I have two 4K monitors which I hook up to my laptop for video editing.
I got a Docking Station from i-tec which is advertised as "USB 3.0 / USB-C / Thunderbolt 3" and "up to 2x 4k@60Hz". The monitors are connected to the dock with DP cables.
In real-world conditions, I experience stuttering on the external displays, especially for full-screen videos. The stuttering will stop if I connect only one monitor, rather than two.
Digging into the issue, I found out that the Docking station maxes out at 5Gbps (so much for the "Thunderbolt"...). Evidently, it uses DisplayLink to communicate between PC and Dock, and the Dock will convert the video-signal back to DP before sending it to the monitors.
DisplayLink does not officially publish any data rates, but basically says "it depends on what you're doing". I understand it creates a virtual display buffer in RAM, then compresses the video signal and sends only the data which differs between consequent frames.
I can understand that this will deliver well for mouse cursor movements or text editing, but I can't get how two 18Gbps video streams (approx data rate for 4K60Hz) possibly could be compressed and sent over the same 5Gbps line which also guarantees my LAN connection, Mouse and possibly 1-2 external HDD's.
- So, did I fall for a marketing stunt by buying that Docking station?
- Does any one manage to get smooth video display over a similar setup?
- In order to get smooth playback on the two monitors, should I go directly for a TB 3.0 dock, which my PC would support (but which costs me 3-4x the money) ?
My system is a Lenovo Yoga C940-15IRH. i7-9750H / 16GB Ram / NVidia GTX 1650 Max-Q. The monitors are Dell U2720q