Pricing (accurate at the time of writing)
The ASUS GeForce GTX 970 STRIX 4GB graphics card retails for $349.99 at Newegg and the same price at Amazon over in the USA. In the UK Overclockers UK stock the card for £299.99. ASUS provide a 3 year warranty with this product, it is not currently part of any game bundle deals.
At $350 in the states the ASUS STRIX GTX 970 holds a modest 10% premium over the baseline pricing for the GTX 970. In the UK the pricing is a little more inflated at 20% over the baseline of £250. Whichever way you assess the pricing there’s a good reason to pay more for the ASUS STRIX GTX 970 over a reference style design or even a rival custom cooled design like the EVGA GTX 970 ACX which has been the subject of significant controversy for its cooling solution over the past month. The good reason to pay more is simple: the ASUS STRIX GTX 970 is crazy quiet in any form of loading scenario whilst still managing to maintain sterling temperatures. The passive fan mode, one of the newest trends that ASUS have kick-started in the graphics card market, offers an interesting way to keep your system quieter under light loads. In practice, any game will push the GPU beyond 65 degrees after a short period of time but from our testing if you’re playing an easy to run game with V-Sync enabled you could easily prevent 65 from ever being reached. For example at 1080p this graphics card might smash 250FPS+ in a light game but by enabling V-Sync you could drop that down to 60FPS and cut the GPU workload down to a low enough level to sustain passive operation. Even more pertinent is the role of G-Sync here: if you’re running a 60Hz G-Sync panel your graphics card would do this automatically.
What didn’t we like about the ASUS STRIX GTX 970? Not that much if I’m honest. Aside from the seemingly high UK pricing the only other noteworthy blemish is the fact that ASUS have been too conservative on the out of the box clock speed. Given many consumers still might be afraid of jumping into the world of overclocking I think ASUS would have been wise to match or come near to the clock speeds of rival solutions such as Gigabyte’s G1 Gaming variant and EVGA’s FTW edition. Despite that we’ve seen that the STRIX GTX 970 overclocks like a beast so the lack of “out of the box” speed compared to rival offerings is a mere technicality: overclocking will fix it.
- Excellent overclocking
- Mind blowing cooling and acoustic performance
- Sleek aesthetics
- User-realistic Display output configuration
- Passive fan mode
- No support for triple G-Sync monitors, only one DP
- Factory overclock is a little pale compared to rivals
“The latest incarnation of ASUS DirectCU II cooling on the STRIX GTX 970 is probably the best cooling solution on the market for a GTX 970. It strikes up a brilliant balance between temperatures and noise while still offering great performance and overclockability.“
Thank you to ASUS for providing this review sample.