MacPro and Multiple Monitors

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by southerndoc, Apr 15, 2010.

  1. southerndoc macrumors 65816

    southerndoc

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Location:
    USA
    #1
    Forgive me if this has been discussed before, but a search didn't reveal the exact answer I was looking for. Lots of discussion of multiple monitors on MBP's though.

    I am considering purchasing a MacPro and want 3 monitors (probably 3 24" or possibly 27" if they are out by the time I purchase the computer). One window I wanted devoted to Windows under VMWare Fusion, another window for my dictation window (I am a physician that does dictations at home), and the third for viewing lab/radiology results when dictating.

    What will i need to set up 3 monitors? Do I need 3 separate video cards, or is one video card enough to drive 3 27" monitors? Is there a way to disable the iSight cameras on the two side monitors and only have the middle monitor's iSight functional?

    Thanks!
     
  2. whyrichard macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2002
    #2
    i run 3 21" monitors, and am planning on getting an apple 30" for the 4th.

    you need two videocards. i have the stock one plue the ati upgrade in my mac pro.

    love it.
    sometimes knda overwhelming. i guess i like to be overwhelmed.

    r.
     
  3. Mackilroy macrumors 68040

    Mackilroy

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2006
    #3
    Unless you find a video card with three ports (easy enough on a PC - don't think there's any Mac-native cards that have three of anything) as the previous poster said, you will need two.

    I'm not familiar with having more than one iSight camera available, but you could always go for non-Apple displays if you don't mind all your displays not matching.
     
  4. southerndoc thread starter macrumors 65816

    southerndoc

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Location:
    USA
    #4
    I prefer to have all Apple displays so they match. Plan to mount them on a stand.

    Do you pick which camera to use with iChat? Or does it randomly pick one when a video chat is started?

    How does the Mac deal with multiple video cards? I want the ability to drag and drop windows across multiple monitors. I'm guessing the video card will do this seamlessly?

    Sorry to sound so retarded with this, but I've never had multiple monitors set up at home.
     
  5. Umbongo macrumors 601

    Umbongo

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Location:
    England
    #5
    If you want to run three 24" Apple displays then currently the solution would be to have three GT 120 graphics cards in your Mac Pro.
     
  6. OneShotos macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #6
    If you use the Nivida GT 120 either 3 card or 2 card. Just 1 GT 120 can run 2 displays.
     
  7. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #7
    Are you sure the ACD would be a good choice for the monitor displaying the various scan images?

    I'm more familiar with other brands such as Eizo Nanao's Color Edge series used for medical image analysis. For the others, the ACD's would be fine (or other decent units, as I'll presume for the moment you'll be spending quite a bit of time in front of the system for this at a time).

    Beyond that, you'd most likely need 2x cards (1x if the HD5870 Eyefinity version could be used - it has 6x Mini DisplayPorts). But if you go with 2x cards, you might need to use at least 1x DVI to MDP adapter (i.e. GT120 + HD4870 = 2x MDP ports + 1x DVI port) that can be accomplished with current offerings in the '08 and newer systems (EFI64 systems).
     
  8. southerndoc thread starter macrumors 65816

    southerndoc

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Location:
    USA
    #8
    I'm not displaying actual images, just reports (I'm not a radiologist). Occasionally I will pull up an image to take a peek at it, but it's not for diagnostic purposes. Those are done real-time at the hospital.
     
  9. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #9
    Ah. Not a problem then. :p
     
  10. Fotog macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2009
    Location:
    Canmore, AB
    #10
    Depending on the connector type, you'll need either 2 or 3 video cards.

    I'm currently running dual ACD 23" and a Dell 22" from an XFX HD4870 and the stock 7300GT. Moving windows across screens is as smooth and seamless as you imagine it would be.

    My only recommendation would be to get faster / better video cards, as the stock units (ex. my 7300GT) have a hard time running dual displays at higher resolutions.

    But, definitely nice having a lot of screen space!
     
  11. TopTrainer macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2009
    #11
    Interesting thread this, I am not clued up on this multi screen stuff but I would also like to try.

    So you can have a different file/illustration on each screen from the same machine and drag things from screen to screen?

    Sorry to sound so dim on this but I really dont have a clue about it:confused:

    Pete
     
  12. Wonderl33t macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    Location:
    Fresno, CA
    #12
    Yes, exactly. You can drag windows from one screen to another. You can have one window displaying in one screen, and another window/program in the other. It is quite sweet
     
  13. southerndoc thread starter macrumors 65816

    southerndoc

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Location:
    USA
    #13
    So I was thinking of something like this as a mounting solution: http://www.ergotron.com/Products/tabid/65/PRDID/128/Default.aspx

    That isn't exactly what I'm looking for since it has a desk pedestal. Is anyone familiar with a triple mount similar to this that has a desk mount (where it's on a arm instead of a pedestal)?
     
  14. gotzero macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2007
    Location:
    Mid-Atlantic, US
    #14
    Multiple monitor (and 30") setups are a little much for Ergotron Arms. I have a few of the LX arms and was disappointed to find that the 30"s were just too much. If I were doing it, I would get an LX mount for each monitor, and you can then manipulate them separately.
     
  15. southerndoc thread starter macrumors 65816

    southerndoc

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Location:
    USA
    #15
    Looks like the 24" ACD's weigh 21 lbs each. Most of the monitor mounts I've found on the internet only support 10 lbs per monitor. The Ergotron supports up to 48 lbs total.

    I was really looking forward to having them mounting above my desk!
     
  16. diazj3 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #16
    Try the sturdier Ergotron MX arms, which work well with my 24" HP displays. They are single display arms, but hold the 30" ACD just fine. I'm sure I've seen multiple 24" arrays in NewEgg, but that offer limited mobility for each one...
     
  17. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #17
    You could take a look at Chief Manufacturing. They've a dual adjustable arm desk mount unit that are rated for 20lbs. per monitor (KCY220 Series). Then use a single for the 3rd monitor (KCG110 Series is the same as the dual unit in terms of armature design; the single arm units all seem to be rated for 25lbs.). I'd be willing to bet they'd handle the 24" ACD's just fine (tension is adjustable). They also come in silver as well as black, if it matters to you.

    All the single units that can handle 3+ units though, are all similar to the unit you located and linked above.

    Hope this helps. :)
     

Share This Page