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I'm wanting a dual HD monitor desktop. Desktop system with two monitor outputs (1920x1080 and 1920x1200) side-by-side, displaying one X screen (Xinerama, TwinView, XRandR, whatever works). Will be running Ubuntu 11.10 64-bit with Unity 3D.

Looking for a recommended graphics card for such a setup. Other requirements:

  • Dual DVI output. Or dual-HDMI output if it works with Ubuntu.
  • Smooth non-buggy desktop compositing in Unity 3D/Compiz
  • Smooth rendering of (Chrome) browser and non-accelerated IDE windows.
  • At least 60fps on fullscreen glxgears (1920x1200 resolution), but not looking to play games.
  • Smooth fullscreen video playback (just because)
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What do you mean by Dual Monitor? Two external HD monitors used as a xinerama screen? And are you aiming for a laptop or a Desktop computer? –  Hanynowsky Nov 30 '11 at 7:56
    
Ok, clarified. Desktop computer, two external monitors as single X screen. –  Graham Dec 1 '11 at 5:54
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2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

I am running Ubuntu 11.10 and using the mini DisplayPort to export video display to a 1920X1080p HD Monitor (Dell) and the HDMI port to a 1920X1080p HD Monitor (SAmsung). All the requirments you mentioned above are met but one which is a true xinerama and that is because my computer is Nvidia Optimus Enabled. But in your case (Desktop Computer) you will not have Optimus (supposing you go for Nvidia). Just be sure not to have hybrid graphics.

Nvidia GTS series graphics card offer the best Price/quality balance on the market over ATI while ATI offers better results when it comes to its EyeFinity high ends graphics cards. If you would not do gaming at all or occasionaly play non resources consuming games, then get yourself a Nvidia GTS series card with 2Go of memory for more texture quality. These series offer three outputs : two DVI and 1 HDMI. The advantage that HDMI has over DVI is that is capable of outputting sound.

Here is what you need: Nvidia GTS 450 Ps: Be sure to install nvidia proprietary drivers to enable Unity 3D and GPU acceleration.

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Nvidia GTS 450 looks like just the right card. Dual output, reasonable price. –  Graham Dec 5 '11 at 6:35
    
Only thing is, I need to find someone who has actually tried the Nvidia GTS 450 in a desktop dual-monitor configuration under Ubuntu 12.04 64-bit... else I can't be sure it will work. –  Graham Jul 5 '12 at 9:46
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Considering the only two good brands on the market, ATI and Nvidia, i suggest ATI over Nvidia without a doubt.

I have a netbook with an AMD C50 ( which surely it's not a powerfull APU ) and i have no problem using both the integrated display and the VGA and HDMI output to an HD screen, audio bridge included. Same good performance with a 5770 on my desktop.

Be sure to install the closed source proprietary driver from the official AMD ATI website.

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