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View Full Version : Which multimon solution should I use?


Neurotox
10-06-04, 11:27 PM
Here's what I'm using in my current single monitor setup:

emachines w/ a 2.66 Ghz Celeron D, 533 Mhz FSB,
512 DDR RAM, no AGP slots (yes, this sucks, I didn't buy it tho)
Geforce FX 5500 128 MB PCI (grr) with dual (analog) heads and tv-out
19" analog monitor

I also have a spare 15" (might even be a 14" it's so old) analog monitor,
a Geforce 4 MX PCI left over from my last vid card upgrade,
and the onboard Intel graphics which I believe to be "emulated" AGP.

As far as I know, these are my options:

Geforce FX/onboard AGP
Geforce FX output 1/output 2
Geforce FX/Geforce 4 MX

The answer that jumps right out at me (of course) is to utilize the two outputs of the GFX. However (correct me if I'm wrong), using this method you have to use the same resolution on both monitors - since the old one won't go above 1024x768 and I'm used to working in 1600x1200 on the 19', this poses a problem. I also wasn't able to get independent desktops, only cloned and extended, but after some reading I think that's solved (unckecking the "extend desktop onto this monitor" box - haven't tried it yet though).

If I am correct and this cannot be done, I have to either re-enable onboard AGP, which I have heard will drain some cpu cycles and RAM; or install the second PCI vid card, which I have heard is bad if you are using your computer for audio (the whole reason I want dual monitors) because it's just that much more competition on your PCI bus, where your audio card is located.

I would LOVE for someone to tell me that I'm doing something wrong and that one video card CAN produce two different resolutions (and in this case bit depths, too), but if not, I guess my question is: which of the two alternative solutions is the lesser of two evils? I play 3D games and make music mostly,
with a slight emphasis on audio (I can always reduce graphic options for games but need all the juice I can get for audio).

Thanks in advance for any advice on this, I just don't want to spend all day tomorrow mixing and matching configs, installing and uninstalling vid cards, etc.

nTox

Neurotox
10-06-04, 11:28 PM
btw...hey everybody! :beer:

ricercar
10-07-04, 02:36 AM
The answer that jumps right out at me (of course) is to utilize the two outputs of the GFX. This seems like the best answer to me. The second best is likely GF FX + GF4. You likely don't want to mix Intel drivers with NVIDIA drivers.

What is the AGP on-board GPU? Intel Extreme? Do you know if it benchmarks faster than your GF FX? your GF4 MX?

using this method you have to use the same resolution on both monitorsIncorrect.

I would LOVE for someone to tell me that I'm doing something wrong and that one video card CAN produce two different resolutions (and in this case bit depths, too) You're doing something wrong and that one video card CAN produce two different resolutions and bit depths. :clap: I've run two monitors at different resolutions on two-port GeForce2, GeForce4, Quadro4, GeForceFX and Quadro FX cards.

Use Control Panel > Display > Advanced > GeForce FX 5500 > nView Display mode > Dualview, Analog Display 1 + Analog Display 2.

Gator
10-07-04, 06:50 AM
Donot bother with the onboard AGP. Stick with the 5500 only, or the 5500 + GF4MX. For myself I just use my single card because when I benchmarked using 2 video cards I saw little to no performance boost. But my FX5900XT AGP is more powerful than your FX5500 PCI, so I'm not sure if dual head or dual video card would be right for you. I will say that using dual video cards was a little more headache overall, so the FX5500 PCI alone may be your easiest choice.