Did you know that adding a second monitor to your work setup could help you increase your productivity by up to 30%? No matter how large your workload is, this is a substantial boost that you can’t overlook. Although setting up multiple monitors is relatively straightforward, there are still certain nuances that you need to be aware of.
Let’s explore everything you need to know about handling monitor setup with more than one screen.
Decide How Much Screen Real Estate You Need
The first step in setting up multiple monitors is to determine how much screen real estate you need. Ideally, you want to have enough space on each monitor so that all of your windows are visible without having to scroll. This can vary depending on your work setup, but a good rule of thumb is to allocate at least 25% of each monitor to windows that you need to keep open at all times.
If you’re working on a project that requires a lot of reference material, you may need even more screen space. As time goes on, you’ll be able to determine the ideal portion of each screen that you need for your projects. This will help you reach your target productivity levels faster than ever before. You will also likely find it unpleasant to work with a single monitor in the future.
Position the Monitors in an Ergonomic Way
Once you’ve determined how much screen real estate you need, it’s time to position your monitors in an ergonomic way. This means that you should place your monitors so that you’re looking straight ahead at them, and the top of the monitor should be at or slightly below eye level.
If you can’t position your monitors in this way, you may want to consider using a monitor arm to adjust their height. However, some people choose to place their top monitor well above the others and recline back in their computer chairs. As long as you are able to keep your neck in a neutral position, this can be a great way to handle low-intensity tasks like proofreading or watching videos.
Avoid Glare and Reflections
One downside of using multiple monitors is that it can be more difficult to avoid glare and reflections. This can be an issue if you’re using a glossy monitor, so try to avoid positioning them in direct sunlight or near windows.
You may also want to consider using a matte screen protector to reduce reflections. Some manufacturers create monitors that have an anti-glare coating. If your workspace has a lot of sun exposure, you might want to consider one of these devices.
Use the Right Cables
Most monitors use either a VGA, HDMI, or DVI cable, so make sure you have the appropriate cables available before starting setup. If your monitors are of different sizes, you may also need an adapter to connect them. Manufacturers often bundle these with monitors that require them.
There’s nothing worse than completing your monitor setup only to find that you don’t have the right cables to get them to work.
Looking for other information about troubleshooting this situation? You can check out this resource to learn more: https://setapp.com/how-to/troubleshoot-multiple-monitors
Adjust Display Settings
Once your monitors are set up, it’s time to adjust your Display settings.
On a Windows device, you can access these settings by right-clicking on the desktop and selecting “Display Settings.” You’ll want to make sure that the resolution, color depth, and refresh rate are set correctly for each monitor.
You may also want to enable “Extend These Displays” if you want to use multiple monitors as one large desktop. On Mac computers, you can access “System Preferences” and then “Displays.”
Use Taskbar Shortcuts
If you’re using multiple monitors, you’ll want to take advantage of taskbar shortcuts. This means that you should add icons for your most commonly used programs to the taskbar on each monitor.
You can do this by right-clicking on the program’s icon and selecting “Pin to Taskbar.” This will make it easy to launch your programs from any monitor.
This becomes more important as the number of monitors you use increases. The less often you have to move your mouse from screen to screen, the more productive you will be.
What Else Should I Be Aware Of?
You may need to download drivers for your monitors to work properly with your computer. You can usually find these drivers on the manufacturer’s website. It’s possible that your computer may automatically prompt you to download the drivers after you connect your monitor.
You should also keep in mind that using a large number of monitors may place additional stress on your device. Be sure to monitor your CPU and energy usage after setting up additional monitors to prevent issues from arising in the future.
To clarify, your computer might not be powerful enough to handle five additional screens. A scenario like this could substantially decrease the lifespan of your device. In general, high-power devices should have no issue accommodating additional monitors.
Base models of computers, though, might only be able to handle one additional screen.
Setting up Multiple Monitors Is Easier Than You Think
Although multiple monitor setups might seem complicated, the process is simpler than most people believe at first. However, you should still ensure that you keep the above information about setting up multiple monitors in mind. This will allow you to handle this task with minimal complications.
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