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Displays Best way to set up a secondary display?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Cthippo, 5 Dec 2016.

  1. Cthippo

    Cthippo Can't mod my way out of a paper bag

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    As part of my new build I'm planning on installing a secondary display in the desk front. This is going to be a 7" 1024x600 TFT which will display various system parameters. It's probably going to run on Samurize even though I've never used that particular software.

    So, two questions...

    1} Can I run it off my primary GPU or should I install a second, low powered, GPU to run it?

    2} I would like to install a series of pushbuttons around the screen to select which information i want displayed. I've seen USB button encoders for DIY arcade games
    on ebay and I'm wondering if something like that will work. Will the computer see the device as a "keyboard" and allow me to bind those buttons to different displays on the screen?
     
  2. Pete J

    Pete J Employed scum

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    Running it off your primary GPU is fine. As to the other (more difficult) question, I don't know unfortunately.
     
  3. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Lover of bit-tech Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    Depends on which ones you buy: some show up on the system as a joystick, others as a keyboard. If I were doing it, and in the past I have (my old desk had six arcade buttons along one side which I set to trigger various things on the desktop), I'd be using a dirt-cheap knockoff Arduino Leonardo ($5) which can easily emulate a standard USB keyboard.
     
  4. creative

    creative 500rwhp

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    as a suggestion...

    Put a touch screen overlay on it then you dont need to bother with buttons or extra arduino stuff.

    Also check out Rainmeter to display system settings etc
     
  5. Cthippo

    Cthippo Can't mod my way out of a paper bag

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    Ok, Thanks everyone! :thumb:
     
  6. Paradigm Shifter

    Paradigm Shifter de nihilo nihil fit

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    Second 'vote' for Rainmeter. Use it since the Windows gadgets bit the dust - there were some really useful CPU/GPU/HDD/LAN ones out there...

    Sometimes in the past having dual monitors connected meant that the GPU wouldn't properly reach idle clocks, but I've not seen complaints about that for some time...
     
  7. Pete J

    Pete J Employed scum

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    That's been solved AFAIK. I say 'AFAIK' as the drivers seem to wait a bit before dropping down, almost as though they wait to see if you're going to start up another game or something.
     
  8. Paradigm Shifter

    Paradigm Shifter de nihilo nihil fit

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    Right; my Titan X clocks down low to proper idle in Surround mode, but not when I've got all three monitors in 'extended' mode. It's most bizarre. May be a driver issue, but since I spent about a minute in extended monitor mode after a driver update, I don't usually worry too much.
     
  9. Cthippo

    Cthippo Can't mod my way out of a paper bag

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    Ok, so the hardware is in place, so how do I put it together?

    I've got a Leonardo and 10 buttons and a secondary screen. I'm still trying to find a wiring diagram and instructions on how to program it. Input sought.
     
  10. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Lover of bit-tech Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    This should have everything you need Arduino-wise. Here's how to wire the buttons (and here as a schematic if that's easier to read), and here's a sketch for triggering macros/shortcuts depending on each button press I wrote for a feature in PC Pro about four years ago. Obviously, this is for four buttons; just extend it as you need for ten.

    If you look elsewhere for advice, ignore anything about needing resistors on each switch; literally all you need is switches, wire, and the Arduino. The Arduino itself has pull-up resistors, which you can turn on by setting the pinMode to INPUT_PULLUP - as in lines 27-30 of my sketch.

    Any problems with the code or wiring, let me know and I'll try to cast my mind back four years to remember what I did!
     
  11. Cthippo

    Cthippo Can't mod my way out of a paper bag

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    You're awesome, Gareth, Thanks!

    The wiring looks pretty simple, but the code is intimidating. I know it will hurt my geek cred to admit it, but I never did BASIC coding as a kid, but I'll give it a shot.

    A couplf of dumb questions to start out with...

    What voltage does the leonardo run on? Mine came without a power supply and so I need to order one or if it's 12 VDC tap into the wiring under the desk.

    Is there a name for that connector type / pin spacing so I can order a connector to plug into the board itself?

    Thanks again!
     
  12. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Lover of bit-tech Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    The Leonardo is designed to run from the USB port on 5V, or can take between 6 and 20V (7-12V recommended) on the DC jack. In other words, you're free to wire it in to 12V via the barrel jack connector.

    The pin headers are 2.54mm female. Arduinos have a peculiar glitch in one row, though, from a layout mistake that ended up becoming the standard. Any standard jumper wire or breadboard wire will work fine, or look at something like a Protoshield or Wingshield for more permanent wiring.

    Oh, and learning BASIC wouldn't have helped much - that there's C!
     

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