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Re: * Onboard video and pci video card conflict. Vista

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Kathy wrote:
> I was wondering if someone can help me, I have a Presario SR5050nx with
> onboard video,
> Intel GMA 950 (82945g express chipset) with vga port in the back panel and
> the latest drivers,
> and the motherboard has 2 pci and 1 pci express x16 and Vista home.
> I decided to install an Nvidia PCI FX5200 video card (vga and dvi) and I
> would like to have 3
> monitors (3 monitors makes things easier for the type of work I do) but once
> I install the pci card,
> it says "Incompatible display adapter has been disabled" and I can only get
> to use either the
> onboard video or go to bios and set it to use the pci as primary and use the
> pci card (w/2 monitors).
> Intel says that it can be done with a pci (no pci express), I don't know
> what am I missing. See:
> Has anyone got the onboard video and pci video card to work?
> Thank you for your help.
> kathy

Check the BIOS to see if there is an "INT 19 capture" or "INT 0x13 capture"
item and enable it.

Each video card has a BIOS chip on it, and there is code sitting in there.
You should enter the BIOS and see if there is any setting which is
preventing that add-on BIOS from being loaded. And the necessary setting,
might not be in the section where you find the Primary display adapter
setting. It'll be located elsewhere. Search all the BIOS pages until you
find it.


As for your choice of video cards, I own a PCI FX5200 video card. I bought
it originally, to use while I was flash upgrading the BIOS chip on an
AGP video card.

I've tested that card, in my last two motherboard upgrades, and it
upsets PCI bus operation too much, and gives too much stuttering for
practical work. If you'd asked about this card, before purchasing
it, I would have advised against it, based on the test results I've
seen here.

You can purchase PCI Express video cards with quad outputs. Basically,
the card consists of two GPU chips, running two outputs each, all
connected to the one PCI Express x16 slot. PNY used to make cards
like this, but I only see Jaton brand now. The modern PNY ones
are more likely to be useful with DVI or DisplayPort monitors.
You could then disable the onboard display, and run all monitors
from a single video card.

You want to read the customer reviews first, to see if there are issues.
Yes, there are issues.

To fit all the connectors on one faceplate, they use adapter cables.
The faceplate end is something like a DMS-59 connector (something with
more pins than a DVI), while the two monitor ends would be DVI cables.$S640W$

On the back of the card, you can see, more or less, two GPUs and
their associated memory chips in the layout.$S640W$

In terms of the wiring, it should work like this. A PCI Express
switch chip, splits the interface so that two GPUs can be used.
It effectively makes two slots from one. Sometimes that confuses
a less-sophisticated motherboard BIOS. Which is why one reviewer
mentioned getting a BIOS update for the motherboard, if
only two out of the four displays worked. If the motherboard
BIOS is confused, it might only enable and use one of the two
GPU chips.

to two DVI monitors <--- HD3450 HD3450 ---> to two DVI monitors
\ /
\ /
PCI Express
Switch chip
PCI Express x16

That should give you better performance. Even if the x16 interface
isn't really fully wired. I suspect it may be something like
wired x8, and split into two x4 interfaces, just based on the
surface mount caps I see near the slot connector. That is still
plenty of bandwidth, compared to the crappy PCI bus. (x4 = 1GB/sec
versus PCI 133MB/sec)

The PNY catalog is here, and there is only a short section at the
end claiming to drive 4 monitors. And the cards are too expensive.
The VCQ450NVS-X16-DVI-PB for example, might be a prospective solution,
except it'll be twice the price of the Jaton card.

If the whiny cooling fan on the card bothers you, there
is a potential solution for that. Disconnect the tiny fan cable
on the video card. Place an 80mm or 120mm Vantec Stealth computer
case cooling fan, right next to the Jaton heatsink. That will give
the airflow needed to keep it cool, without the high pitched noise
of the 40mm fan on the video card itself. Whether this is feasable
generally, depends on whether the heatsink is "open". Many heatsinks
are closed in such a way, that not enough cooling air would make
contact. But the Jaton heatsink looks open enough, to be cooled
well using an adjacent computer case fan. I suspend the fans
I use for this purpose, by bolting a "paint stick" to a PCI slot
cover screw hole. Then use nylon ties, to hold the fan to the
paint stick. I've also made a more classy solution, using aluminum
angle iron, which costs about $10 for the aluminum at Home Depot.

You can check the temperature of video cards, with a program called
GPUZ (amongst others). First, you'd run the Jaton card with its
own 40mm fan. Wait for temperatures to stabilize and take a reading.
Then, disconnect the 40mm fan, position the 80mm or larger fan right
next to the video card. Run the computer again and compare temperature
readings. As long as the temperature hasn't shot up astronomically,
that may be enough. This program may think there are two video cards
connected, so there could be two different temperature readings to
check (one per GPU).

Good luck,
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