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3 screen setup

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware' started by ironchef, Jul 1, 2012.

  1. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    I went to compusa yesterday and at the front they had the batman game on like 23in screenS. With three screen setup. I was like woah! I want that! Anyone have any suggestions or comments? Pros and cons?
     
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  2. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Wait a minute. I thought you said that 3 was going to be too much? Going to the dark side with the rest of us with our computer toys are we?
     
  3. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    Hahaha. Shhh. Dude i sat there and felt like i was in wonderland. Hahaha. My only concern is if i can design and rip to a mimaki with it. What kind of hardware do i need. I'm thinking i7 3500k .16gb. With capacity upto 32gb. Two gpu's. 2Tb hdd. 258 ssd. ? Anything else? What kind of power supply? Motherboard?
     
  4. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    Anymore to do multi-monitor setups you do not need anything really fancy, just a single graphics card that supports EyeFinity. This means looking at AMD Radeon cards that support triple monitor output or more. I put one of these in one of our office computer, the AMD Radeon HD 7850 and the card is tremendous! Not only can it run three or even more full 1080p monitors at once, but it can do so while drawing half the power and running much cooler than the similar range nVidia cards.

    I've always been a big fan of nVidia, I've used them in the greatest majority of my builds, but this latest generation of graphics cards from AMD offer such wonderful performance while running so amazingly efficient that I am thoroughly impressed.

    What you will need for this kind of setup is going to be an AMD Radeon HD graphics card that supports EyeFinity. You will also need a decent power supply to ensure you have enough to run all your additional hardware needs, usually 650 Watts or more. Then you need to look for the monitors that have the right connectors for your display outputs so that you can connect everything up. True, you can run multi-monitor outputs by putting in dual graphics cards or even more, but you then are introducing more power draw, more heat, more noise, and requiring specific motherboard requirements for running multiple graphics cards. My recommendation is a single card with EyeFinity.
     
  5. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    I use Sapphire HD 5970 with dual GPU 2GB DDR5 that has 3 inputs for monitors (big honker of a card). 2 DVI inputs and 1 mini display port. I had to use an active adapter though to do DVI to mini display port and to get the 3 monitor setup to work, so the 20 dollar adapter that you usually see for apple computers to plug into the mini display port don't work.

    They may not make that card anymore, that's 2 yrs old at least I'm thinking. It was about an 800 card that I got for 300 (they were running an incredible deal on them at the time).

    One thing of advice though. Once you go 3 monitor setup, it's hard to go back to 2 monitors and it's damn sure hard to go back to a single monitor. I have a hard enough time at times using my laptop with 2 monitors and one of them is the 12WX Cintiq, so it's as close as it can be to my 3 monitor setup.

    It's an addiction that's for sure.
     
  6. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    Sweet. Ill go for the best single card that supports 3 screens. my concern is. If i can print and rip on a mimaki. And design at the same time
    .what upgrades would i need to do. If that's possible
     
  7. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Can't help you there. I don't deal with that type of print/rip work, so I don't know all that you would need to get everything to work.
     
  8. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    Being able to print to your mimaki while still continuing to design depends on your software and computer hardware. In reality you can do this with just about any decent computer out there, but it's not always going to be the most efficient or fun to use unless you get some decent horsepower in that system so you can multitask with ease.

    Having a very high end graphics card in your computer, at least for 2D design work such as Flexi and Illustrator, is not going to give you any benefit in quality or performance. Granted, not all graphics cards are created equal, but if you are running these programs with a $130 AMD Radeon HD 7770 you will see no benefit in quality or performance in your work if you were running a $500 AMD Radeon HD 7970. If you have an infinite amount of cash at your disposal and wish to also game on the computer, then sure spend your money wherever needed, but for the best distribution of funds throughout your computer hardware, I'd save the money and put that into additional RAM or SSD instead of high end graphics card where you will see absolutely no difference for the higher cost.
     
  9. 2CT Media

    2CT Media Very Active Member

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    We built a DUAL purpose RIP/Design computer, We are doing a i7-3930K with 64GB of Ram. Its got (1) 240GB SSD for a system/program drive, (1) 120GB SSD for our ONYX Work Folder, (1) 120GB SSD for a Working File Drive, (4) 1TB Drives in Raid 10 for storage that is mirrored to a NAS.

    We also have (3) PCoIP Zero Clients attached to this computer for (2) for Design Terminals (4 Thread / 24GB Ram Limit each) and (1) for a RIP/Cutter Terminal.

    This set up allows us to have a low cost of equipment and the ability to get more done. We might build a Dual Xeon system once we out grow this setup to allow for more Zero Clients / System Resources.
     
  10. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Very true. The program that I use for embroidery, you will notice a difference between the two, but mine also renders in 3D as well.
     
  11. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    Wow that's alot of ssd. I knew i needed one for programs and such. But i should have one just for rasterlink? I only need 1 or 2tb hdd since my next project after that will be a nas or server.
     
  12. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    That is a pretty awesome system, may I ask what you are using for your virtualization set up? Are you running ESXi Hypervisor free, or full paid version, and utilizing VMWare View? Do you have a specialized RAID controller to achieve this compatibility support in your virtualization?

    The capabilities of computer systems today is so great that the majority of system resources remain untapped for most users and scenarios. Digital printing can utilize a LOT of resources, but or a lot of other situations I think that virtual desktop solutions (VDI) will become more and more popular. This is actually something that I'm trying to teach myself right now, but it can be very expensive to try and get your own equipment just to play with the feasibility and learning how to do something so complex as clustering, virtual migration, and desktop virtualization.
     
  13. 2CT Media

    2CT Media Very Active Member

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    We are using EVGA PCoIP Clients and host cards... this is based on the Teradici system which has its own software or it is compatible with VMware. We just use the Teradici software as its comprehensive enough for our needs. The raid system is a standard Intel controller, nothing special really.... The ssds are the only limited resource: the Onyx work drive is limited to the RIP terminal and the Working File drive is partitioned and split for each design terminal (we are probably going to get a second one and give each terminal thier own drive).

    'Digging deeper, the Teradici software is a custom built VMware software'

    I like playing with new toys so we try new stuff all the time... I really wanted to find a way to get more done with out adding more workstations, the nice thing is unless we are working on something huge the zero clients are just as capable as individual workstations. The primary workstation cost $1500 and each client/host card was $400, to build (2) equally capable systems for design and (1) for a RIP would be almost $5000 so we saved $2200! Also we only have to install software once and all users have access to it almost like individual RDP sessions.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2012
  14. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    That is pretty great to hear. I've been looking into PCoIP resources and equipment lately too, but did not realize they had products and software separate of VMWare to utilize their protocol. I will have to try and find some information on that, as it's a great option for us to do some learning on as well! The cost to try and get started with VMWare View is incredibly high and the system is quite complex to configure, which means for a small office of less than thirty clients it is really not feasible.

    May I ask, what type of host cards did you get, and were you required to get a single host card per end client, or can you run multiple clients from a single host card?
     
  15. rjssigns

    rjssigns Major Contributor

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    Instead of messing around with three monitors buy one of the new 4K TV's in the 80" size. Done. 4K's will have twice the resolution of a 1080p, but you will only get that benefit if you are very close. Perfect for a computer monitor.
    I am just full of good ideas this morning.:rolleyes:
     
  16. 2CT Media

    2CT Media Very Active Member

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    We have the EVGA host cards in a 1:1 Ratio and a 7570 with 4 DVI outputs to drive the the Host Cards and the workstation monitor.

    We were looking at the ATI RG220 host cards which eliminates the graphics card requirements but its $600 vs $200 for the EVGA. The ATI cards are supposed to have a firmware update soon that will take it from a 1:1 to a 1:4 ratio. Also with VMware you don't need a host card to drive the PCoIP devices as long as they are not "power" users that need high resolution graphics. If you are building "office" terminals you can skip the host cards and just get NIC cards to get more data throughput.

    The other thing to look at which might be vaporware for now is the logmein terminals. These were supposed to be thin clients that are built to use the logmein service without an OS so that you can access a User session on your PC, Linux, or MAC.... IF these come to light soon it will be a cheaper option that VMware/PCoIP based solutions.
     
  17. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    What language are you all speaking? Lol....
     
  18. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    VDI is becoming a huge part of technology strategy for many businesses out there, the problem is that so far it's really been limited performance and only feasible cost-wise if you're looking at virtualizing like fifty or more desktop users. Otherwise, the cost of the licensing and hardware and configuration of the server systems and thin clients is far greater than the cost of individual desktop systems.

    I'm glad to hear from someone who has been using the PCoIP system for a small office usage like you're describing, as simply I've heard it is feasible but never heard of anyone actually trying it to know if it would work well. I've seen PCoIP through VMWare View used at our local college campus on several computers, but to set this all up is quite an expensive ordeal, especially if someone is just wanting like five or ten virtual desktops.

    I had not heard of Teradici providing their own software system though, I'd only heard of it through VMWare, so that is very good to hear. I will have to do some more research on this. You said that you don't have to have a host card if you more of a limited office terminal, correct? Is it possible to do this just with the Teradici software, or is that requiring VMWare then? I've got several places talking with us currently that could utilize a system similar to this, but they only need rather simple functionality, nothing like RIP and design stations. It would be nice if they could use a lower graphics card and not have to worry about host cards for each terminal.
     
  19. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    Well im off the three screen idea. Originally the third screen was to rip and print. I'm going to use Y current pc to rip and print which is dual screens. And I'm goin to buy the best pc 1000 can buy me. Well a grand to 1200. That will be dual screen too. So ill have 4 screens all together. ;)
     
  20. 2CT Media

    2CT Media Very Active Member

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    Yes, on the disk that Teradici provides there is a way to setup low resolution terminals that don't require a host card or even a high end graphics card, They even have a "Server Dump" card that can supposedly process up to 25 Low res terminals.

    We just got Cyrious Control, so we may start testing out the low res terminal features soon, We would use it for Pricing and Production updates so there is no need for a high resolution host card.
     
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