slightly Off-topic - SGI monitors on PCs

From: Henry Sommer (
Date: Mon Jan 21 2002 - 17:55:41 EET

I got enough requests that I will reply to the list. Since hardware is very
important to how we do our business I do not think it is to far off Topic.

There are three basic ways to use an old workstation monitor from something
like an SGI on a PC.

1) If the monitor is new enough it may have a VGA port on the back. All you
will need to do is get a high quality VGA monitor cable with at least 14 of
the 15 pins. It will be male on both ends and is usually called a
replacement cable.

2) If your monitor is multi sync you will only need to get an adapter that
will let you connect your proprietary connector from the monitor (usually 13
pins plus 3 coax) to the PC. Be very careful to get the correct one for your
machine. Different vendors used different pinouts on the same plug. I will
put links to vendors at the end.
        If it has 3-5 BNC (the round ones with a rotating locking collar) then you
will need a cable from VGA to BNC. These are not to hard to find. I have
even seen them at Best Buy.

3) If your monitor is fixed frequency then you will need to either adjust
the setting on your video card to the correct frequency or get a fixed
frequency video card. You may find the setting do not take effect until you
are all the way into windows. Your monitor may not work with the start up

These vendors will give you the information and parts you need to do this.

Start one of these places to identify your monitor and get the adapters and
video cards

Henry Sommer
Associate Senior Engineer, Whitelight Design
(770) 354-4392

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