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3 Monitors! :]

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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June 4, 2008 8:22:14 PM

Ok, im looking for some more screen real estate and wanting to have 3 monitors. I know i can go for a triple head 2 go but id still like to have some graphics power behind at least one of the monitors for gaming. So i could do an sli set up.. but i have a 8800 gtx and don't have the cash for a new one and 2 more monitors so id rather not go that rout. So could i get some no name graphics card and NOT hook it up in sli and have 2 monitors on my 8800 gtx and one on the no name one all hooked up as one display? or could i have my main center monitor hooked up on my 8800 gtx and the triple head to go on the other port of it and only have 2 monitors on that? idk.. just give me some input heres a diagram of the options:

More about : monitors

a c 143 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 4, 2008 8:35:31 PM

You could just get a 24" or 27" monitor, and use your 8800GTX with two monitors. That sure works, I do it myself.

Does your motherboard have a slot for a second video card? What kind of motherboard is it?

AFAIK you can use a PCI-E or even PCI card for the third monitor. Some $40 GeForce 6200 for example.
June 4, 2008 8:37:57 PM

im on a 780i mother board so i have another pci e slot.. i really would like 3 monitors so idk
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a c 143 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 4, 2008 8:56:14 PM

Good. I guess you can get something like the 8400GS PCI-E for $40 after rebate and shipping, and connect it to monitor #3. Then you get into the nVidia Control Panel and configure things. I wish I could help you here, especially since I'd like to add a third monitor too some day...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127354

There's also a HD 3450 that would be good here, but it's probably best not to mix ATI and nVidia drivers.
June 4, 2008 10:06:15 PM

Alright, that looks like a really good plan, cheap.. ish., and lots of power for my main monitor.
a c 175 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 5, 2008 12:27:45 AM

I would actually hook up two of the monitors to the second card. The main card in the main slot, with one monitor hooked up to it. A second "cr@p" card with the other two. Speed where you need it, with the extra rel estate that you "need".
June 5, 2008 1:56:27 AM

awesome.. idk.. just one of those " why didn't i think of that " moments
June 5, 2008 1:59:15 AM

on that card above, is it dvi OR vga, or can it pull a dual monitor with 1 vga and one dvi?
a c 143 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 5, 2008 1:35:36 PM

The 8400gs has a DVI and a VGA. I guess that will do. If you want, you can spend $60 on this 8600GT. It has two DVI outputs. It's also a bit more powerful than the 8400gs.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814145146

There's a poster on this Forum, Heyyou27, who has the setup 4745454b mentioned, with the 8600gt hooked to two monitors and the 8800GTX to a third. I don't know how much trouble he had configuring it in nVidia's software, but it sure works.
June 5, 2008 3:57:35 PM

ya, i was pretty sure id have to get something with two DVI's.. but its only $20 more.. i think thats my best option for price/preformance
a c 143 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 5, 2008 4:03:10 PM

Let us know how it works, and good luck!
June 5, 2008 4:08:09 PM

x_x time to start saving.. quick math..

Wide screen for the center : $250
Another 931BF: $160
8600 GT: $55

Total: $665 ( realistically probably $700 ish? )

ehh.. at least i can buy each piece at different times and still use them with no problem.
a c 143 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 5, 2008 4:43:34 PM

Is there any chance you can sell the 931BF you have and then buy two or three identical 22" widescreen monitors?

If your monitors are not identical it's going to be annoying. It's annoying enough for me with a 20" and a 21.6" with the same resolution. In your case the resolution will be different too (1280x1024 vs 1680x1050), which will make it worse.

Another thing: 2 monitors at 1680x1050 have 3.528 million pixels, while three 931bf monitors at 1280x1024 have 3.932 million. Maybe when you have 2 bigger monitors you'll decide you don't really need the 3rd one and the additional video card.
June 5, 2008 4:50:48 PM

I was really going for the surrounding effect, and with two monitors, when your gaming in full screen ( if i do use it in full screen ) the cross hair will be RIGHT smack dab in the middle of the two.. ( where theres no monitor ).. like this video:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=PkTuta6R2ZI

and wont they be really close resolutions, just one is much wider than the other? idk.. just me thinking.

--Edit--

And all my monitors will physical look the same style.. if thats what you were going at.. i was thinking about the 216BW for the wide screen so it will all be uniform.
a c 143 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 5, 2008 5:55:04 PM

Wow, I loved the video :) 

Yeah, it will look really bad if you have a 21.6" widescreen at 1680x1050 near a 19" fullscreen at 1280x1024. You'll see the barrel of the gun ending on one monitor and continuing on the next at a different height and thicker. If you have different monitors you can still do what I do - watch a movie on one and work or surf on another, but you can't do what that video shows.

That being said, 216BW is a great monitor. I got one myself and love it.

June 5, 2008 11:09:43 PM

the only problem i could possibly conceive with the two 931Bfs and the 216bw is that different pixel heights could throw me off a little, tell me what ya think?

19" 4:3 screen has same physical viewing area hight as a 21.6" 16:10 wide screen
a c 143 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 6, 2008 2:29:55 AM

Good point. If one monitor has 1024 pixels on the vertical and another has 1050, and they're both the same height, it might not even be noticeable at all.

I'm not sure if nVidia's drivers support this. Try to find out, maybe e-mail their support.

Totally unrelated thing: now I'm home and can see my monitors. I notice that the LG has thinner sides than the 216BW. In a scenario like what you're planning that's important, IMO. That edge will be in the middle of your game after all. It's like 1" for the Samsung and 0.5" for the LG. I'm not saying you should buy LG, but try to pick something with thinner edges maybe.
June 6, 2008 6:01:52 PM

I use 3 monitors total with two different videocards. On my 8800GTX I have a 1920x1200 LCD and my 8600GT has 1680x1050 displays connected to it. The Nvidia driver supports different resolutions per display, however there is no way to have a game span all 3 displays unless in Windowed mode, and that runs like complete garbage. If you wanted to play games this way you would need a Matrox Triplehead2go with 3 monitors of the same resolution.
June 6, 2008 6:04:12 PM

Well what games have you tried to run across all 3 monitors? .. so everyone who plays games over 3 monitors uses the triplehead2go?
a c 143 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
June 6, 2008 6:06:20 PM

Heyyou27 said:
I use 3 monitors total with two different videocards. On my 8800GTX I have a 1920x1200 LCD and my 8600GT has 1680x1050 displays connected to it. The Nvidia driver supports different resolutions per display, however there is no way to have a game span all 3 displays unless in Windowed mode, and that runs like complete garbage. If you wanted to play games this way you would need a Matrox Triplehead2go with 3 monitors of the same resolution.


Thanks, good to know!
June 6, 2008 6:55:23 PM

I bet the 1st Dungeon Siege could be played with a newer computer across three monitors in windowed mode. That might be fun.
!