ASUS Matrix 5870 Platinum Review
Sometimes I think we expect too much.
When the Matrix Platinum was first started to break out of the ASUS labs a, admittedly very specially selected model, managed to obtain 1500MHz on the core. Of course we'd never hope to get near that on a retail model, but nonetheless we were hoping for perhaps 1150+.
Certainly with the myriad of overclocking features available and with this board currently an eye-watering £408 we were hoping for more than 1050MHz with a stable of just past the 1GHz barrier. Most of the "specialist" cards we've seen will do a GHz happily and for a fraction of the price.
However, there are two important things we need to note here. Firstly if there is one thing we have learnt from our many reviews here in the OC3D dungeon, it's that Jim is a demon with the branding iron. No hang on that's not right. It's that you should never go into a product review with a preconception of its performance.
Secondly remember whenever you're overclocking that some chips perform better than others. We've always prided ourselves here at Overclock3D on not demanding some specialist hand-picked sample. We want to review exactly what you get. Therefore it might just be that we've got an average one.
More importantly than either of these you have to look at the hard numbers. Here there can be no doubt that the Matrix Platinum is quite the performance powerhouse. It's the fastest stock card around, although purchasing it for its stock abilities would be somewhat missing the point.
In short ASUS have put everything possible together so if you really want to push it to the maximum, the card shouldn't let you down at the vital moment. If it does, a quick press of the reset switch on the back and you're ready to go again.
Boy do you pay for this feature set though. Considering the ASUS voltage tweak BIOS can be flashed to any card of your choosing, then for the absolute hardcore that alone isn't enough. The cooler is alright, but not a patch on the Frozr 2 or similar. So what you need to ask yourself is, is a Super ML cap, a reset button and a logo that changes colour enough to justify the extra £70-odd over a reference HD5870?
For the hardcore overclockers or those who demand the absolute best, probably. Everyone else should stick to the already brilliant HD5870 from a manufacturer of your choice.
It's an easy winner of our Performance award. It's just stretching our "performance at all costs" definition to the limits.
Theoretically nearly unlimited potential
Our one didn't overclock any better than any other we've tested
Matrix lighting is perhaps more for flash than anything
That price. The HD5870 is a price/performance King. This is nearly GTX480 money.