Independent Resolutions for Each Monitor

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by fonzfx, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. fonzfx


    Hi everyone, currently i have a low spec comp with a 15" CRT monitor. I want to add on either 2 20" or 22" LCD monitor for trading & charting. I am going to run them at different CRT (800x600) & 2 LCD (the max native resolution allow). Do i need a video card like the Matrox G450x2 MMS with independent resolutions capabilities for each monitor?

    I have few cards in mind that might fit my 3 available PCI slots after reading this forum. These are the inexpensive ones i have found on eBay, Matrox G200, Matrox G200 MMS Quad, Matrox G450, Matrox G450 MMS Quad, Nvidia Quadro NVS 280. I realised that some cards are low-profile & some are half-length :confused: . I am a newbie to this type things, can anyone recommend and give me some advice on the right type of cards that can run independent resolutions and do fit my PCI slot. Thanks a million. :)

    Here are my comp spec:
    IBM ThinkCenter E50 Small Desktop
    Intel® Celeron® D 331 Processor
    2.66GHz, 533MHz FSB, 256KB L2 cache
    Integrated Intel 915GV chipset
    3GB DDR2 PC-4200 SDRAM
    15" CRT
    Windows XP
    3 x half length PCI slot
  2. Any video card will allow independent resolutions of monitors.

    Those Matrox cards are probably too old to be the best choice for your new widescreen monitors.

    Your computer should have a PCIEx16 slot, so the video card you should get is an Nvidia Quadro NVS 290 or 285, PCIEx16. They are half-height cards so will fit in your computer, but you'll want to be sure to get the "low profile" bracket to mount into your case.

    Not sure whether you'll be able to run 3 monitors (including the oboard video)... that's up to the BIOS. If so, one video card and you're good to go.

    If the onboard won't cooperate, you'll need to disable the onboard video and probably get an additional NVS 280 PCI... again, get the low profile bracket.
  3. fonzfx


    Thanks for the advice on the cards. But i have confirmed with Lenovo cust support that my pc has only 3 x PCI slot. And i was told that it only fits half-length cards. The Nvidia cards you mentioned is great but i do not have any PCIEx16 slot. Do you mean even the Matrox G450 MMS Quad does not support widescreen monitors totally? I am looking out for NVS 280 PCI though. Thanks again :)
  4. I looked up the E50 on the net, and it's said to have a PCIEx16 slot. You can verify yourself simply by looking at the mobo. In spite of what Lenovo told you, I'll bet you have one.... PLUS "3 x PCI". Look at your mobo. There should be 3 slots which are the same and are white.. .those will be the PCI. There should be one which is longer and lines up a bit differently.. they're usually black.. that's the PCIEx16.

    For a small form factor case like you have, are you sure they didn't say "half-height"? I've never heard of "half-height PLUS half-length".

    The resolutions of widescreen are different than the old "conventional" ones. You can check yourself if you can find a list of "supported resolutions"... you'd be looking for 1680x1050 for 20" & 22".

    Maybe next time, don't buy a SFF case... they're sort of pain in the neck.

    Addendum... got to checking agian. Usually when a computer is described as "small", it means "Small Form Factor"...

    Is your computer case like a normal tower/minitower or is it smaller like VCR size?
  5. fonzfx


    You are right! SFF case... very much pain in the neck when you want to expand into the little case. But it does save some space (on my table) for the past few years. My ThinkCenter E50 model is 8294 which unfortunately do not have any PCIe slot. Lenovo just reconfirmed with me again today. I have checked my mobo too.

    I have attached here a pic of the back of my comp and the links to the mobo detailed specs from Lenovo webby.

    Detailed specifications:

    Mobo Diagram:

    As you can see my comp case is like "VCR" size. The Thinkcenter dimensions are Width 13.0 x Depth 15.9 x Height 4.3 inches. Will the half-length cards like Matrox G450 MMS Quad PCI with a height of 4.2 inches fit into my comp? Or should i get the low-profile NVS 280 PCI with a height of only 2.6 inches?

    I have found out that the Matrox's maximum resolutions for digital (per display) is 1280 x 1024 and the NVS 280 maximum resolutions for digital is 1600x1200. What is the recommended multi monitors connection for trading & charting, DVI or just VGA will be good enough? Thanks again for your time & advise.
  6. fonzfx


    Pic similar to the back of my Thinkcenter case.
  7. You're right... no PCIEx slots. (I had one of those years ago... only PCI cards will work for you.... But for trading, that's actually OK.)

    You will definitely need low profile card(s).

    The native resolution for 20" and 22" widescreen is 1680x1050. That is not one of the choice options for ANY of the cards you've mentioned... and you DEFINITELY want to run at native resolution if at all possible. (If desired, you should be able to set a "custom" resolution in the Nvidia Quadro NVS driver... but you'd have to use VGA... can't go over 1600 in DVI.)

    Therefore, if you don't want to get a new computer to run widescreen monitors properly, I'd suggest you get the NVS 280 PCI.. you should be able to run 2 of them if your onboard video doesn't cooperate.

    Also, instead of getting widescreen monitors, get either 19" conventional, 1280x1024, or 20" UXGA, 1600x1200. Either of which are plenty good for trading. (I have several 20", S-IPS panel, HP LP2065's, and they are very good.)

    "Everthing" is going widescreen, so you'll have to get another computer at some point anyway. The one you have is SUCH a basic budget model, I think you should replace it with something better.... wouldn't cost much if you got one on Craigslist... Just off the top of my head, I suspect your computer would bring only about $100 in a sale.. maybe not even that.)