Anyone with 100% Functioning Surface Dock?

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Book' started by BigZAJ, Nov 9, 2015.

  1. netjamba

    netjamba New Member

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    I too have had a lot of problems with SB dock, which seems to work very well on a Surface Pro 4. It has been very difficult to get the dock to work with multiple screens. For example, I have not been able to get both mini display ports to work at the same time nor have i been able to get all the USB ports to work at the same time. In order to get two monitors, neither are 4K, to work with the SB docking station I had to use a USB to DVI connector and a mini display to DVI connector. This allowed both displays to work. However, the additional USB ports on the docking station did not work. In fact if i had anything else plugged into the USB ports the monitors didn't work. My work around was to have the two monitors attached as described above and the additional items attached to the USB ports on the SB.
     
  2. BigZAJ

    BigZAJ New Member

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    Complete guess but given that the issues seem to be Mini DP to some other digital (DP, HDMI, DVI) issue... could it be a HDCP issue? It can't facilitate multiple HDCP handshakes?
     
  3. Curlynerd

    Curlynerd New Member

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    So, I can uncategorically answer "kind of". I have 2 docks, one for home office and one for work. At work, both work flawlessly with my Dell (non-4k) DP monitors and SB display on at the same time using the dock. Not a single issue there. However, at home, with my 2 older DVI monitors, neither work through the dock, but both work directly from the SB (one via USB -DVI). Now, before you blame the DP to DVI cabling, connection or technology, both of my Dell monitors at work also work flawlessly using the same cables as at home, with both using DVI from the dock. So, something is missing from these monitors, I would guess. Maybe the HDCP comment is correct??
     
  4. protip

    protip Member

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    Curlynerd, it's reassuring that you have two DisplayPort displays working on your dock at work. My two 4K monitors are (obviously?) DisplayPort 1.2, so I wasn't certain if the problem I had was (a) that the dock doesn't support two DisplayPort displays or (b) that the dock doesn't support two 4K DisplayPort displays. It sounds like the answer to that is (b).

    Just out of curiosity, have you swapped your two docks to see if the problem is one of quality control or not? It would be at least somewhat interesting to note if the observed behavior is consistent between the two docks or if one just simply works better than the other. If you were to swap them and determine that one was "good" and the other was "bad," I would be tempted to return my dock for another. (But to be clear, I doubt that would be the finding; I suspect they would behave the same way.)

    I don't know a whole lot about HDCP, but I would not be surprised if that ends up being involved. It would not be the first time that technology has been hurtful to consumers for the very nominal benefit it gives copyright owners. But again, I am using plain DisplayPort 1.2 (mini to full) connectors and have tried a variety of these. I'm not converting to HDMI, DVI, or VGA.
     
  5. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    I have two DP monitors working, one 4K Dell and one 2K Acer, SP4 driving them through the new dock.
     
  6. Curlynerd

    Curlynerd New Member

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    Good point, forget to mention that both docks work at the office. There I am using two mini DP- DP cables (1 piece construction) and for the DVI, I'm using the Mini DP to DVI from Rankie (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ZMU9PQS?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00) along with the same DVI cables on both docks and both sets of monitors. Only the monitors are different. I'm tempted to replace the two monitors, but without knowing for sure, it's hard to commit to an additional $300.
     
  7. protip

    protip Member

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    It's reassuring to hear that there are people with two DisplayPort displays operating concurrently. That puts my target of getting two 4K DisplayPort displays (60 Hz please) working closer to reality.

    I've been back and forth on my thinking, but I hope it's a software matter. And I hope Microsoft is working to fix it. If it's in Intel's video driver, I hope Microsoft is "assisting" (either politely or forcefully) with the necessary fixes. I have this second very large (40 inch) display at my left just collecting dust.
     
  8. Curlynerd

    Curlynerd New Member

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    Since in my case it consistently works with 2 monitors using DP and DVI, it seems more like an incompatibility with older monitors, perhaps those that do not support HDCP? At least in my case this seems to be the issue.
     
  9. netjamba

    netjamba New Member

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    Given the issues i was having I ended up doing a lot of testing with the docking station today. I won't bore you with the details but the tests involved DP to VGA, DP to DVI, USB to VGA, USB to DVI, and many monitor types though none were 4K. Basically what I found out is that using DP connections cause the most problems. I was able to get two DP connections to work some of the time. However, if I undocked the SB or it's screen, when I plugged either back in one of the DP monitors would not display until I unplugged one of them and plugged it back into the docking station. I also found that if you had additional USB devices, hard drive, flash drive, DVD, etc., plugged into the docking station sometimes the USB connected monitors didn't work and sometimes the USB connected monitor didn't work. The setup that I found most stable was connecting a USB 3.0 powered hub to one of the docking station's USB ports and connecting all the external monitors to it. This setup allowed all the monitors to work even when the SB or it's screen was undocked. Additionally, any USB devices that were connected to the hub or docking station continued to work without issue. I was even successful in getting a DP to VGA or DVI to connect giving you three external monitors.
     
  10. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    I run two monitors via DP off the dock everyday, one 4K, the other 2K and the SP4 screen.....no issues
     
  11. dstrauss

    dstrauss Active Member

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    I'm using the new dock with an SP3, with two 2K monitors attached (2560x1440) in a DP daisy chain (guess because that's what I did with the old dock and din't have a second mini-DP cable at the time). Anyway, works great so far (as he knock on his forehead - I mean wood).
     
  12. Curlynerd

    Curlynerd New Member

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    jnjroach, can you tell me if MS engineers ever respond to these forums? If you ARE that person, I apologize. :) If you are, can you tell us if the Dock's Mini DP and the Surface Book's Mini DP are somehow different? It's the only explanation from these posts. Maybe HDCP is treated differently? If not this, than what else might be different?

    We appreciate the help!
     

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