Monitors have many technical characteristics and when choosing a new device, it is very likely that this technology will go unnoticed in favor of other parameters such as size, resolution or whether or not it is compatible with HDR. However, as we are going to tell you below, PBP technology can be very interesting and above all very useful for some users, so let’s get to the heart of the matter to see if you are one of them.
What is PbP (Picture by Picture) technology
PbP stands for Picture by Picture, or translated into Spanish “frame by frame“. Its name is probably not very descriptive, but its meaning is that it allows you to use a single monitor with two different video sources and simultaneously. How? ‘Or’ What? Break the screen in half, in half. Obviously, all PbP compatible monitors must necessarily have multiple video inputs, and you should know that this is a fairly common option on ultra-wide monitors but not so much on normal wide screens.
So, in essence, this technology allows you to connect two different video sources (which can be, for example, two different PCs, a PC and a console, a PC and a smartphone, etc., but never the same PC) to the same monitor. and see both in split-screen mode, in the purest style of the “multiplayer” games of the consoles of yesteryear.
Generally, if a monitor is compatible with PbP technology, it will be configurable. This way, when you have two video sources connected to the same monitor, you can use the input selector button to switch between images or you can configure, in the monitor’s OSD menu, if you want to activate. PbP. Unlike PiP, it doesn’t have any possible configuration in terms of position or size, since PbP usually always consists of splitting the screen in half.
What do you need to make this work? And what about the audio?
For PbP to work you obviously need a compatible monitor, and as we mentioned earlier, most ultra-wide screens support it, but only a handful of high-end widescreen models. (16: 9) have this functionality. The second thing you need are two different video sources, because as we said before, you cannot connect the two video inputs of the same equipment (for example, using the HDMI and a DisplayPort of the graphics card of your PC) because the system will detect it as a.
What allows you to configure PBP mode in most cases is its aspect ratio. As we saw in the first image of this article, the image may be stunted because, for example, you compress a 16: 9 signal into a 4: 3 space, so with this option you can select what to want it to look for the best result.
As for audio, since PbP technology is only compatible with interfaces (essentially, HDMI and DisplayPort) that also carry audio, it is usually selectable in the monitor’s own OSD, and you will be able to select (If the monitor has speakers, from which video source you want the sound to be picked up. In any case, it is not possible to have sound from both sources simultaneously as with PiP.
What do you want to use this technology for?
As we mentioned at the start, it’s a technology that tends to go unnoticed but can actually be very useful for a lot of people, especially for those who have ultra-wide monitors since they have a width. additional. PbP technology can be used for many things, such as:
- View the mobile image on the screen while using the PC.
- Have two PCs connected to the same screen.
- Have a PC and a console on the same monitor at the same time.
- View a recording from a camera while using your PC.
The possibilities are really great because you can really hook up any video source you can think of, always taking into account the conditions that we listed in the previous section.