My new rig... Q: monitor output

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by $lave2bmw, May 25, 2005.

  1. Ordering a Dell Optiplex 3.2ghz setup for trading with 4 lcd's. Has a gig of ddr ram, and an ati radeon with dual output. So my question is whats the most efficient way to add a quad output capability? Should i buy an exact duplicate card that the computer has already?

    Any advice or coupon code to get it cheaper?

  2. TGregg


    You want to add quad to get . . . uhm. . . sextuple or whatever? Or do you want to add dual to get quad?

    And your card is almost certain AGP. Unless your mainboard is one of them new fancy ones (not sure if they are out yet) that has dual AGP slots, you cannot add another AGP card, only PCIs.

    If you just want to add two more monitors, and don't expect to upgrade to more monitors any time soon, I'd suggest picking up a couple older model PCI video cards. If you might be expanding soon, I'd suggest a dual Matrox G450, they seem to be pretty reliable.

    You really don't need a high end video card for trading. But it is nice to have one good card so you can do stuff other than trading. :)
  3. what im looking to do is end up with 4 lcd's, so should i purcahse an additional pci card with the same radeon chip?
  4. gnome


    You have not provided info about the ATI card. Is it AGP or PCIe? If your card is AGP, any Radeon PCI card should work just fine. It doesn't have to be with the same chip. If your card is PCIe (newer platform) that may not be so easy.
  5. It is the regular agp slot. Say i wanted to add another 2 monitors to the setup after that giving me a total of 6 lcds, would i add a third video card for that?

    Sorry if my questions are lame. Im learning :cool:
  6. TGregg


    Yeah. You can add single, dual or quad monitor cards. Duals cost more than twice as much as a single, and quads cost more than twice as much as a dual.

    There's also a limited amount of PCI slots in your mainboard. And finally there's heat to consider. Not sure about this, but I suspect that a dual will give off less heat than two singles, and a quad less heat than two duals. I run a GeForce 6 in my AGP and 3 G450s, and I had to buy a couple extra case fans. They are cheap and easy to install.

    If I were you and you have a tower and say 3 extra PCI slots, I'd go with a couple one-monitor PCI video cards. Then if yer raking in the big bucks, you can add a dual or even a quad. Also, buy a couple case fans (they're about 5 bucks each and easy to install).

    If you bought a desktop, you'll need to see if you have room for more fans, and count your PCI slots.

    Some folks will make the arguement that one should have the same graphics subset. I never bought into it. My previous setup with a certain Intel chipset and video card combo was supposed to fail, but I got it to work. It's certainly easier if you have all the same card, but it can be quite a bit more expensive and you may get less of a system.
  7. Banjo


    gnome makes the point about PCI or PCIE slots, a new machine will prolly have PCIE instead of the older PCI slots. Cards will be more expensive. Duals or singles will work just fine, as T Gregg stated . I've had 3 different brand cards in a machine and all worked fine. Sticking with ATI prolly a good idea tho as you will get by on one driver. Check your specs on the machine to see if slots are PCIE. It is all plug and play so should be no problems.
  8. gnome


    If you really plan to end up with 6 monitors, you need to inventory your PCI slots to see what else you want to have installed... modem, sound card, etc.

    You may want to consider getting a used Matrox G200 quad off of ebay. You should be able to get one for <$150 with cables.
  9. I second that. Ebay is great for multi monitor cards. You can get them really cheap.

    I've heard that some people have probs with ATI combos with other brands. No personal experience there though.

    Seems like Matrox multis are most popular, but Colorgraphics and Appian work well also. I have used all three (currently running an Appian Quad in my main box).

  10. i use an ati 9600 pro agp as my main card and added a ati 7500 pci card as my second card...

    i have never had any problems with any card...

    ati 7500 pci is less than 75 bucks on ebay...

    i run 7 monitors between 2 macines...all ati issues
    #10     May 26, 2005