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Need a machine configuation to run three monitors

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 4, 2008 4:15:14 PM

I have a 22 inch ViewSonic monitor and 2 Samsung (still in the boxes), and want to have a computer to run all three as if they were a wide screen. I want to be able to drag from one to the other and cut and paste from one to the other as well. Also need to run three different apps one on each screen and be able to take from one and use in a different screen. I have run into several opinions as to what I need to do. I am not a gamer and will be doing multi tasking, and computer auctions for the most part. Sometimes need to run office apps and be browsing the internet at the same time. Please help! Any suggestions as I’m having a company build the computer but they suggest just adding an additional video card. Will this work? I have also looked at a device called Triple head 2 go. Any experience with this stuff?
July 4, 2008 4:31:42 PM

Triple Head2Go will work but would cost you more then just adding another video card. Since your not gaming your video card requirments are not that high. You just need to make sure your system that is being built for you has two PCIe slots for using the two cards.
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July 4, 2008 4:40:19 PM

Good advice.
July 4, 2008 4:44:44 PM

Do I need two cards?Do they need to be the same?any additional help or advice would be helpful.
Thanks
a b U Graphics card
July 4, 2008 4:53:58 PM

You need a way to have at least 3 video outs to supply video to the 3 monitors. Since video cards only have 2 outs, you'll need at least 2 cards.

No, they don't have to be the same make and model, though I do believe that you need to stick with the same company - the driver issues become tricky when using different one, I believe.

Someone else can probably shed more light on using ati and nvidia.
July 4, 2008 5:37:11 PM

triple head2go will require just ONE video card. Also the new matrox cards support up to 4 monitors natively
a c 107 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 4, 2008 5:52:17 PM

2 Cards will work well. You just extend the desktop in the windows display properties properties. With XP I have used Nvidia and ati together, but i have heard Vista does not like to run 2 cards from different companies. So get another card from the same gpu makers as your current one.

Since you are not gaming you do not need the most powerful card on the market. Your new card may even be more powerful then the first card. If so use the new card to run the primary display and the second for the other 2. It just performs best this way.
July 4, 2008 6:09:12 PM

with WindowsXP you can mix Nvidia and ATI.

with vista the driver issue becomes important and you can not have 2 different video drivers loaded.
I don't know if you can mix different model numbers since drivers are a little bit vague to me...
perhaps some one else can add to this...
a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 4, 2008 6:22:23 PM

For a 3 monitor solution you could get a motherboard with integrated video and one video card.
Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-SH2 780G motherboard $80 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Sapphire HD 3450 video card $34 ($19 after rebate) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
That combo will get you good support for up to four monitors.
Add an energy efficient dual core Athlon X2 4450e 2.3GHz CPU $70 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

THG review on the 780G motherboards: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/amd-780g-chipset,17...

"want to have a computer to run all three as if they were a wide screen"
That option is called "Extended Desktop" and you use your Windows Video Properties options to set it up.

Even Al Gore can do it.



July 4, 2008 6:33:11 PM

You can always get a ColorGraphic Xentera GT 4 video card. It can run up to 4 monitors on a single card. They worked great in our 911 call center at my old job.
!