Does TripleHead2ToGo Beat A 30" Panel?
The Matrox TripleHead2Go is available from a number of vendors, such as Monarch Computer Systems, for about $285; in contrast, a 30" LCD panel runs in the neighborhood of $2,000 and up. So, for the cost of a single large LCD, you could buy the TripleHead2Go and three $175 panels and still save around $1,200. With the extra money you could upgrade your graphics power plant to an SLI configuration to push out the 4 MPixels per frame that the 3840x1024 resolution demands.
If you collect monitors over time from others, or accumulate them from various stages of your computer elitism adventures, then the TripleHead2Go will allow you to hook a few of them together to save some money and gain a whole new gaming experience. If you have a few on hand then the cost to upgrade to this level of gaming or productivity will be very little, as you may only have to add an additional monitor and the TripleHead2Go.
TripleHead2Go And CRTs
However, if these monitors are CRTs, you will be limited by the device. Like the DualHead2Go, the TripleHead2Go can only support 60 Hz for the widescreen experience, which is not recommended if you sit in front of your monitors for an extended period of time. A resolution of 3072x768 permits refresh rates of up to 75 Hz, but of course, this limits each display to a maximum individual resolution of 1024x768.
As we pointed out in our article on the DualHead2Go, "clearly, TFTs are a better choice of display technology to use with this device." Still, while LCD panels are rapidly gaining popularity, many gamers still prefer CRTs. In addition, CRTs are less expensive than TFT panels. This dichotomy makes for an interesting debate: it is becoming increasingly hard to find a 23" CRT with a resolution of 2048x1536. LCDs will win out in the long run, as CRTs are being forced out by monitor manufacturers.