Set Up Multiple Monitors

jasongregg

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Jan 30, 2013
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Hello,
I have a need to run 7 monitors. dual 24" in front of me, 4 quad 19" to the side and a 42" HDMI above the dual widescreens, so 7 total with the 42" being hdmi.

I have a decent AMD quad core DDR3 machine now but can upgrade the mobo.

I have researched this a but, but really looking for community input.

should i run 3 ati crossfire video cards?
 
As far as I can tell, all your monitors are 1080P(1920 x 1080)

Crossfire is not appropriate. It applies the power of multiple graphics cards to a single gaming app.
While some cards will support 6 displayport monitors, the cards are for gaming and quite expensive.
Displayport connected monitors may be more expensive too.
What you want is simply to connect multiple monitors.

I think you could do that most economically with several inexpensive graphics cards.

Such cards may cost about $30 each, and handle at least two monitors. Usually, they only support two out of the three ports at the same time.
The cheapest ones fit in pcie-x16 slots.
Here is one example: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150600
Others are available for pci slots or pcie x4 slots.
for pci: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130466
For x1: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500260
All will perform well enough for normal desktop usage like in a trading system.

If all the cards are nvidia , you will only need one driver.
But, windows 7 supports multiple drivers if that is convenient.

If your current motherboard does not have sufficient slots, then a motherboard upgrade will be in order.
 

AdioKIP

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Jul 10, 2008
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If you go with one of the more recent 7 series cards you can run 4 monitors per card (I run a 7950 with 4 monitors). If you plan on gaming at all this would be a better solution than going with 3 cheap cards. Go with 2 midrange to high end cards (Say a 7850 or up) and you can game as well as run all your monitors. You'll need adapters to convert from Displayport to HDMI/DVI though if you go with this method.
 

jasongregg

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Jan 30, 2013
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i guess my current specs arent important, since i can build a new machine. but here are my current specs.

AMD Athlox II quad core black @ 3.00GHz
12Gb 10600 DDR3
Nvidia GeForce 7900 GT/GTO
M3A770DE Asrock Mobo (yes i know but its been a good board on a budget)

only 2 pcie slots, so im thinking another board. i have an amd f1 cpu i can build around.




my budget is low but i am prepared to spend what it takes. my reason for this is to work on the dual widescreens, while the quads have my dynamic charts and graphs, and the 42" is to have video/tv on while i work. I do a lot of web work so i have site monitors/graphs/charts etc that i need to monitor all the time

should i go ati? heard nvidia can only handle so many monitors.
 


Your M3A770DE Asrock motherboard should be fine. It has plenty of expansion slots.

If budget is a concern, buy a second pci-e x16 card for $25 like this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130466

and two pci cards like this for $40 each : http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130466
 

jasongregg

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Jan 30, 2013
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no gaming. just data mining and monitoring. thanks
 

bucknutty

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You have 2 pcie connectors and a bunch of PCI connectors. I would go the way geofelt suggested. 4 cards. 2 pcie 6450s and 2 pci 6450s. Figure around 40 per card and your done. Each card only pulls around 20 watt of power so no need to worry about PSU.
 

There are some GeForce GTX 650 and greater graphics cards that can support four displays on one card.

E.g. ZOTAC ZT-61002-10M GeForce GTX 650 2GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500271
 

jasongregg

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Jan 30, 2013
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I do have 2 fx5200 PCI cards im using now, but ive never been able to get them to run on my machine. in fact, the only machine ive been able to get them to run all 4 is in an old dell p4 ddr1 desktop. and of course its only running 512 ram so dynamic charts dont refresh.
 

bucknutty

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the fx5200 should work however I would assume you would have trouble getting the drivers in windows 7 to work. The FX5s are so old they dont offically support windows 7-8 and can't run aero.

Try to run one along side you 7800gt. Cant hurt to try.
 

bucknutty

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DO NOT install the FX5 vista driver on a win7 box that has a working nvidia card. I have a simlar system on my bench. It has a gts250. I found a fx5500 pci in my box of parts. Plugged it in and isntalled the vista driver. BAM blue screen and an error about the nvidia install proxy. Now the computer is messed. I will try to use safe mode to uninstall all nvida drivers and start fresh.
 


Nvidia has a unified driver that runs all cards, but I think they need to be the 6xxx series or higher.
The Nvidia site will have a detailed list of which cards are supported.
 

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