[vcf-midatlantic] OT: One modern PC, two screens

Systems Glitch systems.glitch at gmail.com
Thu May 19 09:52:15 EDT 2016

As a programmer/electronics guy, multi-monitors is pretty much the most productive thing ever. If you have only one video output you will need to buy a second video card. If you're going to plug in a non-4K display, it can be pretty much any old video card. 

If you're going 4K, which I highly recommend if you stare at the computer screen all day, you'll need to buy a card with DisplayPort (or whatever newer HDMI rev supports 4K) and explicit 4K support. I went with the cheapest short-length NVidia card at the time, I think it was around $80-100 from NewEgg.

If you've never, ever used multi-monitor, I'd say start with just a basic cheapie LCD and graphics card, and upgrade to 4K if you really like it. 4K is *much* easier on the eyes, and yes the decent 4K displays cost $300-400, but like all decent displays, they're going to last longer than buying the cheapest 4K TV from China. Personally, I have a 24" Dell P2415Q, but I'd recommend going with the 27" P2715Q -- I thought 27" might be too low of a pixel density, having worked with 27" iMacs at a previous job, but it definitely would not be.

Note that you're not limited to *two* monitors. A lot of people like three, with one or two in portrait mode. Portrait mode is really nice for viewing full PDF documents, datasheets, et c.


On Thu, 19 May 2016 09:40:21 -0400
Evan Koblentz via vcf-midatlantic <vcf-midatlantic at lists.vintagecomputerfederation.org> wrote:

> Starting to think I need a second computer monitor. My PC is 5 years old 
> and only has the one VGA port (no DVI/HDMI), so do I need to get a video 
> card? For those who've done it -- do you find it distracting to have 
> your display spread across two screens? A priority is to spend as little 
> as possible.

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