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Old 01-22-2013, 09:33 AM   #1
Kaido
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Default Best GPU setup for 8 monitors?

I have a buddy who does financial trading and wants 8 or 9 monitors setup on a new-build computer. Well, probably 1080p HDMI televisions since you can get a 32" TV for about the same price as a 28" monitor, and all he needs to do is look at charts, so fine dot pitch isn't a big requirement. The computer will be a basic i5, 16 gigs of RAM, 120gb SSD type of setup running Windows 7 Pro 64-bit.

I'm not sure what the best route is to go for the video card. For $300, I can get 3 GT640's, which have 2 DVI and 1 HDMI (they support 4 monitors out each, but the 4th is VGA so meh):

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814121643

Or perhaps go with an Eyefinity setup, but active Mini/Displayport adapters to HDMI can add up price-wise, plus cards with more than 4 ports of any kind get really pricey really fast. It's not a super budget project (so it doesn't necessarily need to be on the cheap side), but the charts run off Java or something, so they don't really require much horsepower. We tested a USB to DVI video card, but it was too laggy, so we need at least some kind of GPU. We also tested integrated HD3000 and that worked OK. So 3 GT640's, all dual-bay, setup on a board like this is what I'm thinking right now:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813157336

So in theory, that would give me the ability to run up to 9 digital displays using (3) HDMI and (6) DVI to HDMI cables. I can't think of a cheaper or easier setup to go with, but I don't do many multi-monitor setups like this so I figured I'd ask!
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Old 01-22-2013, 09:42 AM   #2
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For ease of setup, NVS 420. Done and done. Cost shouldn't be a consideration when you're looking at it from an ease of setup. One half decent trade will cover the cost easily.
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Old 01-22-2013, 01:20 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Railgun View Post
For ease of setup, NVS 420. Done and done. Cost shouldn't be a consideration when you're looking at it from an ease of setup. One half decent trade will cover the cost easily.
So basically a pair of NVS 420's (2 x 4 DVI) and Nvidia's Nview software?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814133258

From a reviewer:

Quote:
512 MB memory is a bit subpar for today's standards. Only 16 Cuda cores and does not support DirectX 11. When given these specs, the card is VERY expensive. 3rd display lags quite a bit on occasion.

...

After testing various settings, I have determined it is not worth the price I paid for it. Newer and cheaper Multi-display Nvidia cards easily out-perform this card and the price for this dated card is still $500.
So is it worth spending $880 on a pair of Quadro cards vs. $300 for three GeForce cards? Windows 7 seems to have improved multi-monitor configuration since the XP days. I've setup 4 and 5 monitor configurations without much hassle on 7 in the past, using multiple cards, but never as many as 8 or 9. From what I've seen of the trading software, it's basically just a maximizable window per monitor, so as long as the monitors can be arranged via software settings, I think it would work pretty well. So is it really that difficult to setup that many monitors these days using basic cards, or is the extra $580 truly justified?
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Old 01-22-2013, 02:06 PM   #4
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2x MSI 7770 GHz (HDMI + DVI + 2x miniDP) $90 AR each
+
4x PowerColor miniDP to single link DVI $25 each

= $280 AR

Will need six DVI cables and two HDMI cables.

I have never actually set up anything like this so I hope someone can confirm this'll work. If not, sorry for wasting your time ;D
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Old 01-22-2013, 03:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaido View Post
So basically a pair of NVS 420's (2 x 4 DVI) and Nvidia's Nview software?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814133258

From a reviewer:



So is it worth spending $880 on a pair of Quadro cards vs. $300 for three GeForce cards? Windows 7 seems to have improved multi-monitor configuration since the XP days. I've setup 4 and 5 monitor configurations without much hassle on 7 in the past, using multiple cards, but never as many as 8 or 9. From what I've seen of the trading software, it's basically just a maximizable window per monitor, so as long as the monitors can be arranged via software settings, I think it would work pretty well. So is it really that difficult to setup that many monitors these days using basic cards, or is the extra $580 truly justified?
You said for all intents to ignore cost.

All our trading screens use these cards. No hodge-podge of cables. No driver issues. No special software. It just works. We still have xp machines but we also have 7 and again, it just works.

As for the cost, I'm sure that there are cheaper solutions, and we perhaps get some volume discounts, but I'm only suggestion a solution that will work for what you need as we have the exact same setup.
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Old 01-22-2013, 05:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
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You said for all intents to ignore cost.

All our trading screens use these cards. No hodge-podge of cables. No driver issues. No special software. It just works. We still have xp machines but we also have 7 and again, it just works.

As for the cost, I'm sure that there are cheaper solutions, and we perhaps get some volume discounts, but I'm only suggestion a solution that will work for what you need as we have the exact same setup.
Sounds real good! Are any of your trading machines running dual cards perchance?
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Old 01-22-2013, 05:54 PM   #7
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you need to tell us what monitors and hardware he already has or is willing to replace.

if he doesnt have any monitors he's particularly attached to, i would get 2 eyefinity5 6770 cards for ~$110 each, and find some cheap dell monitors with native displayport. then all you need are 10 mini displayport to displayport cables from monoprice for $4 each.

if he doesnt mind spending a little more, i would suggest getting 4 dell u2913wm 2560x1080 ultra wide aspect ratio monitors (~$700 each i think, equivalent to 2x 4:3 screens side by side) but you can daisy chain them and only use one displayport out on the video card(very clean cabling-wise).
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Old 01-22-2013, 06:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Railgun View Post
For ease of setup, NVS 420. Done and done. Cost shouldn't be a consideration when you're looking at it from an ease of setup. One half decent trade will cover the cost easily.
If you're going the NVS route, I see no reason to go with the 420. The 510 is a far newer model with quite a bit more VRAM and processing power backing it up.

http://www.amazon.com/PNY-DisplayPor.../dp/B009S2F268

The model with the DVI accessory set comes with all of the parts you need.
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gorobei View Post
you need to tell us what monitors and hardware he already has or is willing to replace.

if he doesnt have any monitors he's particularly attached to, i would get 2 eyefinity5 6770 cards for ~$110 each, and find some cheap dell monitors with native displayport. then all you need are 10 mini displayport to displayport cables from monoprice for $4 each.

if he doesnt mind spending a little more, i would suggest getting 4 dell u2913wm 2560x1080 ultra wide aspect ratio monitors (~$700 each i think, equivalent to 2x 4:3 screens side by side) but you can daisy chain them and only use one displayport out on the video card(very clean cabling-wise).
Right now he's leaning towards eight (8) 32" LED LCD TV's with HDMI input. He has a bunch of 28" 1080p Hanns-G monitors on his other system and is happy with the resolution, but wants a bigger physical size. Plan is just to mount them on the wall using some Monoprice arms. Pretty straightforward. Doesn't require fine dot pitch or a higher resolution (although that would be slick!).
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:40 PM   #10
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HD5870 eyefinity 6 edition plus the cheapest card you can get your hands on.
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