Playing video games and being a day trader, you might think, make for strange bedfellows. One is all number-crunching and statistical analysis, following trends and making predictions based on strategies and observations, while the other is focused around relaxing, having fun and unwinding after a hard day. Not so, though; there are more similarities between the two than you might think If you’re going to game and trade, you’ll want a good monitor setup. Your monitors display all the action, whether that’s blasting away at invading demons or monitoring the rate of the Euro against the US dollar – as explained by this ForexTradingExpert review. With that in mind, your monitor setup should reflect how much you care about both of these disciplines.
Your day is one of the most important parts of your setup. Day trading already poses enough challenges as is; the last thing you want is for your technology to hold you back. While it's possible to trade from your iPhone or laptop, serious day trading generally requires a fast PC with multiple displays. Keep in mind, you don't need to build a $3000+ computer setup when you are first getting started.
You can work with what you have an upgrade over time. For example, you can upgrade components within your existing computer without buying a new one. Here are a few considerations: How to Build a Trading Computer Setup The first thing you need to focus on is your actual trading computer. This can be a PC tower or a laptop, whichever you prefer. PCs generally allow for more customization and upgrades, but laptops can have great specs as well. Hard Drives A computer's hard drive is where all of your data is stored.
Storage is relatively cheap nowadays, so you won't need to pay to upgrade your storage. That said, you should opt for a solid state drive (SSD) as they are much faster and more efficient.
For example, booting your computer with a SSD takes about 10 seconds whereas booting with a standard HDD (hard disk drive) takes about 30+ seconds. In terms of storage, most computers will come with 500GB, which should be more than enough. Minimum Recommended Specs: 500GB (Preferably SSD) Nate's Setup: 1TB SSD Hard Drive RAM (Random Access Memory) RAM (Random Access Memory) is the component of the computer that allows you to run multiple processes efficiently.
Whereas a hard-drive could be compared to "long-term memory," RAM could be compared to "short-term memory." The average trader will be running many processes at the same time, so RAM is very important. If you want to have your, chat rooms, and browser windows open, make sure to opt for higher RAM. RAM is measured in gigabytes, and built-in RAM will generally start at 4GB, but most traders should get at least 8GB of RAM (preferably 16GB).
Minimum Recommended Specs: 8GB RAM Nate's Setup: 32GB RAM Processors (CPU) Processors, also known as central processing units (CPU), serve as the brain of your computer. Your computer's CPU controls all of the processes you have running.
CPU is measured by it's speed in gigahertz (GHz), which will usually start at 1GHz and go up to 4GHz. You should also pay attention to the number of cores your CPU has, as that will affect how many processes can be run simultaneously. Minimum Recommended Specs: Quad-Core 2.8GHz (Intel i5 or i7 are leading options) Nate's Setup: Quad-Core 3.3GHz (Intel i7) Graphic Cards A powerful graphics card is essential for traders who plan on using multiple displays.
As you could probably guess, your graphics card is responsible for processing all videos, graphics, and anything you see on your screen.
More powerful graphics cards will display better graphics AND allow for higher resource usage (AKA using more screens). Look for a card with dedicated GPU of 2GB+. Think of the GPU as RAM for processing graphics. Minimum Recommended Specs: NVIDIA or AMD Graphics Card with 2GB+ Memory (4GB+ if you are using more than 2 monitors) Nate's Setup: 2 X NVIDIA GTX 980 4GB Graphics Cards A post shared by Investors Underground (@investorslive) on Feb 11, 2017 at 5:32pm PST Day Trading Computer Monitors Once you have your trading computer set up, you'll want to focus on your computer monitors (also referred to as "displays.") If you are just getting started, you can get monitors for a decent price on Amazon.
Make sure the monitor is compatible with your PC so you don't need to buy an adapter. How Many Monitors Do You Need? There is no golden answer to this question. Some traders are comfortable trading on one monitor while others prefer having 8+. Don't get additional monitors for the sake of it. Think about what you need the monitors for and continue to upgrade over time. For example, if you can fit 4 on each monitor and you like to watch 8 charts during trading hours, get 2 monitors.
If at one point you decide you want to watch 12 charts, you can always add a third. More monitors means more things to focus on, and that's not always a good thing. Looking for inspiration? Check out . What Resolution Should I Choose? (1080p vs.
2556x1440 vs. 4k) A monitor's resolution refers to how many pixels are displayed on the screen. Additional pixels add higher levels of clarity and allow you to fit more windows on a single screen. Resolution can often come down to preference. If you prefer your content to be zoomed in, you may choose 1080P, whereas if you prefer to fit more windows on a screen, you may prefer a 4K monitor. Choose a minimum of 1080P (1920x1080) when buying a monitor. If you have extra budget, you may consider exploring higher resolutions like 2556x1440 or 4K (3480x2160).
Minimum Recommended Specs: 1080P Nate's Setup: What Size Monitors Should I Choose? This question comes down to a) preference and b) desk real estate. What do you have room for and how do you want your setup to look? For example, you could get similar screen real estate by choosing either 3 27-inch screens or 2 32-inch screens. Don't overthink this one. Focus on what you have room for and how you want the setup to look.
Additional Considerations Mounting Monitors Chances are, if you are getting more than 2 or 3 external monitors, you will need to mount them. Mounting monitors can also save you a You have a few options: Desk Mounts - Desk mounts can be used to mount 1-3 monitors.
These mounts are clamped directly to your desk (which is helpful if you have a sit/stand desk). Wall Mounts - Wall mounts can be used to mount your monitors directly to the wall (Similar to TVs).
This is generally one of the least flexible options but may be suitable for a couple of monitors. Monitor Stands - Monitor stands are similar to desk mounts, except they sit on your desk instead of clamping to the side of it. You can usually mount up to 3 monitors on one stand.
How to Build a Mobile Trading Setup For most day traders, a simple mobile trading setup will do. Chances are, if you are away from your desktop, you won't be trading too actively.
A mobile phone or basic laptop will suffice in most situations. That said, if you travel frequently or just want to upgrade your mobile setup, here are some considerations.
Trading Laptops Your trading laptop is the most important part of your setup. It needs to be able to run smoothly and any mobile monitors you may have. Getting higher quality specs on a laptop can be more expensive than building a new desktop. If you already have a decent laptop, consider using that or upgrading certain components (vs.
buying a new laptop). Minimum Recommended Specs: • 128GB Hard Drive (Preferably SSD) • Intel i5 Processor (Dual-core minimum) • 4GB RAM (Preferably 8GB) • Powerful Graphics card with 2GB+ Memory Nate's Setup (): • 512GB Solid State Drive • Intel i7 Processor • 16GB RAM • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M Graphics Card w/4GB Memory on Apr 3, 2017 at 1:22pm PDT Mobile USB Monitors If you build a great day trading computer at home, it can be difficult to trade on the road when you are limited to your laptop and/or smartphone.
This is where USB monitors come in handy. USB monitors plug directly into your laptop and can be used as additional monitors when you are on the road. Nate's Setup: A post shared by Investors Underground (@investorslive) on Mar 5, 2016 at 12:14pm PST Mobile Monitor Stands If you are using one or more mobile monitors, it can be helpful to put them on a stand (as shown in the 2 pics above).
There are a few different options for mobile monitor mounting. Nate's Setup: Power Bank A power bank can be a lifesaver when you're trading on the go. These devices can charge your phone a few times over so you never have to worry about finding a place to plug in. Nate's Setup: Trading Computers Video Guide Share Your Setup How does your desktop or mobile setup look?
Any life-changing devices you'd recommend? Feel free to share in the comments below! 20 Comments • although it is a good idea to have a 1080p capable video card, for the relatively simple display demands of trading (vs.
gaming), a trader can utilize a much less powerful graphics card. As a matter of fact, an 8 year old graphics card will more than do the job. However, some of the newer graphics cards (which are still 3 or 4 years old) can handle up to 4 monitors each. Any of the quad core (8 thread) processors from Intel or AMD, should be more than enough power for today's traders' needs.
• I know having HUGE HDMI monitors is great, but if you are on a budget, go to GOODWILL and get a used VGA or two. I have four and paid no more than $25 for each. You will need VGA to HDMI adapters that costs about $7 at walmart.com I use 2 computers that are refurbished from Walmart and got the 4 monitor setup including the computers for around $450, not thousands. • A little critical to say one should not trade if they can’t afford a two thousand dollar computer as one needs to paper trade for sometime till they make consistent quality trades on good setups and to do one needs a computer and a couple monitors.
If one can’t afford it buy a cheaper used computer and put s couple goodwill monitors on it. This would get you through the studying and paper trading •
best monitor setup for day trading - How to Find the Best Computer Setup for Day Trading the Worlds Markets
I'm building a PC for primarily day-trading and some gaming (far cry, AC3, etc). I need to run from 4 to 6 monitors in an array. What kind of video card would be suitable. Also, I prefer the noise kept to a minimum when trading. Would a GTX 750 card be suitable here or do I need something professionally suited to trading? Thanks A they are just flat images aren't they? the eyefinity was first generation of the modern cards so a HD6850 eyefinity card is a possible. GT's are not high level they are the base nvidia cardsm gtx's are the higher level nvidia cards.
I don't see why a day trading solution should need gpu power enough to show windows but why need more? the eyefinity cards in particular are built for more than 3 displays, 6 in fact, which needs more clock generators in the video out section than is normally available, hence why most cards can do 2 at a time from a selection of 3 outputs (unless you use an active adaptor).
they never did any comparable, so you'd be looking at several cards, i'd be tempted to try 2x gt610 and a gaming card or similar and see what happens, if it doesn't work then you've lost very little as they are really cheap. Personally I run a GT220 and a GTX580 at the same time for different screens and have no issues at all. Is the eyefinity good enough to support a modern trading solution? I see many trading computer vendors using modern powerful graphic cards like the GT/GTX,, etc with a lot of memory on board.
The EyeInfinity Cards have a maximum resoultion of 2560X1600. Which means that for a 2X2 monitor array, each monitor would run at 1280X800. If your monitors are 20" or greater, you'd certainly want them to run at least at 1980X1080, as text at 1280X800 would be too grainy to read on 20"+ monitors.
The power raising desk is here and the office is almost complete (except for some major cable management). Details of where I bought it is below. Extremely happy with the set up, I find myself standing most of the day and using the stool and chair periodically. The chair by the way is the best chair ever!!! All the details in the picture are below (foot warming dog not included).
Here’s a breakdown of the tools, services and people I follow that have led to my success… Stock Newsletters/Chatrooms : Stock alerts. Day and Swing trades, Long term, and (Jason Bonds mentor and mastermind program that I joined in Dec 2015 and has helped me make over +300k in profits since joining, full write up .). Jason’s returns +243% +$242,570 so far in 2017 , +330% +$330,085.22 in 2016 and +155% +$145,187.80 in 2015.
He’s one of the best on Wall Street. or read my full review . Biotech Breakouts was created by Kyle Dennis, one of the best traders I’ve ever seen. Kyle started trading with 15k and turned it in to over 1.6 million in less than 3 years.
He is now teaching others how he did it. Kyle has a really laid back teaching style and is extremely knowledgeable when it comes to trading the biotech sector. I found that this was one niche I was missing and I’m already having great results with the nucleus program.
. This is a fairly new service but with a veteran stock trader names Keith Kern. You’d think I would have learned just about everything about trading after 4 years but Keith has taught me so much in a short time. He has created a very easy to follow trading style that has made a him a very nice living in the last 17 years.
I wrote more details about Keith . Brokers and Scanners I’m currently running Etrade Pro but have also used SureTrader. My set-up handles everything perfectly with hardly any slowing down. Here’s what I use on a daily basis to trade… : I switched to TD after using Etrade for a long time. I was mostly interested in lowering my commissions and trying out a new platform.
So far I like the think or swim platform, and plan on sticking around for a bit longer. Hard to borrow for shorting requires 100k account so thats a negative when compared to Etrade. : Used Etrade for several years overall happy with their service and platform. Executions and sometimes be a little slow but usually pretty good. The availability of shares to short stocks has greatly increased over the last year. : I started using SureTrader to reduce the amount of capital that is normally required to day trade.
They let you day trade with $500 and offer 6:1 margin. I did a full write up on it . I’m not currently using them anymore, only TD right now. There platform requires a to run on a Mac. At first I was worried about how it would work, but I’ve had zero issues with it. Crossover is an application that lets you run Windows based programs on your mac. You can try it free for 14 days . : I have found this is the fastest way to get news, with a live news feed and audio for fast breaking news. This is a must have for traders who want to get ahead of as many people as possible!
: Very similar to Benzinga Pro, fast news alerts and also live audio. Their platform is a little basic and sounds can be annoying, but its cheap and worth the price. An absolute must for day traders, trade idea’s scanners are the best in the business and used by just about every retail trader. Tons of very customizable scanners so you can be alerted of any setup, i.e. volume alerts, breakouts, pre-market, etc.
Started learning how to trade option sweeps with Keith Kern in the lightning alerts chatroom, its expensive but can pay off in just one trade. These type of trades take a lot of time to learn so I don’t recommend it for beginners. : Extremely useful and most advanced charting you can find. Ton’s of filters so you can find just about every chart condition or pattern possible.
They offer free basic charts and more advanced options are available. Computers and Equipment 27-inch iMac 4.0GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7 with Retina 5K display, Video Card 395X, 512GB Flash – Picked up a refurb from the Apple Store .
If you can’t find the model you want, subscribe to the Apple refurb tracker . Apple is always adding new models all the time. *iMac Stand from ZPlanFab (also using them on the Dells), sold here on . Absolutely love it and you can choose a customizable height. 27″ Dell Ultra HD 4k Monitor 27″ Dell Monitor (Pictured on the right) This is my older monitor that I’m still using. It’s a lower resolution but still works as extra space for charts till I upgrade it.
Power raising desk, SmartDesk 2 70×30 XL, Business Edition(this is a must, extra heavy duty for heavier equipment) also same place I bought the stool and chair. Great products for the price, cheapest power raising desk I could find. Speakers Upgraded to the speaker system. Unbelievably good sound, crisp and clear.
Perfect for those . Wall-Art Used an app called from the iTunes App Store. Lets you choose photos from your Instagram or from your library. Here’s a video I made showing my screen set up on TD Ameritrade’s Think or Swim Platform … Comment below with any questions!
Would love to hear from others on what they use. Thanks Adam. Actually I have very few problems. That’s why I got the specific Mac above with the upgraded video card so that I could be certain I wouldn’t run into any problems. So far any issues that come up are usually related to etrade pro and java. Besides that the Mac is a champ and I get no lagging between my monitors.
I originally tried that cable at first, but the most I could get my Dell to display was 1920×1080 and I could tell a difference when the monitors were side by side. As soon as I got the apple adapter it let me choose the 2560×1440 option so both screens matched. I wish the cheaper cable worked, but since I spent the extra money to get a 2560 capable monitor I wanted to utilize it. Are you able to get 2560×1440 on your end? I’ll be getting a new monitor soon and would love to avoid buying another apple adapter.
yup, full resolution 🙂 here is the breakdown: Built-in Display 15.4-inch (2880 x 1800) NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M 2048 MB DELL U2713HM Display 27-inch (2560 x 1440) NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M 2048 MB graphics and it works perfect too with my macbook Air, full resolution! I know some folks can’t get full resolution with that cable, probably cable defect?! Hi Kevin, I traded for a little over 6 months, and decided to take another 6 to study even more.
There is always new to learn. I am thinking of going from etrade to speedtrader. Do you know of a place or book or anything that can teach me how to use speedtrader efficiently? hot keys, chart set up etc.. ? Thanks Hey Ed, Excellent to hear you are taking the slower approach, it could really pay off for you in the future!
Patience and discipline has been something I was slow to learn but its one of the most important aspects to trading. I no longer have an active subscription to speedtrader so I can’t log in to the DAS trader platform anymore to do some videos.
I would say it was simpler overall to learn compared to Etrade so I think you will figure it out pretty quickly. The hot keys were intimidating at first to set up but its really easy, just start building a simple buy and sell and then you can build off of them to make more complicated rules for your keys. Good luck!! ok awesome thanks! I have a iMac 21.5-inch (1920 x 1080) wanting to add monitors and have heard that 4k monitors do not work with Etrade pro. Sorry for the stupid questions lol I’m three months with Jason Bond and finally need to upgrade my set up!
Any suggestions? Im still a newbie following your journey and learning from jason 8 hours a day. Great to hear Matt! I think it might depend on which iMac you have, is it the 5k model? Also might depend on the video card you have. Check some message boards on the web with you model specs and see if anyone else has been able to hook up 4k monitors. I have a 5k iMac with the upgraded video card, but I heard you can still hook it up on the base 5k model.
On my configuration 2 4k monitors is the max I believe. Etrade Pro looks amazing on the 5k. It’s definitely displaying in higher resolution so you should be fine there.
The Total Trading Office Transformation Part 1-of-2