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Cheapes Graphic Card for Triple LCD Setup

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 24, 2009 1:29:54 PM

Hi all,

Wondering if anyone can recommend me the cheapest Graphic card for my next triple LCD 23" with 1900 x 1080 each...?
Pretty much for stock market display, and watching my favorite HD movie once in a while but it's not mandatory.

Will ATI or Nvdia better?
Any recommendation in particular type of card/s?

Thanks a bunch in advance
a b U Graphics card
October 24, 2009 3:02:17 PM

It depends on how you want to approach it, are you building a new rig or adding to an old rig? Specs? What are the input options on the mointors (VGA, DVI, etc)

There are may ways to go about it and it depends on a few things.

If building from scratch, get an AMD integrated MoBo, and then add a cheap ATi HD2000-4000 series card (simply to make driver management easier).

For an existing build, cheapest would be to grab either two cheap GeForce9 or HD4K cards with dual outputs, which together are cheaper than multi-output cards, most of which (outside of the HD5k series) are not great at HD playback.
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a b U Graphics card
October 24, 2009 3:40:40 PM

Yeah, but he's looking for the cheapest, dual cards is stil about $50+ cheaper than the single HD5750, which is why I mention it in passing. To me the issue with the HD5K is the inputs for the LCD, if they only have DVI or DVI+HDMI then he needs an adapter (which is another $50+), same if they are all VGA only, if they are VGA+DVI then he's good to go with no additional cost, but it'll still be more expensive than dual cheap cards or a mobo integrated + cheap card.

If he mentioned gaming and not just HD, then I'd definitely go with the HD5K series, but for the basics and looking for the cheapest, it's still cheaper to go with 2 cards, and considerably so for now.
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a c 130 U Graphics card
October 24, 2009 3:44:06 PM

I suppose. The cheapest card out is the HD4650. Two of those are $100, but even so, the HD5750 is just $30 more. It'd be unwise to pass up such a performance-increase.

Unless, of course, he can use 3 monitors with GP+IGP.
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a b U Graphics card
October 24, 2009 4:13:52 PM

Well actually he could get two GF9500 for about $35 each, and then the two HD4650, which can be had for about $40 each ($45 on NewEgg).

I know there's a performance increase in game and true heavy lifting 3D apps, but for stock apps and basic HD playback, there really wouldn't be much difference in the HD5750, and like I said, if he needs an adapter it puts the price up even further.

I personally would prefer the HD5750, heck the 5770 because of better cooling, but I don't think it's a best fit for this particular case if he's looking for low price and ease of use.
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October 25, 2009 12:08:14 PM

Hi Great & Shadow,
Thank you so much for your reply...

@GreatGrapeApe
Yes, I am actually looking for cheap card/s, but i think $100-$150 still in my price range. I am flexible to build a new system or use my existing. If the solution requires two PCIe ports motherboard, then I have to build a new one. If there is a card suitable for me for 1 PCIe and 1 or 2 PCI port, I can keep my old one.
I am not so interested in 3D gaming. However, Command and Conquer is the game that I may interested to play, and again it's not mandatory at all.

@Shadow
Can HD5750 drive 3 monitors? at 1900 x 1080 resolution?? Actually, I can use my old motherboard, this solution only requires 1 PCIe port? Am I correct?

@ALL
BTW, one more thing, if it is possible, I am looking for quieter system - so less fan would be better for me.
FYI, The monitor I am going to use are S2309W

thank you so much in advance guys!! :) 
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a b U Graphics card
October 25, 2009 2:16:48 PM

Just need you to answer my first question about the monitor inputs.

The HD5750 has the full compliment of outputs, but you may need an expensive active adapter to make a triple monitor solution work depending on what inputs the monitors accept.

Here's the backplate;
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ShowImage.aspx?CurImage=1...

You could still do the 1 PCIe + 1 PCI port solution, but it also increases the price (because PCI cards are a little more expensive too).

You'd still be able to play C&C on an HD4650 or GF9500, quite well in fact. C&C is more about CPU strength than GPU, so it would only mean maybe slightly different settings with a more powerful card, not playable vs unplayable.

Anywhoo, current specs helps us understand what we're dealing with for current system, and especially current monitor needs.
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October 26, 2009 12:21:18 AM

Thanks again TheGreat...

I am planning to use Dell S2309W (less than $200 a piece), I think they take only DVI-D input. So, what I need to do is to find a converter from DisplayPort to DVI-D?
Is this expensive and hard to find?


Link to Dell S2309W


and another one

If i decide to go with my old motherboard:
It's a older Dual Core config with 2GB RAM with ASUS P5KPL-AM SE Motherboard
with a PCIe 16x and a regular PCI port free to be used.

Currently I am happy with a 19" monitor (CRT) using integrated VGA on the motherboard. But I am telling myself, it's time to upgrade to a better one, but keep not to spend a fortune on them ... :) 

Thank you so much .... :) 

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Best solution

a b U Graphics card
October 26, 2009 3:48:20 AM

The Display Port to DVI-D is a bit more expensive because it does need to be an active converter.

Missed your comment to ALL about the monitor. Since it's DVI and VGA, then you may have some options.
Since the resolution of that DELL is low enough, you may be able to setup the following configuration on an HD5750, but I would double check first;

DVI-D - 1st LCD
DVI->VGA adapter - 2nd LCD
HDMI->DVI - 3rd LCD

That would allow you the three off one card. The HDMi to DVI doesn't need to be an active adapter because the resolution is low enough to run off of single link, and so you should be OK (since the HDMI is single link double speed, it should support the 1920x1080 resolution, whereas 1920x1200 would've required the active adapter).

You may still want to try the PCIe+PCI, since it's still noticeably cheaper with the G9500 and HD4650 above being the base PCIe, and then a PCI GF8400 or HD2400 for under $50. So that's still under $100.

I would prefer the HD5750, even if it meant adding a cheaper PCI card (with only basic windows driver support), simply because it gives you additional expansion options. But you probably only need the PCIe+PCI if you want to keep it basic and in budget.
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October 27, 2009 6:54:36 AM

Thanks again TheGreat...

last question, any idea how the performance loss difference between:

1. DisplayPort to DVI-D converter (using DVI-D port on the input monitor)
2. VGA to DVI (using VGA port on the input monitor)
3. HDMI to DVI (using DVI porrt on the input monitor)

thanks
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a b U Graphics card
October 28, 2009 2:38:55 AM

No performance loss, and IMO, as long as it's not a cheapest of the cheap, even inexpensive adapters should not show quality issues, I use all of the above and equivalent adapters, and only if you get a true defective part is it really noticeable, although in an area with high EMI/RFI you may need quality parts for the analogue, but really it's usually not an issue even for standard cable in medium noise situations.
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October 28, 2009 6:41:18 AM

Wow,...thanks so much for the thorough response!
Your insight definitely helps!

shopping time :) 
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!