When I got my first 49″ ultrawide monitor – it was a game changer.
From there it was only a matter of time before I took the next step and got a stacked ultrawide monitor set up.
Hesitant at first being a pretty large investment (and still debating whether 2 x 27″monitors were a better option) , but after doing my research – taking the plunge – I invested in the Samsung.
It arrived, and it was huge – it literally was too big.
My desk was too shallow (maybe less than 60cm x 120cm) that the monitor literally dwarfed the entire set up — I literally had to focus on one end of the screen – as it wrapped around the other side of my vision.
Eventually I ended up with a larger desk 160 x 80 (an Ikea special) that works perfectly – centre and dead on.
The next issue I faced was screen resolution, it wasn’t working all too well with my Mac M1 Mini – fortunately, I worked out the right combination of cables and a nice piece of software in SwitchResX.
Well worth checking out, if you ever run into issues there.
In fact, it worked so perfectly, I decided to stack it.
What is My Stacked Ultrawide Monitor Set Up?
I chose another Samsung monitor (the ) and for now the set-up is complete (for now).
The inspiration actually came from Joma Tech with his set up here:
The 49″ ultrawide curved monitor sits at the bottom and the 34″ curved monitor sits at the top.
Here’s something that I should have thought more about. The curvature is 1000R on both. So I wrongly thought that they would offer the same curve.
The top monitor has a much more pronounced curve – looking back at the details of what the 1000R actually means – where 1000 monitors put together would make a circle – this makes more sense.
I’d have carried out more research into the secondary monitor matching the 49″ monitor curvature – although I think I might have had a tough time with that.
Now, I just needed a desk mount that could actually handle that size of a monitor – I actually found it pretty tough to find a good reputable one that can both get the height I need (above the first monitor) and be robust enough to carry a 34″.
I landed on the VIVO Single Monitor Desk Mount
Stacked Ultrawide Setups
Classic gaming set up with the largest ultrawide monitor sat at the bottom – then a slightly smaller on top.
I don’t know if it is just me but having two ultra wides of the same size just looks odd to me. You can see an example of that below with 2 x 49″ monitors below – I much prefer the aesthetics of a slightly smaller one on top.
Why the laptop and ultra wide works particularly well is the practicality aspect it affords, you can take the laptop on the go – and then plug it into the ultra wide when you need to carry out a task that’s more ‘screen intensive’.
Adding backdrop lighting along the desk and even on the desk is a tip well worth employing, certainly makes it more inviting to work on during an evening.
You can see the contrast here when you don’t have that – it can come across as being quite dark. However, the cable management could do with some tidying too.
Getting the lighting to match your wallpaper is always a nice touch – plus the easy access storage to hide cables and leads is well worth thinking about.
A stacked curved display of 2 x 49″ monitors. It can get a bit information overload – so that’s why I opted for a slightly smaller one on top (that’s just a personal choice though).
What is quite distinct about the set up above of stacked ultrawide monitors is that they have not opted for any curve monitors and they both look to be quite flat panel.
I think this is an each to their own scenario. One of the things that irked me is that my 1600R 49inc monitor is a lot less curved than the 32inch 1600R – which made sense in hindsight but I would have liked them to have the same general curvature.
With flat monitors you obviously don’t really have this issue to contend with.
Benefits of Stacked Ultrawide Monitor Setups
The benefits are pretty much as you would expect.
There’s something about just having a tonne more screen real estate – there is less closing and minimising apps and more getting the work done.
There’s a number of studies that are a testament to that.
However, I think specifically on having two ultrawides – having the physical divide can be helpful for ‘reading instructions from one screen’ and then ‘implementing on the other’.
Especially the curved monitors, I think there is something that can be said – this is purely anecdotal – that it can draw you into the work and help keep yo focused.
Naturally, you need to be aware of eye strain as well but having dual ultra wides – can keep you focused on nothing but the task in hand.
Downside of Stacked Ultrawides
Now we have touched on some of the benefits, it’s well worth touching on the downsides as well:
There is always one major drawback of any set up that contains ultrawide monitors and that’s cost, it wasn’t the cheapest set up in the world to combine both these.
Well over $1500 on monitors spent, and that’s not including the ergonomic aspects such as the stand to actually sit it on, the cables to get them to be compatible, and so on.
Not only that monitor arms for 49″ monitors don’t tend to be on the cheap side either.
- Neck Action
My major concern with this set up was the top monitor.
Would I have to keep tilting my head upwards to actually see what’s going on? I think the answer is ‘yes’ but not to the extent that you would think it is discomforting.
The monitor is actually somewhat in my line of vision – the only reason I’d have to go further than that is to get to the very top of the monitor.
That is mainly due to me incorporating a slight tilt on the top monitor – it doesn’t look right actually when you look at the desk standing up – but makes a lot of sense once you’re star down and it’s facing down on you.
Plus, with an adjustable standing desk, I have the desk set a little bit lower than you would normally and the chair higher too – so pretty much everything is in line.
- You Need a Big Table
As I touched on above, I started off with a table that was way too small and have to invest in a pretty large table.
Even then though, you will find the monitors pretty much take up all the room.
So if you don’t have the space it might be difficult.
Is a Stacked Ultrawide Monitor Set Up Worth It?
Firstly, if you’re debating whether to get an ultrawide monitor – I can definitely advocate for that. The productivity ROI on your first ultrawide is definitely high.
Whether you want to go stacked is more debatable, it can depend on your type of work.
However, there is definitely a diminishing return to it I think.
Although it comes in use a lot of the time, I find myself filling the above monitor with distractions more than anything – filling it for the sake of filling it almost (usually with Notion) – and I feel that can actually lead to a bit of a distraction.
That said, when I am writing a report for a client – it really does come into play then – other times it is debatable.
Then throw in the overall cost – it becomes a bit more of a question.
Ultimately, I think it is fair – sure it costs more – but I think if I was honest with myself, I could always turn the top monitor off or use some sort of ‘focus’ app to keep myself in the zone.
How I Would Set It Up?
I have made a rooky error I think. My Samsung CRG9 is on a stand and the 34″ is on a desk mount.
Sounds on the surface, but really the big 49 incher is encroaching on way too much desk space – so I should be looking to either wall mount the sucker or get it on a specailised desk armmount – this would then help me create more space and I think a better overall aesthetic too.
Especially when wall-mounted.
Then I am planning to chase in the walls to help with overall cable management as well. So I think that’s something you ought to think about as well – what is actually the best way to stack ’em.
Are You Thinking About Getting a Stacked Ultrawide Monitor Set Up?
I’d love to hear your thoughts, on whether you think it is the right way to go – what are you hesitant about – what do you like about it.
How would you go about doing it? If you do complete, please send them across to me, I’d love to include them in this post within the inspiration section.
A gaming enthusiast who started their gaming venture all the way back on a Gameboy Advanced (Purple) on Pokemon Yellow.