Three Monitor Setup? (Windows)

I’m using the built-in Intel graphics of the 4770k (Haswell) on an ASUS mobo. Both monitors are on DVI. I’m using the built-in ‘Extended Desktop’.

(I have not used 3 monitors since the days of VGA with a Matrox ‘triple-head’ and I dropped it because the sheer width of 3 screens blocked the sound field of my near field speakers.)

With Cubase 8, it -seems- like the windowing is much better. So I was thinking I could place a 3rd monitor ABOVE the 1st two (like a pyramid) and keep VSL or Kontakt up there out of the way.

SO: Does Windows 8 (or the Intel graphics) support a 3rd monitor? Ideally I was hoping that I could plug in any old video card and Windows would recognise it as the -3rd- screen automatically.

Or does one need to disable the onboard video and purchase 1 or 2 new video cards (like gamers do with SLI)?

I don’t ‘game’ so this whole deal is an undiscovered country.

TIA,

—JC

I actually increased my monitor count on my machine because Cubase 8 does support them better.

The onboard intel graphics supports 2 monitors.
I have an NVIDIA graphics card supporting 4 monitors.

All 6 monitors work well together with Cubase 8 and I’ve setup Workspaces so I can use them all. I have 3 monitors over my 88 note controller, and 3 on the desk with my speakers and mixing environment. A shortcut key or two and I can move everything I need around easily.

Only tips I have when using two graphics cards:

  1. Install your main video card drivers first
  2. Make sure your BIOS is set to use the main video card as First (automatic usually does this)
  3. Make sure your BIOS has the intel graphics card on (some motherboards will disable the intel graphics when the main video card is detected)
  4. Use Windows driver update to install the intel driver. I tried to use the Intel download package and it mucked things up badly. The windows driver update worked perfectly.

Hope that helps.

Cheers

Rob

Hi Rob, can you share the info, what 4-head nVidia craphic card do you use and what driver version?
Thanks
XV

http://www.steinberg.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=209&t=47223&start=150#p396558

this is how I sorted the sound field problem that 3 monitors creates…couple of breakfast bar mounts…perfect

this is an old pic, I’ve since added a 4th screen.

Kevin

I work with 3 monitors as well and couldn’t go back anymore.

2 Nvidia graphics cards : 4 + 3 display outputs.

Windows can handle as many video cards you throw at it, and no need to link them with SLI or else.

Besides, putting a monitor above the others is not a good idea in my opinion. A horizontal field of view is much more natural. At least with a 3 monitors setup.

But with 4 monitors, I suppose you would be forced to do so, because the horizontal field of view would be too wide.

Yeah, i have 4 monitors…the 4th is hanging from the ceiling over the top of my middle monitor with velcro attached to the bottom of it which sticks to the velcro attached to the top of the middle monitor…get the hanging length right and the screen leans forward just the right amount…looks cool also :sunglasses:

Kevin

Attached only with Velcro ?!
Is it safe enough ?
Or do you wear a helmet when you work ? :smiley:

Are you using Windows 7 or 8?

TIA,

—JC



I’m using Windows 7 and have used two setups as I recently upgraded the NVIDIA card. Both have worked reliably.

Original setup:
Gainward GTX670 2GB with NVIDIA 340.52 driver

Fan was way to noisy for my new studio microphone…

Upgraded setup
ASUS Strix GTX970 4GB with NVIDIA 347.25 driver

The ASUS Strix is completely silent when running Cubase, it turns its fan off. Combined with the Define R5 case the wind outside is louder than my PC now. :smiley:

The Intel graphics driver was obtained from Windows driver updates AFTER the NVIDIA drivers were installed. I did try the intel download package as it was newer but it seriously screwed things up.

The NVIDIA 347.25 driver with the GTX970 does have a slightly bursty impact on Cubase Realtime performance compared with the 340.52 and GTX670. ASIO Guard though completely offloads everything else and I am finding no difference in real life usage for me. I suspect this is simply the maturity of the driver optimisation since the 970 is very new.

I’m currently exploring using DisplayFusion multi-monitor software to assist the window management. Cubase tends to remember where I last put a window. If it’s not part of the Workspace I setup it can pop up on the far side of the room. Display Fusion has short cuts which can move the window to the monitor where my mouse is. My monitors are also all different sizes and Display Fusion can move windows and resize them suitably for the new monitor as well. So far there’s no downside using this.

I hope this helps.

I’m using Windows 7

My son, who has Windows 8 and a 3 monitor setup across NVIDIA GTX770 and onboard Intel reckons it would work better on Windows 8 as it has better multi monitor support built into the OS. His split across cards is because the 770 is driving a 4K monitor for gaming, it works hard for a living!

I can’t be bothered upgrading to Win 8 given Windows 10 is free and just around the corner.

Ohh, you just gave me an idea! I’ve been trying to figure out how to get my two side displays off the desk so my near field monitors could be lowered and not sit behind the displays. Shelves were one option but I’d like to remove the display stands completely so they are as low as possible on top of the middle display.

…there’s a trip to the hardware store in my future.

How did you fasten the hanging cables to the top display?

So just to be stupid clear… in both your case and your son’s… Windows recognises the 2 displays with the onboard Intel graphics and then the NVIDIA card automagically takes over for any remaining displays?

No configuration at the mobo level?

—JC

PS to one of the previous posters: It’s a free country (plus or minus) but that ----wide---- monitor placement violates laws of acoustics that haven’t even been written yet. :smiley: YMMV.

Just to support other posts above, yes, multiple monitors is easy and very very useful. Using windows 7 64 bit, cubase 8, one video card that supports 3 (actually 4, I think) monitors. The windows attempt to ‘dock’ a window to the nearest border can be very annoying, but can be defeated if you go deep enough into (scroll all the way to the bottom) <make it easier to focus on tasks (lol) – or harder depending on your point of view> (scrolll down again, thanks Microsoft) .

Depends on your motherboard defaults or changes you’ve made. For most Windows will just work it out and all good.

If not then in your BIOS you need to ensure:

  1. The NVIDIA card is initialised first. Auto will normally work but you can set it to PCI-E
  2. The Onboard graphics has to be enabled. You may find your BIOS turns it off when the PCIE card is plugged in so setting this will fix it.

Shoot through your motherboard details and I can look up the exact settings in the manual if you get stuck.

You rock. Last question (for a while anyhoo)… What -model- of NVIDIA do you have? I assume even the cheapest (650?) would be adequate for my needs, right? I mean, I could care less about ‘frame rates’ and all that. The other possible snag… I only have 2 slots on my mobo…
One is the teeny PCI type and the other is the extra-long one (PCI-X). Hopefully there is a (cheap) card that will fit one of those slot types.

Thanks again!

—JC


some pics of the hanging 4th screen and the speaker on a breakfast bar mount…all cables are just hanging behind the screens…

velcro is pretty tough stuff, it takes a lot of effort to get the screen away from the bottom screen…no way it’s gonna fall, had to disassemble the screen stand and drill a small hole for a hook to attach the chain…of course the screen is upside down but that’s no biggy :slight_smile:

Kevin
1P1010052.jpg
1P1010051.jpg
1P1010047.jpg

@JC
You’ll need to make sure your motherboard has a suitable PCI-X to match the NVIDIA card. Just check your motherboard PCI-X spec against your chosen NVIDIA card.

As for model, I use mid-high range cards as I use them for my day job and do compute on GPU cores. I’ve used GTX670, 770 and 970. All are way overkill for use with Cubase alone.

My 970 is an ASUS Strix, has the advantage of turning off fans when used with Cubase as it isn’t loaded. I think they make a lower end model Strix as well. My sons Gigabyte Windforce is pretty quite as well when not under load.

I should imagine any card would be suitable if it is supported by a recent NVIDIA driver. Cubase doesn’t exactly tax the graphics card.

@Kevin - Upside down by the existing stand, clearly I don’t think out of the box enough. Thankyou

anytime… :slight_smile:

When I had 4 30" Dell 2560x1600 monitors, I had an inverted-T arrangement, with the speakers above the outer two monitors.

I built a custom frame that held them all:

SOK-MUS.Inverted-T_monitor_setup_cropped.2009-09-01.jpg