4 Reasons Why You Need a Dual Screen Monitor Setup

In our current age of speed and technology, multitasking and efficiency are very important. Find out how to improve your work flow with a second monitor.

Over the past few decades, our society has continued to move faster and faster, mostly due to the incredible advancements that have been made in technology.

Prior to the computer era, many activities were accomplished manually by hand, like writing a novel by means of the traditional pen and paper method. Entertainment often involved focusing on a single activity, like focusing all of one’s attention on playing a game of soccer, or concentrating solely on a single book.

Now that personal computers are found in abundance, American culture seems to be shifting over from focused singular tasks to multitasking.

Monitors were once expensive, sometimes so expensive that they contributed to nearly 50 percent of a new computer system’s cost. Nowadays, the cost of a monitor has gone down and purchasing multiple monitors for a single computer system is becoming a popular choice.

If you use your computer for more than simple word processing and web browsing, There are many reasons why you should purchase a second monitor.

Reason #1: Increased Workspace

The primary reason – which is actually the root reason for all of the following reasons — for setting up a dual monitor workspace is to increase the available work area on your computer. Depending on the size of your current monitor and the resolution you’re using, you may not have as much room as you’d like.

Imagine a plain and ordinary school desk, the kind that is often used in public schools across the nation. It would provide enough room for doing some work, like sketching out a prototype design or writing down some notes using longhand. However, as you receive more and more work, you may need to use up more of the available space. Eventually, you’ll find yourself swamped with books stacked on top of one another just so you can have enough space for getting work done.

That’s what it feels like to have a single monitor. It works, but it could be better. By including a second or third display into your arrangement, it would be like upgrading from a school desk to a real work desk.

Reason #2: Increased Productivity

With the increased prevalence of multi-monitor setups, there have been many studies conducted examining the effects of such setups on worker productivity.

A study conducted by Jon Peddie Research concluded that using multiple displays increases the average worker’s productivity by a mean of 42 percent. Another study, conducted by Microsoft, found that adding a second monitor could increase productivity by anywhere from 9 to 50 percent.

Increased productivity is valuable. Greater efficiency leads to getting the same amount of work done in less time, which can mean an increase in profit per measure of time. Another way to look at it is, the quicker you finish, the more leisure time you have remaining.

Reason #3: Quick Access to Multiple Programs

If you’re busy and have many contacts, a second monitor will be a lifesaver.

E-mail programs like Outlook and Thunderbird can be kept up at all times in the secondary display. Instead of having to check your e-mail every few minutes, you can just glance over quickly. If you use instant messaging or other chat protocols, you can leave your window up on the other screen and chat without having to deal with constant minimizes and window switching.

What about video conferencing? If you use software like Skype, it can be a real pain trying to organize your windows so that you can see both Skype and your actual work at the same time. With a second monitor, you can just put your Skype video on the other display and work freely without hassle.

Reason #4: Increased Leisure

There are some uses for a second monitor that are unrelated to work and productivity: leisure.

Some people like to leave their televisions on in the background while they do work because the ambient noise can surprisingly help with concentration. Similarly, users with a second monitor can play a DVD of a television series or a movie on the auxiliary screen while doing work or browsing the web on the main display.

On a related topic, playing music on the computer while working also seems to be popular. Dedicating some space on a secondary display for a media player can free up a lot of room in your primary work space.


The lifelong problem that we, as humans, will never overcome is the issue of unlimited desire with limited resources. Space is a valuable resource, and that’s no less true when we’re speaking about virtual desktop space. Having more monitors means having more space, and having more space means increased productivity and efficiency.

If you believe you are being hampered by a lack of screen space, a dual monitor setup could be exactly what you need.

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