agree, they overshot the price on this one.
ever seen a mars card that didn't?

a good option if you a itx board although a 780ti would be better

20-11-2013, 05:14:15

WeLikeLead
Have an "order" for one of these already placed with my companies hardware vendor. They will snap one up the second they become available to the e retailers.

It's a shame that two could be a bit of a fail combination. I would like to see that tested though...



Thanks,

WeLikeLead

20-11-2013, 05:26:05

Kaapstad
Quote:
Originally Posted by WeLikeLead View Post
Have an "order" for one of these already placed with my companies hardware vendor. They will snap one up the second they become available to the e retailers.

It's a shame that two could be a bit of a fail combination. I would like to see that tested though...



Thanks,

WeLikeLead
Why do you want one, according to your signature you already have a GTX 690 which is better in every department.

20-11-2013, 05:33:55

WeLikeLead
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaapstad View Post
Why do you want one, according to your signature you already have a GTX 690 which is better in every department.
I have been building and spec'ing a completely new rig for a few months now and have been looking for something different for the GPU. Then this little beauty surfaced. I waited "patiently" until the review and as it got a thumbs up I was like hey lets do it. (Same basic reasoning behind the 690 purchase all that time ago now )

So basically its going into a new rig..


Thanks,

WeLikeLead

20-11-2013, 19:13:41

demonking
what is strange is that you put 2 of these in sli, 760's can't do quad so i wonder how well that will actually work.

20-11-2013, 20:47:43

WOLF
G'Day Tom.

Thank you for some nice review mate!

Theres one thing I didn't get clear and that if ASUS MARS GTX 760 can handle Ultra High Definition (UHD) as well as 4K Standard?

Sincerely, Bengt "WOLF" Johansson.

20-11-2013, 23:58:10

NeverBackDown
4k is a joke with any card. Only ones that do better than anything else are the 290x's but then again you still need at least 2 just to hit a 30-40fps mark with lowered settings.

21-11-2013, 00:12:41

Kaapstad
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverBackDown View Post
4k is a joke with any card. Only ones that do better than anything else are the 290x's but then again you still need at least 2 just to hit a 30-40fps mark with lowered settings.
I would not class the 290X as a 4K card, 4gb of vram is not enough to max games. To do that you are going to need three or four 6gb Titans and even then you are at the mercy of driver support.

I know AMD keep on about the 290X being up to the job but when it is demoed at 4K, it is with the settings turned down or using games that are not very demanding. This rather defeats the point of 4K.

21-11-2013, 00:27:10

looz
Benchmarks I've seen seem to suggest that 780 Ti is fastest for 4k.

21-11-2013, 02:11:56

Kaapstad
Quote:
Originally Posted by looz View Post
Benchmarks I've seen seem to suggest that 780 Ti is fastest for 4k.
Right up to the point where you run out of vram, 3gb is not enough.

For decent fps with the settings maxed out @4K you need 3 or 4 cards with more than 4gb of vram. You can use one or two cards with the settings turned down but then what is the point of using 4K.

21-11-2013, 09:08:42

RizeAllard
I think its a "we can make it, why we should skip it" card. I can't see where it was positioned. Two GTX 770 in SLI is all the same but cheaper. Anyway its a good looking card, and if someone has the money for it enjoy it

21-11-2013, 22:08:43

NeverBackDown
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaapstad View Post
I would not class the 290X as a 4K card, 4gb of vram is not enough to max games. To do that you are going to need three or four 6gb Titans and even then you are at the mercy of driver support.

I know AMD keep on about the 290X being up to the job but when it is demoed at 4K, it is with the settings turned down or using games that are not very demanding. This rather defeats the point of 4K.
I did not class it as a 4k card either? I said it is a joke with any card...
It would handle it just as well as a titan. Has a 512bit bus compared to 384bit bus which is needed at such higher res( as well as vram).

I also said settings need to be turned down... 4k in general is pointless. Won't be worthy for another 3 or 4 years.

23-11-2013, 09:10:53

Nessaja
So running 2 of these would result in only 2GB avail VRAM? I managed to get another 460 for 30€ so I'm wondering what I should get for "xmas"... That is, should I save up for a 780Ti (SLI next year) or buy 2x 780/MARS?

23-11-2013, 10:41:01

Kaapstad
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverBackDown View Post
I did not class it as a 4k card either? I said it is a joke with any card...
It would handle it just as well as a titan. Has a 512bit bus compared to 384bit bus which is needed at such higher res( as well as vram).

I also said settings need to be turned down... 4k in general is pointless. Won't be worthy for another 3 or 4 years.
The difference is 3 or 4 Titans in SLI can handle 4K maxed out providing the driver support is there, if you max the settings the Titans won't run out of vram. If you try the same with 3 or 4 290Xs they will run out of vram and the fact that they have a 512 bit bus will not help in the slightest.

23-11-2013, 13:57:50

Lyndon
Mmmmhhh... Do I treat myself, My 660Ti is a little low spec now :/

02-12-2013, 14:55:22

notcool
Crysis Warhead and Witcher 2 are proper pc games, built from the ground up, that's why quad sli works better. Great review as ever.
Reply
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