Last updated on October 3rd, 2023 at 08:26 am

Are you wondering if it's time to move on from that single monitor display to a multi-screen set up?

Computer monitors with program

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Multi monitor setups: are they really a thing or just a way of being fancy? Working with two or more screens has many advantages but requires good preparation beforehand. From equipment, techniques, tips, in this article you will discover everything you need to know about the use of several screens for a successful implementation at home.

Why Work With a Multi Monitor Setup?

Working using a multiple monitor setup is not always a necessity, but it sure does bring tons of advantages. Depending on how it’s used, a second screen can either allow you to work with a larger screen size, or work with more open windows at the same time and split them more efficiently.

In this case, it is easier to organize yourself and to delimit your tasks. For example, the first screen will include your most used programs while the second will display the list of tasks that you have to complete for that day. This is more convenient than having to navigate between different applications, which in the long run is a waste of time.

During the last two years home offices have become the norm, and working with a multi monitor configuration can be a great solution if you are connecting to a remote machine that does not necessarily use the same operating system as your main workstation. 

Dedicating one part to the Windows environment and another to your own operating system, for example, reduces the confusion by deciding which part of one screen will be used to open Internet pages while the other will be responsible for running programs.

How Many Screens Can You Add In A Multi Monitor Environment?

Two screens are good but three are better. In reality, it’s rare to exceed 3 displays, making a triple monitor stand more and more popular, but you can connect almost as many displays as you want to your computer, as long as you have the proper number of display outputs.

Multiple monitor setups come with significant advantages in optimizing your workspace. With a triple monitor stand you can position the monitors just the way you like as they provide more flexibility of movement than the stand that comes built in with most monitors.

On this point the advantage goes to towers and gaming desktop PCs because they are modular and allow you to install one or more graphics cards, but laptops can be used as well, since there are many that come with at least two display outputs as standard. And of course you can make use of a docking station, which can provide support for up to 4 monitors.

But beyond the power of the graphics card, the motherboard must be taken into consideration. It also has its limits, especially since adding a graphics card leads to an increase in power consumption that can lead to overheating and a whole host of other problems.

How to Position Your Screens?

The layout of the workspace is a matter of taste. The main thing is that you are comfortable enough to work without problems for several hours. However, in general, we will favor two screens side by side when using a desktop computer. When using a laptop, it is better to place it in the foreground and the external screen in the background so that the whole thing is in the direct field of vision.

After connecting your monitors to your PC, you must assign each of them. The screen normally used with your computer will be determined by default as being screen 1. To check the status of each screen on Windows 10, simply type “detect or identify displays” in the start menu bar then click on “Identify”. You will then be able to rearrange the screens by clicking on them and dragging the mouse. 

Taking Care of Your Posture and Your Eyes

This is an aspect not to be overlooked when spending a lot of time at the computer, and even less when you have several screens in front of your eyes. Adopting good posture will allow you to be more efficient and to be less tired. In the long run, this will prevent joint pain and other musculoskeletal disorders.

We must not forget either the eyes which are more solicited by so many screens. If you do not have protective glasses or if the screen does not have a native blue light filter, you can install applications that take care of it or simply activate the “Night lighting” function in Windows. The slightly yellowish tint might be a bit disturbing at first but your eyes will thank you.

Use Multiple Displays Without Cables

At a time when more and more technologies are offered wirelessly, screen projection is no exception. If you have a Mac and an iPad, you can count on Sidecar, the solution offered by Apple. You will thus be able to transform your iPad into a secondary screen as easily as you share a file via AirDrop or play music via AirPlay. It is certainly not the most comfortable solution for the eyes, but it can still help.

On Windows, you can turn to Miracast. To do this, type “Connect to a wireless display” in the search bar of the Start menu and click on the corresponding option. If the TV you are trying to connect to is compatible, its name will appear in the list.

Be aware that wireless screen projection is less stable than a wired connection. Therefore there is a chance that there is some latency. In addition, the computer and the host screen must always be connected to the same WiFi network. It’s also important to note that most good monitors these days have a higher than HD resolution which means your TV might not actually make that great of a monitor unless you’re using it for streaming video from your computer.

What Screens To Choose For Your Multi-Monitor Setup?

To choose the right PC screen, there are a number of parameters to take into account. It all depends on the use you plan to make of the screen in question. The first aspect to consider is the size of the screen. Choose a diagonal of at least 24 inches to benefit from optimal visual comfort. 

For office use, you can turn to matte slab monitors. They are easy on the eyes and won’t bother you too much like a gaming monitor might.

Glossy slab screens offer more brightness and contrast and will be perfectly suited to anything other than work (movies, gaming, etc.).

There are screens dedicated to certain specific trades, like better color calibration more suitable for graphic designers and video editors. Apple , for example, offers a 6K screen with nano-textured display that offers stunning graphics and can render over a billion colors while reducing glare to a minimum.

In the end it is up to you to choose what kind of monitors you will include in your setup, but what we can advise is to pay attention to the monitor’s specs as well as what your needs are.

Final Thoughts

There are many advantages to working with a multi-monitor setup, but the most interesting aspect is undoubtedly being more productive.

We do not realize all the time that we are wasting just by switching from one window to another to fetch the information we need. With a second monitor, all it takes is a quick glance to quickly see what interests us.

When working all day at the computer, it is extremely rare that you have to use only one program, software or document at a time. And even if that is the case, one will still need to go check their emails or check a web page and, unfortunately, we often have to stop whatever we were working on just to find extra information.

Those who use video editing, photo editing or music mixing software will better understand how having more screen area to work with can make all the difference.

Before you go have a look at the video below, and see what others are saying about multi-monitor setups:

I am a tech lover, blogger and enthusiast. I love to write about the latest trends in technology and how they can be used for personal growth. I believe that through my writings, people will find new ways of understanding themselves and their interactions with others. You can reach me at [email protected].

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