Docking Station - Lenovo ThinkBook 14-IML

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
I have been instructed to acquire a docking station for my laptop. It's a Lenovo ThinkBook 14-IML, running on an Intel i7 processor with 16gb of RAM, and using a 64-bit OS.

It's been a long time since I've done procurement, and many of the docking stations now are USB-C, which I'm not familiar with at all. What would you recommend? The purpose is to enable me to run two external monitors for ease of handling the increased volume of data-entry and document preparation that fall to my lot now that I have become Stated Clerk of the RCUS.
 

Wretched Man

Puritan Board Freshman
If all you're looking to do is connect your laptop to two monitors, you can just get a USB C to HDMI adapter. Run it from your laptop (USB C end to laptop - HDMI end to monitor) to one of the monitors (monitor #1) and then run another HDMI from your laptop to the other (monitor #2). This will give you HDMI connection quality to both.

I actually just did this and purchased an adapter here for $10. A lot cheaper than a $150+ docking station - unless you need it for other purposes (connecting other devices or charging).
 

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
@py3ak - question - does your laptop have a USB-C port?
Yes, 2 in fact.

Thanks for the tip, Nathan; I may get one of those USB-C to HDMI cables. I'm inclined to like the convenience of a docking station for moving from a full workstation setup to just hauling my laptop around -- thanks for the link to the docking station, Gabriel! I wouldn't mind if it did charge my laptop.
 

Jake

Puritan Board Senior
For what it's worth, I'm a big fan of my USB-C hub. I have a work laptop and personal laptop (and work from home) and I'm able to just move one cable between the two to have my whole workstation ready to go and work at. It's quite nice. One is a Thinkpad running Linux and one is a Macbook. I also have used the same hub with a Microsoft Surface and my cell phone with USB-C as well.
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
What is the purpose of 2 monitors. Can you actually have the source on one monitor and the data entry on the second from the same PC?
Yes. I just use the 15 inch screen on my laptop as the secondary screen, my larger monitor for the primary view. Now Ruben has me thinking about a third screen. But I'm not sure my video card will support that.
 

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
What is the purpose of 2 monitors. Can you actually have the source on one monitor and the data entry on the second from the same PC?

Oh yes, and it makes a big difference. Edward's approach is one way to do it, but also having two monitors that are the same size and height cuts down on the amount of adjusting your eyes have to do in moving back and forth.

If you're transcribing from a scan, two monitors would be a huge improvement.
 

NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
Oh yes, and it makes a big difference. Edward's approach is one way to do it, but also having two monitors that are the same size and height cuts down on the amount of adjusting your eyes have to do in moving back and forth.

If you're transcribing from a scan, two monitors would be a huge improvement.
Yes. I just use the 15 inch screen on my laptop as the secondary screen, my larger monitor for the primary view. Now Ruben has me thinking about a third screen. But I'm not sure my video card will support that.
How? How do you for instance put Adobe reader on one screen and Word open in another? Normally I have both open, Word on top of the source on a large external screen.
 

VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
I have two screens. I've used three monitors and would go back to it if I had room. It speeds things up a lot.

For instance: laptop has Word document open that I'm working on. Another screen has BibleWorks (or whatever) open. A third one has a browser open (or a pdf book, etc.). You can copy from one screen to Word just by moving the mouse.

It is really useful if you are working with lists or outlines while drafting. No need to try to remember a particular reference while you jump from window to window on one screen. Just a glance over and there it is.

Just like spreading out books on your desk.
 

VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
How? How do you for instance put Adobe reader on one screen and Word open in another? Normally I have both open, Word on top of the source on a large external screen.
I guess I really didn't answer your question. Open Acrobat window. you might have to click the box in the upper right to make it smaller than maximum, but not minimized. Then just drag it to the other monitor. You can expand the view or maximize as you see fit.

Then open Word document and move it to whatever screen you want. Just drag them over.
 

NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
I guess I really didn't answer your question. Open Acrobat window. you might have to click the box in the upper right to make it smaller than maximum, but not minimized. Then just drag it to the other monitor. You can expand the view or maximize as you see fit.

Then open Word document and move it to whatever screen you want. Just drag them over.
Sorry, I don't understand the dragging bit. Does Windows know with two monitors there are two screen spaces? I don't have two to try it out and my laptop simply goes dark when the large screen is running. Not super critical since with one large screen I use it as said above.
 

VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
Sorry, I don't understand the dragging bit. Does Windows know with two monitors there are two screen spaces? I don't have two to try it out and my laptop simply goes dark when the large screen is running. Not super critical since with one large screen I use it as said above.
When you plug in the extra monitor, you might have to go to Settings, then Display. There you can choose under "Multiple Displays" click the "extend" option.

Then Windows will treat your two displays as one big display. If you have the windows not maximized and not minimized (Microsoft calls that "normal"), you can put your cursor at the top of the window and move it around on your display, regardless of how many monitors you have.
 

ZackF

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
Another trick that can be done is to turn a larger monitor (21"+) vertically. You can then put two feeds into one monitor effectively making it two.
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
Sorry, I don't understand the dragging bit.

After you plug your monitor into your laptop using the appropriate cable (HDMI if available, DVI or the old connection if not,) (I used a $100 24" 720 P TV for a while, if you use use HDMI, any modern flat screen TV should work)

1) right click on your laptop screen. with no program open
2) Click on "Display Settings" in the popup window
3) Scroll down to "Multiple Displays" Your laptop will be 1, monitor will be two, you can drag and drop depending on whether the monitor is right or left of your laptop screen.
4) Check "Extend these displays" (Mirroring will give you the same image on both screens, which has its usage, but not for what you want to do)
5) check the box for "Make this my main display."

Follow Vic's instructions above for moving whichever program you want larger to the bigger screen

When you turn off the exterior monitor, everything should move to your laptop, and when you turn it back on, it should remember how you wanted it to work. Although you'll have to slide whatever you want on the other screen back over.

Hint, the screens likely won't line up exactly, so if you slide something from one to the other, you might get caught by the edge of the screen and get blocked. Wiggle the mouse up or down while holding your dragged image, and you should be able to get around that issue. Don't flinch if you can't go from the top of one screen to the top of the other directly, just swoop your image across.

Cut on one screen, paste to the program open on the other.
 
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