[AG-TECH] Matrox Parhelia triple head AGP: 3 independent outputs???

Matthew Wolf mwolf at cc.gatech.edu
Thu Mar 27 09:03:37 CST 2003

I've been using a parhelia on my display node for some time now, in 
exactly the sort of configuration you're describing.

Depending on what people are doing, I run it in one of two modes.  By 
default, I put it in clone mode, so that outputs one and two are the 
same.  Output 2 goes to the console, and #1 goes to the projector.  That 
it works very well if you're just doing local presentations & demos.

When I need the full real estate, I put it into the triple mode, where 
the 3rd output drives the left-most projector, #1 drives the right 
projector, and #2 drives the console.  (this may sound 
counter-intuitive, but it works with our room layout)

In the Matrox powerdesktop setup utility you can force all popup windows 
to go to one particular screen -- here I send them all to #2 (console). 
  It plays a bit of havoc if you set vic to automatically place new 
video streams, because they all only show up on the console.

The icon issue is a pain -- Best I've ever been able to do is just drag 
them (and the task bar) over to the far right of the screen.  I suppose 
going up to XP would help, since you could get rid of the icons 
altogether and just run everything from the taskbar.  I've never 
actually tried this, though.

For the PCI card, I just bit the bullet and bought a g200.  I needed 4 
more outputs, and it was the most reasonable solution at the time.  On 
other machines we've mixed nvidia and matrox cards successfully, though, 
so if I was doing it again today I'd probably go that route.


Gurcharan S. Khanna wrote:
> hi,
> we recently purchased the matrox parhelia card with triple outputs, hoping to
> use it for 2 projector displays and 1 console display, which requires 3
> independent displays. however, it seems that the drivers only support 2
> independent or stretched displays + 1 "Feature" display (only takes input from
> DVD, etc.???) or 3 stretched displays.
> 1) is this really the case?
> the 3 stretched displays work except that if the primary display is an end one,
> then some apps will pop up in the middle display (projector); or if the primary
> display is the middle one, then the icons on the desktop tend to live on the
> leftmost display (another projector).
> 2) anyone else encountered this and/or have any suggestions? otherwise, i'll
> have to buy a PCI card for the console display and leave the 3rd parhelia output
> for when i might have a third projector (but it seems a waste not to use it).
> 3) given the price of the matrox g400 at over $500, are there less expensive PCI
> cards that are of equal performance and that would be compatible with the
> parhelia card to create a single logical display? i'm assuming that sticking to
> the same vendor might be safer?
> thanks for any feedback,
> -gurcharan
> ===========================
> Gurcharan S. Khanna, Associate Director
> Research Computing, Dartmouth College
> gkhanna at dartmouth.edu
> office: 603-646-1644
> http://research.dartmouth.edu/
> http://www.dartmouth.edu/~gkhanna


         -- Matthew Wolf
         -- Research Scientist, IHPC Laboratory
         -- College of Computing, Georgia Tech
         -- mwolf at cc.gatech.edu

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