The gauntlet has been thrown.
Just like the MSI N680GTX Lightning, the ASUS GTX 680 DirectCU II TOP was just as silent, that is to say nothing by the whisper. Fan speeds when idling were just 930RPM, while under full load they went up to 1440RPM. The surprising thing was that even with the overclock and increasing the voltage, the highest recorded speed remained at just 1440RPM.
As for the temperature, have a look at the table below.
Hardly a 1 degree increase from stock to overclocked settings, all the while the card has the same amount of low noise.
The ASUS GTX 680 DirectCU II TOP is the most expensive GTX 680 we have tested to date, certainly one of the most expensive single GPU cards at $550. With the impressive overclock the performance gap between the $50 dearer MSI N680GTX Lightning, and indeed the similarly Zotac GTX680 AMP! Edition is incredibly small, making the ASUS variant one of the most desirable GTX 680s on the market. That is if your casing and motherboard can afford the extra size.