Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Multiple Monitor Support Possible via DisplayPort?

  1. #1

    Multiple Monitor Support Possible via DisplayPort?

    Hi all,

    In a few weeks (I can't wait! ) I will replace my laptop with the Surface Pro.

    Right now, though, I have my laptop connected to two monitors: One via VGA and other via DVI. I'm running Windows 8 Pro x64, so this all works great.

    So the big question is whether it is possible to have multi-monitor support via the one-and-only DisplayPort that is on the Surface Pro? If so, what--if any--additional hardware would I need?

    When I'm docked at home and using my Surface Pro as laptop, I really need to keep the functionality of using both external monitors (one is 31" and the other 29"). I would really hate to go back to only being able to use one.

    If you can provide any insight, I'd appreciate it.


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  2. #2

    Posts : 1,127
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    there are 2 options:

    1) DisplayPort v1.1a hubs available today that allow you to connect multiple monitors to a single DisplayPort connector. Various output configurations are available for these hubs including DisplayPort, DVI, and HDMI.

    2) you need DisplayPort monitors that support daisychaining. DisplayPort v1.2, supports monitor daisy chaining.
    DisplayPort v1.1a displays are fully compatible with DisplayPort v1.2 PCs and graphics cards. A DisplayPort v1.1a display can be the last display in a DP v1.2 chain.
    Here’s an example:
    A PC with one DP connector is driving two monitors via daisy chaining. The 1st monitor is a DP v1.2 monitor with input and output connectors. The 2nd monitor is a DP v1.1a monitor. DP v1.2 PC—> DP v1.2 monitor with in & out connectors—->DP v.1.1a monitor.
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  3. #3

    Thanks very much for the detailed info!

    It'll have to be Option 1 for me, as one of the monitors does not have a DP.

    Thanks again for the solution. I really appreciate it.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4

    So I decided to ditch the old monitor that didn't have DP input and I just bought a new one, a Dell U3011.

    Now I will have 2 U3011s connected; they have a DP input port only, no output, so I still need to proceed with Option 1.

    I did a search for DP hubs and I'm not sure if I found the correct hardware. Please confirm if the following product will work: Accell UltraAV K088B-001B DisplayPort to 3x DisplayPort Multi-Monitor Adapter: Electronics

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  5. #5

    After some further research, I see that the downside to these hubs is the resolution limit.

    Right now I have my Dell at 2560x1600 and the max I've seen any of those hub adapters support for 2-monitors is 1920x1200 each. I would hate to drop down to 1920x1200.
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  6. #6

    Posts : 1,127
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    if you can wait a short while, the DisplayPort 1.2 hubs are almost out as well as more monitors that support daisychaining:

    View topic - 2013 - The Year of DisplayPort MST | WSGF

    A number of recent releases are pointing to Display Port daisy chaining and MST hubs finally making a splash in 2013. A couple of weeks ago, I saw a post at TFT Central regarding model numbers of upcoming Dell displays. The post contained a scan of the DisplayPort 1.2 flyer from the Dell U2913WM. The flyer indicated that upcoming products (U2413, U2713H and U3014) would all include DisplayPort daisy chaining through including DP 1.2 MST hubs. I fished out my flyer, and have included a scan here.

    Click image for larger version

    AMD Has Lots to DisplayPort at CES 2013
    The cute feature for the MST is its ability to split a 4K image into four 2K monitors. The reason why this is cute is because the hub enables the user to plug four-times as many monitors as they have DisplayPort 1.2 sockets on their GPU. The W600, for instance, contains 6 DisplayPort 1.2 plugs which enable it to drive 24 separate monitors from a single-slot card.
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  7. #7

    Yes, I stumbled on several articles relating to the release of MST products in 2013 and I can't wait, but your Dell flyer was the best!

    I must admit that after seeing the flyer, I am tempted to wait. The U3011 is still in the box.

    Hmmmm...lots of thinking to do.
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  8. #8

    Quote Originally Posted by dirtyvu View Post
    if you can wait a short while...A number of recent releases are pointing to Display Port daisy chaining and MST hubs finally making a splash in 2013. A couple of weeks ago, I saw a post at TFT Central regarding model numbers of upcoming Dell displays. The post contained a scan of the DisplayPort 1.2 flyer from the Dell U2913WM. The flyer indicated that upcoming products (U2413, U2713H and U3014) would all include DisplayPort daisy chaining through including DP 1.2 MST hubs...
    I'm so thankful that you had brought this to my attention.

    I found this the other day...

    Dell intros color-accurate U2413, U2713H and U3014 displays (updated)

    I'm really excited and anticipating it and my whole setup. Unfortunately, the big variable missing from the equation is my 128GB Surface Pro.
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  9. #9

    Posts : 1,127
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    good luck! sounds exciting!
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  10. #10

    Posts : 1,127
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    IRL: Dell's U2713H monitor and the X-Arcade Dual Joystick

    Click image for larger version

    Performance monitors aren't all about FPS. For lovers of fine color and resolution, Dell makes some of the best pro displays for budget-minded broadcast or image editors -- after all, competitive models from Eizo and others can cost twice as much. The company's latest offering is the U2713H, running about $750 on Amazon and designed to replace the U2711, which we thought highly of when it first came out. But if you've decided to treat yourself to a high-end monitor, are a billion colors and a 2,560 x 1,440 pixel count worth double the price of a decent 8-bit-per-pixel screen?

    First off, the IPS screen looks great, and the stand is amazingly ergonomic. It's widely adjustable, too, and can even be rotated 90 degrees to portrait view. As with the U2711, there's every source input imaginable, including dual-link DVI-D, DisplayPort 1.2, mini DisplayPort 1.2 and HDMI -- though the U2711 had an extra DVI-D port that is sadly missed. Image-wise, the newer model is nicer to stare at for hours than its predecessor, as it uses a less aggressive coating that eliminates the graininess many customers complained about on the U2711. As for those vaunted 10-bit-per-pixel graphics, the U2713H is actually an 8-bit + FRC and not a true 10-bit panel like what you'll find on the sublime U3011 model. That lets it dither its way to a billion colors, but visually speaking the effect is nearly identical to a proper 10-bit display. However, unless you have a graphics card that supports deep color like the NVIDIA Quadro FX 4800 I'm using, you'll only see the usual 8-bits per color (16 million hues). On top of that, you'll need software that supports it, like the apps in Adobe's CS6 Creative Suite.

    If you're able to check all those boxes, what does it get you? The sRGB color range is a full 100 percent, giving you smoother transitions between black-and-white and color gradients, which allows for more accurate image adjustments and grading. That requires an equally accurate color setup, so Dell strives to calibrate each screen correctly before shipping them, and mine was nearly exact out of the box, with a factory report to prove it. I certainly couldn't tune it more accurately by eye (using color bars), meaning a dead-on setup would require an external calibration device and plenty of spare time. That makes it ideal for someone like myself who needs precise, but not dead-perfect colors straight out of the box or pro colorists and graphic designers who could easily tweak it the rest of the way. As for gamers and other casual users? Response times are middling, but if you want to make sure Desmond Miles' robe is exactly the right shade of gray, then why not, if you can afford it?
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