Hi all. I just purchased a Samsung MD230X6 and my current computer can't support more than two screens, so I am forced to upgrade. I've only used Nvidia cards up to this point, and I realize that I will now be switching to ATI.
Which card do you all recommend I get for this setup? I see a few cards that have 6 display ports, but they seem more expensive than the same card with 2 display ports and 2 DVI outputs. I am not positive, but from what I've read online, one display port can power up to 3 individual monitors. So, if that is the case, I can use 1 display port to run 3 screens, another display port for the 4th screen and 2 DVI's for the remaining screens. Is this possible? If so, what do I need to buy?
Monitors have display port inputs and DVI. I read that all I have to do is daisy chain them together via display port....I have no idea what that means?
Please help me choose a card I can use to run this bad boy. I will not be using the set up for gaming, so I am not looking for anything too expensive. I want something that is good, but not extreme good as I won't be running Crysis 2 on this
It would be helpful to know your system specs and the specific usage for the displays but I'll just assume the six displays are for windows desktop productivity.
If it isn't for gaming or 3D graphics then you can use a combination of cheap graphics cards to drive each display. Most graphics cards can only output to two monitors at once. There used to be some cheap radeon 5450s that had a DP on them which allowed them to output to three displays at once. If you were to get two such cards (NOT in crossfire) you could drive three displays each for a total of six. But you'd have to find the ones with a DP since without it, the card is limited to two outputs. All the "cheap" cards I currently see can only output to two monitors at once. You could get three such "cheap" cards as long as you have the motherboard slots and the PSU. They would not be in XFire/SLI.
That gives you five miniDP outputs for pretty cheap compared to the 6 output cards. The problem with that is that I believe your monitors take full sized DP so you might need adapters (whereas the eyefinity 6 editions usually come with the adapters). Combine it with any cheap radeon card (it can work but I wouldn't mix Nvidia with AMD) and you can have six or more monitors. Remember you can't use Crossfire when outputting with more than one graphics card, so don't worry about Crossfiring. Each card will need its own slot so you need to make sure you have enough motherboard slots and power supply to handle this.
The above will work fine for the windows desktop. Again, I am assuming you aren't gaming and therefore don't need actual eyefinity support. I assume the six displays are for productivity so there is no need to spend $350 on an eyefinity 6 edition card.
But if you'd like to go the expensive route, you can buy an eyefinity 6 edition card.
Or you could buy a single card that has two miniDP connectors with "displayport 1.2" support (I think some of the 6850s might have this). That won't get you six displays yet. But, when they finally get around to making them (probably a couple more months) you can get a Displayport Multi-Stream Transport Hub that will split one miniDP into three or four additional monitor outputs. The hubs will also be expensive and aren't yet available.
Hope that helps. If you'd like more specific recommendations please list your full system specs and exactly what the computer will be used for. Then I can tailor the recommendation better.
To add to my giant wall - in case you don't want to hassle around with multiple cards, Ebay has some good prices on brand-new in retail box 5870 2gb eyefinity 6 edition cards. Those come with miniDP -> DP adapters and would give you six monitors with a powerful GPU right out of the box. I'm seeing sub-$300 prices which compared to other sites and other cards appears to be a great price. There is a 6870 eyefinity 6 edition for like $370 on newegg but the 5870 is the more powerful choice.
Hmmmm, generally displays are similar to cars - lose value immediately upon purchase. I'm terrible at price estimates but basically it all depends on what it sold for new and what newer versions cost now. I wouldn't worry too much about them not being LED-lit, if they look good to you then they should be fine for many years to come. Even LED-lit monitors are going to depreciate. Value-wise they will keep losing value the older they get - think of a Ford Pinto, not a Shelby GT.
And another thing, since you got the 5870. I know it isn't a gaming rig. But if you (or someone you know) want to game with it you can get a decent gaming experience if you setup a 3 x 1 eyefinity group with your lower (or upper if you prefer) three monitors. The card will do ok for many games (with lowered game settings) at three-monitor resolution in case you have any interest in that sort of thing.
That is a very good point, I saw some of the videos of 3x1 setup and it looks amazing. I play Counter Strike from time to time, so I'm sure that will run amazingly well on 3x1 on everything maxed out as the game doesn't require much.