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Huge multi-monitor PC

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 12, 2007 7:12:53 PM

I'm going to be setting up a 6+ display PC for trading. I was going to use two 30" screens and 4 19"s, so i thought it'd be ok to use 3 gfx cards ( i dont want USB-VGA adapters ) but i was wondering that if i wanted to setup more monitors in the future, i'd need the quadro NVS440's (they support up to 4 monitors, two per slot) but only at up to 2048 resolution... gaming isn't all too important to me. so that leaves me with the 30" question:

Could I just throw in a graphics card and two or three quadros and be fine? Or should i use all gfx/workstation cards? If i use all workstation cards - (the 30" need dual-link DVI's, so is that a problem with the NVS440's?) - will it be a problem putting the 30"ers on 1920x1200 and just not going any higher(defeating the purpose)?

I want to use the 30"s at max, but I also would like to be flexible enough to have more than 6 monitors going through cards if i need to in the future. I've seen mixing cards work purely for multi-monitor use, but i'm not sure what configuration i should be setting up with this. Cause i'm torn - I could use 4 gaming cards and just have 8 potential monitors at max, or I could use 4 workstation cards and have 16 potential monitors at 1920x1200 and i'm not sure if having 1 gaming card and 2-3 workstation cards will work or not.

This is a toughie.
Thanks.

More about : huge multi monitor

a c 236 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
December 12, 2007 7:59:17 PM

Interesting question. I have a 30" samsung 305T sitting in front of me, and if there were more that 6 of them, I don't think I could read the numbers on anything further away. Six of them would represent about 16m pixels of display space. Your initial need is for about 13m pixels. The 30" are 4m each(2540x1600) and the 19" are about 1.3m each(1280x1024) depending on aspect ratio. There are motherboards out there that have 4 pcie-16 slots such as the Asus P5K64. With 4 vga cards, and 30" monitors, you could have up to 8 30" monitors and 32m pixels. This assumes that you coule even see the most remote images. To go completely crazy, you could add in some pci cards. There might be some problems if you needed different vga drivers to run different cards, so I would stick with a standard typr of vga card. The card need not be a very powerfulgaming card, since there will not be lots of motion to be displayed. The main requirement would be the ability to support 2 dvi ports at 2560x1600. I don't understand the use of 4 19" monitors. It seems simpler to me to just resize and position several windows on a single 30" display.

--good luck---
December 12, 2007 8:18:20 PM

Video conferencing (4 19"s)
Might want to throw on some extra 24"s for more trading graphs. But thanks.

Also I wanted to know: Could I put in an 8800GT and throw in 3 Quadro NVS440's? (I know I could throw on some NVS 285's in the PCI slots) but as far as PCI-E goes, I should just basically stick to all workstation or all gaming type cards right?
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a c 236 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
December 12, 2007 8:26:42 PM

Even with video conferencing, could you not just resize windows and place them where you want? For that application, motion might be a bit more important, and you could use a stronger card. Sorry, I know nothing about quadro cards. The current nvidia driver for 8800's also support 6600 cards on up. I think you might need a different driver for quadro, and that might cause a problem. I would test out that scenario first before buying all the cards.
December 12, 2007 8:27:48 PM

Great. Just thinking about drivers and I know what to do.

Thanks for your help.
December 12, 2007 9:50:28 PM

If i were you I would get ATI's new FireGL cards. They are much cheaper and they kill the Nvidia's Quadros.
December 12, 2007 10:22:37 PM

go for dual gpu cards like the gecube 2600xt dual, it can handle 4 - 30 inch monitors, only uses 1 pci-e slot and are a lot cheaper than workstation cards
August 27, 2008 4:28:55 AM

If you are going to use multiple monitors, the main rule is to always use the same graphics cards. I have a Day Trading Computer with six monitors and I love it! Sometimes I do wish I had more though. Anyway, if you do get the commercial graphics with a Quad PCIEx16 board, you will get a lot more graphics card power for a lot less money. It's not recommended to run too many monitors, since it will start to drag on your computer system. This is not desired for day trading computers when multi-tasking is so important. You don't want to lose money! The dual monitor 30" LCDs is a nice touch. If you really want to do things right, you should just get a SUPER PC from Multi-Monitors.com.
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