Multi Monitor Support

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Freebird
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby Freebird » Fri Apr 14, 2017 4:40 pm

This is what you need http://www.tweaktown.com/news/57030/samsung-teases-49-inch-32-9-aspect-ratio-gaming-displays/index.html?utm_source=tuicool&utm_medium=referral Deal breaker for me would be 1080p, been on 1440p for a while & I just couldn't go back.

janjansen
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby janjansen » Fri Apr 14, 2017 6:41 pm

Freebird wrote:This is what you need http://www.tweaktown.com/news/57030/samsung-teases-49-inch-32-9-aspect-ratio-gaming-displays/index.html?utm_source=tuicool&utm_medium=referral Deal breaker for me would be 1080p, been on 1440p for a while & I just couldn't go back.


Im wondering how different it would be from a triple screen setup. Not very different I think (minus the bezels of course). Put it this way, if you where to take a screenshot on that monitor, it would look almost identical to my MM setup (mine is in fact, a little wider even as I have a 2560 center monitor + 2x1920 = 4720). So Im scratching my head why it wouldnt have the same stretching issue. Or even how you would render properly on a monitor like that. Multiple camera's would not solve the problem, instead the software would need to know the curvature of the monitor?

as an aside, for productivity, I actually much prefer 3 monitors over one huge one. My brother has a 43" UWD, but its just so much easier to run several maximized windows (I know, software exists to emulate it, but even so) and the bezels are not an issue. For flightsims, a single whopper of a monitor like that ought to be nice though.

janjansen
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby janjansen » Fri Apr 14, 2017 7:21 pm

Did a little googling. From what I found, for the most part, curved UW screens will indeed have the same problem as multi monitor setups. The crux of the problem is the linear projection games use when using large viewing angles (~120 degree FOV on my setup). It doesnt really matter if you get that wide view on a single or many monitors. Its only that the wider you go in your aspect ratio, and the more you curve your display (or displays), the larger FOV you need, so the bigger the problem. BTW, the curvature of these monitors is defined by a so called R value. Should be easy enough to configure, or maybe even via EDID.

The solution to this is either multiple viewports as discussed many times here. You could also do that on a single curved display, but you would risk that where you switch from one viewport to the next, you might notice some distortion. It shouldnt be too bad, but ironically, MM might be considered better for this solution.

Or, use a different projection method, like cylindrical projection, which would be perfect for a curved screen, and probably good enough for a triple angled screen setup. But I never heard of that being implemented in the context of 3D games and a quick google search also draws a blank. Which strikes me as a little odd, as big, wide, curved monitors are certainly a trend. I dont know if non linear projection requires additional hardware or software support, but surely the people at nvidia and AMD noticed this trend? Why would they market a solution for multiple monitors and ignore these new shiny curved UWD displays?

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Freebird
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby Freebird » Fri Apr 14, 2017 9:09 pm


janjansen
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby janjansen » Sat Apr 15, 2017 1:43 pm

Freebird wrote:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mq8T42ymiBw Nvidia's answer


Thats been posted several times now. Its not really an answer, nVidia just made something that reduces the FPS penalty when rendering multiple viewports. Certainly useful, but only if the software implements multiple viewports, something I wouldnt count on for condor V2. Moreover, it doesnt address the issue with curved and/or ultrawide displays.

pstrzel
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby pstrzel » Sat Apr 15, 2017 5:20 pm

For me and my budget it's still TrackIR FTW. I don't see (pun intended) how helpful it is to have a display that you can't focus on until you look at it :). Just tilt your head slightly (or a lot) and focus on whatever you need to focus on. I frequently have a need to look up or back. How many monitors would I need for that? And how many months would it take for them to become outdated? And since VR goggles are not true to reality without a motion controlled platform, I'm saving my money for a $100K 6DOF simulator. :mrgreen:
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janjansen
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby janjansen » Sat Apr 15, 2017 9:57 pm

pstrzel wrote:For me and my budget it's still TrackIR FTW. I don't see (pun intended) how helpful it is to have a display that you can't focus on until you look at it :). Just tilt your head slightly (or a lot) and focus on whatever you need to focus on. I frequently have a need to look up or back. How many monitors would I need for that? And how many months would it take for them to become outdated? And since VR goggles are not true to reality without a motion controlled platform, I'm saving my money for a $100K 6DOF simulator. :mrgreen:


I agree, head tracking is a better solution than giant panoramic screens or multiple screens (unless you have a dozen or so, or you can project in to a 180+ degree sphere), and its one of the best investments you can do for flight sims.

But why chose when you can have both ? :) The wide view helps with the immersion, and you can spot things in your peripheral vision even without focusing on it. A human can see things in a >200 degree arc. A typical single monitor probably covers less than 30 degree or so of that. I mean, its not like cant see anything beyond your monitor even when looking at it. With wider view you can also greatly relax your trackir sensitivity around the yaw axis, because you can actually turn your head, say 45 degree to either side, and yet without crossing your eyes, still be looking at the center of a display, rather than a cupboard. It feels more natural. Its not gonna help in the vertical axis, unless you go for 4 screens, or even 6, but you'd still have the trackir for that.

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Slartibartfast
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby Slartibartfast » Tue Apr 18, 2017 1:24 pm

After a short hiatus I just checked back in on this thread again and I'm pleased to see that the discussion is back on track.

Freebird, thanks for posting that link. It may have been posted several times already but I actually hadn't seen it before myself and I found it most informative. In particular it does a very good job of explaining exactly what causes the edge distortion on extended desktops. I had always assumed it was something to do with spherical/planer mapping but didn't realise it was literally a rectilinear translation (ie. mapping a projection onto a dead straight wall). In fact I thought people were able to increase their FoV beyond 180°, which is clearly not possible if the projection is rectilinear.

When I first started looking into this I thought cylindrical projection was an obvious solution too. In fact I'd naively thought cylindrical projection was the 'normal' way of doing things as it would seem so much simpler to just have each pixel represent a certain amount of arc, but clearly this is not what's done. I'm aware this would induce a minimal amount of distortion on monitors that are indeed flat but over the breadth of your typical monitor I would have thought this would be negligible. I am actually now wondering if old 3D perspective games like Doom may have in fact used a cylindrical projection by default. I know they use to kind of 'fake' 3D through manipulation of flat images and who knows, they could well have used a "given arc per pixel" approach to construct these scenes. It would seem the simplest way to do things.

One problem with cylindrical projections (of which 'Mercator's Projection' is one) is that while the image looks great across the centre of the canvas it becomes more and more distorted toward the top and bottom. Most of our surround displays have an extremely high aspect ratios (say 5760x1080) and a display that wraps around 120° may only extend vertically ±15° and would no doubt look fine. In fact if you were to mount your monitors in a pseudo-cylindrical shape the distortion would actually be perfect (just as a planer projection model is perfect for an extensive array of flat panels), however the great majority of players who only use a single monitor don't actually want a literal view of exactly what would be visible through a window of the size and proportion of their monitor as it would be too restrictive. Can you imagine trying to fly a real glider with your view port limited to a frame that was literally the size of your monitor as it is now? You'd be flicking your head all over the place just trying to keep a lookout. For this reason the rendered FoV on a monitor is basically always larger than the actual angular dimensions of the monitor itself. That being said though I'm not sure whether the cylindrical distortion at the top and bottom of a 'zoomed-out' display would be any worse than the current planer-projection (which I believe cartographers would refer to as a "Gnomic Projection").

Anyway, when the industry genuinely went "3D" (with real 3D ordinate based engines) they all decided to adopt the Planer-Projection model (including Condor v1.0 by the look of the ultra wide screenshots available). If the Condor 2.0 developers have decided to continue with their own engine rather than implementing an 'off the shelf' solution, who knows, they may even implement a cylindrical projection system. That would indeed be a novel solution ;).

phercek
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby phercek » Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:12 am

Cylindrical projection would distort / "compress" left and right side of the picture on flat monitors (if the cylinder has vertical orientation). Cylindrical projection is good only for cylindrical monitors with the same radius of curvature as in the projection parameters. I doubt any engine ever used this since almost all monitors are flat. Multiple cameras of viewports(*) is the best option.

It is as simple as wanting the same projection as your monitors are. If you have one planar monitor then you want one planar projection. If you have multiple flat monitors which are not in one plane then you want multiple planar projections and some way to set resolutions, FOV, and projection plane positions in the game so that it corresponds to real placement of your monitors.

(*) or whatever it is called in the marketing materials of this or that company to make a difference between multiple cameras showing the same scene and showing a different scene

janjansen
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby janjansen » Wed Apr 19, 2017 12:45 pm

phercek wrote:Cylindrical projection would distort / "compress" left and right side of the picture on flat monitors (if the cylinder has vertical orientation). Cylindrical projection is good only for cylindrical monitors with the same radius of curvature as in the projection parameters.


A flat monitor is just like a cylinder with infinite radius. Since radius would have to be configurable, I dont see how this would be a problem for flat monitors.

I doubt any engine ever used this since almost all monitors are flat.


In the same way that almost no monitors support QHD/UWHD/4K. Im guessing their current market share is comparable right now, I wouldnt even be surprised if there where more curved displays than 2.5+4K displays. But nVidia/AMD have been touting support for such high resolutions for ages, and Microsoft has supported it through directx for, what, almost 20 years now?

Multiple cameras of viewports(*) is the best option.


It doesnt fix the problem for (very) high aspect ratio monitors, even if they are single and flat. And the market is clearly moving in the direction of wide aspect ratio and curved monitors. Cylindrical projection would solve the problem for just about any configuration, other than dome shaped screens.

BTW, I just found at least one program that apparently supported it 4 years ago: outerra:
https://forum.outerra.com/index.php?topic=2180.0

phercek
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby phercek » Wed Apr 19, 2017 2:54 pm

janjansen wrote:
phercek wrote:Multiple cameras of viewports(*) is the best option.

It doesnt fix the problem for (very) high aspect ratio monitors, even if they are single and flat.

If you see distortion with planar projection on a flat monitor (regardless of the monitor size) then position of your head relative to the monitor is not correct. But if position of your head is not right relative to your cylindrical monitor with a cylindrical projection then you will see distortion too. Therefore I say that the assumption of the correct head position is implicit.

But otherwise I agree. Not sure how well the driver will take infinity for projection cylinder radius. Though I see it as nitpicking as well as this post is just nitpicking :D I'm not trying to argue against use of cylindrical projection in general. Only that for multiple flat monitors it is better to have more viewports than a one cylindrical projection.

tom eagles
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby tom eagles » Wed Apr 19, 2017 8:17 pm

I have a UWHD Monitor and can tell you that there are no issues whatsoever :) And that's the only comment I am making!
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janjansen
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby janjansen » Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:41 am

tom eagles wrote:I have a UWHD Monitor and can tell you that there are no issues whatsoever :)


Aside from the fact condor doesnt even support UWHD resolution ?
;)

In fairness, I have a flat 27" 21:9 myself, and using dgvoodoo, I can use its native resolution, and rectilinear projection is indeed not a really noticeable problem - yet. But then in condor I cant really widen my FOV quite as much as Id like, and my screen isnt even that large, nor is it curved. In my case, the angle between left and right screen borders is just 15 or so degree. I might be able to measure some distortion on my single screen, but I dont notice it, and it doesnt bother me. Some of these new 40+" curved monitors would provide a horizontal viewing angle thats closer to 30 degrees, so more comparable to two of my screens. With two screens, the stretching becomes a very noticeable problem. When I triple it, the stretching on the outer edges becomes absurd.

The larger the screen, the wider the screen, the more curved the screen, and obviously the more screens you have, the wider FOV you would want, and thus the bigger the problem of (single) rectilinear projection becomes.

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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby janjansen » Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:20 am

Actually, I take that back. It is very noticable on my single screen, if you pay attention. Look at these two screenshots:
Image

the red square is the same size on both shots, and positioned on the same cloud. The game was paused, I just rotated the view. Its hard to miss how the cloud changed shape, became larger and stretched out, by almost 2x, just because its being rendered on the edge rather than the center of the screen.

Now this is just mildly annoying when you pay attention, when flying, it doesnt bother me too much. But have a look what happens when you triple the aspect ratio. Ignore the red texture issue:

Image

you can click the image to get a larger one. Hard to believe the green square is on the same cloud, no? Believe me, this is unflyable and nausea inducing, particularly if you try to combine that with headtracking..
Last edited by janjansen on Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:12 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Slartibartfast
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Re: Multi Monitor Support

Postby Slartibartfast » Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:47 am

tom eagles wrote:I have a UWHD Monitor and can tell you that there are no issues whatsoever :)

If your UWHD monitor is flat (or near to flat) then their would be no problem. The issue only occurs when you attempt to map what is intended to be a 'flat' image onto what is essentially a 'curved' surface.

Note: You will also see the distortion if you display a wide angle image on a not so wide angle screen, even if the screen is flat. Assuming your rendered scene's 'angular width' is relatively similar to the monitor's 'angular width', and that your screen is relatively flat their should be no problem.

tom eagles wrote:And that's the only comment I am making!

We shall see ;)


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