I have four 4k@60hz external displays, to which I’ve connected my 12th Gen DIY framework with the lid closed by way of its four USB-C expansion cards. One of these monitors is connected using an adapter - allowing me to also deliver power to the laptop.
While this drives the displays without issue, the battery behaves… erratically, with the OS (arch+KDE) constantly shifting between reporting the battery as charging or discharging. The reported battery level will randomly nose dive from high power to “your laptop is about to shut down” style messages from the OS.
Reducing the number of connected displays by one resolves the issue.
Is there hope for my dream of a non-mac that can drive four 4k@60Hz displays without an eGPU? Should I try throwing a 140W charger at it?
That’s a good question. If the adapter is the bottleneck, this would be an excellent way to find out. Unfortunately, I don’t have the equipment to try it out - these displays are a bit older and don’t support any sort of daisy chaining or USB-C PD.
I’ve downgraded to three monitors - plugging the power adapter directly into the laptop - and it consistently charges now, at least.
This makes me suspect the issue is, in fact, something with the laptop itself. I’ve opened a support ticket and crossed my fingers, but don’t have the EE background to know much more about what’s going on under the hood.