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StarTech ConvergeAV Triple Head DisplayPort to DVI Multi Monitor Adapter - Setup, Performance and Final Thoughts

Are you looking to expand your desktop, but do not own an AMD Eyefinity capable GPU? - StarTech might have an alternative for you with the ConvergeAV.

| Cables & Adapters in Displays & Projectors | Posted: Nov 26, 2010 4:53 am
TweakTown Rating: 64%Manufacturer: StarTech

Setup

 

Setting up the SP123DP2DVI is one of the simplest things I have ever done. It was as easy as connecting the three monitors to the ports, turning them on, plugging the DisplayPort and USB cable in and then turning on the PC. From there Windows sees the device and pushes the display out to the three attached monitors. In our case we had three low resolution images (one on each monitor). To correct that we used the Windows display manager and pushed the resolution up to the maximum supported of 3840 x 1024. As soon as we clicked Apply, we had a spanned desktop.

 

Performance

 

How do you measure performance of a device that splits a video signal? Well, if you are the Lab at TweakTown you take a look at how well it does this and if there are any color or image anomalies. In the first part of this we had a slight issue with the three panel resolution. Unfortunately we only have three Dell P2210H 22-inch displays on hand that are each capable of 1920 x 1080. This gives us an extended resolution of 5760 x 1080 which is significantly higher than what the ConvergeAV can handle; filling up a maximum of 3840 lines of that vertically and 1024 horizontally.

 

This left the image looking distorted and pixelated as it was not close to the native resolution (3840 is about 66% of the available lines vertically). In our case, this limited the usefulness of the system for any type of fine detail (like image manipulation). Gaming was in a similar boat. Although we did not have any "performance" issues, the image quality was not as good as it could have been because it fell far short of the native resolution of the monitor group.

 

With that said, the resolution limit of this device is made clear in the specifications and it is doubtful one would spend the money on it if they had a trio of monitors running a native resolution beyond that of the 1280x1200 limit per screen. Providing your monitors don't run a native resolution beyond 1280x1200 each, it is safe to say that the SP123DP2DVI will deliver in spades.

 

Final Thoughts

 

The ConvergeAV SP123DP2DVI is a very cool idea. It allows you to group up to three monitors into a single display from one DisplayPort connection. It does this seamlessly and without much interaction from the user.

 

The problem with the ConvergeAV is when it comes to execution. Because it is unable to match the native resolution of most modern panels over 17 inches, it has limited use in both professional and consumer applications. The price tag of around $300 also puts a damper on this as you really are paying quite a bit more to get a similar effect from something like Eyefinity or even standard dual and triple monitors.

 

If StarTech can extend the resolution (and reduce the price a little) then we could see the ConvergeAV getting a much more solid hold on the market. As it is, we see it as a very niche product with not much practical use considering the other options currently available.

 

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