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Windows 7: Three Monitors Dual Graphics Card question

27 Feb 2011   #1
Johnathan Lyman

Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 
Three Monitors Dual Graphics Card question

I have a question in regards to having three monitors.

I know that with my single 6850, if I want three monitors, I have to either do DVI, DVI, and DisplayPort, or DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort.

I am getting a 2nd 6850 mid-week. Will I be able to do DVI-DVI-HDMI with a 2nd card or am I still in the same boat?

I guess it's not that big of a deal if I have to get a DisplayPort-DVI or HDMI adapter, I'm just curious.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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27 Feb 2011   #2
Punkster

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 (64-bit)
 
 

Hello there, Johnathan.

I'm not a Multiple monitors guy. but i'm pretty sure that you can connect them like that:

DVI-DVI-HDMI

I guess is possible because the purpose of adding another card to you rig is somehow related to the fact that you want to add more monitors (of course, this is only one of the reasons for multiple cards), hence, you need extra ports for connecting all the monitors. hehe Somebody please correct me if i'm wrong

Cheers, mate.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2011   #3
stormy13
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Johnathan are you getting the second card for the extra performance of Crossfire, or for extra monitors?

If it is only for extra monitors then you don't have to spend anything as you already have what you need. With the motherboard you have (785G chipset) and your 6950, you just need to go into the bios and enable both the onboard video and the SurroundView option. That will give you the ability to run up to 5 monitors at a time, 3 on the video card and 2 off of the onboard.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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27 Feb 2011   #4
Zepher

Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Punkster View Post
Hello there, Johnathan.

I'm not a Multiple monitors guy. but i'm pretty sure that you can connect them like that:

DVI-DVI-HDMI

I guess is possible because the purpose of adding another card to you rig is somehow related to the fact that you want to add more monitors (of course, this is only one of the reasons for multiple cards), hence, you need extra ports for connecting all the monitors. hehe Somebody please
correct me if i'm wrong

Cheers, mate.
You aren't wrong, but you are only half right.
More cards for more monitors or more cards for more performance.
Nvidia needs 2 cards in Surround mode to run a Triple Screen Gaming setup.
ATI only needs 1 card to run games on 3 screens.

I used to use a GTX285 and 9600GT to run my 3 screens and game on the middle one, then I wanted to try gaming across 3 screens and at the time, ATI was the only*, so I traded the 285 for an HD5850 which I am using now.

*Matrox has a Triple Head 2 Go adapter that allowed 3 monitors to be hooked up to the box and windows would see this as one really wide monitor.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2011   #5
Punkster

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 (64-bit)
 
 

Quote:
Nvidia needs 2 cards in Surround mode to run a Triple Screen Gaming setup.
ATI only needs 1 card to run games on 3 screens.
Yep, i did know that the thing i didn't know is the fact that you could connect different monitors not necessarily into 1 card, even in SLI/CrossFire. the way the OP wanted
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2011   #6
Johnathan Lyman

Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stormy13 View Post
Johnathan are you getting the second card for the extra performance of Crossfire, or for extra monitors?

If it is only for extra monitors then you don't have to spend anything as you already have what you need. With the motherboard you have (785G chipset) and your 6950, you just need to go into the bios and enable both the onboard video and the SurroundView option. That will give you the ability to run up to 5 monitors at a time, 3 on the video card and 2 off of the onboard.
The original plan was for more performance and being able to use all of my existing cables would be a bonus, I guess. The two 6850s will be in crossfire for gaming performance and if I can get more monitor support without having to convert a DisplayPort to HDMI or DVI (depending on what I feel like at the time I order) that'd be great.

ALSO: I will be upgrading my board to a 890FX chipset (MSI 890FXA-GD70) and replacing my 925 with a 1090. Since my current board only has one PCI-E x16 slot, I had to upgrade the board to do the crossfire dance
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2011   #7
profdlp

Main - Windows 7 Pro SP1 64-Bit; 2nd - Windows Server 2008 R2
 
 

Quick reference:
(Not to contradict what others have said, just to perhaps make it a little easier.)

Ati only; I know not of the nVidia these days.

Quote:
One card, two monitors, use any ports you want

One card, three monitors, at least one monitor must be on a Display Port connection.
If you use an adapter it must be an Active one. (Though not necessarily powered.)
Most (maybe all) Ati cards actually have a Mini Display Port connection.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2011   #8
Johnathan Lyman

Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by profdlp View Post
Quick reference:
(Not to contradict what others have said, just to perhaps make it a little easier.)

Ati only; I know not of the nVidia these days.

Quote:
One card, two monitors, use any ports you want

One card, three monitors, at least one monitor must be on a Display Port connection.
If you use an adapter it must be an Active one. (Though not necessarily powered.)
Most (maybe all) Ati cards actually have a Mini Display Port connection.
Yeah that's what I'm figuring. So What I'm asking is if I introduce a 2nd card in XF, do i get 2 cards up 4 monitors (all DVI, for example)?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2011   #9
profdlp

Main - Windows 7 Pro SP1 64-Bit; 2nd - Windows Server 2008 R2
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Johnathan Lyman View Post
...What I'm asking is if I introduce a 2nd card in XF, do i get 2 cards up 4 monitors (all DVI, for example)?
For normal usage, yes. For a Crossfire-enabled game it will run off the two monitors on the primary card.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2011   #10
Zepher

Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Johnathan Lyman View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by profdlp View Post
Quick reference:
(Not to contradict what others have said, just to perhaps make it a little easier.)

Ati only; I know not of the nVidia these days.

Quote:
One card, two monitors, use any ports you want

One card, three monitors, at least one monitor must be on a Display Port connection.
If you use an adapter it must be an Active one. (Though not necessarily powered.)
Most (maybe all) Ati cards actually have a Mini Display Port connection.
Yeah that's what I'm figuring. So What I'm asking is if I introduce a 2nd card in XF, do i get 2 cards up 4 monitors (all DVI, for example)?
From what I just read, you disable Crossfire and you can run 4 screens on the 2 cards just fine.
Enable Crossfire and the Primary card runs 2 screens and the other screens shut down.
If you want to game across 3 screens, 3 of the screens have to be hooked up to the Primary card, with one screen using the Display port.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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