I want to build a new computer with 3 monitors for game play but don't want the video card driving the monitors when they are not being used.
If I install 2 video cards - 1 for the 3 monitors game play and another lower end one for web surfing and video watching on my 47"hdtv. Then when web surfing the game monitors are off will that effectively turn off the game play video card?
Any other sugestions? I don't want 2 seperate computers and also don't want my expensive video card being driven hard with 3 monitors all the time.
If the monitors are off and they are demanding any power or image from the Graphics card you shouldn't have a problem with them using the card. Many cards only use their power as needed and some AMD cards even have the ability to shut down and let the CPU GPU take over when browsing the web or watching youtube ect. Some motherboards with the new touch bios can do this as well making it so that the CPU takes the load for youtube and netflix ect. instead of the graphics card.
SLI and cross fire give you the power of two cards combined and increase the amount of monitors you can use. So i would crossfire or SLI if you want two cards. This will increase your power and put less strain on one or the other card.
To put it in short i don't know why you would use two separate cards like that. If you have two cards you should run crossfire or SLI. The graphics card wont burn out from having it be idle with you monitors off. Many cards have software in their drivers to help you with this like AMD's control catalyst.
If you have any questions or need more help let me know.