While some video card makers might include custom and pre-installed waterblocks onto their high-end cards, ASUS went the way of including their own closed-loop water cooling setup to cool not one, but two insanely fast AMD Radeon HD 7970 “GHz Edition” GPUs. The cooling setup is said to achieve “up to 31C cooler operation compared to a reference GTX 690,” which is saying a lot, given AMD’s track record of GPU temperatures.
Since it’s not using your typical air cooler, a card like this will just need to take up the standard two slots, rather than three as some might expect. The design is quite unique, primarily consisting of a black and red ROG-inspired color scheme.
Due to the high-powered GPUs, you’ll need 3x 8-pin power connectors. In terms of pure specs, you can expect:
- Video memory: 6GB GDDR5
- Core clock: 1050MHz (1100MHz boost)
- Memoy clock: x1650MHz GDDR5
- Minimum PSU: 850W (42 amps on a 12-volt rail)
If you’re interested in this card, there is one catch, however. This is a limited edition card, meaning that only a certain number of them will be produced until they’re extinct. ASUS says that they’ll only be making 1,000 of these babies, so you better start digging into your wallet now before they go on sale later this year. Exact pricing and availability are unknown at this time, but given the pricing of ASUS’s top-of-the-line GHz Edition 7970, we’re basically combining two of those GPUs into one card that features water cooling and some other goodies to make it perform like no other. I’m estimating that this beast will cost around $1,250, but even that might be quite generous.
For full details, you’ll find the press release below.
ASUS Releases the Limited Edition ROG ARES II Graphics Card
Featuring dual AMD Radeon™ HD 7970 GHz Edition GPUs, 6GB GDDR5 memory and a liquid/air cooling system the ARES II redefines graphic performance
Fremont, CA (January 7, 2013) – ASUS ROG presents the fastest and most powerful graphics card currently available with the limited edition ARES II. Its dual Radeon™ HD 7970 GHz Edition GPUs and 6GB GDDR5 memory support provide the ultimate PC gaming experience in a space-saving 2-slot design. The ARES II features exclusive ASUS DIGI+ VRM and Super Alloy Power technologies for greater stability and product longevity. The bundled ROG Edition GPU Tweak utility allows customers direct access to graphics card overclocking and tuning options via a user-friendly interface.
Continuing the ARES legacy with collectible hardware for enthusiasts
Launched in the summer of 2010, the original ROG ARES provided a new milestone in graphics power that soon became an in-demand commodity among hardware enthusiasts and collectors. ARES II likewise debuts as a limited edition product, with only 1000 units produced. It ships in a special ROG-themed case, with each card featuring a laser-etched serial number on the aluminum backplate to denote its collectible status.
New thermal cooling design enables maximum performance
ARES II provides a custom cooler that utilizes liquid and air cooling to achieve drastically improved heat dissipation over reference design cards. The hybrid design consists of a closed-cycle liquid system with dual 120mm fans and a radiator block that easily fits in most PC cases. The card itself includes an 80mm dust-proof fan to enable additional cooling for critical components such as video memory and power delivery components. The new design assures continuous stability even under full load, and achieves up to 31C cooler operation compared to a reference GTX 690. ARES II features a 2-slot height design, making it accessible to most PC cases on the market.
DIGI+ VRM, Super Alloy Power, and GPU Tweak provide unparalleled power
Exclusive ASUS DIGI+ digital voltage regulation technology provides precise power delivery to bolster graphics card stability and help increase overclocking flexibility. The 20-phase Super Alloy Power architecture, consisting of heavy duty solid state capacitors, high quality chokes and MOSFETs can withstand higher temperatures and stress loads than typical designs while providing a much longer lifespan. Users can modify card parameters including core and memory speeds, fan performance, and voltages using the bundled ROG Edition GPU Tweak utility, all via a user-friendly interface. Multiple profiles for individual games and applications can also be set up, and GPU Tweak doubles as a monitoring program for keeping an eye on ARES II temperatures and power consumption levels.
Model name ARES2-6GD5 Graphics engine 2 x AMD Radeon™ HD 7970 GHz Edition System bus PCI Express 3.0 x 16 Video memory 6GB GDDR5 Boost clock 1100MHz (base clock: 1050MHz) Memory clock 6600MHz (1650MHz GDDR5) Memory interface 768-bit (2 x 384-bit) Maximum DVI resolution 2560 x 1600 Maximum VGA resolution 2048 x 1536 Microsoft Direct3D version DirectX® 11 I/O 1 x single link DVI / 1 x dual link DVI / 1 x HDMI via adapter/ 4 x native DisplayPort Bundled accessories 3 x 8-pin power cable / 1 x DVI to HDMI adapter / 1 x extended CrossFireX™ bridge Minimum recommended
850W (42A on the 12V rail) Power
3 x 8-pin Dimensions Card: 11.8” x 5.5” x 1.8”
Fan block: 4.6” x 5.8” x 1.9”
Fan: 4.7” x 4.7” x 1”
Liquid cooling tube length: 13.4”
Availability and pricing
To be announced near product launch and may vary by market. Product specifications and features may change without prior notice. Check usa.asus.com or rog.asus.com for further details.