CSV-3104D with multiple computers & dual display

Updated 3 days ago in Docking Station
5 on 08-01-2021

Okay, so I’ve got a different setup and I’m having trouble pulling all the pieces together and getting it to work… Hoping for some helpful advice.

I’ve got two source computers that I want to hook up.  Two because one is my work laptop (I work from home), and the second is a Mac Mini that I use for personal & video editing. 

Issue #1:

I only recently got the Mac Mini (late 2012) and I haven’t been able to get the docking station to work with the displays.  I contacted support and installed the most recent version (or the version they provided me with) of the driver for Mac OS (running Catalina 10.x btw) and still nothing.  This is the same if I am running both monitors or just 1 monitor… no video output to the screens.  I have been using the dock with the windows laptop for years without issue so I know the dock works as it should.  Any advice or thoughts on how to get the mac mini (late 2012) to work with the CSV-3104D for dual monitors using the provided USB 3 cable?

 

I want a quick and easy solution to switch between sources.  In order to do so, I would need to make sure that all the peripherals are connected to the dock and not either computer.  My thought was that if I get a 2-1 USB 3 switch (NOT SPLITTER OR HUB) I should be able to quickly switch between the permanent USB 3 connection on the mac mini and the desktop USB 3 plug for my windows laptop.  The laptop needs to stay portable as I sometimes travel for work and am planning on hiding the mac mini under my desk to keep a clean look on the desk top (ironically my windows desktop is a disaster right now).  So this leads me to issue #2…

Issue #2:

Does anyone have experience using a USB switch between the computer and the dock?  I haven’t found one yet to test, although it would be something similar to this

https://www.amazon.ca/StarTech-com-USB221SS-Peripheral-Powered-Sharing/dp/B00DNULHHY

 

For reference, I’ve included a drawing of what I imagined the end result will look like if everything works.

Final thoughts:

I really want to get this to work so I’m open to pretty much any solution including changing the dock or even changing to a newer mac mini (I have a feeling that I won’t be able to get display output from the USB 3 ports on the late 2012 model).  Ideally, though I’d like to not spend more money than what I already have trying to get this to work buuuuut if the only solution is to upgrade what I have then c’est la vie.

 
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4 5 days ago

Hi Nersh,

Without going to much into detail, you might want to look into KVM switches. I have no idea what/which will work with the setup you desire hopefully you can find someone who does!

5 days ago

Thanks, I will check them out!

3 days ago

For anyone that might look at this in the future, this is the correct solution.

You still need a docking station if you are planning on using a laptop or any device that only has a single display output.  

Essentially you take the KVM 2×2 dual monitor KVM switch and run the mini dp, hdmi, and USB connection from the mac mini to the KVM switch.  The laptop is connected to the docking station via USB 3.0 and then from there the hdmi outputs (one is dvi to hdmi adapted) and a USB cable to the same KVM switch.

The peripherals need to be connected to the KVM switch and not the laptop dock, this (at least in my situation) also requires a USB hub.  Note; the KVM switch is a USB 2.0 so if you are planning on running external storage through this I wouldn’t recommend it.  I am planning external storage so the best solution I could come up with was to connect a USB 3.0 + SD hub directly to the Mac Mini as that is where I will need to connect the external storage to 99% of the time.  For the other 1% of the time I figured the modular piece of the setup (the lenovo laptop) which is not connected for external storage will be easily accessible so I would simply have to plug my external storage into the laptop rather than the USB 3.0 hub that I’ll have. 

 

For me this solution is as close to perfect as I can think of.  I should easily be able to get 1080p on both displays with both devices and easily be able to switch between them without needing manually reconnect all my peripherals.  

 

As a bonus, I also have a (now old) PS4 Pro kicking around and am debating using a HDMI switch so that if I really wanted to I could also use this setup to game on a single monitor while the other one is used for either computer, I could probably find a different KVM switch to give me a third input, but I figured this would be overkill and I don’t want any gaming experience to have a gap in the center where the dual monitors split, ie, one monitor is better for gaming.

3 days ago

Here is the new architecture image for reference.

3 days ago

Hi Nersh,

You made a whole studie about it! What was the grade? No just kidding, nice work there. Love it

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