Playing "IT" at the business.

darqnessdarqness Registered User regular
Hi Folks,

So, my boss recently found out about dual monitors and thinking it would be really cool and handy to have them, ordered two Samsung monitors online. They arrived and he asked me to hook them up.
I have no IT background, and can only do basic stuff with Windows. I've never opened up a computer or had the desire to until now, and have no idea what I am doing.

Because there is only one VGA port in the back I told him we would have to order a video card and he had me do it. Well I ordered the Radeon 5450 since it has a DVI out and VGA out that I can use for both monitors. After receiving the card and doing further research, it calls for a 400w PSU and I have no idea what our our Dell Optiplex 745 computers are equipped with. Rather than try it to see if it works or not and risk destroying something, I come to you computer mechanics, hoping you can point me in the right direction of which card I need.

The computer we want to do dual (extended) monitors with is a Dell Optiplex 745

If this is the wrong place to post this please feel free to move it to the appropriate area mods. Thanks!


  • Donovan PuppyfuckerDonovan Puppyfucker A dagger in the dark is worth a thousand swords in the morningRegistered User regular
    That video card can pull a maximum of 75 watts through the PCI-E slot you'll be installing it into. As I understand it, you should be okay.

    Here is the manual for your computer:'s guide_en-us.pdf

  • tinwhiskerstinwhiskers Registered User regular
    you should be fine just plugging it in. The card doesn't even require any power connections besides what it can draw through the PCIx slot.

    Do the work, Call People, Have Conversations, Defeat Trump
  • BlindZenDriverBlindZenDriver Registered User regular
    I think you will be okay even though the combination of hardware is pushing it a bit.

    AMD which makes the chip on the Radeon card lists the 400W as an recomendation:
    AMD specs for the Radeon 5450
    and the Dell specs say the PSU is a 305W unit: This is a link to a pdf with the details

    Obviously if we take the numbers as is then it is a no go - however the 400W number is on the safe side even with sub-standard hardware and while Dell isn't known to be using stellar components they do know what they are doing and their 305W psu should be as good as a crappy one with higher specs. So that and my assumption your bosses machine isn't stuffed with extra hardware, that you'll disable the on-board graphics system and that your boss won't be playing taxing 3D games all in all means you should be okay.

    So assuming you're moving forward and installing the graphics card then you so go about it in the following way.

    0. Just in case make sure there is a backup of anything worth keeping on the computer.
    1. Boot the system as normal and uninstall the drivers for the onboard graphics system.
    3. Turn of the system, remove all cables, open the box and install the graphics card.
    4. Close the system and reattach the cables. Connect the new monitors to the graphics card and the old one to the old VGA output.
    5. Turn on the power and push the "magic key" so you enter the BIOS configuration. Once in the BIOS configuration then disable the on-board graphics. Save this setting and reboot.
    6. The system should boot as normal and you'll then need to install the drivers for the new hardware. Until that is done only a low resolution will be available and you may only see an image on one of the monitors.

    Note. The steps aren't as complicated as they may sound. If you google a combination of search words like say these:

    dell upgrade graphics guide Windows X (replace X with the windows version used)

    You should find the info you need - or you can ask here again :-)

    Bones heal, glory is forever.
  • darqnessdarqness Registered User regular
    Wow this is awesome. Thank you! Will get this done this week and let you know how it goes!

  • darqnessdarqness Registered User regular
    Well before closing up today I followed the directions you gave @BlindZenDriver and now have a dual monitor setup in the office! Thanks for the help!

  • BlindZenDriverBlindZenDriver Registered User regular
    darqness wrote: »
    Well before closing up today I followed the directions you gave @BlindZenDriver and now have a dual monitor setup in the office! Thanks for the help!

    You're welcome. Glad to hear you got it sorted. Remember to maker your boss let everyone have at least two monitors hooked up to their PC's - there are even studies that document it increases productivity :-)

    I presume you set up the two monitors side by side in landscape mode as that seems to be the norm. Now some monitors stands also support having them in portrait mode. At work I have been combining the two with one monitor in portrait mode used mostly for my mail software and the other in landscape mode for all the other stuff and it is really useful like that.

    Bones heal, glory is forever.
  • Donovan PuppyfuckerDonovan Puppyfucker A dagger in the dark is worth a thousand swords in the morningRegistered User regular
    Only two, BlindZenDriver?


  • BlindZenDriverBlindZenDriver Registered User regular
    Only two, BlindZenDriver?
    Yes, only two. The games I play at work lets me make real humans jump so I don't need a FPS setup for office fun :-)

    Bones heal, glory is forever.
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