Laptop with dual external monitor support

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nikodemz

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I've been searching hi and low for a laptop that will support dual external monitors. I know that extending the desktop to a single external monitor is quite common but I need to find a system that will support dual external monitors. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Thanks.
 

TheGreatGrapeApe

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Yes, there are many that support dual external monitors, the question is how you want to do it?

Alienware Area 51 M9750 and a few others have a single DVI port and single VGA port.

Others, especially the new laptops, have a single VGA port and a single HDMI port.

Both would support dual external monitors.

Main thing is to find out if what support you need for your monitors, and make sure to check whether the laptop's DVI out it DVI-I or DVI-D.

They are limited to the number of RAMDACs and TMDS they need to support both the primary display (the LCD panel in the lid) and the external outputs.
 

TheGreatGrapeApe

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It can be either, but your monitor has to match the capabilities of whatever it is.

And if it's a DVI-D, you want to make sure that it's not splitting outputs and it allows you to independantly assign them.

DVI-I will allow you to put on a dongle for Andlaogue VGA out, so the VGA+DVI-I would allow you 2 VGA Screens, but if it's DVI-D you must have a DVI-D jack for the panel it can't do VGA.

That why I say check to be sure, because if you have 2 panels/monitors with only VGA connectors, then a VGA+DVI-D won't work.
 

rafdo

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Do u want to run 2 external monitors or "dual screens" which XP provides by adding a second monitor to your primary on notebooks? Check on your graphic card type. My notebook Sony VGN-A790 17" 1920x1200 w ATI 600x 256 MB card went blank after connecting a Samsung 245bw as a dual second monitor after using a 21" ViewSonic 1600x1200 for a year+. ATI website states the problem exists when using digital cables. No fixes or solutions exist! I used an analog cable.
 

TheGreatGrapeApe

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Of course it's not going to work if you're trying to run a 1920x1200 monitor on a single link DVI connector. It's not 'digital cables' that are the problem, you're running outside the bandwidth of the single 165mhz TMDS, and that's a problem you'd experience on any old graphics solution, however on newer chips they integrate dual-link DVI support. Running out the analogue portion of a DVI-I will let you run off of the integrated 400Mhz RAMDAC thus giving you monitor support up to 2560x1600 @ 60hz.

And being XP doesn't matter either as it supports up to 8 displays pretty easily, as long as there is the hardware to do it, but trying to run outside of the resolution supported by the TMDS or RAMDACs just won't happen regardless of what you use.

I recommend anyone serious about multi-monitor support should use a 3rd party app like UltraMon to manage profiles and desktops since they do a better job than Hydravision and nView.
 

killernotebooks

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You're going to want to DVI-D if you want to output to the 30" style of monitors anytime. Usually the GPU's control panel program, like CATALYST for ATI or nVidia's Control Panel will have the option to configure for external monitors. Many notebooks have S-Video (an option), VGA, DVI, DVI-D and even HDMI outputs.

If you have a lack of outputs / options in that category, look at a product from Matrox called Head2Head for 2 monitors or they have a 3 monitor solution also.
http://www.matrox.com/graphics/en/gxm/products/

 

TheGreatGrapeApe

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Yeah the dual and triple head to go are good, I wasn't thinking of external solutions, but that's an option, although a tougher one with the resolution restrictions.

If he's not gaming there's of course PCMCIA and even USB based additional monitor add-ons.

I almost bought an open box USB one at FutureShop on the weekend fo $29, but I'm not really THAT curious, and for the money an HD-DVD copy of American Werewolf in London earned the attention of my wallet. :sol:

Like the Dual/Triplehead to go though, nice unit, just finicky though.

Pauldh was playing with one and considering setting up a triple projector setup for huge surround gaming.
 

humelbr

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I had the same problem and found a solution:

Its called ViDock 2 and the web site is: http://www.villagetronic.com/vidock/index.html
( * link edited by TGGA to point to Mfr, not reseller :non: * )

You have 2 option:

1st - Vidock 2 with video card (512mb) about $308.00
2nd - Vidock2 with out a video card ( you must purchase and install a video card that suits your needs.


I choose option 2 put in the video card that had more memory.
I also would try to see if they will give you the activation code to a multi monitor controle software they sell for 49.00 that is great.

Product was very easy to work with and instructions are great.
any question just follow the link or you can email me @ humelbr2@yahoo.com
The CSR that helped me was awesome.
Good luck.
 

dwellman

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Well, the better solution is grabbing the standard dock if your notebook supports it. For instance the mini dock for some T series ThinkPad has two video outputs (1 D-SUB and 1 DVI)

I got my dock of the Ebay for $20.00.

EDIT: Ok, not better, but definitely cheaper.
 

pelicano

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Hello Everybody

I have a laptop with a geforce go 7300 graphic card that has both VGA and DVI-D output ports. I have an external monitor connected trough the Vga port and it works perfectly, and I was wondering if I could connect a second external monitor via the DVI-D port and have two external monitors working at the same time. Is that possible with this nvidia card?

Thank you
 

TheGreatGrapeApe

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Yes, one uses the on chip RAMDACs (VGA) the other uses the TMDS (one or two) so those two output won't be an issue, but if it only has 1 TMDS then you will only be able to use the VGA when the main laptop LCD isn't bing used since the LVDS connection runs off of the digital path and usually converts the TMDS output.

However, next time start a new thread! :non:
 
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