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Yes, with a USB port you can add a VGA or DVI display!
Written: Oct 7, 2008 (Updated Oct 7, 2008)
a Very Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
Windows XP and Windows Vista compatible, supports standard and widescreen ratios
Poor video refresh rate on USB 1.0 computers.
The Bottom Line:
Powerful black box that offers widescreen and standard ratio support. Perfect for an office, the EVGA UV-16 can instantly upgrade any PC with no need for tricky upgrades.
For the past two weeks, I have had the pleasure of testing a new gadget called a USB video adapter. Until now no one could have convinced me that such a product was even possible, but here it sits on my desktop rendering the text used to create this review. I am very happy with it and the low price tag of $75 made the product more than pay for itself.
You can use this video extender on a laptop to give it more monitors, on a server cluster to view more than one monitor or just on your home computer as an IM monitor while you play Call Of Duty online.
The UV16 itself is a 2.5"L x 2.5"W x .75"H black box with four blue half moon, rubber grips on the four bottom corners and a chromed strip that runs around the sides of the box. The unit comes with a four foot retractable USB adapter and a DVI to VGA adapter to increase its compatibility with a wide range of monitors. When not in use, the manufacturer EVGA included a black velvet pouch to help keep your investment safe.
2D or text graphics are great. I used this device for two days on two computers and have no complaints. EVGA removed support for Direct X graphics and OpenGL graphics in an effort to keep the device stable in its black box. You can play Windows Media player visualizations though. The visualizations graphics render decently at a resolution of 1280x1024.
Does the device work with a laptop running Windows Vista?
The first try was successful but the laptop was an IBM T60P laptop with a USB 1.0 port. The monitor display refresh rate is very slow. A second attached monitor had its first 20 vertical pixels collapsed into 10 which caused the title bar of Microsoft Dynamics AX to look strange. However, then the control panel applet popped up and warned me that an automatic update was available. I installed the following update: EVGA UP Plus+ 4.5.12909.0 and then had to reboot my computer. Once rebooted the monitor really started to shine with 2D graphics. However, using ITunes to play the video of Cheap Trick Surrender the video became blurred. My problem with the collapsed pixels on the second monitor went away. I am now the envy of every laptop geek... I have three monitors! While the operation and configuration of dual monitors is out of the scope of this review, you can find several technical guides on the internet that will help you.
Does the device work with a desktop computer running Windows XP?
After learning my lesson on the IBM T60P laptop, the first thing I did when I installed the device on my Dell Precision T3400 was install the update: EVGA UP Plus+ 4.5.12909.0! I did have to reboot the computer to enable the update. Since the Dell computer had USB 2.0, I was able to get a faster screen refresh rate. The device performed flawlessly with standard 2D desktop applications like Microsoft Outlook 2007 and Dynamics AX. I tried to run the Dream Aquarium screensaver but could not because the UV16 does not support Direct X video display. Windows Media player visualizations did work though, making for a nice show on my third monitor while I worked.
How does it work when you or your coworker Greg jiggles the cabling?
I gave the cable several jiggles. The contacts inside the DVI to VGA adapter do not hold very well and would cause the screen to flicker. The USB cable did not lose power though. I recommend using some velcro or double sided tape to hold the UV16 in position.
Does the box overheat at idle and then when running graphics?
The box was 100F while idle. Since the device does not accept Direct X graphics, it was hard to try and make it overheat. As a result, the highest temperature was about 110F while running Windows Media player's visualizations. You should make sure the black box is protected from papers or other miscellaneous desk projectiles that could cause it to overheat. Since no one knows what is inside the mysterious black box, overheating it could cause whatever is inside to come out!
Black box with cross shaped blue led indicator.
32bit color depth
Resolutions supported: 800x600, 1024x768, 1152x864, 1280x720, 1280x1024, 1400x1050, 1440x900, 1600x1200, 1680x1050
DVI to VGA adapter
Two-year limited warranty with registration
Part Number: 100-U2-UV16-A1
Visit the following website to get the latest product updates, http://www.evga.com/support/UV+
The EVGA UV16 is a programmer's dream. Find an old CRT or LCD monitor and simply plug and play to get more desktop area for your Visual Studio 2005 development or Dynamics AX coding needs. I highly recommend finding an available USB 2.0 port to ensure optimum speed though. A powerful black box device that offers widescreen and standard ratio support. Ideal for an office user or software developer, the EVGA UV-16 can instantly upgrade any PC with no need for tricky video card hardware upgrades.
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Amount Paid (US$): 75