On the frontside the 285GTX really is identical to the 280GTX. The cooler covers the whole front of the card and there really isn't anything to see, except the nice stickers that the manufacturers have stuck to their cards. All of the 285GTXs so far have been based completely on the reference design, so all of the cards at least look the same in general.
Now that we have a look at card from the top, you can spot the two power-plugs that the card needs to operate. The decreased craving for power for the GPU-chip can also be seen here. Instead of using one 8-pin and one 6-pin power-plug like the 280GTX, the newer 285GTX only needs two 6-pin plugs.
Next to the power-plugs you can find the SPDIF-connector that is needed to pass the sound through HDMI with the 285GTX. I really find the approach that AMD has taken better, as with their latest offerings, you don't need to use any separate cables to do so.
When compared with the 280GTX, the biggest physical difference can be seen on the backside of the card. When the 280GTX was covered with a heatsink on both sides, the 285GTX only has the heatsink on the frontside. In addition there are no memory chips on the back of the PCB, which means that all of the chips have been moved to the frontside.
This time the SLI-connectors are left without the cover that the 280GTX had.
The card has two DVI-I and one connector for the HDTV-adapter. Just like most cards today, the back has a grill that lets the heatsink push some hot air outside of the case.
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