DVI KVM switch?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Lord Blackadder, Aug 25, 2005.

  1. macrumors G4

    Lord Blackadder

    I have the dubious honor of buying computers for the lab where I work - stuff I will never be able to afford myself. And I don't get to use them. :(

    I recently got the green light to spec out an insane performance computer - but it had to be from Dell (corporate policy). :rolleyes:

    Still, I got to go to the website and check off every option - a Dual Xeon with a striped RAID array, 4GB RAM, Quadro video card etc....Fun!

    Recently I was instructed to buy a Powerbook for the same lucky b*stard that got the Xeon. She's running a 20" Sony flat panel.

    Enough of the back story. Any recommendations on a good DVI KVM (or monitor only) switch that I could get so the Powerbook could share the monitor?
  2. macrumors G4

    Lord Blackadder

    None? For some reason DVI switches are much more expensive, at least at CDW and like vendors...
  3. macrumors 6502a

    I haven't been able to find a reasonably cheap one, i am waiting for a belkin flip with dvi, i mean who builds a kvm not compatable with the computer its designed for?????? :confused: :confused: :confused:
  4. macrumors 68000


    DVI KVMs aren't cheap because they actually have to put quality circuitry in them so as to not hopelessly degrade the DVI signals passing through them.

    You should be able to get something for under $200 easily enough, especially if you don't need to support >1600x1200 resolutions. You can get an IOGEAR GCS1762 for $175ish at Newegg, for example.
  5. macrumors G4

    Lord Blackadder

    Well, that may be a problem if the Sony flat panel's native res is bigger than 1600x1200. It is a wide aspect ratio display, after all.

    Thanks for the tips though, the best device I found so far was the IOGEAR. I may go with something from Black Box if I'm allowed to burn that much money...

    I always hated the cost of adapters and cables. I can't tell you how many times I've had two devices, each of which functioned, but in order to connect the damn things I had to shell out a bunch of cash for a silly adapter... :mad:
  6. macrumors newbie


    I have an Aten CS1764 4port DVI KVM. Price was around $275. Works fine. I have a mini, a G5, a powerbook and an iMac (keyboard only) hooked to it.

    Had problems connecting a PC simply because I don't have DVI out on my PC.
  7. macrumors 68000


    I'm not aware of any Sony widescreen 20" LCD displays on the market, unless I just haven't been paying attention. The only 20" Sonys I've seen are regular aspect ratio 1600x1200 displays.

    If you do want to have the option of driving a 1920x1200 display in the future, then Gefen has a few DVI KVM choices to consider, as well.

  8. macrumors member

    I have the IOGear mentioned and yes it does say it only supports 1600x1200 however i am running above that at this moment with no problems what-so-ever. I am currently running an Apple Cinema Display 23" at native resolution 1920x1200. You have to remember DVI = Digital Video Interface; so you are just passing 0's and 1's down the cable not analog wavelengths.

    So to recap... you CAN run higher than spec'd resolutions on the IOGear DVI KVM.
  9. macrumors 68000


    Well, I might just have to hold you to that recommendation. If it doesn't work... well, I've been looking for an excuse to visit Ecuador. :D

    But I'll probably just spend a bit more money and get the Gefen unit instead. I actually don't own a 1920x1200 display yet (I run a 19" LCD at 1280x1024 for now), but I agree with Blackadder's previously-expessed sentiments and don't want to spend more on making connections than is absolutely necessary.

    I had a lengthy and fascinating discussion with one of Iogear's engineers at Macworld San Francisco about what goes in to making a quality DVI KVM switch, and it's very tricky business. He said they were working closely with Apple to certify their KVMs to run at 1920x1200 at the highest quality, so I was disappointed when their DVI KVMs hit the shelves many months later rated at only 1600x1200.
  10. macrumors G4

    Lord Blackadder

    I'll have to check out that Gefen, I just got quoted $229 on the IOGEAR switch from my reseller - If I can get the gefen within $100 I may go for it (I AM spending other people's money... :p )

    I'm pretty sure that the Sony is a wide aspect ratio screen, but I'm going right now to go check the res. Thanks all.

    EDIT: The Sony display is a 23" flat panel running at 1920x1200, so I think I'm going to get the Gefen unit for $299...our CDW rep said he couldn't find it in their product page, so I said never mind I'll get it from Amazon.com. He looked a bit sheepish... :D

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