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1clue
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 3:17 am    Post subject: Thunderbolt external monitor on non-Mac hardware? Reply with quote

Hi,

I'm contemplating new monitors, which will almost certainly require a different video card.

I really like the 27" Apple Thunderbolt displays, but I can't seem to find anything about even 1 working on Linux, let alone 2 or 3. I don't know if it requires a different driver or not. I know there are Thunderbolt video cards for non-Mac hardware, but again nothing I find has any mention of a Linux driver.

I currently use 2 1920x1080 monitors and a dual head nvidia card, and would like more desktop space. If somebody has an alternate crazy-high resolution monitor that works well, and the video card that comes with it, I'm listening.

I actually have 4 1920x1080 monitors but they're not all the same size, and I'm not sure I want to divide things up like that.

I'd love to hear your recommendations.

Thanks.
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dch24
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 3:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you looked at the korean catleap 27" 2560x1440 monitors?

If you pay a little more than the lowest, lowest prices (ebay usually has them for $390) you get more reliable service and the monitor will have DVI + VGA + displayport.

Obviously only DVI or displayport is needed to get a 3-way setup with any recent video card.
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1clue
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll check them out. I'm a little nervous buying that size monitor with that high resolution for that small an amount, don't see how they can do a good job of it.

But at least that would get me back to cards known to work on Linux. And maybe my existing card.

Thanks.
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Ant P.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They're cheap because they're already mass-produced - these are the same monitor panels Apple uses but without the branding or fancy addons (which can mean no hardware scaler or OSD menus).
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dch24
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 5:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

1clue wrote:
I'll check them out. I'm a little nervous buying that size monitor with that high resolution for that small an amount, don't see how they can do a good job of it.

But at least that would get me back to cards known to work on Linux. And maybe my existing card.

Thanks.
Do some online research. There are a lot of reviews that I think do a good job of showing the pros and cons. Like Ant P. said, some don't have a hardware scaler or OSD or the necessary back panel inputs, but if you pay a little more than the bottom prices (bottom prices are around $390 right now) you can get those niceties, and it may prove well worth it by saving you hassle.
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1clue
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 8:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If missing some fancy hardware I don't use anyway is all that's different then I'm a lot less worried.

In fact, it would be neat if I could take 2 of these monitors and put them face to face, and make them into a luggable computer. Of course, finding a laptop style box with two dual-link display ports would be tough too, outside of Mac hardware.

<rant type=hypothetical>
Why is the current trend in laptops moving toward tiny machines with large resolution, wimpy processors and small RAM?
</rant>

Thanks.
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dch24
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

1clue wrote:
<rant type=hypothetical>
Why is the current trend in laptops moving toward tiny machines with large resolution, wimpy processors and small RAM?
</rant>
Heh, only macs even have the resolution, the majority have 1366x768 and 1440x900. My 1280x1024 laptop from 10 years ago laughs at them!

In all seriousness, I believe it's related to the global economic hard times. Laptop makers are losing money and can only afford to put out little junk boxes.

I'm quite happy with my desktops, servers, and an old laptop as a media player. But I'm probably part of the reason the laptop makers aren't selling huge numbers of units any more.
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i92guboj
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 9:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been looking around, and found the Qosmio series, which offer good machines for an acceptable price. I know they have hdmi ports, but I have no idea about the rest, so you will have to check yourself if it's possible to plug more than one monitor. I have no idea.

Provided that you have the money you can get a good machine. But a good laptop is, and will probably always be, more expensive than a desktop box.

The thing right know, I think, is that the lower end has become a lot wider than it used to be. That is, now you can find literally thousands of models in the 350-399€ range, and if you want a notebook that can be <300€. You can't expect those machines to be top-notch, ever. They are ok for internet, docs, photos and some gaming, and that's all 99% of the users want and need, so it's ok that the machines are weaker because the prices are also lower, and that gives access to this technology for the masses, and not a few privileged people.

Those who can pay for it can still get a good machine, just like before.
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1clue
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hear you both.

I've been building my own, usually coming out with an amazingly heavy tower at around $3500USD. This one will probably have to be smaller than that. I also have a Mac laptop for work, which is getting long of tooth.

I need to be able to travel with it, so it needs to be at least luggable. Dual monitors and everything. I don't care if I have to dedicate a suitcase or even make my own enclosure. Actually come to think of it, if I could do that and make a clamshell monitor setup with a hinge on it, that would be awesome.

And if I found a laptop that could do two dual link DVIs or even HDMIs that would be awesome. But I have 8g and dual core on the current work laptop, and it's very definitely inadequate. Prefer quad core Intel and 16g, that would give me about the same "headroom" I had when the laptop came out. Problem is, I often need up to 3 VMs running simultaneously, and then a full IDE, and whatever else is usually going on in my regular workspace.

I don't really like buying laptop hardware, you're stuck with whatever you got, and SOMETHING doesn't have a driver, guaranteed. I'd prefer setup made of laptop-sized equipment, with low electrical usage, and then stick a 4-output video card on it just in case, because I seem to be going in that direction. AND a @#$@%# gigabit ethernet port! Who takes off the Ethernet?!!
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