A few weeks ago I was able to get my hands on a Cirago HydraDisplay X3 (the DisplayPort input to 3 DVI version, there is also a DisplayPort input to 3 DisplayPort output version) and now it’s time to let you know what I thought about it. Before I get into that though, let me tell you about some of the specs that we are working with here. The unit outputs up to 3840 x 1024 or three 1280×1024 display resolutions. It supports 60 Hz and it is HDCP 1.3 capable. It comes with a 45 inch cable. It’s powered by a DisplayPort or by USB. The Cirago HydraDisplay has an MSRP of $179.99. And the last bit of specs, it works with Windows XP, Vista, 7, Server 2003, Server 2008, Mac OS 10.4 and higher. Alright so lets go ahead and get into this review.
Packaging: If there was ever an example of standard PC packaging, this is it. Sorry everyone, nothing special here, just keep on walking because there is nothing to look at. The HydraDisplay is inside just a plain blue colored box. Inside, just a standard cardboard divider to keep everything separated.
Installation: Installation is another pretty basic area here, but in a very good way. You plug in your HydraDisplay to your PC or Mac using a DisplayPort (and USB if needed for power), and you plug your monitors in. That is absolutly it. There are no drivers and if everything is working properly, then it will just work. If it’s not working properly, they have an extremely friendly and helpful support. I found that out because the first unit that arrived for us to try out had power issues and they walked me through everything to troubleshoot the device.
Usability: This is where they device really does great. It does exactly what it sets out to do. It allows you to either mirror your display on up to 3 different monitors. You can also turn your single display into an extended display that spans up to 3 different monitors again. It’s all up to you and it’s all managed through your PC or Mac’s display settings. I tried the HydraDisplay on both PC and Mac and it was just as simple to work on one as it was to work and setup on the other. What about lag you might be asking? I didn’t notice any lag on my end. Now I wasn’t playing any 60 FPS games at all but I did try some video and some games and I noticed no difference.
Steve’s Final Say: If you are in the market for something like this, I’d really suggest checking it out. It does exactly what it says it does and from what I noticed, it does it well. Minus the one setback I had with a bad unit, once that was resolved everything was just worked exactly as said. Just a heads up though, the manual does state that you should use displays that are the same model/resolution. Now I didn’t have any problem with mine, I used two different resolutions, but there is a chance that you might have issues if you do use two different models/resolutions.