Here is what you've been waiting for; boxed in ROG colors is the new Poseidon Platinum GTX 980!

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We know you won't be patient enough to wait until you get home to peek inside, so the Poseidon is made visible from the outside.

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Tucked away safely underneath the protective foam and sheet of clear plastic, inside of a box in another box, you will find the Poseidon GTX 980. In with it is the User Guide, software disc, power cable, DVI to D-Sub adapter (if you need this adapter then please take a look at the PG278Q - you need an upgrade!) and a beautifully-crafted metal ROG sticker.

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When you take the card out, this weighty beast oozes quality and toughness.  On the exterior, you have the ROG red and matte black combination, with unique heptagonal cutouts in the shroud. Naturally, it looks like it's a component pulled from a top-secret stealth fighter jet. At the core, it is powered by Nvidia's acclaimed 2nd-gen Maxwell architecture (GM204); their most powerful and efficient to date.

The Poseidon incorporates DirectCU H2O to bring you the flexibility of using air-cooling out the box or upgrade to liquid-cooling if you wish to do so.  This is the ultimate in GPU cooling (unless you have an endless supply of LN2), there little need to wait for and buy a water block suitable for the Poseidon.

 In case you don't intend on utilizing liquid-cooling initially, Poseidon is still 15% cooler than a reference board using just its DirectCU air-cooled heatsink and fans, so it is still very overclockable even without the liquid-cooling upgrade! That makes you think about what would happen if you did use liquid-cooling; the answer is yes, DirectCU H2O gives you extreme heat dissipation; with up to half the temperature in fact (in certain tests/environments)! 

It is quiet - up to three times quieter than reference - as well as being 3.7% faster than reference in 3DMark 11 Extreme, 7% faster in Battlefield 4, and 10% faster in Watch Dogs if you're still working through that one.

2 - ROG Poseidon

Even though it is fast enough already, ROG loves overkill so it comes factory-overclocked at 1,279MHz (4.5% boost from 1,178MHz), with 4GB of GDDR5 operating at 7,012MHz (effective) on its 256bit memory bus. The 2048-core GPU is fed by the DIGI+ VRM with a 10-phase power design, high-quality Super Alloy chokes and MOSFETs, also Japanese-made 10K black metallic capacitors which have 20% better temperature endurance and five times the lifespan of standard solid caps, meanwhile POSCAPs  positioned at the back of the GPU help maximize overclocking headroom.

ASUS has not factory-overclocked too aggressively, so there is still plenty of headroom left for you to play yourself; grab GPU Tweak and there's enough to satisfy even the most extreme enthusiast.

There are five choices of outputs: DVI, HDMI 2.0 and three DisplayPort 1.2 (four of which can be used concurrently).  

Note that if you do wish to take the DirectCU H2O cooling unit off, you will need to unscrew the six screws next to these output ports as well as the screws on the backplate.  The PCB is sandwiched between the brushed-metal backplate, the custom vapor chamber for liquid-cooling, extended cooling fins with three large heat-pipes, and dual dust-proof fans.

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At the rear of the PCB is the brushed-metal ASUS Poseidon branded back-plate, which doesn't only look good but helps spread and dissipate the heat.  On the outside edge you can see two G¼-inch threaded fittings so you have the freedom to choose the barb size you need to match your water cooling.

2.5 - ROG PoseidonThere is an exclusive real-time GPU load indicator ROG logo that pulsates in ROG red when the card is in use (it is an indicator, please do not mistake it as a warning light; nothing is going to explode!).  This is unique to ROG graphics hardware. 

The dual-slot card measures 11.3 X 5.4 X 1.6 inches in size and there is plenty of power overhead from the 6-pin and an 8-pin power connectors, which have LED indicators on each to signify if each power cable is installed correctly.

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In case you were curious but still wanted to keep your warranty, here we pull the card apart for you to reveal the components inside: everything that needs cooling gets the DirectCU H2O treatment.

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2.8 - ROG Poseidon