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Can't get the most basic Twinview configuration with a 9400GT

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  • Nvidia
  • Configuration
  • Graphics
Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 19, 2010 5:47:46 PM

I have a 9400GT 1GB card, a 19" 5x4 Viewsonic LCD monitor plugged to the computer with a DVI cable and a 16x9 Sony LCD TV plugged with an HDMI cable. Twinview mode works but the aspect ratios are not correct. I tried fooling around with GPU scaling methods but they revert to "GPU scaling methods, Stretched".

As a result, the monitor desktop is stretched on the TV. Applications show on the TV, but are not stretched fully (The desktop background shows to the right). The bottom of the monitor screen does not show. On the monitor, the bottom of the backgroud picture shows twice and the aspect ratio is not correct.

In the first place, I don't understand any settings have to be made, since what I want is the most basic configuration. I want the 5x4 monitor to show on the TV 5x4 with black to the right and left. If I look at a 16x9 picture in full screen mode, I want it to show on the TV fullscreen. If I look to a Panavision movie in 2.35:1 ratio, I want the film to extend to the borders of both screens. I believe that's the most straightforward configuration, no?

Why isn't it the default when using nvidia-settings? Why is there, all over the net, all kind of suggestions on why don't you try this and that, that never works?

I've used Linux for more than 8 years and the problems I now have are usually solved in an hour's work and a 2 day delay. I must have spent a whole week trying to get this card to work, reading and writing and trying this and that. Has anyone ever succeeded in getting this most basic configuration with a 9400GT?

TIA!

More about : basic twinview configuration 9400gt

January 19, 2010 7:03:43 PM

First off having two screens of different resolution dose complicate things as you have already experienced them.

Unfortunately I’m not to familiar with the nvidia control panel so i wont be able to tell you exactly where each button is.

First set your screen resolution to your Viewsonic LCDs native resolution.
Then make sure your in Twinview/clone/mirror mode (whatever nvidia calls it).
Then the last part should be to find in the control panel a setting similar to "letterboxing". It should be near other settings such as "Scale image to full panel size" or other options that relate to scaling an image onto your screen.

To sum up "letterboxing" let’s say your big screen is 1620x1050 and you want to put a 1440x900 resolution on it without it being stretched. This means that the center most 1440x900 pixels on the 1620x1050 will be displayed and the rest (outer most) will remain black and un-used. This is the setting i think you want on your Sony TV.
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January 20, 2010 5:02:41 AM

paperfox said:
First off having two screens of different resolution dose complicate things as you have already experienced them..


If you use a TV and have a 3 years old monitor, it's unlikely that you'll have the same resolution. Many people are in this situation

.
First set your screen resolution to your Viewsonic LCDs native resolution.. said:
First set your screen resolution to your Viewsonic LCDs native resolution..


That's something nvidia-settings does perfectly.

Then make sure your in Twinview/clone/mirror mode (whatever nvidia calls it).. said:
Then make sure your in Twinview/clone/mirror mode (whatever nvidia calls it)..


This is an important suggestion. I now have this right but lost many hours thinking that the defaults nvidia-settings is providing would work. But the default is monitor "right of", which is absolutely no use with TwinView, only with the "Separate X screens" option (monitors side by side). It seems to me it should be should grayed out. So, after reading on the web, I selected "Clone", but it always reverts to "Absolute".

Then the last part should be to find in the control panel a setting similar to "letterboxing". It should be near other settings such as "Scale image to full panel size" or other options that relate to scaling an image onto your screen. said:
Then the last part should be to find in the control panel a setting similar to "letterboxing". It should be near other settings such as "Scale image to full panel size" or other options that relate to scaling an image onto your screen.


It suppose this would be the "Centered" option under GPU0 in nvidia-settings.

To sum up "letterboxing" let’s say your big screen is 1620x1050 and you want to put a 1440x900 resolution on it without it being stretched. This means that the center most 1440x900 pixels on the 1620x1050 will be displayed and the rest (outer most) will remain black and un-used. This is the setting i think you want on your Sony TV. said:
To sum up "letterboxing" let’s say your big screen is 1620x1050 and you want to put a 1440x900 resolution on it without it being stretched. This means that the center most 1440x900 pixels on the 1620x1050 will be displayed and the rest (outer most) will remain black and un-used. This is the setting i think you want on your Sony TV.


I would prefer if either the 900 was scaled to 1050 or 1440 to 1620, whichever reaches the borders of the TV screen first.

I got the Center mode -- which looks like the closest equivalent of letterboxing -- to work but my monitor is 1280x1024 and the TV is 1360x768. So, the 1024 doesn't fit at all in the 768 and I suppose it is scaled, even tough the option doesn't bear this name. Then, in order to keep the aspect ratio, the 1280, which is already less than 1360, is scaled to fit the (scaled to 768) 1024.

Though this should at least fill the height of the TV screen, it doesn't. All I have is a little picture in the middle of the screen. What I ask -- having the picture reach 2 borders -- doesn't seem impossible to me... unless NVIDIA has a deal with monitor manufacturers to promote the sales of the new 16x9 monitors :) 

As you can see, you didn't solve my problem, but you certainly helped me make my wishes clearer. It's a step forward.

Thank you!
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January 20, 2010 6:36:53 PM

I’ve thought up some more things that could help you. I’m thinking since your Viewsonic monitor seems to work just fine that you should only hook up your Sony TV and get that to work under its 1360x768 res first. Also regarding the TV, your remote should have an option to change its "view" or "scale". At least with my TV that is 1-2 years old you can change the scale from Normal to Stretched to Zoom to Zoom Stretched. Perhaps that is why the 1360x768 picture is not stretching the entire length of the screen.
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January 21, 2010 5:25:04 AM

After further testing, it appears that Twinview is a joke. Whatever you do, it reverts to the same settings. The X screens settings work, though. The only problem that remains is that on the TV, the desktop pictures that are 4x3 are stretched whereas the ones that are 5x4 aren't. (First time I tried switching my background picture). Rather strange when you don't touch the settings at all!

Now, both my pictures, except the 4x3 backgrounds only, and movies appear in best size on both the TV and the monitor. Playing with "Normal to Stretched to Zoom to Zoom Stretched" on the TV makes no difference. Applications can only be opened in one screenat a time: monitor or TV. They can't be moved from one screen to another.

All in all, I'm satisfied by the present settings. It's just too bad that NVIDIA makes an awful lot of people lose an awful lot of time with TwinView, a name that is more jazzy tahn X screen, marketing-wise. Is it possible that they don't take a look on the Net to figure out all the lost time their cause?

I'm rather dismayed by the attitude of the company. I read about Mr Huang and I thought he'd care more about people's time.

I don't know if ATI/AMD is any better. It seems everybody in this industry is outputting tons of products and has a hard time meeting the deadlines, OTOH, according to Wikipedia, this card was introduced on August 27, 2008. This is almost a year and a half to modify the software... maybe the hardware too, and it wasn't done.

I believe you have experience with ATI. How do they compare?
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January 21, 2010 6:09:24 AM

Yes most of my experience comes from ATI, but only with what you can do with two 1680x1050 screens. Most of the time they are in extended mode provided im not playing my Xbox on one of them while looking at walkthroughs at the same time. :) 

I was infact going to build myself a small Tevo of sorts in week or two. Something low power to store my DVDs, downloaded material and pictures on. So I guess tomorrow would be a good time to experement with using the TV as a monitor to see how well the ATI drivers workout. Perhaps see if I can get some settings you discribed to work. Tho realistically the drivers/settings/things you can do with a TV should be the same on ATI/Nvidia drivers, just they are hidden in different corners of the control pannel.

edit: BTW have you tried out using extended mode? Maybe that will be easyer, you could then set each screen to its own native resolution.
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January 21, 2010 3:48:09 PM

paperfox said:
edit: BTW have you tried out using extended mode? Maybe that will be easyer, you could then set each screen to its own native resolution.


There is no extended mode.

Keep us informed of your week-end attempts. I would think and certainly hope they won't be as painful as with NVIDIA.
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