I work IT hardware support for a trading company where the traders all use multiple monitor setups. With at least 6 monitor and at most 12. Anything over 12 we give em another pc and they share mouse and keyboards between the 2. We mostly run XP pro 64 bit. The program we run is not too graphically intensive but it does span all monitors. We only use Nvidia Graphics card (not my idea but that was their policy before I started)
My problem is anytime we get up above 8 monitors we run into some problems. Not huge graphical errors just little things like mouse lag, some rendering problems, and other little problems but they are huge problems when a trader is working a lot of orders and money. Some of the problems can be easily fixed by disabling DirectDraw and setting color to 16bit. Other problems are unexpected and seem to happen out of nowhere.
We always use Intel I7s and like I said Nvidia quadros 420. We usually use1156 and 1366 sockets. My question is would I see a difference moving to Sandy Bridge CPU and if so which chipset is the best? I'm thinking that when I get to 3 PCIe x16 cards that I am getting problems with the slots being downgraded to something like x8, x8, x4. Are there boards that do a x16, x8, x8 config?
IMO.. change the damn policies in your work and get AMD.
I don't think they realize that you can run up to 5 monitors, 6 on some, per 1 card on some cards using eyefinity. If you SLI them, you can run up to 12 monitors on those 2 cards. So they are seriously WASTING a crap ton of money trying to get enough nvidia cards to be able to run that many screens.
Secondly, are you running multiple programs, on different screens? If so, the sandy bridge i7-2600k will be very nice upgrade with the hyperthreading. If you are only really running that one program, a new cpu won't do too much for the lag. That is now your graphics cards being silly because they were not optimized to run multiple monitors, especially at that level, while AMD is.
Tell them to pull their heads out of their asses, get all AMD cards and either sell those nvidia cards or give them to me. I expect royalties, thank you.
I am not sure why Nvidia is the card of choice there. I have had nothing but problems with their drivers and control panel programs since I started. I have always preffered AMD/ATI at home.
The program runs on all screens and does take up a lot of rescources but I dont think its nothing that the CPU cant handle. The reason I ask about the CPU and chipset is from my understanding the sandy bridge and chipset handles PCIe lanes differently from earlier i7s/chipsets allowing for faster speeds when using multiple x16 cards. I may be misunderstood though, I was curious as to whether anyone had experience with this.