The ASUS GTX465 Up Close
Having just said that we have no preconceptions there is one thing we can be absolutely certain of and that is that the packaging will be up to the usual ASUS high standards.
The front of the box is dominated by three things. The model name, a fantasy knight who looks like one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and the logo for the ASUS Voltage Tweak. The rider is a strange choice as the horse is white, which is the colour of the Pestilence Horseman. Not quite the image I think ASUS want to portray. Hmmm. Moving on.
Within the external cardboard "flashy bit" is the ubiquitous ASUS black box. This is such a perfect design that we're always glad to see they haven't tinkered. Everything is where it should be and well protected.
Within the box we have a manual and driver disk. Two DVI adaptors for HDMI and VGA, and a Molex to PCIe adaptor.
Moving on to the card we straight away find a curious thing. If this is just a slightly cut down version of the GTX480, that had to be cut down for heat reasons and yet was still fearsomely hot, why is the reference cooler back to the plastic shroud affair? Surely the benefit of cutting down speeds and shaders is to bring it yet further under control?
It's very much a Spinal Tap shroud. None more black. The ASUS logo is the only part of the whole card that isn't black and when viewed side on, especially in light of some of the excellent side graphics/features we've seen recently, it's quite boring and disappointing.
Despite being part of the ASUS Voltage Tweak BIOS this has two 6 pin PCIe power sockets rather than two eights or even one of each. Hopefully this is a good sign.
The front of the card is covered with a mock carbon fibre look, that actually appears much nicer in the flesh than in photographs.
Finally the business end which is two DVI-I ports, a HDMI and the exhaust for the card.