Sunday, December 20th 2009

SAPPHIRE Solves Eyefinity Issue with Active DisplayPort Adapter

A feature of the latest SAPPHIRE HD 5000 series of graphics cards is the new ATI Eyefinity mode, which enables games and other applications to be run on three screens treated as one continuous display area. Now with the SAPPHIRE Eyefinity adapter, standard DVI monitors can be used for all three screens.

In addition to spectacular image clarity, speed and visual effects, the SAPPHIRE HD 5000 series supports the new multi-monitor mode known as ATI Eyefinity. This allows a single GPU to display a choice of images over an array of several monitors. The cards in this series support up to three monitors, with a resolution of up to 7680 x 1600. This opens up exciting possibilities not just for multi-screen gaming, but also for information systems, multimedia systems and promotional displays.

However, with this family of cards, although two of the screens can be connected directly to the DVI or HDMI outputs on the card, the third display has to be driven from the DisplayPort output. Some users have expressed concern about the cost or availability of DisplayPort compatible monitors, or a wish to match existing monitor styles.

Now SAPPHIRE has introduced an active powered DisplayPort to DVI converter, which allows any standard DVI monitor to be used as the third screen and enabled in Eyefinity mode. This allows users to update their existing multi-monitor setup to use Eyefinity, or to add a lower cost DVI monitor to complete their Eyefinity system. The SAPPHIRE converter is simply plugged into the DisplayPort output of the graphics card, together with a standard USB connection to provide power. A standard DVI monitor cable can then be connected to the female DVI connector on the unit.

This series of cards is supported by AMD's DirectX 11 WHQL certified graphics driver which delivers support for all of the key DirectX 11 level features required for new gaming experiences and acceleration of next generation high performance applications.
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79 Comments on SAPPHIRE Solves Eyefinity Issue with Active DisplayPort Adapter

#1
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
All yours for GBP 78.

Many thanks to jagd for sending this in.
Posted on Reply
#2
Solaris17
Creator Solaris Utility DVD
omg bta 11k posts GJ
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#3
Lionheart
I never knew there was an issue in the first place, but then again, ati driver's lol:laugh:
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#4
angelkiller
For the money, I'd just get a third LCD with a Display Port instead of this.
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#5
kylzer
by: CHAOS_KILLA
I never knew there was an issue in the first place, but then again, ati driver's lol:laugh:
Clever post :wtf:
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#6
aj28
Dunno that I would call it an issue, to be fair... DisplayPort is simply a standard before its time, for now at least, and backwards compatibility would only serve to hold it back by unnecessarily increasing its complexity. I'd like to get my hands on some compatible hardware in the near future...
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#7
Zubasa
by: CHAOS_KILLA
I never knew there was an issue in the first place, but then again, ati driver's lol:laugh:
LOL at you.:p
GO figure what a Display Port is before the driver bashing.
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#8
VulkanBros
by: Zubasa
LOL at you.:p
GO figure what a Display Port is before the driver bashing.
+1 for that ;-)
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#9
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
I hope there isn't any lag using that adapter. AMD made a bad call there seeing as DisplayPort just barely got its foot in the door and, to make matters worse, DisplayPort is in no way compatible with DVI/HDMI.
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#10
1Kurgan1
The Knife in your Back
by: FordGT90Concept
I hope there isn't any lag using that adapter. AMD made a bad call there seeing as DisplayPort just barely got its foot in the door and, to make matters worse, DisplayPort is in no way compatible with DVI/HDMI.
I'm not sure what the similarities are between the setup I run and this. But I run an adapter from my PS3 (Composite out) to VGA, and I don't sense any lag compared to running it through HDMI before. I can't imagine this would be any different.
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#11
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
Composite or component video? Composite video is just a matter of extracting the three colors and outputting a matching value on horizontal and vertical refresh rates. That can be done on the fly with a matter of a few ms delay (not detectable by the eyes). Component is more involved because you have to convert binary into analog.

The problem with DisplayPort -> DVI signaling is that they have different communication standards. Still, I'm sure it is not impossible to engineer a chip that would perform the conversion in a time frame that it can't be detected by human senses. It just cost more--a lot more than just rearranging a few pins into a different arrangement.


The point being is that AMD made a bad call. They should have taken a hint from Apple users with all their DisplayPort connectivity issues. Truth be told, I'm as bitter with DisplayPort as I am with ATSC -> NTSC. In fact, I am more so bitter about DisplayPort than anything else. Simply put, it is a bad standard (very limited backwards compatibility, limited cable length, introduces a new form of DRM: DPCP, very little bandwidth gain compared to dual-link DVI, and the list goes on). DisplayPort is "replacing" DVI because industry leaders (HP, Dell, Apple, Intel, to name a few) insist, not because it makes any sense. If it were up to me, we'd be talking about Unified Display Interface (the true successor to DVI), not DisplayPort.
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#12
Mussels
Moderprator
for those that dont get it, the point is that you need three monitors for eyefinity.

Since DP and DVI arent compatible, you need a special adaptor - this adaptor lets you use three DVI (or HDMI screens with further adaptors) for eyefinity
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#13
Hayder_Master
2 ports only , is that mean maximum 4 lcd display
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#14
Mussels
Moderprator
by: hayder.master
2 ports only , is that mean maximum 4 lcd display
its one display port to one DVI port - the other plug is USB for power.






To be honest, this does confuse me.

With 2x DVI, 1x HDMI and 1x DP, i dont see why users cant use a HDMI to DVI adaptor/cable for eyefinity without needing this expensive adaptor.

Is there some limitation with one of those DVI ports not working if the HDMI port is in use?
Posted on Reply
#15
Zubasa
by: Mussels
its one display port to one DVI port - the other plug is USB for power.



http://techgage.com/reviews/ati/hd_5770/ati_hd_5770_03_thumb.jpg


To be honest, this does confuse me.

With 2x DVI, 1x HDMI and 1x DP, i dont see why users cant use a HDMI to DVI adaptor/cable for eyefinity without needing this expensive adaptor.

Is there some limitation with one of those DVI ports not working if the HDMI port is in use?
Exactly, that HDMI port is just an internal DVI to HDMI adaptor :respect:
This is really a bummer TBH.
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#16
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
I'm guessing it is because of how the card is wired internally. The HDMI out is probably linked to DVI1 or DVI2. The DisplayPort, on the other hand, is akin to DVI3--it is not linked to DVI1 or DVI2 in any way. I'm guessing AMD had put some crazy hardware in there in order to support DisplayPort (being so incompatible with DVI and HDMI) and they needed a way to market it as something special thus, Eyefinity is born.
Posted on Reply
#17
Mussels
Moderprator
its probably linked to the one next to it, actually.


So your combinations for eyefinity are:

DVI, HDMI, DP
DVI, DVI, DP
DVI, DVI, DVI (with this fancy adaptor)
Posted on Reply
#18
lemonadesoda
Wow. There I was, just about to buy a 5770 to drive three identical DVI monitors, and now this... discovery of marketing spin and that eyefinity is NOT compatible with 3x DVI without extra (relatively significant) expense AND FDONGLES.

I'm pretty embarassed, because somewhere else in this forum I might have even recommended someone to swap out an asymmetric GPU setup for a single 5770 solution to drive 3 monitors. Man, ATI made some bad decisions there. Any why? ALL FOR BLXXDY BLU-RAY DRM. ATI are giant tits, because people that would find eyefinity a feature...e.g. workstation use... do not want DRM or bluray compatibility. Big boyzTM dont do bluray on their workstations. They got a home cinema for that...
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#19
Mussels
Moderprator
tis a bit daft - was too early for displayport for a requirement, i think
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#20
jagd
It is nothing ,finding an adapter was harder than finding a 58** card ,problem was only DELL (OEM is Blizlink ,same adapter ) carried active DP adapters (apple adapters had problems) and not outside US (even canadians could not find ,think about rest of the world) and one netherland firm in europe http://kabeltje.com/accell-displayport-naar-dvid-dual-link-adapter-25cm-p-1628.html .Sapphire adapter will be more wide speread and price will drope over time
i hope.

IF you have a monitor with DP you are ok and dont need adapter but they are limited and not wide spread .
by: lemonadesoda
Wow. There I was, just about to buy a 5770 to drive three identical DVI monitors, and now this... discovery of marketing spin and that eyefinity is NOT compatible with 3x DVI without extra (relatively significant) expense AND FDONGLES.
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#21
kylew
by: CHAOS_KILLA
I never knew there was an issue in the first place, but then again, ati driver's lol:laugh:
Your punctuation lol :laugh:. :rolleyes:

Then at your stupidity. Display port is a display output, what's it got to do with drivers? (no ' this time).
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#22
SummerDays
by: Mussels
its one display port to one DVI port - the other plug is USB for power.



http://techgage.com/reviews/ati/hd_5770/ati_hd_5770_03_thumb.jpg


To be honest, this does confuse me.

With 2x DVI, 1x HDMI and 1x DP, i dont see why users cant use a HDMI to DVI adaptor/cable for eyefinity without needing this expensive adaptor.

Is there some limitation with one of those DVI ports not working if the HDMI port is in use?
No, you can't use both DVI ports and the HDMI port at the same time. What you really need is for the third monitor to support display port.

btw, Display port also comes with copy protection.

There is a version using mini display ports that will support up to 6, yes 6, monitors!
Posted on Reply
#23
SummerDays
by: FordGT90Concept
I'm guessing it is because of how the card is wired internally. The HDMI out is probably linked to DVI1 or DVI2. The DisplayPort, on the other hand, is akin to DVI3--it is not linked to DVI1 or DVI2 in any way. I'm guessing AMD had put some crazy hardware in there in order to support DisplayPort (being so incompatible with DVI and HDMI) and they needed a way to market it as something special thus, Eyefinity is born.
That would be a pretty good guess. They needed to add compatability with display port and then they realised what it meant, and said "Mein Gott!" slapped themselves in the forehead and ran around shouting "we can now support three monitors!".

However, you can hook up a displayport device using a passive dp to dvi adaptor.
Posted on Reply
#24
Jizzler
by: Wiki
The display unit on Evergreen family of GPUs was completely replaced with one that has two DACs which are used to drive the DVI ports in analog mode (for example, when a DVI to VGA converter attached to a DVI port), six digital transmitters that can output either a DisplayPort signal or a TMDS signal which is used for either DVI or HDMI, and two clock signals needed to drive the digital outputs in TMDS mode. Dual-link DVI displays use two of the two TMDS/DisplayPort transmitters and one clock signal each. Single-link DVI displays and HDMI displays use one TMDS/DisplayPort transmitter and one clock signal each. DisplayPort displays use one TMDS/DisplayPort transmitter and zero clock signals. A DisplayPort adaptor or dongle can be used to convert a DisplayPort signal to another type of signal like VGA, single or dual link DVI, or HDMI if more than two non-DisplayPort displays need to be connected to a normal Radeon HD 5870 or Radeon HD 5850 card.[7] The table below shows the maximum possible configurations on a normal Radeon HD 5800/5700 series add in card.
I don't know enough about their implementation to offer an explanation "why", can only give a consumers rant.

DAMNIT! I would have gladly given up a DAC or two for a third "clock signal", you know, a feature that would have made it easy to utilize Eyefinity. Or at least allow the use of ports/signals on other cards. More cards = more money for your greedy black hearts!
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#25
buggalugs
ye its not as cool as it first seemed but i dont need 3 monitors anyway. 97% of the market will only use 1 monitor.
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