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Three Monitors - none Displayport

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 20, 2010 10:42:43 PM

I have three monitors for my Gigabyte P55A-UD4P motherboard with a Gigabyte HD 5870 video card. These monitors only have HDMI or DVI inputs. So, I cannot (I believe) get all three working at the same time. One of the three have to use the video card's displayport connection.

The guy at Fry's sold me a $25.00 DisplayPort to HDMI Adapter telling me that the "Active" would just make for a better picture. I told him that sounded a little wierd for a "better" digital connection. But, I gave it a try and I can get the monitor to work, but not all 3 at the same time.

Instead of buying a DisplayPort capable monitor, or shelling out $100.00 for an "Active Displayport Adapter", would it make sense just to add a second cheap video card to support my 3rd monitor? This monitor will be used for web browsing and basic desktop word processing type software.

Thanks for sharing any ideas.

More about : monitors displayport

a c 259 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
March 20, 2010 11:19:32 PM

The fry's guy was wrong, you would need an active adapter at about $100. The unpowered adapter won't work.

Just get a cheap ATI card. I have two monitors, and did exactly that. I use my 5870 to drive my main gaming monitor, and a 3450 to drive the secondary monitor. I figured that it would take some load off of the gaming monitor.

You might have to pay $60 or so to get a 3450 or 3650 card capable of connecting two dvi monitors.
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a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
March 20, 2010 11:31:23 PM

If your going for Eyefinity then it needs to be one card.
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March 21, 2010 1:48:14 AM

I ran into this same issue. Not wanting to spend $100 on an active adapter, and not $300 on a mismatched monitor with a display port. I just bought a second HD 5770 and when I want to game I enable crossfire and drop to 1 display (32" Samsung 1080p LCD TV), and when not gaming disable crossfire and use the 2 19" viewsonics flanking the LCD TV. I could run two displays in crossfire, so I could keep an eye on monitoring software, but I don't want to take the performance hit by using the larger resolution. This works well for me, until monitors and TVs with DP inputs become more commonplace and cheaper.
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March 25, 2010 6:17:34 PM

Thanks for your input. But, I am still stuck.

Again, I am trying for 3 monitors, but not Eyefinity.

I tried twice, with two different DisplayPort to HDMI adapters from Fry's. The second try I believe was still a "passive" adapter but it was listed on AMD's website as a valid connector.

So, strike two. This last time, I went for a second video card. This is not working either.

I have Windows 7 64 bit with a Gigabyte 5870 as my main video card. The second card is a cheap HD 4350. My 3rd monitor is hooked up to this HD 4350 but nothing is displaying on my monitor. Am I missing something? Window's installed the drivers automatically for this card. All that I am getting is a blank screen.

Catalyst Control Center shows this 3rd monitor in the Desktops & Displays top section (when using the DisplayPort it was only showing as a Disabled monitor in the bottom section).

Windows Device Manager shows this Display Adapter as "This device is working properly". Both video cards are using the same driver version 8.702.0.0.

Any ideas?
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a c 259 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
March 25, 2010 7:40:06 PM

How is your third display connected to the 4350?

I am presuming via HDMI.

Is it a TV? If so. you need to select the input on the TV to point to the HDMI conection you used.
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March 25, 2010 9:48:39 PM

The third monitor is connected with a DVI cable. DVI-D to be specific. Not really sure if the -D is relevant.
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a c 259 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
March 25, 2010 10:21:07 PM

I have a 3450 / 5870 configuration on an X58 motherboard also.

I have a 2560 x 1600 monitor attached to each, and it is working fine. I suspect that the 3450 might be a bit weak, but it seems OK.

Your 4350 is similar, and even a bit stronger.

The dvi-d is a dual link cable, needed for 2560 x 1600 resolution.

What happens if you take one of the two main monitors and attach it to the 4350?

Is it possible that you have a bad monitor or cable? Perhaps a bad connection?

The newly attached monitor should be detected and installed when you reboot. You could try asking the device manager to scan for new devices.

Rereading your post, I see that the catalyst control center shows the third monitor, so I think you are OK from a hardware and attachment point of view.
The issue is probably with the driver and three monitors.

If you have not done so already, do a clean install with the latest driver you can find, Here's how:

1) Download driversweeper to your desktop, or wherever you can find it easily.
http://downloads.guru3d.com/Guru3D---Driver-Sweeper-(Setup)-download-1655.html

2) Download your new driver to the same place.
3) Add/remove programs, uninstall any Nvidia or ATI vga drivers and programs.
4) Boot into safe mode. Press F8 repeatedly while booting to enter safe mode. Your display resolution may be minimal.
5) Run driversweeper. Check the selection boxes for the removal of all nvidia vga drivers and ati drivers.
6) Rerun driversweeper. All such components should be gone.
7) Install the new driver from the desktop or saved location.
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a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
March 25, 2010 10:21:37 PM

Did the 2nd adapter that was listed on AMD's website have a USB cable?
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March 25, 2010 11:26:23 PM

Thanks everyone for the help.

Tomorrow, I will try a clean install of the drivers.

The adapter was an Accell B087B-001B. It did not have the USB connector. AMD actually shows it as a Passive Dongle, but dang, it is on their page of ATI Eyefinity Validated Dongles.

http://support.amd.com/us/eyefinity/Pages/eyefinity-don...
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Best solution

a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
March 26, 2010 1:17:20 AM

Someone didn't read...
"Connectivity Requirements: ATI Eyefinity technology is supported by graphics cards in the ATI Radeon™ HD 5400 series and higher. These cards can support up to six monitors (depending on the model), subject to the following restrictions:
A maximum of 2 legacy monitors (VGA, DVI or HDMI) can be enabled simultaneously, provided that each monitor is connected either directly or via a “passive” DisplayPort™ adapter/dongle. “Passive” adapters/dongles will NOT support more than 2 legacy monitors.
• To enable support for more than 2 monitors, “active” DisplayPort™ adapters/dongles are required (or monitors with direct DisplayPort™ connectivity must be used).
• Approved “active” adapters have no general connectivity restrictions with ATI Eyefinity technology."

AMD is saying, the passive adapters that are verified work for 2 monitors, while active ones work for 3.
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March 26, 2010 2:16:09 AM

Thanks Sabot00. Now that I re-read the notes at the top of the page, I understand. I am normally a person who reads the instructions. Doh!
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a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
March 26, 2010 2:18:44 AM

Yeah, if I wasn't specifically looking for something like that due to my knowledge on how Eyefinity works I would have missed it too, and even when reading it's worded more complicated than necessary.
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March 26, 2010 7:49:34 PM

Thanks everyone for your helpful input.

Okay, I am an idiot. After spending hours on-line looking for a new Displayport monitor or an "active" Displayport to HDMI dongle and finding everyone out of stock I decided to make this dang second video card work.

After taking my PC apart and pulling video cards, rearranging video cards, switching monitors the answer was simple. I had the monitor set to HDMI input while using a DVI connection.

This whole experience has been so frustrating. I build this new computer, not for Eyefinity, but for the new speed and 3 monitor capability. Sure wish the whole Displayport thing would settle down. Dang lack of monitors and dongles.

I do have a new problem concerning the 3rd monitor, but will post this in a new thread.

Once again, thank you all for your responses. Hard to choose a best response, but I will choose one to mark this thread as done.
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March 26, 2010 7:51:16 PM

Best answer selected by thomas97.
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April 10, 2010 11:45:05 PM

I also bought a computer with an ATI 5850 Catalyst card and was told it would suppott three monitors. In fact he told me I needed to use the HDMI connector. He was wrong - now (after I bought the computer) they are telling me I need to use the displayport adaptor.

This is a week AFTER I bought the computer - idiots!!! And they won't do anything to make it right.

As stated above, the Fry's computer sales people are saying that if I get an ACTIVE displayport to HDMI adaptor that will do the trick (passive will not).

Now, I think I will just buy a displayport monitor as you can find them for under $300.

If I do this - will I be able to support three monitors with this card? 2 DVI and one displayport?
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May 9, 2010 7:25:45 PM

By the way - I soleved the problem by buying a monitor that uses a displayport input. I did research and found the adaptors are useless if passive, and even if active they often malfunction. I found an NEC 24-inch that has 1920x1080 resolution for about $300. It looks great, works perfectly and I now have three monitors working on my Catalyst card.

I really think this is the only way to go.
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July 6, 2010 11:00:52 PM

Finaly a Solution for 3 Monitors without big Price Tag
I went through the same fraustration and I have now found a soloution for 3 Monitors (NOT for 3D work or for Gaming Only 2D work) which is what I need and a lot of us out there are looking for without buying new monitors with buying an active Display Port adaptor for $125 plus
Problems to overcome for low cost 2D - 3 monitor solution:
a) Single slot card design Not 1 1/2 slots with coolers or 2 slot cards
b) Works without Active Displayport adaptor to DVI (additional cost)
c) Works without HDMI adaptor to DVI (additional cost)

1) I could not find a Single Slot ATI Radeon 5000 series card(s) looked at Gigabyte, Asus, MSI, they cannot run 3 monitors with these features from any of these Manufactures. Firstly they have No Display Port models on the lower end 5000 series cards? however not without going to higher more expensive series like 5750 or higher.
2) Only Found 2 Single Slot Cards XFX 5570-$89 HDMI/DVI/Display port and XFX tech support said no it will not work Unless you use a Active display port adaptor to DVI this costs twice as much as the card NO soloution here, next
3) Sapphire has 2 Single Slot Cards low end cards that work with 3 monitors 5450-$50 & 5570-$70 has VGA/DVI/Display port and sapphire offers a Display port to VGA addaptor $24
4) Sapphire rep found the simplist way for 2 D uses ONLY either of thes cards 5450 or 5570 with VGA/DVI/Display port make sure you get this configuation with the Display port and VGA this saves you Money also because you don't have to buy a HDMI to DVI adaptors because most the cheaper monitors don't have HDMI connectins either just VGA/DVI Never the less this lower cost solution works for 2D applications. Also very low power no Heat Problems 19 watts and 38 watts also what I was looking for.
I hope this is helpful to someone else and they don't have to use alll their time and fraustration like I did why are the Manufacturers more helpfull I don't want to go there and think that they only want you to buy expensive cards and Monitors!
I am using 5 monitors run for 2D work at a low cost with 2 cards and this looks like the best solution. If anyone has a better idea please let us all know.
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a c 271 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 6, 2010 11:07:58 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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