There is no doubt that AMD’s ATI Eyefinity is an impressive piece of technology. According to Rick Bergman and AMD’s slides, the "resolution" of a human eye is 268 million "pixels", and the company is doing its best to capture most of it.
With the upcoming Evergreen generation of graphics hardware, AMD enables the use of six displays on a single GPU, meaning that a computer equipped with four PCI Express slots could power 24 displays, and this is exactly what the company demonstrated.
ATI Eyefinity technology in all of its glory… 24 display setup
Now, when I saw the 24 display setup, I thought that the displays were Dell’s 22" displays. However, AMD’s demonstration utilized 24 Dell 2408WFP displays, the very same display I am looking at every day? and it looked quite small.
What you’re seeing in pictures inside this article is a single PC based on AMD Phenom II 955 processor, Dragon platform and four graphics cards, running X-Plane from Laminar Research using Linux operating system. You’ve read it correctly, Linux support is out of the box, which is going to make penguin lovers quite happy. Unlike Windows and its limitations due to built-in DRM schemes, Linux has no problems to do a massive multi-scale display experience such as the aforementioned 24 display setup.
24 24" LCD displays make up for terrific experience with is no line breaking due to 120pix compensation
The 24 panel setup is running four instances of X-Plane, occupying each CPU core, using the latest beta version which is going to be available soon.
The caveat of avoiding screen overlapping is very interesting. According to AMD people we spoke with, the driver is making a 120 pixel vertical and horizontal adjustment, e.g. rendering each display as 1920+120 pixel horizontally and 1200+120 pixel vertically [2040x1320 pixels], achieving near-perfect alignment.
By rendering those 120 pixels extra, the resolution load was significantly increased for this 24 display setup [12240x5280], i.e. the next-generation GPU from AMD has to render 64.63 million pixels in order to show perspective-corrected 55.29 million pixel image.
But the end result is more than impressive – flying the plane in 12240×5280 resolution is nothing else but breathtaking. Even though the banding between the two displays reduces the immersive experience, the fact of the matter is that this technology reduces the cost of multi-monitor technology at least by a factor of five.
You will still have to wait for later in the year to be able to immerse yourself in multiple display setups, but the technology shown here is quite impressive.