[ltp] Thinkpad W520, nouveau and external monitors

Martin Steigerwald linux-thinkpad@linux-thinkpad.org
Fri, 17 Feb 2012 23:31:07 +0100

Hi Micha!

Am Freitag, 17. Februar 2012 schrieb Micha:
> I have the w520 with a Quadro 2000m. The nouvou driver is not even
> remotely an option for me though so I can't report on that (first thing
> I do with a new kernel is delete it so it doesn't get in the way). As
> for the hardware setup, the external connectors are indeed connected to
> the NVIDIA and can't be run from the intel processor. With the default
> optimus setup X won't start with the nvidia driver so you can't connect
> external monitors. You can however change the video settings in the
> bios from optimus to discrete (always run discrete graphics internal
> and external, intel disabled). In this case the external connectors
> work just fine with nvidia-settings. The propriatry nvidia driver
> doens't know xrandr I'm afraid. You are however limited to two
> monitors total, two external or one internal and one external. I've


I thought the whole point of discrete graphics would be that it is more=20
powerful than the intel graphics, but I can connect two monitors via my=20
Intel only based ThinkPad T520 as well. So either the internal display and=
one external one or two external ones - however I didn=B4t really test the=
two external ones case yet.

I really thought the NVidia graphics cards could do more than two=20
monitors. But then the docking station does not have more than two=20
outputs. But I expected it to be able to at least do two monitors and the=20
internal display simultaneously.

When they really can only access two monitors then the only advantage left=
seems to be that the should be faster at OpenGL performance.

That compared to a bigger power supply, bigger power consumption, non=20
working on the fly gpu switching yet and proprietary drivers.

Well I am happy that I have an Intel graphics only ThinkPad then ;). Cause=
with it, the Intel graphics is indeed connected to external outputs as=20
well. I tried with with a beamer. Only from the laptop itself for now=20
tough. I did not yet test whether it also works from the docking station.=20
And for what I needed Sandybridge graphics has been fast enough. Even with=
a Full HD display.

I read that Ivybridge will be able to access three outputs. So it might=20
make sense to wait a little bit longer for the first Ivybridge notebooks.

Martin 'Helios' Steigerwald - http://www.Lichtvoll.de
GPG: 03B0 0D6C 0040 0710 4AFA  B82F 991B EAAC A599 84C7