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Displays Dual Display Challenge

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by mikemaher205, 13 Jan 2013.

  1. mikemaher205

    mikemaher205 New Member

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    Hey, bit of a random question to the multi-monitor users out there...

    My main display is a Dell U2312HM 1920 x 1080 and is set my primary desktop.

    I have decided to use my TV as a secondary 1920 x 1080 (60Mhz) display, running out of my GPU's HDMI port. I want to use it to play games and watch films/internet streamed media when using full screen as the speakers will mean I don't have to wear headphones.

    My GPU is a Radeon HD 5850 1GB.

    Is there a way to may the OS or the graphics driver/control program force anything full screen to appear on the secondary display? The idea is I just open a game and it goes straight onto my TV screen, leaving my main display free to use my desktop still.
     
  2. atc95

    atc95 I have the upgrade bug!

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    Can't help but interested in replies as I have a similar issue with the u2412m as my main display and a second lcd monitor I want for web browsing and desktop while I am watching films or gaming.
     
  3. mikemaher205

    mikemaher205 New Member

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    The only solution I have at the moment, is to change the settings on all games and applications to windowed mode, then move the window to the secondary display and maximise it. There are 2 problems with this method:

    1. Constant user interaction every time apps/games opened
    2. Title bar and window edges (Ruins the full screen effect)

    Another issue is sound. I don't think there's any way for just the extended part of the desktop (second display) to output sound related to anything on that display only, ignoring the primary display or desktop. This again would be a case of muting all sounds on other applications while a full screen application is in use on the secondary display.
     
  4. Addie

    Addie Member

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    If you are using both displays all the time you can set your TV to the primary monitor, as far as I recall pretty much all games will default to open on the primary monitor with no option to change this if played full screen. There isn't really any downside of setting the TV to the primary display as programmes tend to remember their location.

    Some games will also have an option for 'borderless windowed mode' which would offer a partial solution to your current method. Also games are not usually designed with the use of dual screen in mind so if you are playing a game and go to use something on the second screen it would still minimize the game on the primary screen unless there is the 'borderless windowed mode' a la WoW.

    As for the sound, I've never had to work around that, I just have a USB headset which takes over when plugged in.
     
  5. GeorgeStorm

    GeorgeStorm Aggressive PC Builder

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    Can't you make the TV your primary display?
     
  6. Aterius Gmork

    Aterius Gmork smell the ashes

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    If you want to switch your primary and secondary screen fast, press Windows Key + P. This way it is very easy to change your primary display on the fly, and once you got the hang of it you can do it blind, which might be necessary if your setup is similar to mine.

    Having a game running and still being able to use the computer normally is very difficult or cannot be done I am afraid.
     
    biojellywobbles likes this.
  7. monkiboi

    monkiboi Member

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    As others have said, if you want to move from the full screen game to the other monitor you'll have to alt-tab out of the game. It's much easier to game in window mode from this point of view although you'll find your 5850 will switch speeds down and up a lot if you monitor it in gpu-z.

    You may well find that the screen 'jumps' when using the 5850 on dual monitors. This is caused by the UVD standard settings in the cards bios that down clocks the memory to 900Mhz when viewing video formats. It's possible that you won't see it when using the HDMI port but if you do there's two fixes:

    1. disable hardware acceleration in flash.

    2. overclock your card by 1Mhz using afterburner. This, for me disables the power savings settings in the bios. It does mean the card will be constantly running at full tilt but, if you do end up using window mode for gaming your card won't clock itself up and down through the powersaving modes as you switch windows around.
     
  8. mikemaher205

    mikemaher205 New Member

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    Interesting information there about the GPU power handling, very helpful. I will have a play tonight and see what results I get.

    Windowed mode sounds like the only work around for "full screen" and just something that has to be got used to.

    Another question that has popped into my head regarding power usage; I read on the preview to AMD 7 series GPUs that they have the ability to turn off the GPU and save more energy when it detects the display is turned off. Does this effect dual monitoring (i.e. if I just work on one monitor with the other switched off, the GPU doesn't try to use any resources on the second, turned off screen)?
     
  9. atc95

    atc95 I have the upgrade bug!

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    Some games do support it and I think it is something being considered in the future as graphics cards can easily power several monitors, Borderlands 2 is an example of it working.
     
  10. GeorgeStorm

    GeorgeStorm Aggressive PC Builder

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    I run all games (that I can) full screen windowed, so I can switch to other programs/the other monitor mid game instantly with no issues.
     

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