2nd Monitor Issues

posted on 09/26/07 at 07:23:09 pm by Joel Ross

I'm a huge fan of using a second monitor, and up until recently, I have been doing that regularly. That was until recently, when I started to think it might be causing performance issues for me.

None of this is hard and fast evidence. It's all anecdotal, so take it for what it's worth. I have a Dell Latitude D820. It's got an NVidia Quadro 110M video card, with 128 MB of dedicated memory and 271 MB of shared memory. My laptop has 3.3 GB of RAM, so I have plenty of memory. Anyway, when I attach a second monitor, things slow down. I listen to a lot of MP3's through Windows Media Player, and when I have a second monitor connected, MFPMP.exe will take 30-40% of my CPU, but only 10-12% when I don't have it connected. I'd read it could be related to audio drivers, but the second monitor shouldn't affect audio. Just to note, this also happens when I use VLC Player as well.

I have a feeling it's the video drivers, but I can't be sure. According to NVidia's site, they have newer drivers for the Quadro cards, but Dell hasn't updated theirs yet, and trying to install NVidia's fails because it doesn't recognize my card - I have to get the drivers through Dell.

By the way, I never had this issue on XP, and I don't really remember having this issue up until a few months ago - been running Vista and doing the same thing since last fall.

Hopefully, there'll be an update soon. I'm a much more efficient developer with a second monitor. I wonder if there are any good external video cards out there...

Categories: Software