ASUS RTX 3070 TUF Review
Published: 13th December 2020 | Source: ASUS | Price: |
The graphics card market has rarely been more swamped with excellent options than it is right now. The RTX 3060 Ti is an affordable card that has excellent performance, the RTX 3070 and AMD RX 6800/6800XT are fantastic cards for the hardcore gamer who still has an upper limit on their budget, whilst the RTX 3080 and RTX 3090 is for the people either want to game at 4K without worrying about settings, or who want to game on some theoretical future 8K panel respectively. It's so nice to not have a selection of cards at the lower end, and then some that require selling your kidneys to afford.
The ASUS RTX TUF in 3060 Ti guise was a victim of the tremendously aggressive MSRP of the Nvidia card and the quality of this particular cooler upping that price to the point it was untenable. Here though, on the RTX 3070, that TUF cooler is placed on card with a more sensible MSRP and thus the pricing of the TUF is much closer to that of its contemporaries and, indeed, below that of some of the higher end RTX 3070 offerings. This scores it massive points with us.
Quality is the first thing that strikes you when you take the card out of the package. That all metal cooler feels gorgeous in the hand. We know that it's insane to judge a card based upon how it feels when for the rest of its life you won't be touching it, but first impressions count for a lot and in a world of plastic shrouds on metal backplates to have an all metal cooler is a big tick in the desirability column for ASUS. Additionally it isn't just scoring high on the strokability scale that gives this cooler some serious cred, but it works very well indeed. Just cast your eye on the temperature graph on the previous page and you have to look a long way down before you come across the TUF. Maximum temperature of 60°C even running at nearly 2 GHz highlights the efficiency of the Ampere GPU itself, but also that the many heatpipes and thick heatsink cooled by those three fans works like a superstar.
Performance is what counts and here the TUF continues the trend of the RTX 3070 GPU being the best choice for those of you who want a card which can do it all at nearly every setting. Yes if you want to run a Ray Traced game at 4K you might need to tolerate a frame rate below 60 FPS, but it nearly every other scenario it spanks out very smooth gameplay with no obvious lags or stutters, and none of those sudden frame drops which can leave us looking aghast at the respawn screen.
If you've been patiently saving up for a new graphics card and the RTX 3070 hits your budget sweet spot then you could do much worse than look at the ASUS TUF. It's built like a tank, quiet, and hugely capable and wins our OC3D Performance Award.