Register Now!

To Get More Info and Daily Reward.

Please login or register.
Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: Surround matrix setup with 2 external monitors and laptop display on GT72 2QE  (Read 163 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

n7.revenantTopic starter

  • PRIVATE E-2
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5

Hello,

I have GT72 2QE (2015) and would like to get 2 extra monitors hooked up to the laptop - one from each side and together being able to create the matrix display, like so:



The laptop has 17.3 inch display, one HDMI port and 2 Minidisplay ports. I have not purchased anything for this yet, as I would like to find out how viable it is first. 

My questions are:
Is it possible to set up GT72 2QE laptop like the example above in the first place?
If possible:
Could you recommend any monitors for this? If bigger, or same size (I couldn't find many same size monitors), specific models, etc. - preferably with vesa mountable.
Is there anything else that I would need for the setup? i.e. if some kind of monitor docking station is required, or will the HDMI with the 2 Minidisplay ports (with appropriate cabling) be enough.

I've read the manual for the Matrix setup - several actually - but none of them yield the answers.

Please excuse me if I am not using the correct board, or if I did not supply enough or proper information.
Logged

david

  • MAJOR
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1284
  • Proud bodybuilder, bought GT80 Titan & sold gym :)
« Reply #1 on: 19-May-17, 02:16:05 »

Hello,

I have GT72 2QE (2015) and would like to get 2 extra monitors hooked up to the laptop - one from each side and together being able to create the matrix display, like so:



The laptop has 17.3 inch display, one HDMI port and 2 Minidisplay ports. I have not purchased anything for this yet, as I would like to find out how viable it is first.

My questions are:
Is it possible to set up GT72 2QE laptop like the example above in the first place?

Hi n7.revenant,

Yes, it should be possible to create the configuration shown above with your GT72 2QE. I strongly recommend avoiding adapters if you can. With that in mind, you should try to find two computer monitors that have an mDP or DP input. Then get an appropriate video cable for each monitor. For example, if your monitors have mDP inputs, then an mDP-to-mDP cable is what they will each need. If they have the larger DP input connector, then you'll need an mDP-to-DP cable for each monitor. As far as I know, you'll only find the display port and mini-display port inputs on external computer monitors and they are your best-quality option. You will not find these ports on HDTV sets. It is possible to convert DP to HDMI but I do not recommend it. Since your notebook only has one HDMI port, I would avoid using it since you plan to add two external monitors. In my experience, most of the mDP/DP-to-HDMI adapters are cheap and do not work very well.
  
  
Quote from: n7.revenant
If possible:
Could you recommend any monitors for this? If bigger, or same size (I couldn't find many same size monitors), specific models, etc. - preferably with vesa mountable.

You should do your own research on this. The size monitor you select is purely up to you and what you want. When possible, I try to avoid small monitors because their high ppi (pixels per inch) can cause problems for Windows and Windows applications. This is because Windows does not scale very well and many programs do not scale very well either. Windows does best and most Windows programs do best when the scale factor is 100%. The standard ppi for Microsoft Windows is 96 ppi (Macintosh computers use 72 ppi). For a full HD display (1920 x 1080 pixels), you will want to avoid going any smaller than a 23-inch (diagonal) display. At 23-inch, you should be close to 96 ppi and the pixels will be large enough that most graphical user interfaces will look good and be legible. But there's a lot of room here for personal preference. The older you get, the larger you typically want the display to be in order to avoid eye strain.

I posted some general information about LCD panel types here that may help you decide what kind of panel you want. (Note: The text color of my post has gone wonky since I posted it. It didn't used to be that way. Sadly, users cannot edit posts after they are more than a day old.) Since computer monitor models come and go all the time, when I need a new monitor, I usually start with a search on Amazon.com. Once I've found some models that look interesting, I go to the manufacturer's websites and download the user manuals and specs. Finally, I look for reviews.
  
  
Quote from: n7.revenant
Is there anything else that I would need for the setup? i.e. if some kind of monitor docking station is required, or will the HDMI with the 2 Minidisplay ports (with appropriate cabling) be enough.

All you should need are the video cables. A docking station is not required.
  
  
Quote from: n7.revenant
I've read the manual for the Matrix setup - several actually - but none of them yield the answers.

Please excuse me if I am not using the correct board, or if I did not supply enough or proper information.

The biggest bit of information that you omitted is: What do you plan to do with a matrix setup? The purpose for your external displays has a strong bearing on any advice that will be offered here. For example, I had a setup similar to the one shown in your illustration except my displays were ordered like this: (1) First external display on the left. (2) Second external display in the center. (3) Notebook on the right. Why? Because the Windows desktop flows in the numerical order from display 1 to display 2 to display 3. Placing them out of order as shown in your illustration would be insane if you want a contiguous desktop to flow across your field of vision. In my case, the external displays were much larger (28-inch) and had a higher resolution (1920 x 1200 pixels) compared to the internal 18.4-inch 1920 x 1080 pixel display of my GT80 2QE notebook. So I used the two external displays as my main work space in the center of my desk and located the notebook on the right side where is served as a temporary parking place for smaller secondary software tools. (I use my monitor setup for illustration, photo editing and media creation using the Adobe Master Collection. I can't help you if you plan to use a matrix setup for gaming because I don't have any experience in that area. All the gaming that I've done so far has been focused on just one display.)

In Microsoft Windows, the "primary" display is set independently of the display number. For example, you can set the displays in 1-2-3 order from left to right on your desk so the Windows desktop flows correctly, yet you can assign any one of these displays as the Windows "primary". For example, you can set display 2 as the "primary" and the Windows menu and application tray will appear on it.

By the way, I eventually replaced the two external 28-inch 1920 x 1200 pixel displays with a single 40-inch 3840 x 2160 pixel display. It is my primary and the notebook display is still used as a temporary parking place for software tools.

Kind regards, David
Logged
GT80 2QE Titan SLI-001 • i7-4720HQ • 32 GB DRAM • 2 x GTX 980M in SLI • 16 GB VRAM (8 GB/GPU) • 2 x 512 GB Micron M600 M.2 SSDs in mirrored Recovery array • 2 x 128 Toshiba M.2 SSDs in mirrored RAID-1 • 2 TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD • MiniPro RAID V2 external case w/ 2 x 2 TB Seagate ST2000LM003 HD in RAID-1 for local backup • 40" Philips 4K UHD BDM4065UC monitor • Gigabyte Aivia Osmium external keyboard • SteelSeries Sensei MLG mouse • Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit • Adobe Master Collection CS6

n7.revenantTopic starter

  • PRIVATE E-2
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5
« Reply #2 on: 19-May-17, 18:34:10 »

Hello David,

thank you very much for the information and the time you took to write this.
This setup would be mainly for games and occasional work. I was looking to have 2 extra monitors—matrix display actually being optional—but since I wanted to get the 2 monitors anyway, I thought it'd be a waste not to use the capability since it's inbuilt already.

I looked a bit prior to this and was thinking that the monitors closest to the size of the laptop's display (along with the resolution) would be the best, to not have drastically different views—this seemed to be easier said than done, and doesn't really seem to be a so important now. Thanks for mentioning the ports, I wasn't really sure about that whatsoever.
This specific external-inbuilt-external monitor setup is because of the limited space I have, also that I love the inbuilt steelseries keyboard (so the laptop needs to be right in front of me).
Considering all that, this is for a better experience and more efficient workflow, while staying within a reasonable price tag (otherwise I'd go for one of those insane curved ultra wide screens and external keyboard).

I will have a look and if I decide to go for anything, I'll write here what I will have done, so anyone else might benefit.

Thanks again.
Logged

n7.revenantTopic starter

  • PRIVATE E-2
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5
« Reply #3 on: 22-May-17, 16:06:50 »

So, this is what I got:
2x AOC G2260VWQ 
21.5''
Resolution 1920*1080
AMD Freesync—any Nvidia G-Sync monitors are 3x to 4x more expensive than these. And I don't notice the any tearing anyway, unless it's really bad.
Connected with DP to miniDP cable to the laptop.

They work well, but for the life of me, I can't get the Nvidia surround to work!
I can get it working with the new 2 external displays alone, but the Nvidia control panel refuses to let me check the 'Laptop display' no matter what I do.

Apparently, the displays have to be perceived to be the same resolution (which they are), the same refresh rate (I set them to be that way manually) and even the same polarity (which I set them to be manually as well). I tried that in Nvidia control panel (despite its weird practice of discarding the custom resolution settings) and even used CRU—custom resolution utility— for the displays to have same the properties.
The laptop display remains greyed out.
Logged

david

  • MAJOR
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1284
  • Proud bodybuilder, bought GT80 Titan & sold gym :)
« Reply #4 on: 22-May-17, 18:31:36 »

Hi n7.revenant,

That's strange. You should contact MSI Support and/or NVidia and see what they have to say. Check NVidia's forum also.

Kind regards, David
Logged
GT80 2QE Titan SLI-001 • i7-4720HQ • 32 GB DRAM • 2 x GTX 980M in SLI • 16 GB VRAM (8 GB/GPU) • 2 x 512 GB Micron M600 M.2 SSDs in mirrored Recovery array • 2 x 128 Toshiba M.2 SSDs in mirrored RAID-1 • 2 TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD • MiniPro RAID V2 external case w/ 2 x 2 TB Seagate ST2000LM003 HD in RAID-1 for local backup • 40" Philips 4K UHD BDM4065UC monitor • Gigabyte Aivia Osmium external keyboard • SteelSeries Sensei MLG mouse • Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit • Adobe Master Collection CS6

n7.revenantTopic starter

  • PRIVATE E-2
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5
« Reply #5 on: 24-May-17, 20:29:38 »

Hello David,

the problem actually is in my initial understanding... or misunderstanding to be more precise.
I thought that the Matrix display is basically the exactly same thing as Nvidia surround (which I didn't know is a separate thing). However, Matrix is just having 2+ extra displays—doesn't matter how arranged (which on the side note works flawlessly); while Nvidia surround can make 2 or more displays into a 'single virtual screen'.

Directly from Nvidia support ticket I made (their software, I figured they'll know the best):
"...from Nvidia's support end, Surround is not designed to work with an external monitor and laptop display."

That explains why I could do the surround on the 2 external monitors, but not with the laptop screen and external monitor(s) in any way. The Nvidia surround is a feature of the MSI Matrix display only under very specific conditions (using 2+ external monitors only).
I don't understand why Nvidia lets you do this only with external displays. To me, it would seem like an arbitrary decision, but know far to little about it to judge it :-))

Hope this helps anyone who might try to do a similar thing I did.
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up