Using multi-monitor displays – ports

In order to use an additional monitor, you will first have to connect it to your PC. Depending on the model of the monitor, different port connections are available.

HDMI

HDMI ports (High-Definition Multimedia Interface) are currently the most common type of port. This compact port can transmit both video and audio signals. Modern HDMI signal outputs can generally accommodate 4K video resolution with 60 Hz refresh rates.

For further information on this topic, see our Monitor knowledge special on video inputs.

USB-C

The latest version of the USB standard is rapidly establishing itself on the market. This port is equipped to transmit a wide array of data. Thanks to ‘Alternate Mode’, USB-C connectors can transmit DisplayPort and audio signals. This standard also supports ‘daisy-chaining’, in which multiple monitors are connected in succession (only using USB-C downstream in DisplayPort Alt Mode).

For further information, see our our Monitor knowledge special on USB-C.

DisplayPort

This standard, which was developed in 2006, has established itself as the successor to the DVI standard, along with HDMI. DisplayPort initially gained popularity among monitors in the business sector, however more and more models for home users are beginning to support this technology as well. The port is protected by a practical locking mechanism, which protects it from being disconnected by accident. Thanks to its Multi-Stream Transport technology (MST), DisplayPort also supports daisy-chaining (connecting multiple monitors in succession).

For further information on this topic, see our Monitor knowledge special on video inputs.

DVI

This classic digital port technology has limited applicability on today’s market, as it is only able to transmit video signals. In addition, the dual-link clock is required for resolutions exceeding 1920 x 1200 pixels. The latest HDMI and DisplayPort standards are technologically superior, offering improved performance in terms of resolution, colour depth and refresh rate.

For further information on this topic, see our Monitor knowledge special on video input.

Two monitors for a single Windows 10 PC – operating modes

Windows 10 makes it easier than ever to operate a multi-monitor display using a single PC. When you connect a second monitor, it is automatically detected by the operating system and ready for immediate use. Access the Display settings under Settings > System, by right-clicking on the Desktop or by selecting the Projector menu from the Control Panel (on the task bar at the bottom right-hand side of the screen).

Display settings in the Windows 10 Control Panel
Display settings in the Windows 10 Control Panel

From here you can access the ‘Multiple displays’ context menu where you can configure how Windows 10 uses the two monitors. The following operating modes are available:

Extend these displays: This option utilises both monitors to provide you with an extended desktop interface. This unified desktop is interrupted by the physical frames of the monitors themselves, however, it can be operated as a single display. For example, you can drag application windows freely from one monitor to the other.

Duplicate these displays: This option displays the same content on both monitors. This setting is particularly practical for presentations, in that it allows you to display the exact same content from your PC on another screen using a projector, for example.

Show desktop only on 1/2: This option allows you to select which monitor is to be used. The other monitor is subsequently deactivated and remains black.

Desktop display settings for multi-monitor displays in Windows 10
Desktop display settings for multi-monitor displays in Windows 10

Multi-monitor displays in Windows 10 – display settings

Apart from selecting the display mode, you can also make other adjustments to the settings. To do this, simply select the desired display in the display settings by clicking one of the rectangles marked [1] and [2].

Practical tips

The rectangles also show the positions of the monitors in relation to one another. By dragging the rectangles with the cursor, you can adjust the position of each display accordingly. This can be useful if the two monitors are set at different heights. Windows 10 then adjusts the screen positions accordingly so that the displays line up when objects are dragged between displays.

Using the display settings, you can adjust the appearance of your screen to suit your individual needs. This includes adjusting the resolution, for example. To prevent irregularities in the appearance of the display, always select the recommended resolution for each monitor.

You can also adjust the scaling of certain display elements, such as text. We recommend adjusting this setting for monitors with high resolutions in order to increase the size of icons and text.

You can also use the display settings in Windows 10 to adjust the scaling of desktop elements and the orientation of the displays.
You can also use the display settings in Windows 10 to adjust the scaling of desktop elements and the orientation of the displays.

There is an additional option that allows you to adjust the orientation of the monitor. This setting enables you to switch between vertical and horizontal formats, which is important for monitors with pivot mode. However, we recommend limiting your use of the pivot option to specific tasks, such as reading documents. For general, long-term use, we recommend using widescreen monitors in landscape format only, as this configuration is more ergonomic.

Display management with Windows 10 using EIZO Screen InStyle

EIZO’s Screen InStyle software is designed to optimise multi-monitor displays. However, it can also be used to manage single-monitor configurations.

Screen InStyle enables you to switch monitors on and off simultaneously, synchronise your display settings and manage colour calibration with ease.

For further information and a free software download, information and a free software download, see our overview of EIZO Screen InStyle.

The free EIZO Screen InStyle software helps you to manage your monitor setup.
The free EIZO Screen InStyle software helps you to manage your monitor setup.

Arranging windows in Windows 10 – understanding how to use additional workspace

In Windows 10, managing programme windows is easy thanks to the ‘Snap’ functionality. When you click and hold the mouse button while dragging a window to the left or right edge of the screen, the active window is automatically resized to fill half of the desktop. In addition, by pressing the Windows key together with the left or right arrow key, you can shift the active window to the desired position on the desktop.

The other half of the screen displays thumbnails of any other open windows. When you click one of these thumbnails, it is automatically resized to fill the remaining half of the display and both windows together fill the entire display.

The Windows 10 Snap functionality provides a number of keyboard shortcuts and easy-to-use mouse gestures to help you organise the windows on your desktop.
The Windows 10 Snap functionality provides a number of keyboard shortcuts and easy-to-use mouse gestures to help you organise the windows on your desktop.

You can also press and hold the mouse button while dragging the window into one of the four corners of the screen. This causes the active window to be resized to fit one quarter of the screen, allowing you to display a total of four windows of the same size simultaneously. This can also be done by clicking the Windows key together with either the up or down arrow key.

Practical tips

Windows 10 offers a practical trick to manage windows when too many programs are open at the same time. Click and hold the window you want to view using the cursor while shaking the mouse back and forth quickly (or use the key combination Windows + Home). This minimises all other windows in the display.

For users who prefer to have a little more control when it comes to display settings, we recommend considering Windows 10 PowerToys from Microsoft. This free package includes clever software extras such as the FancyZones module. This module allows you to organise your desktop into individually configured zones so that you can align your windows on a grid, for example in three columns instead of the standard two. FancyZones offers users additional window arrangement settings beyond those supported by Windows 10. Windows 10 PowerToys offers an exciting array of options that are certainly worth a look, particularly if you use large monitors. Should you decide to stick to the standard settings, you can simply uninstall the optional free software package at your leisure.

Windows 10 PowerToys with FancyZones offers you more control over your window arrangements in Windows 10
Windows 10 PowerToys with FancyZones offers you more control over your window arrangements in Windows 10
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