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ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080 Review

ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080 Review

It has been an interesting time at the high end of the PC  component market recently. We’ve had the launch of a new range of boards such as the impressive ASUS X99 Deluxe II and of course the latest high-end Intel CPUs. Of course, we all want to pair those sort of components with the latest and greatest graphics card and that is exactly what ASUS are looking to provide with their latest Republic of Gamers product. Welcome to our ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080 Review.

ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080 Review – The ROG Strix 1080

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ASUS package their 1080 Strix in a box which highlights a number of the key features, such as it being VR Ready. With our sample being an early one there were no bundled items but you can expect to receive product documentation, software disc, and ROG Velcro Hook & Loop. The card itself is a dual slot product with a length of just under 12inches. ASUS go with a three fan cooler and those fans, with blades designed for low noise and high airflow, sit above a set of aluminum fins and five direct contact heat pipes. ASUS enhance their card by adding Super Alloy Power II components (8+2 Phase) which they note greatly enhance efficiency, reduce power loss and minimise temperatures. These cards are also manufactured using the latest automated process which includes reduced use of harsh chemicals.

Elsewhere on the design front, we get an extra set of 4pin fan headers which allow us to connect a couple of system fans and better tie the airflow in our case to the GPU, rather than CPU. And then there is the lighting…

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The Strix 1080 features ASUS Aura lighting, some of which is on the heatsink cover with another logo on the backplate. This can be set to a wide range of colours and we can apply effects such as breathing, temperature or reaction to music.

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Round at the outputs we have DVI, 2x HDMI 2.0 and 2x DisplayPort. For the power inputs, we get the 8pin connector which is standard for 1080’s with an additional 6pin connector to ensure stability when overclocking.

All key NVIDIA/Industry features are also supported including DirectX 12, CUDA, DirectCompute, 4K, Audio over DisplayPort/HDMI, PhysX, G-Sync, SLI (inc SLI HB) and Dynamic Super Resolution.

As far as specifications go, this card runs at 1785MHz out of the box with boost up to 1936MHz. Memory sits at 1251MHz. In this 16nm Pascal GPU there are 2560 CUDA cores, 64 ROPs, 160TMUs, 256bit memory bus and 8GB of GDDR5x.

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ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080 Review – Software

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ASUS provide us with a few different pieces of software for the Strix 1080. The first is the Aura lighting configurator. We also get a little app which lets us quickly change between performance profiles or for those who want to get a little more hands-on, there is GPU Tweak 2 with full overclocking functionality. Finally, there is a copy of XSplit Gamecaster (1year licence) and of course the card is fully compatible with NVIDIAs own GeForce Experience application.

ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080 Review – Performance

Testing was performed on the Intel Core i7-6950X running on an X99 board with 16GB of DDR4 and a Samsung 850 Pro SSD. Windows 10 was the OS and all games along with the OS were patched.

NVIDIA Driver: 368.39
AMD Driver: Latest Crimson Edition (June 16)

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ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080 Review – Conclusion

Starting with the build quality of the ROG Strix 1080 we have a card which hits the usual high standard we expect from ASUS. High-quality components are used throughout, the card appears to be assembled well and in one of the key areas which is different from the Founders Edition, the cooler, we get enhanced design elements such as the fan blades. As far as the overall design goes, like the Strix motherboard we recently reviewed, this is a card which is designed for those who want to build a system with some pretty cool LED lighting. ASUS allow us to choose plenty of effects and colours and of course, if we just want performance, without the lighting then it can all be disabled.

Speaking of performance, the Strix 1080 is essentially flawless. So much so that we actually considered only benching it at 4k. At 4K every game in our test suite was completely playable. It doesn’t matter if you want to fire up one of the latest titles such as DOOM, or something a little older like F1 2015… or even try to make life difficult for the card by throwing a beta DX12 benchmark at it… the Strix 1080 just blazes through. We’ve compared it to the fastest gamer focused cards of the last generation in this review, the AMDs Fury X and NVIDIAs 980Ti and both were significantly slower in our real world tests (everything but Warhammer was real world gaming). As we build out the comparisons in upcoming articles (including VR) things will only get worse for the previous generation.

It is also worth noting that the power use of the card is very impressive and tied in with this are the thermals and noise levels. Temperatures are kept well within acceptable levels by the ASUS cooler and as a result fan RPM is minimal with noise levels near silent. Finally, overclocking, where the card runs faster than the Founders Edition from NVIDIA as standard and when we used GPU Tweak to push things a little further we found that the total gap in 3DMArk FireStrike Ultra increased to 500 points, a fantastic result which is around a 10% performance increase.

Performance Award

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080
Author Rating
5

About Author

Stuart Davidson

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