Windows 10: Best & Cheapest Way to Use 3 Monitors
Best & Cheapest Way to Use 3 Monitors
I hooked up my new-to-me computer the other day. I was super excited because it had 3 ports on the video card, and while I love 2 monitors, 3 would be even better! Well, as it turns out, this version of this video card (AMD Radeon HD 5450 with VGA, DVI & HDMI) will only display 2 monitors, not 3. So, I'm thinking of upgrading the video card. Computer is a Dell OptiPlex 390 with i3-2120 @ 3.3GHz & 6MB RAM. This is for work purposes, not gaming, so it doesn't have to be the biggest & best, just whatever will show 3 monitors. I'm also open to an active adapter of some sort, though I'm not sure it will work based on the research I've done.
Or...if I buy a second of these video cards, would that work? I saw some stuff on a thread that said if you had 2 identical video cards you could run monitors off each. It looks like there's room on the tower, but I'm not sure there's room on the motherboard. Also not sure how to check.
The Dell series don't have power supplies to run multiple gpu's, but it could be the cpu doesnt support it either. I'm going from memory, so it may be able to. You could go with an usb grapics adapter to run a third monitor.
Amazon.com: Smart Buy USB Graphics Adapter: Electronics
The OptiPlex 390 has a single PCI-E X16 slot, so you're stuck with a single graphics card. (That's not entirely true, but I've never used a PCI-E X1 graphics card.)
I'm not sure whether a card that supports 3 monitors would be supported by the weakfish PSU in the Dell OptiPlex 390 (265W for the minitower). This one is a relatively low-power card:
It has 3 digital outputs, but the DVI one could be used with a simple (cheap) adapter for VGA if needed.
I think you'd be crazy to waste any significant funds on a machine of this type, though.
I think you need a dongle or something with that. I've only ran 2 monitors when I still had my HD 5450 installed.
If your GPU supports "Eyefinity" you can run 3 monitors.
The ATi Radeon HD 5450 does support Eyefinity.
Than it could be set up thru driver.
Actually this issue is a bit weird.
Whilst the older cards can run 3 monitors in Eyefinity setup, the actual problem is that the cards only support 2 passive displays.
VGA, DVI & HDMI are all passive, if you wanted to take advantage of the third monitor you would need to use the DisplayPort connection in place of one of those.
As for @OP's question, yes getting a second card will allow you to run two more passive displays from it, or 3 if you utilised an active adaptor. A new card can cost you up to $100, whilst a decent adapter could be $50.
Startech usually have some decent ones in supply - https://www.startech.com/uk/AV/Displayport-Converters/DisplayPort-to-HDMI-Active-Video-and-Audio-Adapter-Converter-DP-to-HDMI-1920x1200~DP2HDS
However you will need to do some checking to make sure it supports your resolution, and other requirements.
Edit - Just for more reading.
I'm trying to find an HD 5450 with a DisplayPort but I can't find anything to the internet for the OP. But I believe the GPU supports DP output.
I plan to install either win 7, or 8 or 10 on a new PC I built. I was told I can download either of these o/s's from a digital river mirror (link below) and then buy a product key. Then I plan to upgrade to 10. What's the cheapest but legitamite key...
Why does anyone need 2 monitors in Windows 10? Can't you split the screen?
I want to know the cheapest way to get win 10. I read that you can buy a windows 7 key, install win 7 then upgrade to win 10.
I also read you can buy a win 10 OEM license for $20 and you get all the updates. But if something stops working you...
Newbie question re setting up two monitors: is it possible to a different program running on each monitor, e.g., to have an Acrobat file up on one and SketchUp running on the other? If so, can someone tell me how? The dual monitor set up options...
I connected two monitors to my Lenovo H50-55. One with a Vga cable, the other with an HDMI cable. The size of the monitors is different but resolution is the same. One is an LG analog the other an insignia digital set to fit the screen. Now I have...