Who here is running identical dual monitors?

VirtualRain

macrumors 603
Original poster
Aug 1, 2008
6,304
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Vancouver, BC
How do you set them up in front of you and how do you make use of them...

Question 1: Setup...

Do you have your primary monitor directly in front of you with the 2nd one off to the right (or left)?

Or do you have them positioned such that the split between them is right in the middle of your seating position?

Or something else?

Photos would be great!

Question 2: Use...

Do you usually span your primary app across both monitors (FCP, Photoshop, or whatever else you are using)?

Or do you run your primary app on one display and use the other for supporting material (finder, email, etc.)?
 

splitpea

macrumors 65816
Oct 21, 2009
1,010
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Among the starlings
I use monitors of identical sizes from different manufacturers (same panel; calibrated to match almost perfectly). I keep them just about centered, but use the primary monitor (on the left) for most stuff.

I mostly use the secondary monitor for reference and distractions -- so IM windows, photoshop palettes, reference websites, Word docs I'm copy/pasting from, etc. Oh, and the Actions window in Flash, which is my #1 reason for needing dual monitors in the first place. :p

I suppose centering the primary monitor might make more sense, but they probably wouldn't fit on my desk that way.
 

MrBrekke

macrumors 6502
Oct 1, 2009
277
0
Norway
try to have them in center 2x30" Dell monitors.

primary monitor on left side as it feel most natural.

i am a IT pro so i normally have a lot of terminal servers i am logged on to remotely and other clients. all that on the primary monitor. then normal mail client and web browser and other stander use programs on the right monitor.

that is for work usage only.

home i only have one 30" Dell monitor. and my MBP
 

a350

macrumors regular
Jul 8, 2009
103
0
two identical 20" hp

main sits on right tilted slightly to be aligned with how I sit most the day, second monitor on left mounted on wall

i really only use the second monitor when I use Lightroom
i'll sometimes use it for full screen video while still having other apps open in main screen.
 

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Gymnut

macrumors 68000
Apr 18, 2003
1,848
3
Running 2 Dell 2408wfps side by side with me seated right smack dab in the middle. My right display is hooked into a Matrox MXO; I primarily use FCP6, Avid MC 4.0.2, and AE CS4. With FCP and MC, the display hooked up to the Matrox MXO mirrors the Canvas/Record window. In AE, I just use one display, with the other open to tutorial sites, since I'm still a putz.
 

lPHONE

macrumors 6502a
Nov 17, 2009
671
1
My dual monitors are mirrored.
They are back to back so clients can watch what I'm doing in front of me instead of looking over my shoulder, breathing down my back. God, that's so annoying. :rolleyes:
 

jodelli

macrumors 65816
Jan 6, 2008
1,219
2
Windsor, ON, Canada
Left monitor is often primary, but sometimes I'll move the dock to the right monitor.
The split is slightly to the right of center with the right monitor facing me at an angle.
Sometimes I'll use two mice, one each for left and right hand, and thus one for each monitor, sort of. I started doing this at a tech support location a little while back and it speeds things up for me a bit.

Second question:
I'll have active rendering or at least the app running on on the left and supporting programs running on the right side.

Pics later, perhaps. I lent one to my nephew (it's an HP) since he moved in from out west and his own monitor hasn't caught up with him yet.
 

lPHONE

macrumors 6502a
Nov 17, 2009
671
1
Why would you want to look to your left most of the time?

S-
Just feels natural to me lol
I also do that with my MBP hooked up to an ext mon.
It just seems like the Ò menu should be on the left... can't remember why I never positioned it in front of me, but I think it had something to do with the positioning of the i/o ports. But I also have one of those crescent shaped desks and a rollie-chair, so i just kinda thrust my hips if I need to switch monitors... im sure i'll end up with carpel tunnel, cancer or acne or something.
 

VirtualRain

macrumors 603
Original poster
Aug 1, 2008
6,304
115
Vancouver, BC
Interesting insights... I'm inclined to run my primary monitor directly in front of me with the other off to the right. However, that makes it difficult to position the studio monitors on my desk in an unobstructed manner. I may have to opt for positioning them such that I sit right between them and just shift right and left to work on the two screens.

I should get the 2nd monitor tomorrow (picking it up from the local fedex depot as I haven't been home to sign for it in person).

BTW, having never run dual screens on OSX before, does OSX allow you to run dual screen wall paper (eg. one large wallpaper stretched across or two different wall papers)?
 

splitpea

macrumors 65816
Oct 21, 2009
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241
Among the starlings
BTW, having never run dual screens on OSX before, does OSX allow you to run dual screen wall paper (eg. one large wallpaper stretched across or two different wall papers)?
Two separate wallpapers is pretty easy -- when you pull up the desktop background system pref, it puts a separate dialog on each screen.

I don't think you can do a single stretched wallpaper without cutting it up yourself, but if anyone does know a way to do this, I'm eager to hear it.
 

Tesselator

macrumors 601
Jan 9, 2008
4,601
4
Japan
How do you set them up in front of you and how do you make use of them...

Question 1: Setup...

Do you have your primary monitor directly in front of you with the 2nd one off to the right (or left)?
I have the two angled so that they are both pointing at my face like so:


I use a $60 dual monitor stand to achieve this - although I think I paid $45 for it on sale. It's pretty excellent.


I can point the monitors straight down at the desktop and use them as a diffuse light source for photography for example:



Or directly up at the ceiling. There's 180˚ of rotation in that X axis, and there's a 180˚ of rotation (in the Y axis) so it can face the back wall or straight on at me (plus that itself in on a swinging arm. And then there is 360˚ (continuous) Z axis rotation so I can use them in portrait or landscape or even upside-down if I want. ;)




Question 2: Use...

Do you usually span your primary app across both monitors (FCP, Photoshop, or whatever else you are using)?

Or do you run your primary app on one display and use the other for supporting material (finder, email, etc.)?
Case by case. Many of the apps I use have two displays (Bridge in PS, Lightwave, Light Room, Aperture, Houdini, Maya, Motionbuilder, etc.) or can be set up that way, so when I'm using those it's kind of as if the app is stretched across the two.


Adobe Bridge​

Otherwise not. I rarely run one "continuous" window across both displays as the frame-gap in the middle is pretty annoying.



I don't think you can do a single stretched wallpaper without cutting it up yourself, but if anyone does know a way to do this, I'm eager to hear it.
Yeah, if you want to do that you either need to find a 3rd party app that allows it or cut it in two. I just cut them in two myself.
 

Tesselator

macrumors 601
Jan 9, 2008
4,601
4
Japan
Yeah, the factory setting had the brightness set to 80% or something and whn I 1st hooked them up they flooded the room with light - which gave me the idea. Properly set, the brightness on these is 10%. ;)

You can stretch a gradient out in PS too in order to color the light sources. Or even do poka-dots and patterns for reflections or low specular hits across a surface.
 

bigjnyc

macrumors 603
Apr 10, 2008
6,496
3,670
my setup at work lol :eek:

4 19" dell monitors, 2 are Widescreen one in portrait mode and one in landscape mode.

at home just my trusty 15" MBP thats all i need I have an external 24" and have only used it a handful of times.
 

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MrLatte23

macrumors regular
Jul 18, 2007
148
0
Spanning Wallpaper...

Two separate wallpapers is pretty easy -- when you pull up the desktop background system pref, it puts a separate dialog on each screen.

I don't think you can do a single stretched wallpaper without cutting it up yourself, but if anyone does know a way to do this, I'm eager to hear it.
I use one picture for my desktop image but I resize and cut it up myself. Not a whole lot of work to do and comes out pretty nice. I have three 20' wide screen monitors (1680 X 1050) so I resize and crop the image to 5040 X 1050. then cut that up.

Other than that I composite and edit using Final Cut, motion After Effects etc. I always keep my program monitor window on the primary output of the primary video card. This helps speed on screen renders. The fourth output is connected to a 37" HDTV for proofing my edits.
 

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akadmon

Suspended
Aug 30, 2006
2,006
2
New England
Sorry for being a little off topic, but is there a way to force SL to focus exclusively on one monitor when two monitors are hooked up? I have a 30" ACD and a 24" Dell, and I find that the only time I ever use the 24" (which used to be my main monitor) is when I'm running Lightroom. The annoying thing is that even though I turn the power off on the Dell, SL still detects it as present, and I invariably lose the cursor every now and then when my mouse strays off to the phantom monitor's side. I don't want to have to keep unplugging the video cable on the 24" to make it go away, and I don't want to keep it on constantly, only so I can know where the cursor is at all times. BTW, mirroring does not work, because the resolution on the 30" is reset to 1920x1200 (i.e., the lower of the two monitors).
 

Transporteur

macrumors 68030
Nov 30, 2008
2,729
3
UK
I'd like to have separate docks on each display.
Like a dock for all SDKs on the main display, preview and terminal apps on the left display and browsers on the right display.

It can get really when all windows get minimised in one single dock.
 

SinisterJoe

macrumors newbie
Aug 10, 2009
18
0
Identical displays with a dual VESA mount is the way to go. These days it's not too expensive. I fought with un-matched displays and all sorts of different ghetto stands in the past. It's really not worth the trouble. A single big display is better than two un-matched monitors IMO.

I tend to use the left as my primary but it's not offset all that much. The right display can still be used as a primary with a swivel of my chair. Since this photograph was taken I switched to a wireless keyboard so I can move it over to be head-on with the right display.

 

VirtualRain

macrumors 603
Original poster
Aug 1, 2008
6,304
115
Vancouver, BC
Got my 2nd monitor hooked up tonight... Wow! I forgot how much I love dual screens and the added real-estate it brings. :D How did I ever work with one screen! :eek:

It seems the only viable configuration right now is having them centered on the desk and angled inwards slightly so I can turn from monitor to monitor. I'm pretty happy with this setup. I guess I could get more flexible with the arrangement if I moved the Bluesky's off the desk onto monitor stands.

I'm trying out "Secondbar" to duplicate the menu bar on the 2nd display and I'm very happy with that... it makes accessing drop down's less of a chore if the window is on the 2nd display.

Here's a crappy (it's nearly 3AM) pic:
 

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