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Asus ENGTX285 TOP overclocked graphics card

Nvidia's new GeForce GTX 285 makes its debut

Bangs Per Buck Results
3DMark Vantage

Asus ENGTX285 TOP - Bangs per Buck

3DMark Vantage Points per Pound
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Switching to a single Asus GTX 285 TOP raised performance by some 13-16 per cent in our benchmarks over a single GTX 280 at standard speeds. Overclocking the GTX 285 delivered mixed result as we were unable to increase the shader speed by a useful amount. The gap between the Asus TOP GTX 285 and the GTX 280 closed to 7-9 per cent which is worth having but translates to a mere 3f/s in Far Cry 2 on extreme settings.

The power draw of GTX 285 was slightly lower than GTX 280, to the tune of 20W per card. Running a pair of GTX 285 cards in SLI gave us 85 per cent higher performance than a single Asus TOP, and we saw frame rates in Far Cry 2 that would make a grown man weep with pleasure. The differential over GTX 280 SLI increased to a full 10f/s.

Bangs Per Buck Results
Far Cry 2

Asus ENGTX285 TOP - Bangs per Buck

Far Cry 2 average frame rate per Pound
Longer bars are better

The problem, of course, is the price. GeForce GTX 280 launched at £330 for a regular card or £370 for an overclocked job. Prices have dropped to £250-290 as retailers clear their shelves for the new GTX 285, which comes in at the same range of £330-370. That puts the Asus TOP at the, ahem, top end of the scale.

Verdict

The 55nm die-shrink used in Nvidia's GTX 285 delivers a useful boost in performance, but the accompanying production-cost reduction doesn’t seem to have ended up in our pockets. That takes some of the shine off the GTX 285, but there is no denying that it's a truly impressive performer. ®

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Asus ENGTX285 TOP overclocked graphics card

Expensive - but undeniably a truly impressive performer.
Price: £364 RRP