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Of HDMIs and Men

ArangArang Registered User regular
edited January 2012 in Help / Advice Forum
I recently bought a new computer screen, and long story short I have no cables that fit. My video card has two DVI ports, both of which are in use, and an HDMI port which I had thought would do nicely for the third. However, whoever made either my case or my video card had the foresight to make it impossible to insert an HDMI cable into the HDMI port without a piece of case getting in the way because the video ports are receded from the backside of the case. Basically, the HDMI cable that I have is too wide and won't fit, and neither will the DVI-to-HDMI M-to-M adapter that I have. My options as I see them:

1) Return. I can still do this and be left with two screens, which is still one more than I strictly speaking need. The screen was marked down so I am unsure of whether or not this is actually possible, plus it would be a fair amount of hassle to repackage it, mail it, etc.

2) Get a second video card. This option has the drawbacks of me having to find one I can afford that is compatible with what I already have, then finding it, buying it, installing it plus extra cost. I don't really like this option a lot.

3) You excellent folks could help me toward my goal! Are there narrower HDMI cables available for sale? Is there some clever workaround I have overlooked? These, and many other questions, need answers.

If you feel like you need technical details or pictures to answer, just ask and I'll see what I can do.

Arang on


  • AF-IXAF-IX Registered User regular
    edited January 2012
    I'd suggest using a Dremel to cut/grind a piece of the case to allow access.

    Does your video card use a full-sized HDMI cable connection? Or does it use a 'mini-to-full" adapter?
    Is it an aftermarket card?

    AF-IX on
  • drfogdrfog Registered User
    Yeah, dremel's probably the way to go. Maybe you should post a picture of the card/slot?

  • ArangArang Registered User regular
    edited January 2012
  • ZeroczZerocz Space Cowboy In SpaceRegistered User regular
    It's the case that getting in the way? Looking at the pic, I'd think the screw for the dvi port next to it would be more of an issue.

    In any case, which part of the case is obstructing it? If it's the little flap that is the mounting point for the cards, I don't think I can advise trimming it away. You may want to try shaving down the HDMI plug instead. Of course, you would run the risk of cutting too deep and ruining your cable.

    If the problem were the strip of metal between two card slots, I actually say to use a nibbler instead of a dremel. A nibbler will cut out easily-caught chips of metal, instead of hurling metal filings all about.

  • ArangArang Registered User regular
    I'd say the space is about equal on both sides, but the case protrudes more than the screw, so that's where it got caught when I tried it. The actual plug fits, but all the plastic frippery on the sides won't, so I'll have to get another cable and try to pare that down (the first one was a loaner). I don't think it's possible to dremel off a lot or maybe even any of the case without also cutting into the mount for the card on the inside, which I won't do. No way am I trusting that tiny little plastic thing to hold up my seventy-pound video card.

    Anyway, I probably won't get around to all that before tomorrow afternoon at the very earliest, so keep suggesting if you have any good ideas. Thanks so far!

  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    I'd go hunting through monoprice and find either a lower profile hdmi cable or dvi > hdmi adapter that'll fit. Maybe just a dvi to hdmi cable.

  • MidshipmanMidshipman Registered User regular
    edited January 2012
    What video card do you have? The vast majority of video cards cannot support 3 simultaneous monitors (even though most come with 3 output ports). I wouldn't do anything to your case until you check the specs and verify whether you can actually even handle the third monitor.

    Getting a second video card is most likely what you'll need for running a third screen regardless of getting the plugs to fit. Also, the second card does not need to have any particular capability with the first card. The only time you need identical cards is when you have both cards driving the same screen like in a crossfire setup. What do you intend to use your third monitor for? If it's just more real estate space for your desktop, then a cheap pci video card would work just fine (something like this).

    Midshipman on
  • ArangArang Registered User regular
    That is very useful information indeed. It is a ZOTAC GeForce 570 GTX, which this thread on the nVidia forums suggests cannot suppor three screens. And yes, I am just using it for extra space.

  • illigillig Registered User regular
    you can get an HDMI PCIx card for ~$30.... or you can double up on high performance cards and get an oh so sweet boost of power via SLI (assuming your motherboard and current vid card supports it), for *slightly* more (like 10-20x more :D )

  • mightyjongyomightyjongyo Registered User regular
    You can also look into splitters so you can change one of your dvi ports into 2. This may or may not be an actual thing, it is possible that I am confusing it with something else.

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