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Matrox C900 video cards

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I just saw these were introduced. according to the manufacturer, they are capable of driving 9 displays across a single card. All outputs are 1920x1080 @60hz. 

 

I would think that these would be ideal in a rental/staging environment, and was hoping someone in this forum maybe a beta tester, or have some info on these cards.

 

Thanks!

 

Kevin Lawson

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Anything driving nine display is doing so without the

DirectX 3D hardware accelerated rendering mode needed by WATCHOUT,

because WATCHOUT's six output restriction comes from the needed advanced mode of DirectX itself.

Will the Matrox card support the needed DirectX mode as well - probably, do not know for sure.

But the card is clearly focused on different graphics aspects than the ones needed by WATCHOUT.

Matrox has always been know for their OpenGL prowess, not the DirectX function needed by WATCHOUT.

Best results and best value for the financial outlay are typically found in graphics cards 

that focus on DirectX function. That is why you see nVidia and AMD/ATi

duking it out for top performance in the video gaming (DirectX 3D) market.

You rarely see Matrox mentioned in that conversation, as that is not their focus.

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Accoring to the manufacturer:

 

Memory 4 GB GDDR 5 GPU AMD™ Maximum resolution 
(per monitor) 1920x1200 @ 60Hz (HDMI)
1920x1200 @ 60Hz (Single-link DVI)1 Additional Features Supported Graphic Standards - OpenGL® 4.4
- DirectX® 12
- OpenCL™ 1.2

 

I find it interesting that they say their GPU is an AMD. Same as an ATI.

 

I know, doesn't give all the info one would want, hence my asking for any 1st hand knowledge here.

 

Thanks for the insight though!!

 

Kevin Lawson

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Hi-

 

Samuel from Matrox here.

 

According to page 157 of the Watchout 6.0 manual, the "minimum requirements" listed are:

 

• Intel or AMD dual core processor (quad core to drive multiple displays). • USB port. • Ethernet port. • SATA hard disk (SSD recommended to drive multiple displays or for playing some video formats). • 4 GB rAM. Under 64 bit Windows, 8GB is recommended (more rAM will generally not improve performance). • PCI Express 16x video card slot. • Modern AMD or NVIDIA graphics card. • High quality audio output or sound card/interface. • Windows 7, 32 Bit “Home” (while WATCHOUT is a 32-bit application, it’s fully compatible with 64-bit Windows).

 

The soon-to-be-shipping C900 has comfortable 3D acceleration - including DirectX acceleration - comparable to the "business graphics" ranges in the nVidia (NVS) and AMD (FirePro W6xx and 2xxx series) product lines.

 

This product is really intended to run nine monitors in a 3x3 stretched desktop configuration acting as a single display.

 

It's ideal for presentation and digital signage applications on 3x3 video walls.

 

While we do have beta testers for this new card shipping soon, I am not aware of anyone having used Watchout with the C900 yet.

 

If anyone is interested in beta testing this combo, this is currently an option. (First come first serve).

 

Cheers!!

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Hi Samuel!

 

Thanks for your post. I had a look at the C900 at ISE. It is a very interesting card. Although it will probably work from the technical point of view, there is currently a limitation in WATCHOUT, which is set to 6 outputs. So currently there will be no joy with card in WATCHOUT Over to the guys at Dataton for a comment.

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Thanks Fredrik. I wasn't sure if this six output cap was capped by "number of physical heads connected" (example: six DisplayPort outputs) or by "maximum resolution" (or maximum aperture).

 

   For example: Max at HD x6? Max at 4K x6?

 

I'm not sure what this limit really means.

 

I have customers that have powered Watchout on six heads using just two heads from a graphics card but then "expanding" the output to six heads using Matrox Graphics Expansion modules like Triplehead2Go.

 

Using that same line of thinking, it's not clear to me that it is "impossible" to make this work.

 

If the C900 card supports 9 monitors but the operating system only perceives one monitor; or three monitors; what happens?

 

Since this has worked in the past with our GXMs I'm curious.

 

Maybe best way is to try it. It may not work, as you have pointed out. But it may if past behaviors are still supported. 

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Thanks Fredrik. I wasn't sure if this six output cap was capped by "number of physical heads connected" (example: six DisplayPort outputs) or by "maximum resolution" (or maximum aperture). ...

 

Limit is the number of physical heads connected.

WATCHOUT versions 6.1 and higher now allow

different resolutions on each output of a single graphics card.

Refresh rate must remain the same on all outputs however. >>>

From a WATCHOUT perspective, any resolution is acceptable,

providing all outputs on that one computer are the same resolution and refresh rate.

(For varying resolutions a separate computer / WATCHOUT Display

is needed for each unique resolution.)

i.e. if the hardware supports a resolution on all outputs under

hardware accelerated DirectX 3D mode used by WATCHOUT, it should work.

 

As for spoofing WATCHOUT by using one output that the GPU then interprets to more than one output,

you sacrifice features like blending, geometry correction, etc, so that is a very limited solution.

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"The soon-to-be-shipping C900 has comfortable 3D acceleration - including DirectX acceleration -

comparable to the "business graphics" ranges in the nVidia (NVS) and

AMD (FirePro W6xx and 2xxx series) product lines"

 

I would say that what I wrote in Sep 2011 still applies for WO6, unfortunately: 

http://forum.dataton.com/topic/93-wo5-multi-output/

 

"NVidia NVS series will not do, they lack sufficient DirectX/Direct3D hardware acceleration for WATCHOUT-use. 

Same thing with AMD FireMV and Matrox M91xx-series"

 

Business level graphics might be OK for straight-forward video playback, has been done with

AMD FirePro W600, mentioned in the Forum.

 

BUT, as soon as any of WATCHOUT's DirectX/Direct3D based functions/tween tracks are to be used

in any significant way, they will fall short, very fast.

This means that one will build in a limitation in such a system, if based on these types of graphics solutions.

Hence the warning above.

 

Just my 2 cents...

 

/jonas

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Okay. Appreciate the insight into how the application is designed. Thanks.

 

The C900 supports standard bezel management. So for a standard, flat, 3x3 nine-head configuration with same displays that may not require geometry correction, it may eventually be worth a try by someone with the right AV project.

 

If past usage of NVidia and AMD with Matrox GXMs is any indication, there could be circumstances/projects where this board is an appropriate fit. (But with the limitations indicated by jfk).

 

Cheers

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Hi all!

 

Has anybody already played with the new C900 by Matrox?

It seems quite interesting

Edited by jfk
<<< above new thread submission merged to existing thread by moderator >>>

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Hi 
Has anyone tried this card yet?

We are looking for a solution to control a 3x3 video wall from watchout, on a single computer. And would like to know if the C900 would solve this?

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For future reference:

Got some information back from Dataton support (Thanks)

The card works with WOthe C900 groups the 9 outputs into three actual displays. So, if I understood correctly, 9 x (1920x1080) is actually 3 x (5760x1080).

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