General discussion


Multiple Monitors

By mpd881 ·
I work for a local government and want our Engineering Department to look into getting dual monitors for their mapping programs. I know there are video cards that support dual monitors, as well as the option for buying two cards. But I also heard there is a Y-cable out there that plugs one end into the video card and the other ends into different monitors. Is this true? I have search everywhere I can think of and have found nothing like this. We are using WinXP Pro.

Thank you for your help.

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Comments

Collapse -

What good would a Y cable do?

by Dr Dij In reply to Multiple Monitors

You can get repeaters cables for VGA output, that amplify signal to allow for two screens,
problem is you'll be showing the exact same thing on both screens.

If you want useful, get a card like the ATI all-in-wonder card. It has 'hydravision'. i.e. it has TWO vga outputs. you hook up 1st monitor to 1st vga like normal.

if you hook up a 2nd monitor to 2nd vga, and click to activate the hydravision, you have a desktop extended to one side. i.e. you can open one program and drag it to one monitor and have 2nd pgms open on other.

I got this so I could open photo albums on one side and copy the pix then paste them into either a paint pgm for trimming or directly to powerpoint or image composer on right side.

This way I don't have to tab between apps as much.
Normally with this kind of setup you can move items / drag mouse from one screen onto the other.

many other apps call for this kind of use: developers, and graphics apps like mapping as you suggested

Collapse -

It can work

by jdmercha In reply to What good would a Y cable ...

Actually a Y-cable can work. But it has to be supported by the video card.

I forget the exact models I used, but I bought a Dell computer with a dual monitor capable video card. The video card had a single VGA connector, and it came with a Y-cable. Hooking up the two monitors resulted in exactly what you have explained, the same picture on both monitors.

But Dell did not provide the latest driver. I went to the video card manufacturers site and downloaded the latest driver. This new driver allowed the video to span accross two monitors.

Collapse -

My display properties

by mpd881 In reply to It can work

When I check the setting tab on my display properties, it shows two monitors on it. The first display show my flat panel monitor on RADEON X300 Series. The second display shows (default Monitor) on RADEON X300 Series Secondary. Do you think this means my card is capable of this? If not, do you know why I get a 'Secondary' display from the same card?

Collapse -

This sounds like a job for

by Dr Dij In reply to My display properties

ATI tech support.

Having two vga ports sounds simpler, but if it works it works!
(see next post, radeon 7000 supports 2 mons)

Collapse -


by jdmercha In reply to My display properties

It looks like that monitor will do what you want. I couldn't find the manuals on the ATI site, but I did find this on the Dell site:

Collapse -

That's the Y cable!

by Dr Dij In reply to Possibly

I thought he was talking about a Y cable onto a straight VGA connection.

I actually have something like this, which I used with my old video card, for some reason I can't remember, I had to switch between two monitors or use two.

The same screen is on both, Since only one set of video comes thru, it couldn't be more than one screen.

ATI's connector, which evidently is for radeons and allinwonders, has the two separate vga connectors at the end of the Y cable. This cable comes with the card. It is not vga connector on the computer side tho.

you can't just hook up a regular vga connector tho with anything and expect two different screens.

that was a good link.

Collapse -

While that is a Y Cable

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Possibly

It's actually a DVI interface that it works from allowing the 2 seperate image streams to pass down the cable and allow the two monitors to be displayed.

With the specified Card there is a VGA, SVGA and DVJ output on the card so I suppose that it would be possible to support 3 monitors off this card 1 from the VGA and 2 from the DVI that is provided of course you can find one of these Y Cables.


Collapse -

Well according to ATI

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to My display properties

There are 3 outputs on the X300 ATI Video Card. The one that it sounds as if you are using is the VGA then there is a DVI and SVGA the last is used to feed TV's and the like.

With a DVI poutput you can get a monitor that accepts DVI input or a DVI to VGA converter which can either be a small plug or a lead depending on where you buy it from. But both will work perfectly and allow you to organise your Dual Display as you want it to appear. You can drag the second monitor around the first by placing the curser and left clicking on the mouse and dragging it to where you want it to appear generally most people use it on the right hand side where the default location is but it can be moved to the Top, Bottom, Left and finially just left on the right hand side.

This will allow you to extend your desktop to 2 monitors which will display different pictures the one thing that you can not do with this setup is to have the same picture on both monitors but you can open up one Window and drag it ontop both Desktops, have different programs running on both Desktops or whatever else you require.

So for things like Spreed Sheets you can drag one sheet onto both monitors or a Map so you get better detail or a bigger image. It really all depends on what it is that you want to do here. But from my experience I generally find that people have different programs running on the different monitors and cut & paste as required for their work. It makes moving things around a lot easier as you can imediatly see what something is going to look like while still having the original image on a different monitor to compare against.


Collapse -

Usually it has to do with the card

by RknRlKid In reply to Multiple Monitors

I have a Radeon 7000 card that uses a Y-cable. It is very card specific though.

Collapse -

No a Y cable is like

by zlitocook In reply to Multiple Monitors

A cheap video card it only lets you span the desk top. You only let the user see their desktop on two screens. A better video card (It will cost more) lets the user see two or more programs on both screens. A good video card will let you load one program one one screen and another on the second screen.

Related Discussions

Related Forums