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Part 2: AMD's Eyefinity Technology Explained

After getting a grip on its dongles and working to finish its monitor validation program, AMD hasn’t yet been able to give much attention to stands for Eyefinity arrays. Nevertheless, stands are a integral part of any Eyefinity setup. Sure, you don’t require a stand for a 3x1 array, but we know first-hand how easy it is for monitors to get bumped around on the desk and for stand heights to shift over time. It’s annoying. In theory, a stand should keep everything tight, tidy, and elevated to an ergonomically correct height.

Three MD230s, held together on Samsung's own stand.Three MD230s, held together on Samsung's own stand.

Some months ago, we set out to plant three 19" LCDs on an Ergotron adjustable stand—two MAGs and one Samsung. In doing so, we learned a few basic truths about multi-monitor stands. Attaching the hook or clamp to the monitor’s VESA mounting is the easy part. Once the monitors are on the crossbar, that’s when things get tricky. Spacing can be uneven. Angles look off. If you’re a perfectionist, going with a third-party stand and especially when using different monitor makes and models can be a real bear.

No doubt, this is why vendors like Samsung are developing their own stands in-house. In Samsung’s case, the stand is designed specifically for the company’s DisplayPort-enabled MD230 monitors.

Linking displays on the MD230 setup should be particularly easy.Linking displays on the MD230 setup should be particularly easy.

“Samsung specifically designed the stand for 3x1 and 3x2 arrangements,” says Gasson. “Having a custom stand for their monitor makes more sense than using a generic stand you can buy off the shelf. It allows the user to set it up so the monitors are perfectly aligned. They just click together with no real adjustments from the user. We would definitely like to see more of that. Third-party stands are definitely not as easy.”

That said, AMD does have some preliminary thoughts for its anticipated stand program. For example, Eyefinity Ready stands would need to be no wider than the width of the panels while Validated stands would feature a “mounting mechanism on the backs of the panels that make it possible to connect the monitors together, so you can adjust them and have them be stable and secure.” You can see this in Samsung’s clever design, which uses a post and notch arrangement along with screws and holes mounted through joined plates.

Factors such as cable management and ergonomic height adjustment are still under discussion for the stand validation program, and there’s no ETA on when the plan might roll out. But in our opinion, it can’t come too soon, because a solid, universal stand spec for multi-monitor could help cut build times in half and make arrays look a lot more professional.

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