Finding The Right Cable
If you find yourself having to use VGA, its more likely than not your device is relatively ancient. Similarly, if your device doesnt feature a VGA port at all, to which most modern, slimline notebooks can contend, this option wont suit you either.
These cables only carry image feeds – and not sound – so youll need to connect a separate audio connector to rig yourself up properly. You might be able to find a VGA to HDMI convertor but they tend to be disproportionately costly for the quality of the connection you end up with.
Wed recommend that you avoid using VGA connections if you can help it. Its technical limitations are unsuited to modern connectivity, so its best to seek out a more modern alternative.
DVI is similar to VGA but is capable of far higher resolution. Using a converter from DVI to HDMI will garner better results than VGA, but its still not ideal.
HDMI should be familiar to most people, as its the standard connection used by most televisions. There are variants though, so be aware. There are mini-HDMI and even micro-HDMI connectors, as well as full size, so make sure you pick the right cable.
Dont spend ridiculous amounts of money either HDMI cables are digital, and so either they work or they dont. You wont get better quality from fancy bells and whistles like gold-plated connectors, and buying a cheap one with the right spec will work just as well as an expensive one.
Set The Monitor Display Style
- Select “Duplicate these displays” to enable the secondary monitor display to mirror the primary monitor display.
- Select “Extend these displays” to expand your desktop across each monitor.
- Select “Show only 1” to disable monitor “2” and only use monitor “1”.
- Select “Show only 2” to disable monitor “1” and only use monitor “2”.
Better Productivity With Multiple Monitors
As you can see, there are a lot of steps in the process where some people would give up and conclude that it just doesn’t work. If that’s still you, consider getting a larger monitor.
But really, it comes down to just making sure your video card is capable of doing this, and then playing around with those display settings and making sure that the monitors are configured correctly. If you have one DisplayPort, consider the daisy-chain option. And if all else fails, buy a USB monitor and install DisplayLink software.
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Easy Steps To A Dual Monitor Setup In Windows 10
A dual monitor setup lets you multitask like a pro and increase productivity! Learn how to set up dual monitors in Windows 10.
You’d think that connecting two or more monitors to your PC is a matter of plugging them in, and you’re good to go. The new monitors should just instantly turn on and start working, right? Well, that’s usually not the case.
Did you consider these pitfalls: Does your computer even support a dual monitor setup? How many outputs does your graphics card support? What type of video ports does your computer have?
We’ll help you answer those questions and show you how to configure your multiple monitor setup.
Loose Or Faulty Hardware
This is probably one of the simplest reasons why your monitors may not successfully connect to your laptop.
Either the connection is loose somewhere, or your cables or monitors are damaged.
Check for any loose connections and get a new pair of cables if the old ones are no longer as effective. If your monitors are damaged, get them repaired or purchase new ones if the damages are not worth fixing.
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What Is A Dual Monitor Setup
Chances are youve seen a dual monitor setup before. Either in a friends home or perhaps in your own workplace. Perhaps youve even experienced the wonder of a multi-monitor setup with three, or even four screens in arrangement.
A dual monitor is simply two computer screens operating from a single computer. With a dual monitor setup, you get to spread out your workflows across two screens instead of one. Lenovo has an array of computer monitors to choose for gaming, home, office and more.
In fact, some people choose to extend their computer work across even more screens. With the right components it is possible to achieve a multiple monitor setup. For most of us, however, two monitors should suffice.
Its not just a matter of showing off. Oh-no. Quite the contrary. Spreading workflows over multiple screens is better for productivity, efficiency, and overall workflow.
Extend To External Monitors
Those of you who do not need multiple monitors for presentations but want a more productive experience should check out the Extend to External Monitor viewing mode. This viewing mode is the most popular one out there. It can be used with either a single monitor or a two monitor setup. With this viewing mode, you can connect two monitors in a way that each display and your notebooks inbuilt display can show different things at the same time. You can even drag applications from one screen to another as per your liking. In other words, you can have a lot of information being displayed to you at the same time.
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Check Your I/o Panel And Gpu For Connections
Your PC has an area for all important cable connections, typically called the I/O panel. If its been a while since youve peeked back there, take a look before you buy a secondary monitor. If you have a discrete GPU, then there may also be a GPU section with ports of its own to take stock of. Snap a quick photo of this whole section for quick reference if necessary.
Now check to see what kind of display connections you have to work with. For modern monitors and PCs, the two common options are HDMI and DisplayPort, with even newer models also offering USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 for A/V data. You may also have a DVI-I port for managing older digital/analog connections, and some PCs might still have a VGA port .
Make sure you have at least two of these display ports for two monitors. Note which spare port you will be attaching the new monitor to and what connection type youll need.
You can also use a monitor as a second screen with a laptop, as long as that laptop has compatible display ports of its own. The laptop screen itself can also be used as a second monitor with the right setup, although that isnt as common.
Things To Check Before The Start
Generally speaking, most Windows laptops now support dual monitors, at least. But you need to make sure your laptop is capable to add two external monitors. And that depends on your Windows operating system, the capability of your graphics cards and drivers.
Windows XP/7/8/10 all support multiple monitors, so you just need to check the graphics card and ports on your laptop.
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How To Connect 2 Monitors To Desktop Computer
The below apply only to desktop computer. To connect 2 monitors to a laptop computer, please see the appropriate section.
If you have a desktop computer, it is likely that you will have different display ports on the computer . If your monitor also has several display ports, then the connection is going to be easy!
Dual Screen Laptop With A Dock
There are dozens of laptop docks out there. Some will be made by your laptop manufacturer while others by third parties. They offer a lot of flexibility to how you use your laptop but come at a cost. The average dock costs anywhere between $60 to $200, so arent cheap!
If you have a dock, you can use one, two or three screens depending on your needs. For the purpose of this guide, I will use two monitors and not the laptop screen.
Once Windows loads, it should detect the HDMI and/or DVI signal and pick up your monitors. To configure them:
As above, you can use Windows Settings to refine how your dual screen setup looks and feels. I wont repeat the steps here, just follow the configuration steps above for using dual screens without a dock. They are exactly the same.
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Using Your Laptop Screen As A Second Monitor
If you want to use your laptop’s built-in screen as a secondary display, you need to set it in your display settings.
All you have to do is to right-click on your desktop and choose Display Settings. You will see two boxes in the new window that will open representing your monitors.
Click Identify to know which number corresponds to which screen. You can also rearrange the boxes so to match the physical arrangement of your displays.
When you know the number assigned to which display, choose the screen you want to use as your primary screen. Scroll down to Multiple displays.
Click on the dropdown menu and choose Extend desktop to this display. Don’t forget to tick the Make this my main display checkbox!
Sometimes, when you do these, the computer will ask if you want to Keep changes or Revert. Click on Keep changes if you’re happy with it or Revert if you want to go back to the way it was.
Do You Really Need 3 Displays On Your Laptop Screen
Most general users will not need to have 3 displays of their screen.
However, there are situations when this will be very handy. For a start, when you have two monitors you are then able to run two different applications side by side.
This can be very useful if, for example, you are Skyping someone on one monitor and referring to a document during the conversation that is displayed on the second monitor.
This can also be very handy if you are used to working between more than one program. Instead of pressing Alt + Tab to toggle between them, you can have them all on permanent display. This will make the job much easier.
Havingmultiple files open and visible at the same time will also make it easier totransfer files between applications. As an example, if you are browsing imagesyou can simply drag those you wish to keep to your open Photoshop app on theother screen.
Havingone or more monitors at your disposal also allows you to referencespecifications or other important data relating to the job that you are workingon. You will be able to more easily ensure that you are sticking to theseguidelines.
Havingmonitors side by side will also allow you to make easy comparisons between twosets of data.
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How To Set Up Dual Monitors On A Windows 10 Computer
1. Connect both monitors to the computer tower or laptop you’re using, and make sure they’re both turned on. Depending on the monitor and your computer, you’ll need a VGA, HDMI, or USB cable. In some cases, you might need a combination of different cables.
Your computer should recognize the new monitor right away. Both screens will go black and might flicker a bit.
2. Once the screen comes back, right-click on an empty part of your PC’s desktop and a drop-down menu will appear. Click on Display settings.
3. Scroll down to the Multiple Displays option, open the drop-down menu, and choose how you want the dual monitors to work. Here are your options:
- Extend these displays: You can set your screens up so that they display different things and your mouse cursor can move between them.
- Duplicate these displays: This option will show the same image on both screens, which can be useful for PowerPoint presentations and lectures.
- Show only on 1: Select this if you only want to use the primary monitor.
- Show only on 2: Select this if you only want to use the secondary monitor.
4. Once you’ve picked an option, click Keep changes.
5. If you chose the Extend these displays option, scroll back up to the Rearrange your displays section. Your main monitor will be listed as “1,” and your new monitor will be listed as “2.” Click and drag them around to match their arrangement in real life, then click Apply.
How To Connect A Laptop Or Desktop To A Monitor
Setup is extremely easy: As soon as you plug in a second monitor, your computer will recognize it without requiring any extra software or a complicated setup process. You can, however, take a few optional steps to configure it exactly as you like it. The exact process will depend on your computers operating system.
On Windows, tap Windows+P to switch between four display modes: PC screen only , Duplicate , Extend , or Second screen only . Most of the time, youll want the Extend option, which will allow you to open apps and windows independently on both screens. To further configure your second display, open the Start menu, click the Settingsicon , and choose System, followed by Display. From here, you can configure the brightness, resolution, and orientation of both screens. If youre using two displays as one extended screen, you can also use this menu to set which monitor will be on the left and which on the right.
Over on macOS, open the Apple menu, choose System Preferences, and then click Displays. Under the Arrangement tab , you can change the relative positions of your displayswhich one is on the left screen and which is on the right. Using the Mirror Displays checkbox, you can also switch between mirrored mode and extended mode . In addition, you can set the screen resolution from this same menu.
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Program The Monitors On Your Computer
Programming the monitors to work as desired varies slightly by your operating system. Regardless, the overall process is relatively simple and straightforward.
On a PC, right click on a blank space on the home screen and choose Display Settings. At this point, you must determine how the displays should work. You can Duplicate to have two separate displays doing the same thing. Or choose Extend Display to work between two monitors. Extending is the common choice and you can drag windows between the two screens. Apply the desired settings and you are ready to use the dual monitor system.
On a Mac computer, click the Menu then System Preferences. Choose Display Settings to reach the options. Choose Mirror to display the same screen on both monitors or remove the check from the Mirror box to extend the display.
Again, extend desktop is the preferred method for working with dual screens You can open and work on different applications in each monitor. The Mirror screen function does however work well when multiple monitors are used to share the same presentation. Adjust the angles and you can present to a large audience using this method.
Setting Up Two Monitors
Youshould have your laptop switched on when you set up your two monitors. Here arethe steps to follow:
- Plug the cable of the first external monitor to the appropriate video port on the laptop. This may be VGA to VGA or HDMI to HDMI.
- Plug the cable of the second external monitor to the appropriate video port on the laptop.
- Right-click any empty area on the desktop of your laptop. On Windows 10, click Display Settings.
- In Display Mode, you will see three displays that will be labeled 1, 2 and 3. Display 1 will be your laptop, with 2 and 3 being your external monitors.
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How To Connect Two External Monitors To A Windows Computer
After checking the number of ports offered by your laptop, you can follow these steps. These will work whether you want to connect either one display or multiple to a Windows Computer at the same time:
- Step 1: First, find the primary video output of your laptop which can be used without the need for an adapter. This can either be the VGA or HDMI port of your laptop.
- Step 2: Then, use a VGA or HDMI cable for the connection between your laptop and the first monitor. Make sure to check that you are using the same graphics card port on your laptop as well as the monitor for proper compatibility.
- Step 3: After that, you can use your laptops secondary mini DisplayPort for the connection between your laptop and the second screen. For this, you have to either use a mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort or HDMI cable for connecting to the second monitor.
- Step 4: Those of you who are using USB Type C adapter cables for connecting monitors will also find themselves using HDMI cables.
- Step 5: Now that you have connected both of the monitors to your laptop, you can simply configure them as you please. This can be done via Windows Display Settings which can support multiple screens at once and offers various video graphics settings.
- Step 6: To do so, PRESS Windows Key + I on your keyboard and head over to System. Here, select Display settings from the left-hand side menu.
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