Each time I post about changes in my home office HERE, someone will usually ask why I have two monitors. Before I really get into the whole dual monitor thing, I need to tell you about how I came to buy the system I have today.
When I began working from home about a year ago, I worked each day on an HP laptop I’d had for around 3 years. I decided to purchase a desk top computer since I knew I’d be working my laptop to death. I wanted something super reliable and my plan was to use the laptop as a back-up computer and for travel.
I had my computer built by Vision Computers here in Metro Atlanta because of all the awesome things I’d heard about them. They are known for quality and service and have technical support available 365 days a year with a hold time that averages less than 15 seconds. I wasn’t sure how they were able to advertise a hold time for tech support of less than 15 seconds until I bought a system from them. Now I understand….you never need them. I love that their systems come with just the programs you’ve specified with none of those awful spam programs filling up your hard drive that you didn’t want and don’t need. Their warranty is amazing, too: 3 years on parts and labor, Lifetime for technical support! Love that!
In case you’re wondering, Vision Computers hasn’t paid me or perked me in any way. I’m just sharing this information because of how pleased I’ve been with my computer. It’s hands down the best system I’ve ever owned. After a full year of working on my mine a gazillion hours a week and adding a bazillion photos to it, it’s still as fast and efficient as the day I brought it home.
When I first met with Adam, my salesperson at Vision Computer, I told him how I would be using my computer. Adam listened and gave me his opinion regarding what type system I would need to achieve my goals. I had heard about dual monitors and felt they would be helpful for the way I work. I’m so glad I went with two monitors because the additional expense was minimal (monitors are pretty inexpensive these days) and I adore how they work and make my life so much easier.
I thought I’d share a few of the reasons I love using dual monitors, in case you’re debating going that way.
1. There’s the obvious advantage of being able to have your e-mail up all day. This especially comes in handy if you’re waiting on a particular e-mail or if you are a Blogger and need to moderate comments throughout the day, as you work.
2. I love it for editing photographs. I’ll usually have a collection of photographs up on one screen (right) and as I click on each pic in the collection, I’ll have the pic open up on the other screen. That way I can edit it or do whatever I need to do while checking to see how many I have of that particular shot in the collection. You can literally drag a pic from one screen/monitor to the next. That really comes in handy when you’re creating folders and want to move your pics from one folder to another one.
3. So often when I’m writing one post (left monitor) I’ll wish to link to a past post on the same subject. I’ll bring up the past post on one screen (right monitor) and grab the link to the post from the address bar. I might even copy a sentence I need from the old post…maybe a sentence that has a link in it…and paste it into the post I’m working on in the other screen…left screen in this example. That saves me the trouble of having to recreate the link again. Dual monitors save me time, but mostly they save my sanity. Dual monitors…how I do love thee!
Screen saver: Windows 7 comes with this cute “Bubbles” screen saver. I wasn’t sure how it would work with two monitors. It’s really a hoot! When the Bubble screen saver kicks in, bubbles begin appearing from the far left side of the left monitor. They float across the left monitor, as you might expect.
And when they reach the far right side of the left monitor, they just cross right on over as if there’s no gap or space.
Isn’t that just the coolest thing? The reason everything works so well is because Windows 7 is designed to automatically detect when a second monitor is connected. The picture I’m using as my background/wallpaper can be seen in THIS post where we toured The Isle of Hope in Savannah, Georgia.
I didn’t have to do anything special when I brought my computer home. Vision Computer had already put in the extra monitor card (or whatever it is the system needed) since they knew I was going with two monitors. When I got home and set up my system, Windows 7 recognized there were two monitors and it automatically worked. Awesome!
Now that I’ve had dual monitors, I’m totally ruined. I could never go back to working on just one. It would be like trying to work with an arm tied behind my back all day. Sometimes you don’t know what you’re missing, because you don’t know what you’re missing.
Some folks even work on three monitors. This would come in handy if you wanted to have your e-mail up and visible all day and needed the other two for work. It would also be great if you’re working in a job where you need multiple spread sheets etc… up at one time. If you type “dual monitors” into Google Images, you’ll see some pretty wild set-ups with multiple monitors, even 5 and 6 monitors. It can start to look like a NASA control room! 😉
There are so many more ways dual monitors come in handy; I’m literally flipping back and forth between them all day long. Sometimes I’m comparing products on both eBay and Amazon at the same time. Sometimes I’m watching/listening to a program online or watching a movie on one monitor while I’m working away on the other one. The multi-tasking options are endless, truly endless. This was just a brief glimpse into some of the ways you can use dual monitors.
Have you thought about getting a second monitor? Double check to be sure your computer will work with dual monitors before you purchase another monitor.
Do you already have dual monitors? If so, what are some of the ways you use them?