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Dual Monitors

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by schomeaway, Jan 23, 2006.

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  1. schomeaway

    schomeaway Thread Starter

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    Hello - I am beginner kind of PC guy, and am trying to work something out for my Wife. Her work will let her do some work from home, but in order to do so, we need DUal Monitors like she has at work. Her Work IT guy said to plug one into the VGA and the other into the DVI...But I don't have a DVI port...I only have the standard VGA port (which our regular monitor is plugged into) and an S-Video port...

    My question is, can I do Dual Monitors using the s-video? Do they make a S-video to VGA convertor? I have an HP, about a year old...A friend said i need to get a new Video card and install it, but I am not to keen on cracking open the PC myself, or paying someone to do it unlesss it is the only option...

    Can anyone help me out with some advice? The goal is to have 2 workspaces, so splitting the single VGA won't help??

    Thanks!!!
     
  2. Triple6

    Triple6 Moderator

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    No, you're going to need a second video card or to replace the one you have now.

    But you'll need to know if your system takes a PCI, AGP, or PCI-Express video card. The HP model number will help determine that.
     
  3. kidcnote

    kidcnote Banned

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    Don't let fear of the unknown stop you from taking the side off your puter and installing a video card.. http://directron.com/howtovideo.html It's very EZ. You can get a cheap card that has dual monitor support (VGA & DVI & S-video) for your PCI slot from Newegg or Tigerdirect. Doesn't take more the 10 minutes to install. I'm sure theres plenty of people here to walk you through it..you can do this !!
    To bad you don't have AGP (or do you ??) If you discover you do then the FX5000 can be had for $45 from Tigerdirect http://www.pixpond.com/1/12b0qgc.jpg
     
  4. RedHelix

    RedHelix

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    Unfortunately to my knowledge, S-Video and VGA are two completely different analog signals. If you were absolutely determined you might be able to find a converter on the internet, ($$,) but there is no easy 5-20 dollar adapter solution.

    Unless you want to drop a c-note on this project, I think a new video card is your best bet. Really, though, the only thing you have to worry about when opening a PC is static electricity. Take the PC out to the kitchen, ground yourself by touching a doorknob or any other grounded metallic object, and you can poke around in that thing to your hearts' content without doing any damage. Changing a video card is as easy as adding washer fluid. You just have to know what it looks like.

    We'll be more than happy to walk you through swapping out the card if that's what you opt to do. Otherwise, a converter will also do the trick for you if you want to spend the extra cash.
     
  5. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

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    In addition to knowing what HP model number you have ... We may also need to know what wattage power supply is installed.
    The only way I know to determine this (for sure) is to remove the left side panel and read the info on the power supply.
     
  6. schomeaway

    schomeaway Thread Starter

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    Ok, so I will take your workd for it that installing a new video card is no big deal...So now I have to ask...

    What kind of card do I get? What kind of $$ am I looking at...And am i installing a new 2nd card to use for the monitor, or am I replacing the original...

    I do play some games and such, so i would need a decent new card if I am getting rid of the original...

    As far as power supply, I would guess it is standard US power..nothing fancy there...

    thanks for the help!!
     
  7. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

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    Your power supply may be you main problem.
    If you get a high end video card for your games - I'll bet you'll need a bigger (more wattage) power supply.
    What model is your HP ?????
    Some HPs have a special power supply that may be hard to upgrade.
     
  8. kidcnote

    kidcnote Banned

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    See that Big box in the upper left corner. http://www.pixpond.com/1/45ss85.jpg Thats your Power Supply. It supplies power to your whole computer..The other posters are saying you may need another Power supply that has more Watts. Take the cover off your machine (Turn it off first) and look on your Power Suppy.. You should see a number like 250W or 450W on the label.. What I was telling you above with the FX5500 Video card is it will run on a 250W Power supply so you won't have to get a new Power supply as I'm pretty sure your Power Supply is at least 250W..I think you need someone to install your stuff if and when you buy the parts..and you still have to see if you have an AGP slot along with your 3 PCI slots..
    http://directron.com/howtovideo.html <- Look at the pixs in here and look at your motherboard..
    http://www.pcstats.com/beginners.cfm
     
  9. TRS-80 vet

    TRS-80 vet Account Closed

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    I think you no longer need a second card, T6...

    I read about software, I'm pretty sure, in PCWorld, in the last 2 - 3 issues, how this is possible.

    I'm sure I can find it, if you'd like...
     
  10. schomeaway

    schomeaway Thread Starter

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    Ok, just so you guys have the correct info

    HP Pavilion
    AMD Athalon 64 Processor
    3400+
    1.97 Ghz, 512 MB of Ram

    When I searched computer here is what I found (Don't know if it matters or not)

    +Computer
    -ACPI Uniprocessor PC

    + Display Adapters
    -NVIDIA Geforce fx 5200

    + IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers
    -Primary IDE Channel
    -Secondary ""
    -Standard Duel Channel PCI IDE Controller

    + Sound, Video, Game controllers
    - NVIDIA(r) nforce(tm) Audio Codec Interfacer

    + System Devices
    -NVIDIA nforce PCI System Management
    -NVIDIA nforce3 AGP Host to PCI Bridge


    Ok, so does any of this Help/Hurt my cause? I didn't open things up to see the power supply....I would guess it would be "standard"...This was purchased off the shelf at CompUSA about a year or so ago....

    Thanks for the help!
     
  11. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

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    What's the HP Model designation ???

    If your case is only 14" deep - you may have a problem.
     
  12. schomeaway

    schomeaway Thread Starter

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    Not Sure how deep it is, will have to check at home tonight....

    I think the Model is that 3400+?? I will look closer tonight....
     
  13. RedHelix

    RedHelix

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    That's the class of processor, not the model of the computer. It should be printed on the front of the case.
     
  14. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

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    With the Model designation - we can look at all the specs from HP.
    http://welcome.hp.com/country/us/en/support.html
    But - They don't tell the wattage of the supply installed.

    I tried to do this on one of my older HPs - but it only had a 230W supply installed.
    I was trying to install a Graphics card that required 300 watts.
    The installed supply was NOT the standard physical size.
    All the upgrade replacements were to big to physically fit it the computer case.

    I did find a "cheap" 400w that would fit and changed it.
    Being "cheap" ... it BLEW, with a big bang, in about two days.
    Thank GOD it didn't take the mobo with it.

    When I bought my new Puter - the first thing I looked at was the supply rating and physical size.
    It had 300Watts installed - which is barely handling my two graphics cards (dual monitor app) ... and second HD.
    But - it is a standard size and I can change it if needed.
     
  15. schomeaway

    schomeaway Thread Starter

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    OK....My PC is an HP Pavilion a640n

    it has NVIDIA GeForce FX5200XT AGP
    8X Graphics card with 128mb
    DDR Video Memoryand TV Out

    Aslo, I cracked 'er open..I have a 250Watt Power Supply

    So does that AGP mean that I have the AGP slot? Sounded like that made things easier...What are the suggestions now?
     
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