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 Post subject: Video card recs for driving 3 monitors - quietly
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 5:10 pm 
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I'm looking for quiet video card / adapter solutions to drive THREE 1920 x 1200 monitors for a new build I'm planning. Each monitor can accept either a DisplayPort or DVI-D Input (not HDMI). I'm not a gamer so I don't need a high end card, but want something I won't have to replace in a couple years. Fanless would be nice. It seems like many cards have 1 DVI, 1 DisplayPort, and 1 HDMI output. Does that mean I must install 2 cards to get three non-HDMI inputs, or would a single card with a HDMI to DP (or DVI) adapter work for one of the monitors? Are there any issues with using different digital output types to drive 3 identical, side-by-side monitors? Function and stability are more important than price (but I don't want to spend the $$$ for a workstation card).

Thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: Video card recs for driving 3 monitors - quietly
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 6:40 am 
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IIRC, the video signal over HDMI and DVI are the same. I use a single HDMI to DVI cable to route signal from my A/V receiver to my monitor.


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 Post subject: Re: Video card recs for driving 3 monitors - quietly
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 7:15 am 
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If it's a new build, the CPU will have integrated graphics as well that can drive 2 monitors. So, you really don't need a graphics card that needs to drive 3 monitors as you can split the load between the igp and the discrete card. But, if you want to use a discrete card, any recent gfx card with 1GB of RAM will drive three 1920 x 1080p for non-gaming apps. To get a passive card that doesn't use D-sub for one of it's three connections, narrows the field. You may have to move up to an HD 7750. If you are willing to use the igp for one of the monitors, then you can drop down to an HD 6450.

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 Post subject: Re: Video card recs for driving 3 monitors - quietly
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 8:27 am 
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In theory, any Ivy Bridge based motherboard and all GPU's from Radeon 5000, 6000 and 7000 can run three monitors. But a DisplayPort is a requirement for using the third monitor and many manufacturers don't provide a DisplayPort. The cheapest and easiest option would probably be a Radeon 7750 (make sure it has a DisplayPort). There are fanless versions of them. Sapphire makes a series of GPU's that don't need the DisplayPort in order to use three screens.

http://www.sapphiretech.com/presentatio ... 1414&leg=0

As for the video output. As I've written, one of the three screens must use the DisplayPort. If you intend to use an adapter, then it must be an ACTIVE DisplayPort to (DVI/HDMI...) adapter. Personally, I've used this adapter without any problems whatsoever.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6814998051

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 Post subject: Re: Video card recs for driving 3 monitors - quietly
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 10:07 am 
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kuzzia wrote:
In theory, any Ivy Bridge based motherboard..

Note that IVB IGP only has 2 PLL's. So, if you want to use it to run 3 monitors, 2 of them have to be Displayport (which can share a PLL)....and no IVB mobo's actually ship with 2 Displayport outputs. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Video card recs for driving 3 monitors - quietly
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 1:53 pm 
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Thank you for all the info. I think I'll try the following:

Sapphire Ultimate Radeon HD 7750 (fanless with 1 DVI, 1 HDMI, & 1 DisplayPort)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6814102980

Card Out_______Monitors IN
DVI ------------------DVI
HDMI----adapter----DVI
DP--------------------DP


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 Post subject: Re: Video card recs for driving 3 monitors - quietly
PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 7:58 am 
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Have fun :D

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