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I have a mid-2008 workstation with two HD monitors supporting HDMI and DVI inputs. Since Ubuntu 11.10, I have experienced no end of trouble with my NVidia Quadro NVS 290 in TwinView dual-monitor output. Others have similar desktop TwinView woes. I want a new graphics card.

Previously I asked for a graphics card recommendation and response was Nvidia Geforce GTS 450... but really I'm looking for someone who has actually got a working dual-monitor desktop to tell me what card they use so I can get something that is known to work.

So please, people who have no-issues with their 64-bit Ubuntu 12.04 Unity 3D desktop spread across two HD-resolution external monitors (either DVI or HDMI connector), and who also run Google Chrome (which throws a spanner due to its own GPU compositing)... please let me know what graphics card you have so I can buy one.

Gathering Options

These seem to be the Nvidia cards featuring dual DVI. But they all seem to be gaming cards - what has dual-DVI, good support, but is not a massive gaming card?

Has anyone had a good desktop dual-monitor Unity 3D experience with ATI cards?

Decision

I've decided to go with the Geforce GT 620, which is the successor to the GT 430 and GT 530 in the performance ranking. I don't want gaming power, and the 4xx and 5xx chips seem to be out of stock, so I'll just hold thumbs that the binary blob will handle it correctly because it's a GeForce chip instead of a Quadro chip.

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Take a look on system76.com and the specs of the systems they build. –  modosansreves Jul 5 '12 at 9:41
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2 Answers

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I've bought the Nvidia Geforce GT 620.

The GT 620 is a 2012 card, and at the lower-end card so it's affordable, but still performant at 11.2 gigatexel/second fill rate - and it supports multiple monitors on the different outputs (HDMI, DVI, VGA).

So far it works fine. I've got two identical monitors one on the HDMI and other on DVI, and and the colors seem slightly different at factory default settings.

It seems the main thing is to avoid Quadro cards on linux - GeForce cards work fine.

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What you are requiring is not impossible to achieve for any modern GPU, even some low end APUs like the AMD C50 can support up to 3 monitors in HD resolution, but i think that you are better choosing ATI for its eyefinity technology or buying a Matrox videocard; buying a Quadro or a FireGL doesn't make much sense in todays world.

Matrox is the first company to offer a seriously good support for more than 1 display, they are just the only one company in the world specialized in that field and they are good at since their foundation, ATI is offering that kind of support since 2009 with Eyefinity, Nvidia was the last on the field with its Nvidia surround technologies.

Your choice is simple, if you have to work with your PC buy a Matrox, with work i mean basically CAD and some special appliance in the multi-monitor industry; if you have to play some games go for an ATI, they are cheap and powerfull.

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The issue here is specifically around which card has the best driver support for Linux. I'm sure AMD Eyefinity and Matrox dual-monitor support works brilliantly on Windows, but I want to know that I'm not going to get buggy or slow behaviour under Ubuntu 12.04. –  Graham Jul 5 '12 at 11:06
    
@Graham in this case i think that AMD and Nvidia are equivalent, but in latest years Nvidia just do not want to give a good suppor to the linux environment, look at what they have done with the Nvidia Optimus technology, under Linux you have no good alternative for this kind of videocard, Nvidia just keeps rebranding old products and they do not develop a serious Linux alternative for their product, i think that you are better choosing ATI, they really have a good support now. –  user827992 Jul 5 '12 at 11:15
    
Yes, I'm not happy with NVidia's Linux drivers. But I would like hear from someone who has a particular AMD/ATI PCIe card that works brilliantly for desktop dual-monitor display on 64-bit Ubuntu 12.04 –  Graham Jul 5 '12 at 13:39
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