I have a computer with a single x16 slot occupied by Matrox Parnhelia. Other motherboard slots are x1, which means I have to get a (rare these days) x1 graphics card to drive more monitors. My question is: how can I be sure that the x1 video card plays nice with the x16 one?
The reason I'm asking is that I've read reviews that many x1 graphics cards are exclusive, forcing you to remove all other video cards, if any.
Update: Just in case anyone is wondering what I decided on this, there are some interesting things to consider.
- First of all, it turns out that you can stick a 16x card into a 1x slot if you file away the slot or clip the card contacts. This means you can grab a cheap $50 x16 card and use that. Turns out that lots of people are doing that at my friend's office to have 3 monitors per machine. What this means is that buying expensive x1 cards or 4-head x16 cards us meaningless.
- Second, and this is the solution I'm going to go for, is that as it turns out you can get a graphics card such as the ATI Radeon HD 5870 that can support up to 6 monitors. It costs just $300 (compare that to the costly NVidia NVS with only 4 outputs). The only downside, if you're sticking it into a business PC, is that it requres a power supply far better than the one you probably have. I have a (very expensive) 400W supply, but this baby requires something like 650W.