The cooler on the ASUS GTX 580 Direct CU II is huge and heavy, this give the card a high-quality monster product feeling when you hold it in your hands.
ASUS GTX 580 Direct CU II is one of the few cards that requires three slots in your system. It promises to justify that with reduce noise and improved thermal performance.
The card has two DVI ports, one full-size HDMI port and one full-size DisplayPort. Unlike AMD's latest GPUs, the output logic design is not as flexible. On AMD cards vendors are free to combine six TMDS links into any output configuration they want (dual-link DVI consuming two links), on NVIDIA, you are fixed to two DVI outputs and one HDMI/DP in addition to that. NVIDIA confirmed that you can use only two displays at the same time, so for a three monitor setup you would need two cards.
NVIDIA has included an HDMI sound device inside their GPU which does away with the requirement of connecting an external audio source to the card for HDMI audio. The HDMI interface is HDMI 1.3a compatible which includes Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD, AC-3, DTS and up to 7.1 channel audio with 192 kHz / 24-bit. NVIDIA also claims full support for the 3D portion of the HDMI 1.4 specification which will become important later this year when we will see first Blu-Ray titles shipping with support for 3D output.
You may combine up to four GTX 580 cards of any model from any vendor in SLI.
Here are the front and the back of the card, high-res versions are also available (front, back). If you choose to use these images for voltmods etc, please include a link back to this site or let us post your article.