Share monitor, keyboard & mouse between up to 4 beige Macs, cables included.
MacMall Part #: 974284
Manufacturer Part #: 1104-MSA4
Dr. Bott has taken the simplicity and ease of use of the original MoniSwitch KVM and updated it for the next millennium. Still a manual switching device, MoniSwitch/ADB is economical, easy to install, and great looking. And of course we have addressed those few shortcomings that did exist in the original model, too!
Configurations: MoniSwitch/ADB is available in two standard configurations, MoniSwitch2/ADB and MoniSwitch4/ADB. Both configurations switch video and ADB ports simultaneously. MoniSwitch2/ADB allows sharing of one monitor, ADB mouse and keyboard between two computers, MoniSwitch4/ADB will do the same for up to 4 computers.
Video Connections: MoniSwitch/ADB features standard video connectors to support either Mac standard DB15 monitors or HD15 (VGA) PC standard multisync monitors - both connectors are provided on the MoniSwitch. The MoniSwitch does not limit the possible resolutions of a connected monitor in any way.
The super premium video cables included in the standard MoniSwitch/ADB configuration allow direct connection to DB15 (Apple) standard video ports that are used on most older Macs including Apple's beige Power Mac G3s and most older models and 3rd party graphics cards. Configurations that include one or more HD15 (VGA) video cables are available to accomodate b/w G3 Power Macs, some Clones (e.g. Motorola StarMax) or video cards with the PC-style VGA connector.
ADB Connectors: ADB mice and keyboards are connected directly to the ADB I/O port built-in to the MoniSwitch. MoniSwitch/ADB also includes ADB cables to connect to the ADB port built-in to the computer.
Cabling: MoniSwitch/ADB comes with all necessary video and ADB cables (2 m, ca. 6 feet long). We have taken special care to choose the highest quality video cable available. This has a very special reason - image quality. Our cables do not degrade image quality in any way nor do they show characteristic shadows in the video image often seen with other cables. These cables are virtually lossless at the frequencies involved and will not further degrade visible image quality beyond what happens in the original cable.
The ADB connections also are of excellent quality. We have taken special care to ensure that a common phenomenon, the "hang" of the keyboard and the associated "freeze" of the mouse (both well-known from manually unplugging the ADB chain and transferring it to the next Mac with both Macs switched on) will not occur when using MoniSwitch/ADB. Disclaimer: Do NOT try to unplug and replug ADB devices while your Mac is switched on. You may seriously damage your Mac up to the point that it requires a motherboard replacement. Using MoniSwitch/ADB, however, such "live" switching will not damage your computer in any way and is in fact standard procedure that thousands of MoniSwitch users have come to rely upon since the original MoniSwitch first shipped in late 1995.
Typical Uses: Usually MoniSwitch/ADB will get used in some kind of server room or server corner. Often such a setup makes use of several older Macs to distribute such tasks as receiving faxes, serving databases, file or domain names, waiting for incoming files via modem or ISDN connections and performing print serving tasks on several distinct Macs to distribute the load and enhance performance. By nature of these tasks each Mac will rarely be looked at for longer than a few minutes a day. MoniSwitch/ADB reduces the risk of confusion and error that increases when using multiple keyboards, mice and monitors. Obviously, MoniSwitch/ADB will save space and will allow redeployment of existing equipment or will save the cost of new equipment in such environments.
Compatibility: MoniSwitch/ADB is compatible with all Macintosh computers and their clones with an ADB port (including older and newer blue-and-white G3 models) and without a private, built-in keyboard or mouse. PowerBooks, including Duo models, typically have a private built-in keyboard and trackball/trackpad. With these portable Macs and other, similar configurations MoniSwitch/ADB can only be used for video switching. For WallStreet PowerBook G3 models you might want to check out MoniSwitchUSB in combination with a USB CardBus card, older PowerBooks. Some have had success with putting their PowerBook to sleep (by closing the lid or from the special menu) before switching to prevent this problem.
PCs, Macs & MoniSwitch: While less common than pure Mac configurations, there is a strong argument for using MoniSwitch to share a monitor between Mac and PC. The most common scenario is one Mac and one PC using MoniSwitch2/ADB. With MoniSwitch4/ADB all sensible combinations of Macs & PCs are feasible, too. Having the choice of video cables for either VGA or Apple connectors makes integration a snap.
USB-capable PCs go one step further: With an ADB-USB adapter such PCs work easily into the MoniSwitch solution with the special bonus of being able to use your proven ADB-keyboard and mouse from the Mac on the PC. Plus, in cramped or single user environments the resulting space saving factors in quite nicely, too.
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