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Hardware Thread, Graphic card to run 4 displays in Technical; Originally Posted by j17sparky I believe you only need active for Dual Link DVI. You can run 1080p@60hz on single ...
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    Quote Originally Posted by j17sparky View Post
    I believe you only need active for Dual Link DVI. You can run 1080p@60hz on single link
    That's correct, you only need it for the higher dual link resolutions. I use an active Display Port->DVI with my (now old) Apple Cinema display. This adapter is resold by several companies Scan.co.uk: 490-11917 - Dell / Bizlink Active DisplayPort to DVI (Dual Link) Adapter - 1080P Ready - not sure if there are any others on the market, but it works well.

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    Some of you are way overcomplicating this, all you need is a second graphics card, no need for Crossfire/SLI, just stick them both in and make sure the drivers are installed, easy 4 displays providing the cards have two usable heads.

    Grab a GTX460, stick it in as a replacement for the 7100, you should be good to go.
    Last edited by Cue; 3rd January 2011 at 12:01 PM.

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    Remember the budget of £150. You'd be hard pressed to find a gtx460 for that or under

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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    Remember the budget of £150. You'd be hard pressed to find a gtx460 for that or under
    I think you may be pleasantly surprised...

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    I've been looking at a new GFX card for gaming over the last few weeks so have done abit of research. If you want 4 monitors from one card the best option imo would be to go for a ATI 68xx/69xx.
    Eyefinity, UVD3, And AMD APP Compute : AMD Radeon HD 6870 And 6850: Is Barts A Step Forward?

    The best pick imo being the 6870. It has 2 DVI and 2 displayport and is pretty much the same as the 5870 performance wise which still retails at £200+ . So for the price of teh card plus 2 £10 DP to DVI convertors you're set.

    The total spend comes in over your budget at £190 - PowerColor HD 6870 1GB GDDR5 Dual DVI HDMI DP Out.. | Ebuyer.com + 2x Scan.co.uk: Mini Display Port 1.1a to DVI Adaptor Cable (Apple Compatible) - HDMINIDP-DVI

    But if you are happy with the 6850 you will come in under budget - PowerColor HD 6850 1GB GDDR5 Dual DVI HDMI DP Out.. | Ebuyer.com + 2x Scan.co.uk: Mini Display Port 1.1a to DVI Adaptor Cable (Apple Compatible) - HDMINIDP-DVI

    In respect to multi monitor gaming - yeah you aint going to be able to run 4 monitors off one of these card, but then you aint going to find a card under £400 which will be able to either as you would probably want to be looking towards 4gbs of frame buffer to handle that sort of resolution; 2x 2gb card in crossfire!
    Last edited by j17sparky; 3rd January 2011 at 03:20 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Even Apple only sell passive ones with their DisplayPort fitted notebooks.
    I'm using an Apple Mini DisplayPort to Dual-Link DVI adapter for my Mac mini and this is active.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur View Post
    I'm using an Apple Mini DisplayPort to Dual-Link DVI adapter for my Mac mini and this is active.
    Again, dual-link. Not plain old DVI.

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    Even with plain old single-link DVI, DosBox would still need to buy at least two active Mini-DisplayPort to single-link DVI adapters if he went with an Eyefinity Radeon HD graphics card. These cost around £24 each. Alternatively he could spend a few pounds more and get the dual-link equivalent for £29 which will support resolutions higher than 1920◊1200 (may be useful in the future?).

    http://support.amd.com/us/eyefinity/...y-dongles.aspx

    Connectivity Requirements: AMD Eyefinity technology is supported by graphics cards in the ATI Radeon™ HD 5400 series and higher. These cards can support up to six monitors (depending on the model), subject to the following restrictions:

    • A maximum of 2 legacy monitors (VGA, DVI or HDMI) can be enabled simultaneously, provided that each monitor is connected either directly or via a "passive" DisplayPort™ adapter/dongle. "Passive" adapters/dongles will NOT support more than 2 legacy monitors.
    • To enable support for more than 2 monitors, "active" DisplayPort™ adapters/dongles are required (or monitors with direct DisplayPort™ connectivity must be used).
    • Approved “active” adapters have no general connectivity restrictions with AMD Eyefinity technology.

  9. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur View Post
    Even with plain old single-link DVI, DosBox would still need to buy at least two active Mini-DisplayPort to single-link DVI adapters if he went with an Eyefinity Radeon HD graphics card. These cost around £24 each. Alternatively he could spend a few pounds more and get the dual-link equivalent for £29 which will support resolutions higher than 1920◊1200 (may be useful in the future?).

    AMD Eyefinity Validated Dongles
    Indeed, with the Eyefinity stuff. Which is why I'd recommend the FirePro 2460 I linked earlier - it doesn't need active adapters (at least, there's no mention of it on the amd site). It even comes with a single passive miniDP - DVI adapter in the box. The only restriction when using DVI adapters is that the 4 ports become '2 pairs', and each pair must have identical monitors (ie. 2 x identical monitors in pair A and 2 x identical monitors in pair B, but the monitors don't have to be the same across pairs (ie. pair A does not have to be the same as pair B)). The only other restriction is that those monitors have to be set up identically in the pairs too (ie. monitors in pair A must both use same resolution etc...).

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Which is why I'd recommend the FirePro 2460 I linked earlier - it doesn't need active adapters (at least, there's no mention of it on the AMD site).
    From what I can gather, the GPU used in the FirePro 2460 is exactly the same as the one in the Radeon HD 5450 (RV810 a.k.a. Cedar). As mentioned below, the 5000 series cards are limited to driving a maximum of two DVI or HDMI displays because the GPU only has two TDMS clock generators.

    As weíve covered a number of times now, AMD has been heavily pushing Eyefinity across its entire range of Radeon HD 5000 series cards. Depending on the GPU in use the 5000 series can drive up to several monitors, however because each TMDS transmitter pair necessary for driving a DVI/HDMI port requires an independent clock source, the 5000 series can only drive 2 such ports. The bulk of AMDís flexibility is with DisplayPorts, where they only require 1 clock source between them allowing AMD to offer upwards of 6 DisplayPorts at once. (Source)
    "If youíre already using two DVI connectors on the board, you canít use a passive dongle because, in theory, that would be a third TMDS signal stream," says Roger Quero, technical manager at AMD's GPU Technologies unit. "You can have two passive dongles, and the rest have to be active. Like, if youíre thinking about the six-output card, thatís six mini DisplayPorts. Two of those connections could be passive, putting out TMDS over those ports, then the rest have to be active so that we think itís a DisplayPort monitor."
    Currently, youíll find active adapters available in the market for DisplayPort to VGA and DisplayPort to Dual-Link DVI. Youíll also find passive dongles for DisplayPort to HDMI and DisplayPort to Single-Link DVI. Keep watching, though, and you should soon see a DisplayPort to Single-Link DVI active dongle appear. With this, Eyefinity will be able to support three Single-Link DVI monitors, side-stepping the present two-TDMS-connections-only rule. (Source)
    The entire HD 5000 series products have Eyefinity capabilities supporting 3 outputs. The Radeon HD 5870 Eyefinity Edition, however, supports six mini DisplayPort outputs, all of which can be simultaneously active.

    The display unit on Evergreen family of GPUs was completely replaced with one that has two DACs which are used to drive the DVI ports in analog mode (for example, when a DVI to VGA converter attached to a DVI port), a maximum of six digital transmitters that can output either a DisplayPort signal or a TMDS signal which is used for either DVI or HDMI, and two clock signal generators needed to drive the digital outputs in TMDS mode. Dual-link DVI displays use two of the two TMDS/DisplayPort transmitters and one clock signal each. Single-link DVI displays and HDMI displays use one TMDS/DisplayPort transmitter and one clock signal each. DisplayPort displays use one TMDS/DisplayPort transmitter and no clock signal. (Source)
    The Eyefinity whitepaper linked to in the FirePro Resource Center also implies this (see the example configuration on page 4).

    If only one or two DVI/HDMI monitors are attached through a DisplayPort connector, then only simple passive adapters are required. With a passive adapter the GPU outputs the display signal required for the monitor with no conversion occurring within the adapter itself
    AMDs website doesn't state why it is necessary to pair the displays into two identical groups. It would be interesting to know if this is used as a way around the TDMS limitation?

  11. #26

    plexer's Avatar
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    If you are using displayport to vga with a passive adapter using these cards then I presume you can run 4 without an issue as this only affects dvi/hdmi?

    Thanks.

    Ben

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    VGA has the same limitations (at least officially). See post #23 above.

    There are some reports of people managing to get 3 x LCDs working with DP > VGA adapters, but this isn't 100% reliable (flickering and the screen going blank for several seconds seem to be common issues).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dos_Box View Post
    And yes, it should game well also
    2 x AMD Radeon HD 5770s? This would cost £215 in total, but you could use standard DVI cables since each card has two DVI ports.

    In terms of gaming performance, a single 5770 generally matches a 4870; while two cards in CrossFire can easily beat a Radeon HD 5850 and sometimes even a 5870.

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    Primary concern is to get two GPUs that can run under the same graphics driver for max compatibility. If they are not bridged using SLI or Crossfire then Windows and most apps should handle it fine. Crossfire/SLI will help with some games but best results for multimoniter gaming are with games that actually support multiple moniters like Supreme Comander 2 or with the help of something like eyefinity.

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