Friday, July 16th 2010

ASUS Working on MARS II Dual GTX 480 Graphics Accelerator

After treating the enthusiast community to the Republic of Gamers (ROG) ARES Dual HD 5870 graphics accelerator, ASUS isn't wasting any time is designing its successor, referred to (for now) as "MARS II". This graphics accelerator uses two NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480 (GF100) GPUs on one board, that's right, the first dual-GPU accelerator based on GF100, which is dreaded for its thermal and electrical characteristics so much, that NVIDIA is content with having the second-fastest graphics card in the market (GTX 480), with no immediate plans of working on a dual-GPU accelerator.

ASUS' ambitious attempt is in the design stage deep inside its R&D, where the design is in an evaluation state. The R&D gave us some exclusive pictures of the MARS II PCB to treat you with. To begin with, the card's basic design is consistent with almost every other dual-GPU NVIDIA card in recent past. There are two independent GPU systems, each with its own VRM and memory, which are interconnected by an internal SLI, and connected to the system bus by an nForce 200 bridge chip. On this card, two GF100 GPUs with the same configuration as GeForce GTX 480 (GF100-375-A3) are used, each having 480 CUDA cores, and connecting to 1536 MB of GDDR5 memory across a 384-bit wide memory interface.

ASUS' innovations kick in right from the PCB, since it takes a lot of effort to keep such a design electrically stable, as well form an overclockers' product. MARS II uses a PCB with 3 oz copper layers to increase electrical stability, and used a strong VRM. Each GPU system is fed by an 8+2 phase VRM of its own, which use a new Super Alloy choke that reduces core energy loss. The card takes its power input from three 8-pin power inputs, which are fused.

The card is quad SLI capable, and can pair with another of its kind (and probably single GTX 480s). To cool this monstrosity, ASUS is coming up with a beefier than ever cooling solution. With the product being still at an evaluation stage, how long it will take to reach production, or whether it will in the first place, remains to be seen.
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87 Comments on ASUS Working on MARS II Dual GTX 480 Graphics Accelerator

#1
fritoking
by: the54thvoid
By jove I've got it!!!

I'm going to get two and seal them in a vacuum chamber - run off the heat pipes into a water tank and boil the water. The water will boil off into steam which i'll push through pipes to create pressure to turn a generator and create power from it - which i can then use to power my cards.....

:wtf:
that is great.....:toast:
Posted on Reply
#2
Steevo
I know what happens to cards like this. 5 people buy them and are all like


But in 6 months when the next gen comes out and they are still eating cheesy mac out of a can, and when they realize they have no money for a upgrade and the next gen provides the same performance they become like





And then in like two years when they finally have enough to buy a new card they always brag about how awesome and great their card was, even though they hated it. even though inside they feel like





So who wants to step up with their fail and take part in the last step here?

by: the54thvoid
By jove I've got it!!!

I'm going to get two and seal them in a vacuum chamber - run off the heat pipes into a water tank and boil the water. The water will boil off into steam which i'll push through pipes to create pressure to turn a generator and create power from it - which i can then use to power my cards.....

:wtf:
You sir deserve a cookie!!!

Posted on Reply
#3
Per Hansson
Steevo; your cookie looks delicious!
Posted on Reply
#4
dir_d
Yea i gotta admit that is a pretty good looking cookie...
Posted on Reply
#6
mdsx1950
by: Animalpak
I'm tired of reading comments "pointless" is useless "... This is a product for enthusiast ...



Asus at least not like other companies that only think about profit and sales, there's passion and dedication in what they do and these graphics cards is shown.

These cards are just experiments made by true enthusiast people.
+1

by: Steevo
I know what happens to cards like this. 5 people buy them and are all like
http://www.coronene.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/super_awsome_rad_kidjpg.jpeg

But in 6 months when the next gen comes out and they are still eating cheesy mac out of a can, and when they realize they have no money for a upgrade and the next gen provides the same performance they become like


http://s3-external-1.amazonaws.com/wootdesigncontestentries/damiendone/BUMMER-4lcyyu-s.jpg


And then in like two years when they finally have enough to buy a new card they always brag about how awesome and great their card was, even though they hated it. even though inside they feel like


http://techbuddha.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/vader-fail.jpg


So who wants to step up with their fail and take part in the last step here?
A person who can afford 1 or 2 can definitely switch to the next gen as it comes out. They wont be stuck with that one card for 2 years LMAO! Its kinda obvious don't you think. :laugh:

Its a $1000+ card. Big deal, there a couple of people on TPU running GTX 480 SLi, and i don't think they will be stuck with those cards for 2 years. Hell, i saw some guy running Tri or Quad SLi GTX 480s. lol :laugh:
Posted on Reply
#7
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: Steevo
I know what happens to cards like this. 5 people buy them and are all like
http://www.coronene.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/super_awsome_rad_kidjpg.jpeg

But in 6 months when the next gen comes out and they are still eating cheesy mac out of a can, and when they realize they have no money for a upgrade and the next gen provides the same performance they become like


http://s3-external-1.amazonaws.com/wootdesigncontestentries/damiendone/BUMMER-4lcyyu-s.jpg


And then in like two years when they finally have enough to buy a new card they always brag about how awesome and great their card was, even though they hated it. even though inside they feel like


http://techbuddha.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/vader-fail.jpg


So who wants to step up with their fail and take part in the last step here?




You sir deserve a cookie!!!

http://www.babble.com/CS/blogs/strollerderby/2009/06/chocolate_chip_cookie.jpg
Nah, this is for people who spend any money on the fastest, even if it's outperformed in 6 months by a product half its price. There are people who spend $1000s each month on speed-boats, on automobiles, on robots, on RC aircraft, on rockets, and then there are people who spend $1000s on performance computer hardware. ASUS does have a market to cash in on. Intel has been selling $1000 processors which are outperformed in a short while, for ages.
Posted on Reply
#8
mixa
The only way this can see real world "life" is if they supply it together with 1000+ W PSU and a water cooling system.From all the GTX 480 I`ve seen and tested, I`m certain that there is no way to consume anything under 600W under load (if not more).Yes it will be heck of a monster performer, but wtf, I`m having trouble chilling just one GPU with water, not to mention 2 on the same PCB....
In agree that 460x2 would have been much better choice than 480x2 ....

Oh and forget about 1000 USD price , this is going for about 1200+ (maybe even 1200 euro) at release.
Posted on Reply
#10
mdsx1950
by: mixa
The only way this can see real world "life" is if they supply it together with 1000+ W PSU and a water cooling system.From all the GTX 480 I`ve seen and tested, I`m certain that there is no way to consume anything under 600W under load (if not more).Yes it will be heck of a monster performer, but wtf, I`m having trouble chilling just one GPU with water, not to mention 2 on the same PCB....
In agree that 460x2 would have been much better choice than 480x2 ....

Oh and forget about 1000 USD price , this is going for about 1200+ (maybe even 1200 euro) at release.
460X2? That won't even beat the MARS 1. :nutkick:
Posted on Reply
#11
inferKNOX
by: _JP_
Uhm, I think water cooling would be the only viable solution, but considering how few manufacturers release cards with an water cooling kit in them, this might be the first 4 slot air cooler we're going to see.
And even with a design like that, ASUS would probably be forced to put the most powerful Delta fans in that cooler.
Guess that thing will be able to get as loud as a Jumbo-jet taking off.

Or at least as loud as a vuvuzela!:laugh:
World Cup 2010 fever will live on in the MARS II!
If you hated the vuvuzelas while trying to hear the soccer commentary in FIFA 2010, you're gonna have a ball trying to hear the in-game cutscenes with the MARS II!
:roll:
Posted on Reply
#12
aj28
by: mixa
The only way this can see real world "life" is if they supply it together with 1000+ W PSU and a water cooling system.From all the GTX 480 I`ve seen and tested, I`m certain that there is no way to consume anything under 600W under load (if not more).Yes it will be heck of a monster performer, but wtf, I`m having trouble chilling just one GPU with water, not to mention 2 on the same PCB....
In agree that 460x2 would have been much better choice than 480x2 ....

Oh and forget about 1000 USD price , this is going for about 1200+ (maybe even 1200 euro) at release.
That might not be a bad idea... ASUS could re-brand a beefy PCP&C PSU and a self-contained water cooling system, with modular options which allow you to remove the included pump/rad from the loop and use your own. Oh, and apply Arctic Ceramique from the factory so no one attempts to take the cooler off!! :roll:
Posted on Reply
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