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Can two monitors act as one?

Discussion in 'PC Gaming & Rigs' started by gargoyle, Apr 21, 2005.

  1. gargoyle

    gargoyle
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    My friend put this query to me as he can't afford a large widescreen monitor but would like to play doom 3 on as large a screen as possible for around £350-£400 max.
    My first query is - is it possible to put two monitors side by side and have them act as one monitor so that instead of playing doom on a single 17in monitor, it can be stretched across two 17 inchers giving a theoretical 34in screen?
    second query - is this a practical arrangement?
     
  2. sleepyone

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    It is possible, depends on a few things.. been 18 months since i looked at this so someone feel free to contradict me if i type anything completly daft.

    The most important part is the hardware in your pc. Do you have the graphics card that can power two monitors seperatly? Easiest way to check this is
    a. does your card have two vga/dvi ouputs
    b. does your driver software allow desktop stretching

    A lot of cards have a. but will only show the same desktop on both monitors
    If your card can do b then the only thing stopping playing across 2 monitors is if the game allows it.

    EVE-onine is a great example of this, has options in the game menu to use 1, 2 or 3 screens. Does Doom3 allow this, anyone know?

    As for practicallity the only consideration is phyiscal space 2 crts can use up a lot of desk space. But as you can stretch your normal desktop across both screen and double the size of your working space, this is ideal for playing your fav online game on one screen while chatting in x-fire..whatever.. on the other screen while browsing the web. :thumbsup:

    Due to real estate problems i had to move back in with my parents and had to sell off 2 of my tfts :( , otherwise i could of posted a pic of EVE in 3 screen action...words cant do it justice. :smashin:
     
  3. PiePie

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    Screen sizes are measured across the diagonal, so, unfortunatly you won't get 34ins, but just under 29ins. This doesn't include the case edges in the middle, which is impractical because it'll be your view center, your crosshairs, guns and whatever monster you're attacking will be split down the center and will look very odd. With 3 monitors it'll look nicer, though.
    I remember years ago playing an X-Men arcade machine. It used 2 monitors - one facing me and one with a reversed image, placed below and to the side of the other monitor and pointed upwards at a mirror so that's it gives the illusion of one continuous screen.

    The other thing is you'll need a killer of a machine to run Doom 3 at a decent pace on multiple monitors - even dropping down the resolution to 800x600x2 may be as slow as a single monitor running at 1280x1024 or even 1024x786. There's less pixels in 1024x786 then 800x600x2, but there's added workload for the GPU to split the image into 2. And with the needed 3 monitors for it to be truely practical, it'll take even more workload and another graphics card.

    All this is assuming Doom3 support multiple monitors. I can't find anything solid about this, but I've found the odd page about people trying to run D3 on 2 monitors and having problems with Nview and desktop extensions.

    Oh, and if you're using multiple CRTs make sure you can afford the leccy bill and make sure your desk is stable!
     
  4. gargoyle

    gargoyle
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    Thanks for the input guys, have to admit that I did'nt know that using two monitors would result in a loss of performance and of course, your right about the crosshairs not being in the centre but to the left or right of the field of either monitor.
    So as far as large screen gaming goes, I'll have to suggest to my friend that he'll have to bite the bullet and either buy a projector or buy a large screen monitor, both expensive options.
     
  5. PiePie

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    I don't know if this can be done, but, if you're using 2 TFT monitors you might be able to take the screens out of their shells and so minimize the gap between displays.

    Using a TV will work alright, the image won't be as sharp and you'll suffer some shearing, probably even at 60Hz NTSC, but it'll be the cheapest option I think.
     

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