Asus took us by surprise when they launched their GTS 450 Direct CU edition graphics card for a stellar price. Not only was it the fastest card for less than 10K, it excelled in other areas as well by keeping the temperatures in check no matter how far we pushed the card. The AMD HD 6850 that's up for review features the very same magic cooler and comes at a very competitive price.
The Asus EAH6850 is factory overclocked, but not by much. The only change as compared to the reference card is the core speed, which has been bumped to 790MHz from 775MHz. The memory is left untouched. I guess Asus has left some room for the user to try his hand at overclocking using their SmartDoctor utility. The dual slot card has an open back design, which means the hot air isn't channeled out of the case directly but is dumped inside the case itself.
As long as you have one exhaust fan in your case, this should be a non-issue. While the MRP is somewhere around 14K, you can find this particular model in stores for close to 12K. This puts it straight up against the GTX 460 1GB, as currently there isn't any other DX11 card at this price point. So instead of giving you a laundry list of graphics card scores, let's pit them against each other and see which card makes a better buy in this segment.