Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

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Shiunbird
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Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby Shiunbird » Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:00 am

Hello folks,

As some of you may know, I'm running some experiments on my G5 Quad (PCI SSDs, H264 hardware decoder experiment planned, etc). After the system is all maxed out, I plan to add the cherry on top of the cake and have a high-DPI cool looking desktop environment.

For OS X, I will use Quartz Debug: https://developer.apple.com/library/content/documentation/GraphicsAnimation/Conceptual/HighResolutionOSX/Testing/Testing.html, as demonstrated here https://arstechnica.com/apple/2007/10/mac-os-x-10-5/9/.
On Linux, it's just a matter of tweaking x.conf or whatever I'll use.

The plan is to use the two dual-link DVI outputs of the Quadro FX 4500 to drive the display. I need a display that supports:
- simultaneous use of multiple inputs.
- 2x dual-link DVI inputs.

As far as I know, only the old and rare IBM T220/T221 and the equivalents support such configuration. I found an equivalent today in the UK: http://www.ebay.com/itm/ViewSonic-22-2-VP2290B-Widescreen-LCD-Monitor-AC-Adapter-WORKING-/132205328484
But 245 GBP for a fun-experiment for a monitor I will probably not use and have problems to sell (or not) later on is too much.

So I wonder whether you are aware of any of the following:
- a modern monitor that supports such configuration?
- a monitor that can use dual displayport/mini-DPI inputs simultaneously? In such case, I would need to find a dual-link DVI to displayport converter/adapter, and I'm not aware such thing exists.

I was also considering using a Dell U2515H as it would look very neat with 2x scaling, but that's not really 4K, and I would still have the dl-DVI/DP problem.

My final goal is to have my G5 driving a 4K-ish display, with 4 SSDs+H264 decoder or 6 SSDs, with Tiger, Leopard and Linux.

Any suggestions or ideas?
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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby robespierre » Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:55 am

Barco MDCC6130
:PI: :O2: :Indigo2IMP: :Indigo2IMP:

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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby Shiunbird » Mon Jul 10, 2017 6:29 am

The Barco MDCC6130 goes refurbished for 8.000 USD. =(

So I managed to score the VP2290B from the very same seller with 100 GBP discount. My experiment will proceed.
There's plenty of documentation online on how to configure the FX 4500 to drive the displays with the 2x dual-link DVI on Linux, but absolutely zero documentation on the Mac OS side, so I guess I am on your own.

I know there are two or three owners of the T221 here. How's your experience with the screen? I believe it is fine running at 41Hz or 50Hz.
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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby guardian452 » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:27 pm

Fwiw, I put my thinkpad x220 (old intel IGP) on the dock normally used with w520. Has no problem running a *pair* of dell p2415q (4k) at native resolution. If you can live at 30hz (fine for this purpose) there is a fair chance it will just work. The max spec for this machine was 2560x1600, too...

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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby Shiunbird » Tue Jul 11, 2017 2:28 am

guardian452 wrote:FHas no problem running a *pair* of dell p2415q (4k) at native resolution. If you can live at 30hz (fine for this purpose) there is a fair chance it will just work..


The only machine I have that can output 2x2560x1600 is my Quad, even if I would get mini-DP, dual-link DVI active converters for my other machines.
I'm sure I'll manage to get it running in Linux. I'm more curious how Mac OS is going to behave. I'm going to have to dive into custom modes and so far I've had no success in any of my experiments (most probably due to my graphics card on my Intel Mac).
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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby Shiunbird » Fri Jul 14, 2017 4:34 am

Guys, the ViewSonic VP2290b is here, and it's gorgeous.
But I'm so mad! This screen is one of the nicest screens I've seen. And it's almost as good as the current 4K screens my photo editor colleagues have at work (just muuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuch bigger).

How come we spent so much time with crappy tech when such thing existed?? Why did it take so long to make it to the mass market?

Photo-2017-07-14-13-02-26_7230.JPG

Photo-2017-07-14-12-58-46_7229.JPG


Seriously...

Anyhow, here we are with it. It has 4 single-link DVI cables (with 2 USB) leading to the back of the display with two DMS connectors.
Any suggestions on how I could leverage the dual-link DVI outputs of my Quadro?

OMG this is so cool!
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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby ClassicHasClass » Fri Jul 14, 2017 5:41 am

Wow. Now I want one (my Quad also has a Quadro).
smit happens.

:Fuel: bigred, 900MHz R16K, 4GB RAM, V12 DCD, 6.5.30
:Indy: indy, 150MHz R4400SC, 256MB RAM, XL24, 6.5.10
:Indigo2IMP: purplehaze, 175MHz R10000, Solid IMPACT
probably posted from Image bruce, Quad 2.5GHz PowerPC 970MP, 16GB RAM, Mac OS X 10.4.11
plus IBM POWER6 p520 * Apple Network Server 500 * RDI PrecisionBook * BeBox * Solbourne S3000 * Commodore 128 * many more...

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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby Shiunbird » Fri Jul 14, 2017 7:31 am

Hi-DPI mode via quartz debug, using 2 single link DVI inputs.

Photo-2017-07-14-16-24-26_7233.JPG


I'll create a custom mode later on to have the menu bar stretching to both screens.
20Hz is almost fine to operate the mouse, 14Hz was bad. I should be able to go 40+Hz with 2x dual link, but need to figure out the connection.

I wonder whether this will do the trick:
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/DMS-59-Male-to-2-Dual-Link-DVI-I-24-5-Pin-Splitter-Adapter-Cable-DT-/401343782319

I'm really impressed. A gray background is completely uniform edge to edge. This is some really high quality hardware.

Safari works fine, but TenFourFox breaks completely unfortunately. The wifi icon on the top is broken and some application ignore the scaler completely. But it mostly works.

Edit: fix photo rotation.
Edit2: can't fix photo rotation. Whatever.
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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby spiroyster » Fri Jul 14, 2017 8:59 am

Mucho drool factor there...

Good to see Viewsonic back in the game, they made some razor sharp CRT's ~Y2K. Their subsequent flatpanel displays were pretty shoddy and quite efficient at brand destruction.

I've been in the market for a new display o.0. What are the mounting options? Is it made by Viewsonic or rebadged?

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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby Shiunbird » Fri Jul 14, 2017 12:49 pm

spiroyster wrote:Good to see Viewsonic back in the game, they made some razor sharp CRT's ~Y2K. Their subsequent flatpanel displays were pretty shoddy and quite efficient at brand destruction.


I don't know much about their LCDs, but this one is definitely not an exercise in brand destruction.

spiroyster wrote:I've been in the market for a new display o.0. What are the mounting options? Is it made by Viewsonic or rebadged?


It's a re-badged IBM T221 according to wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_T220/T221_LCD_monitors
However, according to our own hamei, there are slight differences.

I don't see a way to remove the stand. It seems to be made of steel, literally. I can share some pictures if you are interested.

Mine came with 4 single-link DVIs to 2 LFH ports. I'm wondering how I'm going to get it fed by my two dual-link DVI ports. Any suggestions are appreciated.
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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby guardian452 » Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:22 pm

Shiunbird wrote:
spiroyster wrote:I've been in the market for a new display o.0. What are the mounting options? Is it made by Viewsonic or rebadged?


It's a re-badged IBM T221 according to wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_T220/T221_LCD_monitors
However, according to our own hamei, there are slight differences.

I don't see a way to remove the stand. It seems to be made of steel, literally.


If you want around this size and rez, I still recommend the p2415q. Should run fine with a dvi-mdp adapter (which I have). A dl-dvi port should give 3840x2160@30... I don't have a dvi cable to test with, but if I can track one down I'll give it a whirl. Size, weight, energy use, and stand are all quite modern.

I say 30 hz isn't a big deal for me, but I wouldn't want to go any lower ;)

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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby ClassicHasClass » Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:02 am

TenFourFox breaks completely unfortunately.


I may not be able to fix it, but what goes wrong? (Screenshot?)
smit happens.

:Fuel: bigred, 900MHz R16K, 4GB RAM, V12 DCD, 6.5.30
:Indy: indy, 150MHz R4400SC, 256MB RAM, XL24, 6.5.10
:Indigo2IMP: purplehaze, 175MHz R10000, Solid IMPACT
probably posted from Image bruce, Quad 2.5GHz PowerPC 970MP, 16GB RAM, Mac OS X 10.4.11
plus IBM POWER6 p520 * Apple Network Server 500 * RDI PrecisionBook * BeBox * Solbourne S3000 * Commodore 128 * many more...

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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby Shiunbird » Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:44 pm

ClassicHasClass wrote:I may not be able to fix it, but what goes wrong? (Screenshot?)


You don't need to worry. Quartz Debug allows you to control scaling on a per-application basis, so I just set TenFourFox to the standard scaling and then the content to 200% zoom. Unless, of course, now you are REALLY going to get a display and then... =)

But here is a screenshot.

Photo-2017-07-14-16-24-26_7233.JPG

(I don't know what's the deal with my iPhone photos always being upside-down even if I rotate them)

What it seems to be doing is basically scale up again based on the frame buffer resolution of the content on screen. So, in my example, the window is like 1500x1500px, so the scaler is taking these dimensions and scaling them up from there, that's why it blows up and doesn't fit the screen.

My status now:
As you can see by the screenshot, I managed to configure two vertical screens of 1920x2400, so the monitor combines what's coming from the computer and forms the full image. However, I'd like to have Mac OS building a "virtual screen" that is the combined output of the two DVI outputs I'm using now. For example, to do OpenGL at full 3840x2400 @ 48 Hz. Tweaking X.conf for that should be piece of cake. But Mac OS.................

The revision I have is based on the DG3 model (check Wikipedia), so it does not have the intelligence of receiving dual-link DVI and separating odd and even signals to build the image. I'm not sure a firmware upgrade would change the situation. I'm not into breaking this screen yet, so I found the solution:

http://www.matrox.com/graphics/en/products/gxm/th2go/digital/?productTabs=1

There are used ones on eBay for not much, and they can intelligently divide the dual-link DVI signals into 2x single-link DVIs. They are also USB powered, so I can easily hide them behind the G5. I'll see if I get one next month and test. If it works fine, I'll get a second one.

There's also a DP version that splits a DP output into 3 single-link DVIs. If you get the configuration right, the T221/VP2290b should be able to combine everything and build a 48Hz image. Quote from Wikipedia:

When this converter box is used with a third single-link DVI input a refresh rate of 48 Hz can be achieved. In this mode the dual-link DVI drives the left 2624×2400 portion of the screen and the single-link DVI drives the remaining 1216×2400 portion.


But this would only be valid for the latest revision of the display.

And boy, I do understand now hamei's excitement with this screen. It is by far the most gorgeous screen I've ever seen. Mine was built in November 2002. It is so bright I'm running it on minimum brightness. The backlight uniformity is incredible and the colours are gorgeous. They pop, but remain natural. There's no oversaturation anywhere. It's a delight to see. This is what 20.00 USD worthy of engineering can do. I wonder what the first owner of this screen bought it for...

According to IBM Research, they even run back at the time AIX at that resolution, and also Quake 3. =)
IBM used to do tons of cool stuff.
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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby ClassicHasClass » Sat Jul 15, 2017 9:04 pm

Yeah, TenFourFox isn't going to like that. There's not a whole lot I can do there. Sorry. :|
smit happens.

:Fuel: bigred, 900MHz R16K, 4GB RAM, V12 DCD, 6.5.30
:Indy: indy, 150MHz R4400SC, 256MB RAM, XL24, 6.5.10
:Indigo2IMP: purplehaze, 175MHz R10000, Solid IMPACT
probably posted from Image bruce, Quad 2.5GHz PowerPC 970MP, 16GB RAM, Mac OS X 10.4.11
plus IBM POWER6 p520 * Apple Network Server 500 * RDI PrecisionBook * BeBox * Solbourne S3000 * Commodore 128 * many more...

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Re: Monitor suggestions for high-DPI experiment

Unread postby Shiunbird » Sun Jul 16, 2017 12:18 am

ClassicHasClass wrote:Yeah, TenFourFox isn't going to like that. There's not a whole lot I can do there. Sorry. :|


No problem at all. I'm sure you would be happy with such display. =)
Per-app scaling settings are very convenient.

I'll send later on a picture of how it looks like. It's perfectly fine at 200% zoom.
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