The Case for Three Monitors

The Case for Three Monitors
Crazy Gaming Setup

For a number of years now, I’ve told myself that I’m going to update my graphics card and move from a two-monitor setup to a three-monitor setup.  Up to this point, I’ve been thwarted by unexpected expenses, indecision on desired specs, and a general laziness surrounding any in-depth work on my custom rig PC.

Unexpected Expenses

I’ve had two monitors since about 2009 or 2010.  I was late to the dual-monitor trend, and proudly so.  In fact, I’ve never truly jumped in.  The only reason I implemented a dual monitor setup was because I had an old 4:3 ratio monitor laying around the garage and thought I’d put it to use.  I kept that sucker in operation well after it was considered old-school to have anything but 16:9 on your desktop.

In 2015, I first said I’d upgrade, but my 2012 Kia Optima SX Turbo gave out—literally gave out as the engine just stopped while traveling 80 miles per hour on the Interstate—and I needed money for a down payment on switching to a more reliable (but much less fun) car.  2016 brought the need to save for the birth of my daughter in early 2017, and 2017 just flew by with work obligations and my business committing to paying off all of its debts, and helping me pay off all of my consumer debts.

Spec Indecision

Despite the financial stalling, I’ve made at least three or four earnest attempts to research options and price the purchase.  Although, that’s hard to do when you’re not exactly sure what you want.  Do I want 21″ monitors or 23″ (exactly how large is my desk?), do I need a good resolution or a great resolution?  What about speakers, webcams, etc?  And oh, the time I’ve wasted determining whether one of the monitors should be touch enabled!

General Laziness

Maybe it’s a combination of the above issues, or maybe I’m just really lazy, but I haven’t been working on my custom rig like I should.  Right now, I look at it, and the front panel is partly popped off from some previous exploit of integrating audio equipment for a project, the RAM is still sitting at 16GB rather than the 32GB that I sat out to include, and my video card is a dinosaur.  A powerful dinosaur—even by today’s standards—but an old, glitchy, doomed for extinction dinosaur none the less. 

Oh yeah, and as a content producer of all types from audio to video and from websites to images, I’m nearly out of storage space on three of my four installed hard drives with a fifth sitting backup ready to be installed.  Although, what I really need is a NAS solution.  I’m thinking about the following types of NAS devices:

Coming to a Conclusion

You know when you’re coming close to a decision and you try to cut all of the excuse and justification bullshit?  You simply ask yourself, “If cost weren’t a factor, what would the ideal setup be to support my workflow?”  When I answer that question, my mind takes me to dual upper mid-range graphics cards (like an RX 580 because I’m an AMD guy), with three monitors on an adjustable mount, with the center-most monitor touch enabled.

… Sort of

Now, back to that indecisiveness, do I want a mount that can angle the monitors up and down, or do I want a standing desk mount?  Oh, and did I consider curved monitors sufficiently enough? 

This may take a while.