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Maximize Your Multi-display Digital Signage Potential

Matrox Graphics introduces new PowerDesk-SE 2.04 driver

The release of the new Matrox PowerDesk-SE 2.04 driver delivers new and exciting features for the digital signage community. Building on the features contained in the previous PowerDesk 2.03 SE, this new WHQL-certified, Microsoft® DirectX® 9 based driver introduces many special features into one robust, full-featured driver for the QID Series and Extio Series and adds support for the Parhelia Series, Millennium P-Series and G-Series.

New features include: Joined graphics card mode, including multi-card clone mode, stretched mode, and "Twin" card support. The new driver also incorporates Matrox PowerRes for Parhelia and P-Series cards and allows for TripleHead stretched or independent desktops including Matrox Pivot and Matrox 1x"n" Vertical Display Alignment support, features that were previously only available on the QID and Extio products.

More Display Options

PowerDesk-SE 2.04 includes Joined graphics card mode, a feature that enables two Matrox multi-display graphics cards under a single Windows® desktop1. Using the following modes, you can either stretch or clone multiple displays using the new Joined graphics card mode:

Stretched mode

Stretched Mode
The content can be stretched across both cards up to a maximum of eight displays and a single Windows® desktop.

Clone mode

Clone Mode
The content of the first display can be cloned to all other available displays.

Twin-stretched mode

Twin-stretched mode
The content in stretched mode displayed on the first card can be cloned to the second card.

Twin-independent mode

Twin-Independent Mode
The content in independent mode displayed on the first card can be cloned to the second card.

Joined-Graphics Card Mode in Action: Showcasing Information to Airport Passengers
A Matrox QID LP PCI and QID LP PCIe are joined together in one system to form a 4x2 multi-display, stretched desktop across eight displays.

Extend Your Display Options

Use the Matrox Extio remote graphics unit (RGU) series to maximize your digital signage potential. With Twin-stretched mode, you can combine an Extio unit and a Matrox add-in graphics card in one system and replicate the content that is being displayed from one set of displays to a second set of displays, up to 820 feet away. The extension capabilities offered by the Extio Series allow you to enable both sets of displays for public viewing or enable one set of displays for public viewing while the second set can be placed in a secure and maintenance friendly control room. The latter can be very advantageous as access to systems driving public displays can be difficult or even dangerous and potentially interfere with normal business operations.

Retail Store Maximizes Displays
Using Twin-Independent mode, two in-store displays are powered by an Extio F1220, while the store's control room displays (driven by the same PC) are located up to 820 feet away, and are powered by a Millennium P650 in a safe and maintenance-friendly environment.

In Joined graphics card mode, only graphics solutions that belong to the same family of products can be joined together in one system. Dual family graphics solutions cannot be joined with quad family graphics solutions to create joined graphics card modes. Graphics products belonging to each family are listed on the right. Family of Dual graphics solutions2
Millennium P650
Millennium P650 LP PCI
Millennium P650 PCIe 128
Millennium P650 LP PCIe
Millennium P750
Parhelia 256MB
Parhelia 128MB
Parhelia PCI
Parhelia APVe
Extio F1220
Family of Quad graphics solutions
Extio F1400
Extio F1420

Increased support for Parhelia and Millennium P-Series

Matrox PowerRes

Originally introduced on the QID-Series, Extio F1400, and Extio F1420 with the PowerDesk-SE 2.02 driver, the very popular Matrox PowerRes feature is now available for the first time on the Matrox Millennium P-Series, Parhelia Series, and Extio F1220 RGU. Matrox PowerRes offers increased resolution support for widescreen plasma and LCD displays by enhancing the possibility of working in a multitude of widescreen resolutions, timings, and refresh rates. Resolutions can be selected from a default list or can also be customized and forced through the outputs of the card via the PowerRes feature set.

On the left is the new Matrox PowerDesk-SE 2.04 driver interface featuring Matrox PowerRes and just above is the "Add Mode" feature that allows you to add your desired resolution and refresh rate3.

TripleHead independent support

Through Matrox PowerDesk-SE 2.04, the Matrox Parhelia and Millennium P750 graphics solutions now offer support for TripleHead independent mode. Under this new TriplHead independent mode, features such as 1x"n" Vertical Display Alignment and Matrox Pivot are now also supported.

Microsoft DirectX 9 Support

PowerDesk-SE 2.04 is a WHQL-certified, fully Microsoft® DirectX 9 compliant driver. The most essential DirectX 9 additions in this driver include Streamoffset, Scissortest, Depthbias and Stretched texture support. Vertex Shader and Pixel Shader 2.0 is optional DirectX 9 functionality that is not supported at this time.


The PowerDesk-SE 2.04 driver is now available for download. Please visit our driver page or contact digitalsignage@matrox.com for more information.

1 Some limitations with DirectX APIs exist. Contact digitalsignage@matrox.com for details.

2 Matrox TripleHead capable cards can only be used in DualHead when using Joined graphics card mode.

3 Custom resolutions supported are 640 ≥ 1385 in width and 480 ≥ 1030 in height. Custom resolutions beyond this are not natively supported. Contact digitalsignage@matrox.com for more information.

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