Noctua may have a reputation for the quietest, highest-performing PC cooling on the market, but it’s known for more than that. Yes, I’m talking about “Noctua brown”—the distinctive coloring on its fans that sets them apart. Even after a half-second glance, you’ll always know it again immediately.
While the internet continues to crack jokes about the Austrian vendor’s color choices, many devotees to the company exist. And not just to the quality of their products, but the actual brown aesthetic. That worked out to the benefit of the rest of us, because at CES 2023, Asus just showed off the latest product in its partnership with Noctua. And it’s wonderful.
In fact, the Asus GeForce RTX 4080 Noctua Edition may be the only version of this card worth recommending—it’s that striking. As with the RTX 3070 and 3080 versions, Asus knocked itself out elevating Noctua’s vibe into a thing of beauty. A bronzey backplate and thick cooling fins on the rear and sides lend an air of elegance, while the front shroud is a work of art. The dark brown frame balances Noctua’s tan-and-cream fans, and the chrome accents add contrast and fun. The card looks like an owl!
The homage to (and, frankly, loving respect for) Noctua’s namesake and mascot is what overrides a natural aversion to the RTX 4080’s insane markup. You’ll have to check the card out for yourself in the embedded video above, but fair warning—if you want one of your own, prepare yourself. This card is massive, eating 4.3 slots in height. And given the mystery still around its price and availability, it’s probably not going to come cheap, either.
Alaina Yee is PCWorld's resident bargain hunter—when she's not covering software, PC building, and more, she's scouring for the best tech deals. Previously her work has appeared in PC Gamer, IGN, Maximum PC, and Official Xbox Magazine. You can find her on Twitter at @morphingball.