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Any advice? Dual monitors not working through Surface dock.

elee532

Member
I am having trouble getting my external monitors working through the surface dock. They flash on and off. Sometimes they work for a minute, then they start flashing off and on again. Either one connected directly to the surface works fine. I'm trying to set them as extended, with the Surface Book screen set to off. I'm using MS recommended cable. One monitor is LG ultra wide 2560 x 1080 connected via HDMI. The other is QNIX 2560 x 1440 concocted via DisplayPort. I've tried three different Surface Docks.

Any advice?
 

Bandito

Active Member
If you connect just the QNIX monitor to the dock, does that work? What adapter are you using to go from the dock to HDMI?
 

Seneleron

Active Member
I don't know if this will help you or not, but on the reviews for the surface dock on Amazon one person mentioned needing an ACTIVE mDP cable to get it working.

Relevant text:

By sstockfo on January 23, 2016
Verified Purchase
I must admit that I was leery at first reading all the of the negative reviews, but I really needed the option of a dock and I couldn't help but think that Microsoft, while not infallible, wouldn't put out a product so inferior as described by others. Once again, let me state that I know Microsoft puts out software with issues, etc, etc, etc, blah, blah, I chose to have a little faith in them. Well, it is my opinion that the majority of the negative reviews are user error. After I read some of the success reviews, I pretty much confirmed my suspicions in that most were doing it wrong. You must use an "active" mini display port adaptor if you have older monitors. Following the suggestions of others I used the http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EDSZYII?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00 adapters and works like a charm. I now have 3 monitors (the surface screen and two external monitors. I just simply connected them, went to my display settings and arranged them in the order I wanted them and that was that. The scaling is perfect, it simply just works. Again, I suspect that those with issues are using "passive" mini display adapters. Passive don't have the electronics built into the cord and the signal gets lost and compromised creating a failure.

I don't run dual 4k, don't [yet] own the dock, so I can't confirm or deny personally, but figure someone here can either debunk or confirm.
 

Bandito

Active Member
What kind of cable/adapter are you using to connect to the LG monitor to go from mini-DP to HDMI?
 
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elee532

Member
Well that's messed up! MS recommends active but they link to one recommended cable and it's passive. WTF!
 
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elee532

Member
Does active/passive apply only to Mini DisplayPort to HDMI? Or, is there also active and passive Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort cables as well?

Thanks!
 

Bandito

Active Member
From what I've read, you definitely should have an active mini DP to HDMI adapter. That will probably fix you right up.

You mentioned that you've connected the displays, one at a time of course, directly to the SB with success. I am curious to know if you've done the same with the Surface Dock and what your results were there. Do they both work correctly on the dock if only one is connected at a time?

As far as active adapters for mini DP to DP goes, there are none as all of the signals are the same between the two, it's just the connectors that are different. If I recall correctly, mini DP actually has more signals going through it than a DP connector does, because mini DP can be used for ThunderBolt connections as well as monitor connections.
 
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elee532

Member
Thanks Bandito!

They do not work reliably if I hook them up to the dock one at a time. Each will work occasionally. But eventually, they start flickering on and off. Sometimes it's constant. Sometimes it's just every few minutes or even every few hours. It just doesn't seem like this dock was ready for prime time yet.

I'll give the active adapter a try with the HDMI monitor. Not sure what to do about the monitor with the DP connection.
 

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