only 2 of 3 monitors working

Why are only 2 of 3 Monitors Working? How to Fix it?

Are you having problems with only 2 of 3 monitors working? Unfortunately, this is a common issue that can be easily fixed. This article will teach you how to fix the problem and improve your computing experience. We’ll also provide some tips on preventing this issue from happening in the first place. So let’s get started.

Why are only 2 of 3 Monitors Working?

A signal timing problem is to blame. To support more than 2 displays it requires digital signals on all interfaces. This indicates connecting the display you have to one of the DP (active adapter) ports on the motherboard and connecting each display port on the graphics card to one of the 3 active DP ports. The mainboard has control over these signals, and if they are not in sync, it creates a problem.

Cause 1. One Display Port Card is Not Active

The mainboard might detect only one graphics card driver connected. In such a case, the motherboard will control the 3rd active display port on this graphics card adapter, and it won’t be able to support 3 monitors at once. This is common with Nvidia video cards.

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Cause 2. False Graphic Detection

The graphics card might not detect a display connection. In such a case, the motherboard will control the 3rd active display port on this graphics card adapter, but it won’t support 3 monitors at once.

Causes 3. Motherboard Issue

The motherboard mainboard controls 3rd active display port on the graphics card adapter. The graphics card does not detect the display connection, and therefore, it doesn’t hold its own third busy display port.

Causes 4. Video Driver Outdated

Your video input driver (driver) might be outdated or have issues running 3 monitors simultaneously with different resolutions/dpi settings at once.

Although this is only a hypothetical situation because you can safely run windows 7 on a dual-screen configuration with driver 3.10-3.12, you might want to update your video driver via windows 7 control panel settings, display adapter properties graphics card advanced settings, and restart the pc afterward.

Only 2 of 3 Monitors Working: Best Fixes

Step 1. Check if the Graphics Card is Active

The first step you should take is to check if the graphics card adapter itself is active or not. If it’s not, then your motherboard might be controlling 3rd display port on this adapter, and it won’t work with 3 additional monitors at once.

Open the device manager by pressing the Windows key + d keyboard shortcut and type devmgmt-MSC in the Run dialog box that appears or control panel settings display adapter properties graphics card advanced settings.

After this, select 3rd display port adapter on the list.

Suppose you see a yellow-colored light next to the 3rd active display port adapter name. In that case, that means your graphics card is not happening, and hence motherboard controller of the 3rd DVI monitor setup is working for windows 7 pc with dual-screen configuration. So the first thing to do is restart your pc by “restart button” on pc screen.

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Step 2. Check 3rd Display Port

When restart pc, windows 7 display settings will open automatically. You can also control the 3rd display monitor port adapter settings by right-clicking on the 3rd active display adapter in device manager > properties.

A new window of graphics card settings may appear, and you should check if your video driver is updated or not updated video driver section. Also, make sure that the resolution listed for 3rd screen setup is supported with a dual-monitor setup windows 7 pc.

Step 3. Use an HDMI Cable Instead of 3 Active DisplayPort Graphics Card

The 3rd screen setup windows 7 pc adapter graphics card will display video cable signals differently, depending on the adapter. For example, a dual-monitor display port graphics card supports resolution up to 1920 x 1200, while an HDMI DVI adapter support resolution up to 1080P or higher.

So if the laptop is connected with an HDMI DVI adapter, then windows 7 pc won’t detect it as a new device, and instead of 3 active display port settings windows, 7 pc will display adapter settings for the HDMI port.

Step 4. Enable Dual-Monitor Setup in BIOS/UEFI Settings

The first thing to do is restart the windows 7 pc. Then, with the “restart button,” laptop screen settings will open automatically. Then control 3rd display port adapter graphics card settings through BIOS setup of your motherboard or UEFI setting section in windows 7 pc screen resolution.

Step 5. Update Video Driver

If windows graphics card settings are not listed in the device manager section, make sure that the adapter graphics card is supported by windows 7 pc. Also, you should have a video driver updates to improve display port gaming performance.

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Step 6. Buy a New Graphics Card with 3 Active DisplayPorts

Suppose windows 7 pc graphics card adapter settings are unavailable in the windows device manager section. In that case, you should buy a new display driver port graphics card that supports a dual-monitor setup.


How to enable an HDMI Device in Windows 7

  1. Click on start on the lower right side of the screen.
  2. Navigate to and select the control panel from the menu on the right.
  3. Scroll down to the sound icon and double-click on it to display its settings.
  4. Under the playback tab, locate the HDMI audio device, once located right-click on it, and Enable the device

What graphics card can run 3 monitors?

  1. Evga GeForce GT 710
  2. XFX Radeon RX 580 GTS XXX Edition
  3. Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1660 TI Windforce OC Edition.
  4. Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX Vega 64.
  5. MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Gaming X Trio.
  6. EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 TI SC Black Edition.


If you’re one of the unlucky ones who have been struggling to get your 2 external monitors to work together with the 3rd monitor properly, don’t worry. These were 6 fixes that might help. We would love to hear about your experience and if you’ve tried any of these methods and found them successful.

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