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I'm trying to determine what is the highest monitor resolution that will be supported by a computer.
- Win XP-era Compaq Presario SR1750NX that contains
Radeon Xpress 200 integrated graphics on an AMD Athlon 64 based motherboard.
The Radeon Xpress 200 uses shared video memory (UMA). The computer has 3 GB RAM. (I'm not familiar with how UMA works and whether the video can access as much memory as it needs, or how much that would be.)
It is currently running Linux Mint 17.0. I understand that AMD has a Linux version of Catalyst. However, the Xpress 200 probably pre-dates ATI's acquisition by AMD, and the appearance of the UI looks generic, so the driver is probably FOSS, and possibly required some reverse-engineering.
The only built-in video connector is VGA. A VGA connector has no limit on resolution, but I understand the output quality at higher resolutions depends on the DAC and other factors.
Xpress 200 Info
The only thing I've seen that deals with maximum supported VGA resolution of the video chipset, itself, is the link posted by Daniel B in a comment, below. The "for Intel architecture" version of the Xpress 200 is spec'ed to support up to 2048x1536 (apparently a common spec based on a 400MHz DAC). Assuming the specs are the same in the "for AMD architecture" version, that would appear to be an upper limit. It isn't clear whether other factors would limit it below that (e.g., maximum memory it can use).
I don't think this affects anything, but just in case, the intended use is a lot of screen real estate for static content (large spreadsheets, lots of browser tabs, and the like), I'm not trying to view hi-res video or do 3D rendering.
Info From The System
Some years ago, I upgraded the monitor to 1600x900, just guessing that it would be supported. The available resolution settings under monitor preferences lists 1400x1050 as the only higher resolution, which is virtually the same total pixel count as the current monitor. However, I don't know if this reflects system assumptions based on the current monitor or the actual system limitation (or perhaps the limit of the Linux driver). The Linux driver does not have an explicit "list all" option.
- I checked with AMD and HP to see if they had any useful specs. Answer: No.
I used the
xrandrcommand to see what it might show, which produced this (followed by available settings for the current monitor):
Screen 0: minimum 320 x 200, current 1600 x 900, maximum 4096 x 4096
VGA-0 connected 1600x900+0+0 (yada yada...)
The 4096 x 4096 maximum refers to the virtual screen size (maximum framebuffer), rather than a (useful) resolution possible from the VGA port. Would that imply at least that the chipset limit is not further limited by memory (one variable eliminated)?
What I'm Looking For In An Answer
I'd like to get a higher resolution monitor, but don't know how to determine what the limit supported by the system would be, or what factor is the limitation.
- An answer for this particular computer would be great. If that can't be answered without available specs, somebody actually using a higher resolution monitor on a similar system would be good evidence.
- In a more general sense, how do I go about determining the limit for a given system? Is it just the chipset limit (in which case, I probably have an answer, already), or can that be further limited by other factors (memory, drivers, etc.)? If there can be further limits, can those be determined in a practical way, or does it basically come down to just locating specs?