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Active displayport adapter required for 7800 dual monitor?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 9, 2012 6:54:09 AM

So I recently ordered a new 7870. I got the powercolor pcs+ specifically for the 2 dvi ports. I got the card, uninstalled my old 4870, and put in the new 7870, and immediately noticed one display was not working. After trying all of the typical things, never got it to work. Called powercolor and the guy suggested an rma. Ok, did it and got the new card recently. Same issue of course. I really doubt i got 2 bad cards in a row, let alone the first one.

So, I looked further into the problem and apparently I might need an active display port adapter to make it work. Have never heard of it or needed it because I haven't had this problem. I don't know why I should be having this issue because the 4870 worked with the two monitors from boot.

The monitors in question are two old samsung syncmasters. They both are using a vga cord to a dvi-vga adapter to connect to the cards ports. They work perfectly fine otherwise. However, nothing ever works in dvi port #2. I'm not trying to do eyefinity or anything, just like to use an extended desktop. Tried it and have it working perfectly fine in a multimonitor setup when using the HDMI port to my tv. Though, the old samsung monitors only have a vga connection. So will an active displayport adapter work and why do I all of a sudden need one now?

Thanks in advance!
April 9, 2012 7:10:16 AM

I am not certain but I believe that you need at least 1 digital output (HDMI, DVI, or Display Port).

With regard to eyefinity, I recently was in the dilemma of 'should I get the xfx card with 2 dvi out or go for another manufacture and just get an active adapter" So I ended up getting the sapphire version because I was talking to some colleagues and we came to the conclusion that the 78xx series has the same characteristics that the older 68xx and 69xx cards did where even though there are 2 dvi and an hdmi connections, you still need to incorporate a display port connection (for the third screen).

Not in relation to eyefinity, I have successfully connected one monitor in dvi and one in the hdmi port (I do not have 2 dvi ports) resulting in a 2 monitor scenario. So I would try to set up the monitors with just one dvi port being utilized, if possible.

sorry if this is a little rough to follow, its a little late.
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April 9, 2012 7:11:28 AM

It might be because one of the DVI ports is a Single Link Digital only output aka no VGA ever from that port. You will need a native Digital display or find a way to get analog from mini-Displayport or HDMI. I'm betting if you try to hook either monitor to the non working port regardless if the other port is connected or not it will not work.

Regardless of that newer Videocards are going to be moving away from Analog outputs and your Syncmasters will likely eventually not be able to connect to a new computer in the next few years without a Digital-> analog converter. The devices I have seen to do what would be needed to be done via DVI run around $200 so you might just want to get one new monitor.

http://powercolor.com/us/products_features.asp?id=397#S... (Specs for your card note the DVD-I and DVI-D, D = Digital only, I = Both analog and Digital)


EDIT: Seems there might be an affordable displayport adapter -> http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... That should allow you to dual monitor and it only costs $21
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April 9, 2012 5:03:23 PM

So, I need to buy the adapter that converts the mini port into a vga output? In what scenario, if any, does the second DVI actually work? What is the point of this digital output only?
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April 9, 2012 5:17:54 PM

Best answer selected by Sprinkles169.
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April 9, 2012 10:18:14 PM

Digital Only is for LCD (including LED Backlit) monitors (Eventually OLED) that have DVI inputs as they take DVI as a natural input. That port is a single link so that means the port is for monitors that have a recommended resolution up to 1920x1200. If your monitor has a DVI-I or DVI-D input you could get a DVI cable to connect to it instead of an adapter, but for us we would need the model of your monitor to know for sure if it has such an input.
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April 9, 2012 10:28:37 PM

caqde said:
It might be because one of the DVI ports is a Single Link Digital only output aka no VGA ever from that port. You will need a native Digital display or find a way to get analog from mini-Displayport or HDMI. I'm betting if you try to hook either monitor to the non working port regardless if the other port is connected or not it will not work.

Regardless of that newer Videocards are going to be moving away from Analog outputs and your Syncmasters will likely eventually not be able to connect to a new computer in the next few years without a Digital-> analog converter. The devices I have seen to do what would be needed to be done via DVI run around $200 so you might just want to get one new monitor.

http://powercolor.com/us/products_features.asp?id=397#S... (Specs for your card note the DVD-I and DVI-D, D = Digital only, I = Both analog and Digital)


EDIT: Seems there might be an affordable displayport adapter -> http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... That should allow you to dual monitor and it only costs $21


I looked more into this and that may be the wrong adapter for this situation. It doesn't say active, which I apparently need. So I went with a several more dollar active adapter. I can't believe im not even going to be using the second DVI at this point unless i get a new monitor specifically for that. Between that and how powercolor's support was very misleading, very upset with them at this point.

Active adapter: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

caqde said:
Digital Only is for LCD (including LED Backlit) monitors (Eventually OLED) that have DVI inputs as they take DVI as a natural input. That port is a single link so that means the port is for monitors that have a recommended resolution up to 1920x1200. If your monitor has a DVI-I or DVI-D input you could get a DVI cable to connect to it instead of an adapter, but for us we would need the model of your monitor to know for sure if it has such an input.


Thanks for letting me know!
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