Triple Displays Possible with Mac OS X!!!

Discussion in 'Picture Gallery' started by noahslater, Oct 4, 2004.

  1. noahslater macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2004
    After weeks of researching and no mention of triple monitor suport on the Mac website I finnaly took the risk and bought my third Apple display. The third one is driven by a flashed ATI Radeon 7000 64MB PCI from eBay.

    So there you go, it IS possible! See attachments for pictures.

    Attached Files:

  2. edesignuk Moderator emeritus


    Mar 25, 2002
    London, England
    Of course it's possible!

    Looks freakin fantastic though BTW *green with envy* )
  3. noahslater thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2004
    You would be suprised....

    I was so unsure if it was possible because there was no documentation about more than two display and I could not find any user reports on the net.

    In the end it involved the following process:

    1. Hook up two monitors to the AGP card pre-installed.
    2. Buy a Mac compatable PCI card and flash it to be more powerfull

    BTW this involved buying a discontinued card from eBay as I could not find any compatible card for sale new.

    3. Hook up third monitor to PCI card

    BTW, at this point Quartz grinded to a halt an simple things like drag and drop and expose stopped working.

    4. Install to get Quartz working again
    5. Speeded up the card using

    Not exactly plug'n'play!!! :)
  4. Peyote macrumors 6502a


    Apr 11, 2002
    You can afford 3 Apple displays, but can't afford anything other than a picnic table to put them on?

    Just kidding man....looks really fun to mess around on. Nice setup :D
  5. noahslater thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2004
    Picnic table? :)

    I'll have you know that the table in question is a £500 frosted glass dining table from Habitat actually!!! ;)
  6. Peyote macrumors 6502a


    Apr 11, 2002

    Yah, I noticed the glass...helluva lot better than my desk! I've got a giant wooden door sitting on two cabinets that usually go in kitchens. It's all painted up purdy though
  7. noahslater thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2004
    Just to let you know...

    I'm not actually just some rich dude with more money than sense...

    I could only afford all that kit (about 7-8K) because I got an inheritance... god I don't even want to think about how long it would take for me to save for that on my regular pay packet!!!
  8. Peyote macrumors 6502a


    Apr 11, 2002

    No, if you were one of those guys, you'd have twin or triple 23" screens on VESA mounts. Or the 30 inch displays if they were available yet.

    Still, props to ya homie...definately a very cool setup
  9. noahslater thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2004
    Yeah, fully

    I do find it a little amusing, if not satisfying, to know that the combined cost of all three displays was less than the 30" display by itself.

    I know what I would prefer! :)
  10. Macmaniac macrumors 68040


    That is so hot, nice job man, I wish I could have a second or even third display on my computer, unfortunately I have an iMac so I'm not lucky like you. Good job!
  11. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Nov 1, 2001
    Very nice set up - bastard! :D

    So what exactly are you doing that you need three screens? :D

  12. Mechcozmo macrumors 603


    Jul 17, 2004
    Oooooooh. Shiny.

    I so wish I could do that...just wondering: if the PCI card has 2 outputs, can you drive 4 displays total?

    That would be even nicer. Not that 3 displays is bad, y'know. It is, in the immortal words of Homestar Runner, "Fweakin Awesome!"
  13. cb911 macrumors 601


    Mar 12, 2002
    BrisVegas, Australia
    oh sweet!!! :D

    could you post some larger pics though? i wanna see them in all their glory.

    do does it really drag OS X down having the 3rd screen? is it still usable?

    you're going to have to search for some 3 screen wallpapers now. i know Mandoulx has dual screen walls, but good luck finding 3.
  14. aswitcher macrumors 603


    Oct 8, 2003
    Canberra OZ
    An off side question...a new G5 dually with one of those really exy cards for the 30"...since its a "dual dual" could it support FOUR 23" apple monitors...?
  15. Mechcozmo macrumors 603


    Jul 17, 2004
    No, there are only two outputs. 2 30" displays, though. The Dual DVI refers to the DVI connection using all the pins on it, instead of just half. If you got a PCI video card, however, then you might be able to...dunno. Any filthy rich people out there willing to try it? ;)
  16. BrianKonarsMac macrumors 65816

    Apr 28, 2004
    Mac OS X can support as many monitors as:

    1. you have outputs for.
    2. you have bandwidth for.

    with only one AGP slot, it's hard to get a 3rd or 4 monitor without a PCI GPU or some form of splitter (none that i know of). a better card than your discontinued 7000 would have been the 9200 (which costs about the same) with it's 128mb of VRAM and improved components/functionality. I think it might have tv output as well, so you could even go to TV as well for a 4th pseudo-monitor.

    the 6800 can only drive two monitors, no matter how small they may be. it would be difficult to attach 4 monitors with only 2 connections. add a PCI card and get a VGA to DVI adapter and you could probably get 4 monitors going...a 30" would look much nicer and save real estate/power draw.
  17. MacNut macrumors Core


    Jan 4, 2002
    How does it look when playing a dvd, Does it spit the movie on all 3 screens or would it be too stretched out to watch comfortably.
  18. neut macrumors 68000


    Nov 27, 2001
    here (for now)
    of course you can. :) You can even put 3 monitors on a Powerbook (sidecar).

    i like what i see. Flash dev.? Video?

  19. cb911 macrumors 601


    Mar 12, 2002
    BrisVegas, Australia
    yeah, can you post a small video of those 3 monitors all in action? :D that'd be sweet!
  20. the future macrumors 65816

    Jul 17, 2002
  21. russed macrumors 68000


    Jan 16, 2004
    mmm ... nice (i will go any wipe the druel off my desk now!), seriously, i'm envious!
  22. Fender macrumors regular


    May 9, 2004
    Toronto, CANADA
    Do you know the exact name of the desk? That's exactly what I've been looking for. I'd love to get 2.
  23. zakee00 macrumors regular


    Jul 7, 2004
    Anchorage, Alaska
    wow dude that is SO even have the little blue wheel thingy ;)
    so what DO you do with those monitors? And btw, i heard that you can get a dual-dvi splitter, splitting one dual link port into 2 regular dvi ports. therefore, a 6800 ultra can have 4 regular dvi outputs. is this true? that would be cool, then get a 9200 and have 5 monitors :D
  24. solvs macrumors 603


    Jun 25, 2002
    LaLaLand, CA
    Yeah, if you hooked up another couple of monitors to a 9200 you could have a really nice setup. :p I heard awhile ago someone hooked up like 10 monitors to a Mac. This was on OS 8 or 9. Always been there. OS X just makes it better. Pretty much limited only to the # of PCI slots (I think the Performa 9600 had like 6), and even then you could get an external box to run more PCI devices.

    Bit expensive though.
  25. Buckaroo macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2003
    I've always new that Macs would support multiple monitors. I only have two of my monitors hooked up to my G5 and the other two are connected to my PowerBook and a Windows machine.

    I suppose since I don't fire up the windows machine or the PowerBook that often, I could pop in another video card. That would really expand my desktop.

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