Asus EN9800GT Matrix Edition

Graphics Cards
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TEST RESULTS

BASELINE, with Integrated Graphics: First, here are the results of our baseline results of the system with just its integrated graphics, without a discrete video card. We'll also need the power consumption reading during CPUBurn to estimate the actual power draw of discrete card later.

VGA Test Bed: Baseline Results
(no discrete graphics card installed)
System State
CPU
Temp
System Power
AC
DC (Est.)
Idle
22°C
73W
Unknown
CPUBurn
39°C
144W
115W
Ambient temperature: 21°C
Ambient noise level: 11 dBA
System noise level: 12 dBA

Note: In our semi-anechoic chamber, our VGA test bed now measures 12 dBA@1m. Ambient noise is only 11 dBA.

ASUS EN9800GT MATRIX:

VGA Test Bed: Asus EN9800GT Matrix
System
State
System SPL@1m
GPU
Temp
CPU
Temp
System Power
AC
DC (Est.)
Idle
15 dBA
48°C
24°C
109W
84W
CPUBurn
15 dBA
48°C
43°C
181W
147W
CPUBurn + ATITool
31 dBA
68°C
43°C
228W
187W
CPUBurn + FurMark
31 dBA
68°C
44°C
238W
195W
Ambient temperature: 20°C
Ambient noise level: 11 dBA.
System noise level (minus graphics card): 12 dBA@1m.

At idle, the stock fan was fairly quiet, producing a gentle but definitely audible low-pitched hum. Our test platform measured 12 dBA@1m without a graphics card; installing the EN9800GT Matrix increased this reading by 3 dBA. The GPU temperature was very low at just 48°C. We very rarely see such a low temperature without using an aftermarket cooler.

As the system was stressed with CPUBurn and ATITool/Furmark, the fan ramped up in two different stages — once when the GPU reached approximately 60°C and again at 65°C. Soon after, the GPU temperature stabilized at 68°C. By then, the noise level had increased dramatically to 31 dBA@1m. The character of the noise was very unusual — an unfortunate result of the heatsink design which has the radial portion of the cooler covered in the shroud. The tightly confined turbulent air combined with the aggressive motor noise produced what sounded like an old CRT television without an input signal — a spitting combination of static and snow.

As an additional test, we blocked off the exhaust port with masking tape and found that the GPU and CPU temperature increased by only a single degree, suggesting it would have been better to remove the casing altogether and allow the heatsink to breathe inside the system. It's also possible that the temperature simply wasn't high enough for the exhaust system to be beneficial. In either case, the design seems to be flawed.

In addition to the usual squealing under load which plagues many modern graphics cards, the card emitted a constant, high-pitched whine when first installed, which did not stop until the drivers were installed and the system rebooted. Furthermore, after a fresh reboot the card occasionally generated an unusual squeal that fluctuated in frequency and tone for about two minutes. It was as if a tiny gremlin had crawled inside the machine and started to play miniature bagpipes. The noise was associated with an increase in GPU temperature to about 58°C, suggesting the GPU was under some kind of load that we were not aware of. While we weren't able to track down the cause, we were able to record the noise. Here is a sample:


GPU-Z's sensor tab.

That wasn't the end of our problems. We were unable to get a fan speed reading using any of the applications we typically use. The only monitoring software we did get working was GPU-Z, which could only report the core and memory clock speeds and GPU temperature. According to GPU-Z, the core and memory clocks stayed at stock speeds throughout testing, both during idle and load.



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