Dual monitors set up help (not screen duplication)

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Orchie17

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Aug 18, 2017
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Hi all,

Looking for some help I've got quite confused over trying to get dual monitors set up and how to do this...

I already have 2 dell monitors vga connection. I have not yet brought the pc desktop. I want to have both monitors connected at the same time but I want to view different things on each monitor, (i.e. not a duplication), so for example a pdf document to read on one (instead of printing) and working/ writing a word document on the other. I believe the term for this is extended dual screen but I'm not 100% sure. I don't want to see the same thing on both screens.

I am looking to buy a cheap secondary pc to use in home office and act as a mini server, I use a mac as a freelancer when out and about and at home sometimes connect this to a monitor also. I'll be linking to/ using synology NAS as main and back up hard drive for this and my mac.

The pc I'm currently looking at is https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01H5OFUIK/ref=ask_ql_qh_dp_hza
I'll be mainly using a browser, office (word/ excel etc) and maybe diy photo editing and approving design work but not making or editing it.

Would this desktop work to do this with my existing monitors and what cables/ spitters would I need. I have read about the possible need for graphics/ video connection and I have got a bit lost in it all. I used to work in an office where a 'y' type cable was used to have dual monitors and then you just dragged the window you wanted on the second monitor over with the mouse.

Thanks in advance for any able to shed any light.
Apologies if I categorised this wrong!
 

Oddba11

Jim
Joined
May 12, 2011
Messages
8,338
You are referring to Extended Desktop > https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/976064/guided-help-dual-monitor-setup-is-easy-in-windows-7

As for PC selection, you need a video output for each monitor. Many/most OEM computers provide only a single output (such as the single VGA output on the computer above). You could add a video card with dual ports. I don't recall the last time that I saw a dual VGA output card. But finding a dual DVI output card shouldn't be that hard. You could then just use DVI to VGA adapters (many cards used to ship with them included). Or you could use a single output PC as above and use a USB video card. Something like this: https://www.amazon.com/StarTech-External-Video-Monitor-Adapter/dp/B005G306I2 They work just fine for office type work.
 

Orchie17

Thread Starter
Joined
Aug 18, 2017
Messages
2
You are referring to Extended Desktop > https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/976064/guided-help-dual-monitor-setup-is-easy-in-windows-7

As for PC selection, you need a video output for each monitor. Many/most OEM computers provide only a single output (such as the single VGA output on the computer above). You could add a video card with dual ports. I don't recall the last time that I saw a dual VGA output card. But finding a dual DVI output card shouldn't be that hard. You could then just use DVI to VGA adapters (many cards used to ship with them included). Or you could use a single output PC as above and use a USB video card. Something like this: https://www.amazon.com/StarTech-External-Video-Monitor-Adapter/dp/B005G306I2 They work just fine for office type work.
Thank you so much for your help.

I'm on a real budget so would you mind me asking if this would work instead of the adapter you suggested, I think it's the same just cheaper and on uk amazon. https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B06ZZQZHV8?psc=1
I'd like to try and avoid putting video cards into
the mentioned desktop.
Also do you think the desktop I mentioned will have enough oomph for my usage?

Thank you!
 

Oddba11

Jim
Joined
May 12, 2011
Messages
8,338
I don't know if that would work or not. Based on the description, it should work. And, at least here in the US, Amazon has an great return policy.

As for that PC, any semi-current PC can handle basic office apps. For a little better performance, a RAM upgrade would be recommended.
 
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