Turn Off Multiple Monitors & Video Cards?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by rdav, Jul 6, 2009.

  1. rdav macrumors 6502

    rdav

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2007
    Location:
    So/California.
    #1
    Equipment.
    We are building a rig which will have eight ACD 23" monitors running off a mac pro (2009) 8-core via four video cards. Currently at three monitors and one video card. The setup is for a specialized use, but is also to be used for more standard applications that do not need all those screens.

    Problem.
    The current setup already uses about 395W and this will increase with more monitors and video cards. Is there a way to turn off all but one (or two) ACD monitors (and the unused video cards) when not required? The latest Display page in OS-X 10.5.7 System Preferences has removed the option to turn off a monitor (and not the Mac Pro itself) via the side button. Tried turning off the power supply, but this is bad for the monitors, is impractical and causes other problems. No rear-monitor USB2 or Firewire400 ports are used (for now).

    Solution.
    Any ideas?
     
  2. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #2
    You cannot selectively turn off a monitor. You can unplug it.

    Oh, and you're not providing power over your monitor connection. That's what the power cable on each monitor is for.
     
  3. macuser154 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    He isn't talking about that. Monitors that he doesn't need but are on waste electricity.
     
  4. rdav thread starter macrumors 6502

    rdav

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2007
    Location:
    So/California.
    #4
    Monitors / Manual Unplug.

    Thanks for your response.
    I realize that I can manually unplug the power cable for six monitors (as per the post) but this is an impractical solution and may damage the monitors. And yes, I understand that the DVI cable is for signal, not power.



     
  5. rdav thread starter macrumors 6502

    rdav

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2007
    Location:
    So/California.
    #5
    Yes, the unused monitors waste energy.

    Exactly, thanks.
    Estimated at about 420W for the six unused monitors, plus the three extra Video Cards 225W. Approx 650W extra (wasted).

     
  6. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    Location:
    Munich, Germany
    #6
    You can put the power supply of the unused monitors on a master switch and switch them manually of from a central point.
     
  7. jimmypopjr macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    Location:
    Philly
    #7
    this actually reminds me. Anyone have an anecdote about the first electricity bill they got after getting a mac pro?

    I haven't gotten the bill yet, and I'm nervous to see what the damage is. It was powered off for a whole week, and when it's not converting video I try to power it down as well, but I know this thing sucks up a whole lot more than my mac mini did.
     
  8. rdav thread starter macrumors 6502

    rdav

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2007
    Location:
    So/California.
    #8
    Mac Pro / Juice?

    In theory, the latest Mac Pro (2009) models use a lot less juice than the older ones. Are Macs generally more power-hungry than PCs?

    Quote: "Power usage is amazingly good for this class machine. Past Mac Pros would hit the 550 watt range under full load; the MP09 maxes out at about 350 watts under the most severe load."

     
  9. TerrapinStation macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2009
    #9
    10.5.7

    Display page in OS-X 10.5.7 System Preferences has removed the option to turn off a monitor (and not the Mac Pro itself) via the side button.

    Hey rdav.
    Just checked sys prefs>displays>options, and there is an option to tell the power button what to do.

    I use 30" and 23" ACDs and use the power buttons all the time.
    Not an easy solution if you're running 8 displays, but the option is there in 10.5.7.
     
  10. Andrew Henry macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    #10
    Mine actually went down, but then again it also switched from winter to summer and i have electric heaters :cool:
     
  11. Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #11
    I'm not sure what the question is. I assume you already know:

    How to turn on and off the monitors :)
    And that an installed PCIe card is always powered on,

    So I'll assume the question is about telling OS X not to stretch the desktop across the monitors that are turned off and limit space to however many are turned on.

    OS X auto detects "monitor-present" during startup. If having them off still registers with OS X as "monitor-present" then what about a cheap-o AB switch on each monitor? I think they're about $30 each.

    If you're using HDMI there are no Power Button behavior options in prefs.
     
  12. Kosh66 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2004
    #12
    Yeah that would be best. Just put 7 of the 8 (or 6 of the 8) monitors on the same powerbar and hit the powerbar button. As for the installed cards, there is nothing you can do, as all installed cards are powered. But isn't there a power feature in the new GPUs where they use less power when not doing heavy 3D work.
     

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