If you work in a field that requires a lot of reading and writing, such as editing or transcription, having multiple monitors can make a big difference in your ability to focus and get things done. A laptop dock is another way to extend your computer screen space. It’s a small box that connects to the monitor and laptop with cables, providing an extended desktop so you can see documents side by side without having to tab back and forth between them. Since laptop docks are fairly uncommon devices, it might take some research to figure out how to connect 3 monitors to your laptop dock. Read on for everything you need to know about connecting 3 monitors to your laptop dock.
How To Connect 3 Monitors To A Laptop Docking Station?
1. Using HDMI Cables
HDMI cables are used to connect a laptop to a monitor or TV with a display port and are a great way to connect one monitor to your laptop docking station. The best part is that most newer laptops feature an HDMI port, making this an easy connection method. Keep in mind that the number of HDMI ports on your desktop computer may not match the number of monitors you want to connect. For example, you may have a laptop docking station with two HDMI ports, but only one monitor that has an HDMI port. In this case, you can purchase an HDMI switch to make the connection.
2. Using DisplayPort Cables
Similar to connecting monitors with HDMI cables, connecting monitors with DisplayPort cables are a great option if you have a laptop with built-in DisplayPort ports. The best part about this connection method is connecting multiple monitors with just one DisplayPort cable. To connect various monitors, purchase a DisplayPort hub or splitter for your docking station. Or, if you only have one monitor with a DisplayPort connection, you can purchase an adapter to convert the DisplayPort connection to HDMI or VGA.
3. Using USB-C to HDMI Cables
If you have a laptop with USB-C ports, you can connect one monitor with an HDMI connection using a USB-C to an HDMI cable. The great thing about this method is that you can connect the monitor without having to purchase an additional USB-C docking station. In fact, if you already have a USB-C docking station, you can connect one more monitor with a USB-C to an HDMI cable. Keep in mind that not all USB-C ports are created equal, so you want to make sure the USB-C port you’re plugging the cable into is designed for video streaming. If you’re unsure, you can always plug the monitor into the USB-C port on the non-primary USB-C port to see if it works.
4. Using a Docking Station with Multiple Display Ports
Docking stations with multiple display ports are great for those who want to connect multiple monitors to their laptop, but only have one or two ports on their laptop. These docking stations let you connect multiple monitors with just one or two cables. When shopping for a docking station with multiple display ports, read the product description carefully to ensure that it is compatible with your operating system. You also want to make sure the docking station has the ports you need for your monitors, such as HDMI or VGA ports.
5. Using a Docking Station with a VGA Port and an Adapter
If your laptop and monitors only have VGA ports, you can still connect them to your docking station. All you need to do is purchase an adapter that converts the VGA connection to a DisplayPort connection. Docking stations with multiple ports typically feature a DisplayPort connection, and you can use the same connection to convert a VGA connection to a DisplayPort connection. The best part about this connection method is that you don’t have to buy a new docking station if it doesn’t have a DisplayPort connection. You can simply purchase an adapter to convert the connection.
Which Cables Do I Need?
- Most laptop docks use HDMI or VGA cables. HDMI cables are thinner and more common, but VGA is more widely compatible with old computers that don’t have HDMI ports.
- Be sure to double-check the ports on your computer and laptop dock before you buy. If you have a Mac, you can use Mini DisplayPort.
- DVI ports are also sometimes used for extended desktop connections but are less common and will probably not be on your laptop dock.
- If you have an older laptop that only has an S-Video port (or no video port at all), you’re out of luck.
- There are no adapters or dongles that will let you use HDMI or VGA with S-Video, so you’ll need to buy a laptop dock with an older connection type like RCA.
How To Monitor Setup?
- You can set up your monitors in a variety of ways. Some people prefer to keep their laptops in the middle, so they have one monitor on each side.
- You can also put the laptop to the side and use one monitor in the middle and two on the outside. This is a good way to save space if you have a smaller desk
- Finally, you can put all three monitors in a row, with the laptop in the middle. This arrangement might be best for people who do a lot of typing since it puts the laptop where the middle monitor would usually be.
- If you do this, make sure you have enough room to stretch your arms out when typing.
Pros Of Using A Laptop Docking Station To Connect 3 Monitors
- Now that you have an understanding of what a laptop docking station is and how it works, let’s discuss the pros of using one to connect 3 monitors to a laptop.
- One of the biggest advantages of using a laptop docking station to connect 3 monitors to your laptop is that it will cost you less money than if you were to buy three separate monitors. If you are looking for an upgrade for your computer, but don’t want to spend too much money, then getting a docking station is going to be the best option for you. You will be able to save some money on your tech purchase and still get the same functionality that comes with owning three separate monitors.
- Another benefit of using a docking station is that it can be connected in just minutes, even if it’s your first time working with one.
- There are a lot of advantages to using a laptop docking station to connect 3 monitors to a laptop. For starters, you will be able to view 3 different documents or programs at once. This can be extremely beneficial if you are a student who has to write a research paper or a thesis as well as do online research.
- Connecting 3 monitors to a laptop docking station also means having more screen space without having to upgrade your computer. This can be essential if you are a professional who needs to view multiple programs or documents at once. And, if you are a designer or artist who needs plenty of screen space to view their design or drafts, connecting 3 monitors to a laptop docking station is an excellent solution.
Cons Of Using A Laptop Docking Station To Connect 3 Monitors
- While connecting 3 monitors to a laptop docking station is highly beneficial, there are a few disadvantages that you should be aware of as well. First, this can be rather expensive, especially if you are looking for a device with multiple ports.
- You will also need to make sure that your laptop can support connecting 3 monitors. Essentially, you want to double your CPU power in order to power each display.
- If your laptop does not have enough power, it could lead to problems such as slow computer performance or it might even shut down.
- Finally, you also need to make sure that your docking station has enough ports to support 3 monitors. You will want to make sure you have an HDMI port, a VGA port, and at least 2 USB ports.
Laptop docks are a great way to connect 3 monitors to your laptop without having to buy an entirely new computer. However, they are somewhat uncommon devices, so it can be difficult to find out how to connect 3 monitors to your laptop dock without a lot of research. Thankfully, this article has all the information you need to get it done. Whether you prefer to keep your laptop in the middle and put one monitor on either side or put the laptop on the side and put all three monitors in a row, laptop docks make it easy to increase your screen space.