Samsung SyncMaster 940UX USB Monitor - Samsung 940UX

By Riyad Emeran



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Samsung SyncMaster 940UX USB Monitor


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DisplayLink solves the problem of dual monitor setup and maintenance, and brings with it some inherent advantages that a traditional display configuration simply can't compete with. DisplayLink allows you to connect multiple monitors to a PC using nothing more than a USB port - simple as that.

The key to DisplayLink technology is the hardware rendering engine chip which converts the digital data being sent across the USB port into an image that's viewable on the monitor. This completely negates the need for a graphics card to drive extra displays and takes the usual dual display problems out of the equation.

The SyncMaster 940UX monitors ship with the DisplayLink hardware rendering engine chip embedded, so they are ready to accept a video signal over USB straight out of the box. What's even more impressive is that also embedded in the monitor is some flash memory that houses the drivers necessary to get the system up and running. So, all the user has to do is connect the monitor to a USB port, then the drivers are automatically installed to the PC. Once the drivers are loaded, the monitor will just be added as a new display under Windows display options.

That makes it all sound very simple, and it is, but in reality it's not just as simple as a driver install. What's actually being installed onto the PC is a virtual graphics card (VGC). This then convinces Windows to pipe the pixel stream to it, then converts said pixel data into a losslessly compressed transport protocol that is sent down the USB 2.0 connection. The hardware rendering engine embedded in the 940UX then decodes this stream and displays the image.

Now, you may be wondering how much latency this procedure introduces, but DisplayLink and Samsung both insist that it's transparent to the end user, and having spent some time with this technology, I'd have to agree. Obviously these monitors are aimed at general Windows work, rather than gaming or even video streaming, but even so, I had no problem streaming standard definition video over the link.

Up until now I've talked about how DisplayLink technology offers some significant advantages over traditional dual monitor setups, but you can have far more than two SyncMaster 940UX screens attached to your PC if you so desire. In fact you can connect up to six 940UX screens to a single USB 2.0 port - each of the screens has a USB hub built-in, and you can daisy chain one after the other. In the picture below you can see five SyncMaster 940UX displays hooked up to a single notebook - I would have gone for six, but Samsung couldn't rustle up a sixth screen for me.

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