What Is Picture By Picture Monitor?

What Is Picture By Picture Monitor?

What Is a Picture-by-Picture (PbP) Monitor?

A Picture-by-Picture (PbP) monitor is a type of display that allows users to view content from multiple video sources on the same screen but divides the screen into multiple sections, each displaying content from a different source. Unlike Picture-in-Picture (PiP) where one source is displayed as a smaller overlay on the main picture, PbP gives each input source its own distinct portion of the screen, essentially turning a single monitor into a multi-display setup.

How Does PbP Work?

Picture-by-Picture functionality is supported by monitors that can accept multiple inputs and have the internal capability to process and display these inputs simultaneously. Here’s how it typically works:

  1. Multiple Inputs: To use PbP, the monitor needs to have several input ports (such as HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI, etc.). This allows it to receive signals from multiple devices at the same time.
  2. Screen Division: The screen can be divided into two or more sections, depending on the monitor's capabilities and settings. Each section displays the feed from a different input source.
  3. Configuration: Users can configure PbP settings through the monitor's on-screen display (OSD) menu. This includes choosing how the screen is divided (horizontally or vertically) and which input is displayed in which section of the screen.

Applications of PbP Monitors

PbP monitors are versatile and find applications in various environments:

  • Professional Environments: In fields like finance, where professionals may need to compare data from multiple computers, or in control rooms for monitoring multiple feeds simultaneously.
  • Software Development: Developers can use one section for coding and another for testing applications or viewing documentation.
  • Gaming and Streaming: Streamers can play a game on one side of the screen while monitoring streaming software or chat on the other side.
  • Research and Data Analysis: Researchers can view different data sets or research materials side by side for comparative analysis.

Advantages of PbP Monitors

  • Increased Productivity: By allowing multiple sources to be viewed side by side without the need for additional monitors, PbP can significantly boost productivity.
  • Space and Cost Efficiency: PbP reduces the physical space and expense required for a multi-monitor setup.
  • Simplified Workflow: Simplifies the workflow by reducing the need to switch back and forth between different input sources.

Considerations for PbP Monitors

  • Screen Resolution and Size: Larger and higher-resolution monitors offer a better experience, as each input section will have sufficient resolution and screen space to be useful.
  • Aspect Ratio and Scaling: Depending on how the screen is divided and the original aspect ratio of the input, some images may appear stretched or compressed.
  • Hardware Requirements: To effectively use PbP, your connected devices must support the resolutions and aspect ratios that match how the monitor divides the screen.


Picture-by-Picture technology greatly enhances the functionality of a monitor by allowing multiple video sources to be displayed simultaneously, each in its own dedicated section of the screen. This technology is especially useful for professionals who need to monitor or interact with multiple systems at once, providing a streamlined and efficient way to manage and compare different streams of information.

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