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spikowski
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎11-16-2010
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
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Dual displays with X301

Where can I learn the capabilities of using external displays with my X301?

 

I've never had a problem when plugging in any projector, but when I plug an external display into the VGA port, I can't increase the resolution to take advantage of the larger display. My goal is to use either one large external display or two mid-size external displays for GIS work in my office; the laptop is powerful enough for GIS but the small screen is a handicap.

 

(running Windows 7 and ArcGIS 10)

lead_org
Posts: 20,369
Topics: 128
Kudos: 1,202
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Registered: ‎12-19-2008
Location: Australia, Melbourne

Re: Dual displays with X301

1. you can only change the resolution of the two LCD when they are running in independent mode. If you are running in a cloned mode, then the resolution are set.

2. You can drive a 30 inch WQXGA LCD using the displayport, while you can comfortably drive a 24 inch WUXGA LCD using the vga port.
Regards,

Jin Li

May this year, be the year of 'DO'!

I am a volunteer, and not a paid staff of Lenovo or Microsoft
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spikowski
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎11-16-2010
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
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Re: Dual displays with X301

Thanks -- this is very helpful. I tried "clone mode" which explains why I couldn't set the resolution. Is "independent mode" a Windows thing or a Lenovo thing? I need to get more details about cables and settings and I can't figure out where to look!
lead_org
Posts: 20,369
Topics: 128
Kudos: 1,202
Solutions: 1,277
Registered: ‎12-19-2008
Location: Australia, Melbourne

Re: Dual displays with X301

independent mode is just a windows setting, where the two LCD displays two independent image.

 

The image describes the different video cable connectors that you encounter (your laptop only have the vga and displayport connector).

 

In order to help you further, you must tell me the model type of the monitors that you are using.

Regards,

Jin Li

May this year, be the year of 'DO'!

I am a volunteer, and not a paid staff of Lenovo or Microsoft
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spikowski
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎11-16-2010
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
0

Re: Dual displays with X301

My two monitors are 19" ViewSonic VP191, about five years old. Each has a DVI socket and two VGA sockets.

 

My X301 is Type 4057, XB1.

 

When I simply plug a VGA cable into the laptop and monitor, I can "duplicate these displays" and see the same image on both monitors. However, even on my 4:3 monitor, I can get only a widescreen view, wasting nearly a third of the monitor's space.

 

The highest resolution the laptop says I can choose is 1440x900, but that yields an "out of range" error message on my external monitor; the highest resolution that displays on both monitors is 1360x768 -- which looks fuzzy.

 

So my question #1 is whether there is any way to fill the entire screen of my 4:3 external monitor with a crisp image, preferably at its native resolution?

 

Question #2 is, if I buy a DisplayPort-to-DVI cable, can I use my second monitor as well? Could I also fill it to its native resolution and have my GIS software extend across both screens?

lead_org
Posts: 20,369
Topics: 128
Kudos: 1,202
Solutions: 1,277
Registered: ‎12-19-2008
Location: Australia, Melbourne

Re: Dual displays with X301

if you duplicate the display, then both of the image would have the same resolution as the primary display. 

 

Go into your intel display property right click on your desktop, then check under the monitors section, you can select the extended and clone mode.

 

19 inch external monitors usually support 1280 x 1024, so select this resolution for the viewsonic external monitor.

 

The only way to support 2 external LCD is for you to switch off the internal LCD. If you need 3 LCD support, then the second external monitor would need a USB2DVI or USB2VGA converter.

 

Personally, i would use a digital connection for external monitors (i.e. displayport), as the picture quality will be better (less noises and distortions). Otherwise you are not doing justice for your viewsonic LCD (which uses the MVA LCD panels).  

Regards,

Jin Li

May this year, be the year of 'DO'!

I am a volunteer, and not a paid staff of Lenovo or Microsoft
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spikowski
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎11-16-2010
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
0

Re: Dual displays with X301

Thanks so much, now I'm understanding how this works.

 

I will take your advice about avoiding a VGA connection to my external monitor.

 

I don't need the laptop's internal display when I'm using the external monitor. So if I want two external monitors, I just hook up one through the display port connector and the second through a USB2DVI converter? Would that allow the two external monitors to work together, to extend my desktop across both?

 

lead_org
Posts: 20,369
Topics: 128
Kudos: 1,202
Solutions: 1,277
Registered: ‎12-19-2008
Location: Australia, Melbourne

Re: Dual displays with X301

the usb2dvi converter don't support high definition video very well, due to the limited bandwidth of the usb 2.0 port.

VGA port for your second LCD (the one that you use less) should be okay, just have a try first before you decide to fork out more money for a device that you could avoid.

Yes you can operate the 2 external LCD independently of each other (so non clone mode).
Regards,

Jin Li

May this year, be the year of 'DO'!

I am a volunteer, and not a paid staff of Lenovo or Microsoft
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spikowski
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎11-16-2010
Location: Fort Myers, Florida

Re: Dual displays with X301

I now have both external monitors running off my laptop, one thru the VGA port and the other through the displayport -- the quality is fine! Thanks for you patient advice

lead_org
Posts: 20,369
Topics: 128
Kudos: 1,202
Solutions: 1,277
Registered: ‎12-19-2008
Location: Australia, Melbourne
0

Re: Dual displays with X301

i am glad that i could of an assistance to you, enjoy your new laptop setup.
Regards,

Jin Li

May this year, be the year of 'DO'!

I am a volunteer, and not a paid staff of Lenovo or Microsoft