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Setting the resolution on a second monitor

Tags:
  • Resolution
  • Monitors
  • Windows 7
  • Displays
Last response: in Windows 7
April 19, 2014 1:30:31 PM

I just bought a second 27" monitor for my computer. Both are Samsung displays, the original one is an SA550 and the new one is an SD590. I didn't have any trouble extending the displays, but I can't set the resolution on the new display to the recommended 1920x1080.

I'm on Windows 7. Going to the control panel, when I select the second monitor, it only offers me resolutions up to 1600 x 1200. Is there a way to change what settings it's offering me?

I'm wondering if this may be a limitation of the graphics card. I believe this one is an ATI Radeon HD3200.

If that's the case, how difficult is it to get it replaced with a different graphics card?

More about : setting resolution monitor

a b $ Windows 7
a b C Monitor
April 19, 2014 1:38:11 PM

sounds like a driver issue, do you have the most up to date drivers installed?
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April 19, 2014 1:54:16 PM

I do - I just installed the driver with the new monitor today. But now I'm wondering if it is because I'm using a VGA connector for the second monitor. My computer only has one HMDI output, so I had to use the VGA connector on the computer for the second monitor. Could that be the reason?
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a b $ Windows 7
a b C Monitor
April 19, 2014 2:52:33 PM

you dont have dvi ports on that card?
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April 19, 2014 3:02:03 PM

No. There are only HDMI and VGA outputs in the back of the computer. So I'm thinking that you just can't go above 1600 x 1200 with a VGA, and that may be why it isn't being offered in the screen resolution dialog box. Is that correct?
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a b $ Windows 7
a b C Monitor
April 19, 2014 5:06:47 PM

i don't believe that to be the case, i would think something else is causing the issue. try powering off your pc, and connecting just the new monitor alone. see if it will then let you choose the correct resolution.
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April 19, 2014 6:30:20 PM

When I just HDMI cable into the new monitor, it set correctly. What I am finding is that Windows considers the monitor that I plug the HDMI into to be monitor #1. Monitor #1 can always be set to the correct 1920x1080, and monitor #2 can always be set to a variety of resolutions, with the highest being 1600 x 1200.

So if I plug the HDMI cable into the old monitor and the VGA cable into the new monitor, then the old monitor is called monitor #1 and can be set to 1920x1080 and the new monitor is called monitor #2 and can only be set to a max of 1600x1200.

If I plug the HDMI cable into the new monitor and the VGA cable into the old monitor, then the new monitor is called monitor #1 and can be set to 1920x1080 and the old monitor is called monitor #2 and can only be set to a max of 1600x1200.

Also, whichever monitor I plug the VGA cable into looks distorted and visibly less clear than the monitor that I plug the HDMI cable into.

Does that tell you anything? I remain pretty stumped.
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a b $ Windows 7
a b C Monitor
April 19, 2014 10:08:03 PM

sounds strange, but still sounds like a driver problem to me. if you have the latest version, i would assume its a problem that was never addressed considering the age of the card. i would assume a newer card will work better, but that doesnt mean your hardware is bad necessarily. i would try to find another gpu to test with.
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April 20, 2014 7:38:43 AM

Fixed!

Before I got this 27" monitor, I was using a 46" TV as a second monitor in addition to using it as a normal TV. Due to the TV's distance from the computer, I had to use a 10' extension on the VGA cable. I had the same exact resolution issue when I was using the TV, but I had chalked it up as something weird as a result of using a TV instead of a normal computer monitor. So when I hooked up the 27" monitor, I just used the same VGA cable, totally forgetting about the extension.

I remembered the extension this morning, and when I removed it, the resolution problem went away.

daswilhelm, thanks for all the help.
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Best solution

a b $ Windows 7
a b C Monitor
April 20, 2014 11:49:11 AM

glad to hear you have it working!
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