KVM Switch - 4-Port Dual Monitor Model
KVM Switch - 4-Port Dual Monitor Model
Have you ever wanted a KVM switch that doesn’t suck, supports DisplayPort 1.2a (3840x2160@60hz) and USB3? AND has support for not one, but TWO high-resolution monitors!? Level1 has you covered!
Behold, The model B, from Level1!
This KVM switch will let you TWO monitors plus other USB peripherals like a keyboard and a mouse between up to four computers! With up to two monitors input per computer!
We are working with a vendor overseas to help us build and test these to be sure they work in “Enthusiast” scenarios. Most of the time KVM switches are meant to work with servers, and basic mice and keyboards. This KVM switch will work with USB 3 (5 gigabit) peripherals as well as USB 2.0 HID devices. It has also been tested to work with high-end RGB gaming keyboards like keyboards from Corsair, Cougar and more. It has been tested with keyboards that have built-in USB hubs as well as USB passthrough.
You can now switch both of your monitors in a dual monitor setup between up to four computers!
While we don’t recommend USB switching with mass storage devices (!!??), it is possible. It will also let you share peripherals like scanners and printers through USB (note: Maximum 1A power through USB connections).
Full DisplayPort switching capabilities:
- Up to TWO 3840x2160@60hz signals through TWO DisplayPort connections
- Lower resolutions + Higher framerates possible e.g. 144hz @ 1440p work just fine because of full DP 1.2a compatibility.
- Intelligent EDID Engine
- HDCP Passthrough Supported (maintains HDCP signal integrity)
- Intelligent USB HID passthrough (includes work-arounds for known problematic devices)
- 4x 3.5mm Audio
- 8x DisplayPort 1.2
- 4x USB 3 (5gps)
- 2x Displayport 1.2a connection
- 3x USB 2.0 Ports
- 1x USB 3 (5gbps) port
- 1x analog 3.5mm audio
- 1-2-3-4 Pushbuttons for switching Inputs
- 1x USB 2.0 HID port
- 1x USB 3.0 (5gbps) ports (up to 1A current)
Keyboard commands supported:
- Double-tap numlock to do a soft-reset on the USB hub (some USB peripherals do not like to be connected to a KVM!)
- Double-tap scroll lock followed by 1-4 to switch between inputs without using the buttons on the front of the KVM. Total keyboard control! That means you could mount the KVM behind the monitor, inside the desk, etc and still be able to switch inputs.
NOTE: No cables are included, but we are selling a separate 2 pack of 19 pin DisplayPort 1.2 (4k/60hz certified) + USB3 (5gbps) cables separately here.
NOTE2: we don’t recommend connecting to ASMedia USB controllers if you can help it, as they can be problematic coming out of sleep mode. Please report any issues with USB peripherals.
Note: Lessons learned from the first batch:
Almost all of the support issues with the KVM were down to dodgy DP cables. They must be DP cables that carry the ground but not voltage (19 pin). If in doubt order ours. They are generally pretty good, certainly worth the money, and only one or two dud DP cables out of more than 200 we’ve tested so far.
There is a known issue with 2013 mac pros. The DP signal coming out of those is not remotely compliant with DP standards. It is possible to inline some EDID-aware DP repeaters to solve that issue.
There are a couple laptops/docks that are similarly deficient but using shorter DP cables (< 2m) seemed to resolve that.
If you are going to push the full bandwidth (90+hz at 3440x1440, 4k 4:2:2 60hz, etc) be sure the DP cables are good and be sure that the total length of cable from graphics card to monitor is not more than about 4 meters.
Dell monitors, notoriously ones from 2015 and 2016, that feature a built in MST hub can be problematic. Suggest either setting DP1.1 mode from the menu, or disable the built-in dasy-chain MST hub, depending on the monitor, you will have one or the other option. This seems to be a firmware issue on dell monitors. There are otherwise several reports of MST working fine through other more recent DP hubs. Several people have tested Dual DP 5k monitors with the dual port model and reported success.
In general things went pretty well with the first batch. The KVM is not perfect, but it appears to be one of the best and least expensive ones you can get for the feature set it provides.
Final note: The USB 2 and USB 3 ports are wired differently. USB 2 ports try to understand hid devices so you can use hot keys. USB3 ports will be more permissive of “pass through” devices they don’t understand. We have a lot of reports of successful device pass through including USB audio dacs, usb drives, printers, scanners and things like Wacom tablets.
We have one report of a Jabra 920 in USB audio mode + IBM laptop that causes the IBM laptop to hang on boot. As far as I can tell this is because the laptop thinks there is a dangling mass storage device that needs to be initialized. This is a UEFI bug in that laptop as far as I can tell, but no easy way to work around it from my end. Unplugging the headset at boot works around the issue. No other unresolved reports of USB devices hanging machines on boot.