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#109 by Neil Blanchard
Tue Feb 15, 2005 10:23 am

A picture is worth a thousand words, right? Here's some pictures of various DataCAD desktops that I use on my dual 17" LCD monitors. The total resolution of both combined is 2560pixels x 1024pixels, and physically the image is 26 1/2" wide x 10 5/8" high. Click on the small images to get the full size image. I beg your pardon if the white background is too shocking! :wink:


This is a very typical mode: the active drawing visible, with both the MultiWindows (which are graphic GTV's) and the Symbol Browser are open, and the SB is big enough to be useful! The right edge of the main menu is the dividing line between the two monitors, BTW, so the drawing covers as much of the righthand monitor as possible.

This image shows the Layer Manager covering the lefthand monitor -- you can hit Apply, and you see the changes on the drawing.

This image shows the new resizable Symbol Browser dialog.

This image shows how you can have two drawings tiled; one on each monitor, with the SB in the mirror position to the main menu. The light blue section on the righthand drawing is a hightlighted *self* XRef, BTW. Another more accurate name for this might be IRev for Internal Reference View.

Image [This one is half size.]
This image shows DataCAD with IrfanView (which is a free image browser & editor) so you can look at digital photos while drawing in DataCAD.

I hope this helps explain why I am so enthusiastic about dual monitors! I'm sure that others have some thoughts on this, too.

Here's what the pair of ViewSonic VP171b's look like at my work station. They have approximately 5/8" side and top bezels, while the bottom is about 7/8". (I only have the black background so the images will show up on my ultra-low rez PDA cam.) They now sell for about $345 at NewEgg which is about $200 less than I paid just a year or so ago... :roll: [Edit] For about $50 less than I paid for my 17" models, you can now buy the 19" ViewSonic VP-191b for less than $500, which has the same resolution as mine, but I'm sure the extra 2" won't be a bad thing!

[Edit: Since these image links are apparently broken, I'm reposting some similar images:]
Last edited by Neil Blanchard on Thu Jan 12, 2017 4:45 pm, edited 11 times in total.
#126 by joshhuggins
Tue Feb 15, 2005 1:37 pm
Really all that is needed is either a AGP/PCX video card that supports dual head (2 monitors, usually 1 15 pin CRT and 1 DVI output) or a AGP card with single VGA output and a additonal PCI video card. The most favorable would be the single card method, due to only having to worry about one video driver, and most time both displays will benefit from hardware acceleration, where as using an additional PCI card, most of the time Windows can't direct Direct X to two video devices, for complex task, but some cards can.

As far as setup, it's basicly if you don't have a dual head card, can you install a PCI add in card yourself? Or do you know someone who could do it for you? Maybe a local computer shop. Most of the time it's a few simple screws to pop the case open, few more screws to take a metal cover off, push the video card in, screw it back down, hook any power leads (if needed) and power up the system. Download the latest drivers from the internet for your card, restart and see if you now have two displays in your Desktop Properties, on the Settings tab. If you do, and they are working, close your case up and then adjust the display settings as you need. Of course there can always be a glitch, but using most hardware out now and Windows XP, you should be up and going in no time.
#175 by Daniel Kaczor
Tue Feb 15, 2005 4:55 pm
Hi Neil,

Thanks for the pics. But what does your physical desktop look like? Are the monitors the same brand, size, bezel dimension, height, spaced apart?
#190 by Neil Blanchard
Tue Feb 15, 2005 7:31 pm
Hi Daniel:

Daniel Kaczor wrote:Hi Neil,

Thanks for the pics. But what does your physical desktop look like? Are the monitors the same brand, size, bezel dimension, height, spaced apart?

I've added a picture of my work station above, along with a description.
#732 by DBrennfoerder
Thu Mar 03, 2005 10:13 am
Dual monitors are a no-brainer with a laptop. I have the Dell Inspiron 9100 with a 1920 x 1200 res screen measuring 13" wide (15.5 diag) with a 14" diag crt (1024 x 768) monitor attached as shown. I do all my drafting with the working window on the lcd as shown, and buttons on the secondary. I don't dock or lock any toolbars so all is always flexible. When at client meetings, the "secondary" image is the projector I use to show the client our work, so I move the working window to the projector and show our work on the 800x600 screen. All tool bars are kept in front of me on the laptop screen, no distractions for them, they only see the cad window, o2c view, or anything else I move to the "secondary" monitor.Image Well, there's the link anyway :oops:
Last edited by DBrennfoerder on Wed Nov 29, 2006 11:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
#936 by Philip Hart
Fri Mar 11, 2005 4:15 pm
Well, I had an "extra" monitor lying around so I finally took the time to figure out the configuration issues with my graphics card and have been running DataCAD dual screens for the last couple of days. 3200x1200 desktop across two 19" monitors is very sweet.

I've fiddled around and figured out which menus feel better on the "main" screen and which are better on the "support" screen, but there are a couple of things that seem to want to only open in the middle of the desktop - the DataCAD file open and save windows, for instance. They are not too much trouble; it is just a pain to drag them one way or the other. The one that really bothers me, though, is the plot preview window. I don't see a way to make it anything other than maximized whenever it opens. It spreads all the way across both screens - awesome but annoying. Any fix for this?

#941 by DBrennfoerder
Fri Mar 11, 2005 10:07 pm
RE: any fix for this? I maximize DataCAD across both screens, and then restore down the work window. That way all the zoom extents, o2c views, and print previews are on one screen. All my buttons are on the other screen. That way, my drawing area is maximized, all buttons and other programs are on the secondary screen. Image
#942 by Neil Blanchard
Sat Mar 12, 2005 12:14 am
Hello Philip:

It depends on how your video card(s?) are set up. If they are on separate cards, I'm not sure there is much to do about the behavior of things. If they are one one card, but are set to independent (but possibly the same) resolutions, then there may be a setting in the video control panel to "remember window postions". If they are on one card, and the desktop is "stretched" across both monitors (the easy way to tell is if the Start bar is on both screens at once), then this is harder to control window behavior.

I prefer the second way, since you can maximize programs on one monitor, and you have a better chance of having "unified" control, since it is one card and one driver.

How do you have it set up?

BTW, Dwight -- that picture is pretty darn BIG! :P
#948 by DBrennfoerder
Sat Mar 12, 2005 10:28 pm
OK, OK, I shrank the pic. Actually, I tried to earlier, but my FTP program didn't overwrite the file like I thought, so I deleated and re-ftp'd a smaller jpg.
Neil: I assume it's all on one card, this is a laptop, so the second monitor (or projector) is just a matter of plugging it in. I agree, the stretched desktop is best. I CAN set it to one monitor, and have duplicate info on the second screen, but rarely use this anymore. I used to like it for meetings, but the cad buttons and cursor activity are distracting to the client. With the stretched desktop, my control buttons & menus are all on my screen, the client only watches the workwindow. :D
#5356 by Heinrich
Fri Aug 19, 2005 7:51 am
I know it's a bit off topic, but can't help but to post this. Sharp is about to introduce Dual View LCD Displays. Very cool.
Not sure if these would be a usefull application in CAD, but still amazing technology.

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