Headless Ghost Fixes a Problem You Didn’t Know You Had

/ 2 years ago

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Don’t you just love it when someone fixes a problem that you didn’t even know you had, or at least most likely didn’t know about. A new Kickstarter campaign is set out to fix this problem with a very simple and cheap solution, the Headless Ghost display dummy.

The display-dummy plug simply emulates a high-resolution display so the system thinks that it is present, and thereby releasing the full potential of the hardware.

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By using the Headless Ghost and simulating the presence of an attached display, you can use all of the power and available resolutions locked away inside your graphics hardware, which might otherwise be disabled when there is no screen available.

Just plug the dummy into your system in an available HDMI port and it will simulate a 4K display. The dummy will also work with DisplayPort and DVI adapters.

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Many computer systems do not enable their GPU hardware when there isn’t any display attached; a well-documented issue amongst the Mac Mini and Intel HD graphics user bases.

Having a dummy plug like the Headless Ghost attached fully enables the GPU which allows for hardware-accelerated remote desktop access at high resolutions as well as fully utilizing the GPU hardware for GPGPU tasks such as crypto currency mining, rendering and simulations.

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The thing I like most about this new dummy-adapter, next to its function of course, is the fact that it is manufactured in the UK. This isn’t some pride or fear thing, but with most Kickstarter campaigns I run into the trouble with shipping, import taxes and fees that in return makes the final-price two to three times bigger. With me being located in the EU, this won’t be an issue this time.

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The Headless Ghost GPU dummy won’t cost you much to begin with as you can have one for just £10.00, that includes world-wide shipping. Early birds can get it for £8.00, but I doubt the £2 will make any difference for anyone who sees the benefit in this device.

There are multiple other pledges available where you get more units at discounted prices. The funding has almost reached its goal of £2.500 at the time of writing. Just £90 missing and there are 26 days to go.

I’ll do mine to help this project with my pledge as soon as I’m done writing this. This is just too cool a tool to not have.

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  • Supports resolutions from 800×600 all the way up to 4096×2160 (4K!)
  • Operating system and software agnostic – works with Windows, OSX, Linux and just about anything else
  • Requires no drivers, configuration or power supply – just set it and forget it
  • Manufactured on black PCBs, with a gold corrosion resistant finish, in the UK
  • Appears as a headless ghost display in the OS graphics properties window for easy identification amongst other displays
  • Programming port – exposed programming pins on the board allow for new EDID data to be easily downloaded into the Ghost’s memory
  • Open source – design files for the Headless Ghost will be available after the Kickstarter has ended

Reward Tiers

  • £1 – Thank you! Every pledge counts and your name will go on the supporters list on the website
  • £8 – Early bird special! 1x Headless Ghost, free shipping worldwide at a reduced cost for the first 20 backers!
  • £10 – 1x Headless Ghost, free shipping worldwide
  • £15 – 1x Headless Ghost with a custom display identifier, free shipping worldwide (limited 50)
  • £17 – 1x Headless Ghost with limited edition Kickstarter case, free shipping worldwide (limited 20)
  • £19 – 2x Headless Ghosts, free shipping worldwide
  • £48 – GPGPU pack – 5x Headless Ghosts. Great for rigs with multiple GPUs being used for high-performance computing, free shipping worldwide
  • £97 – Server farm pack – 10x Headless Ghosts. Great for taking care of lots of machines e.g. a rack of Mac Mini Servers, free shipping worldwide

After this initial run of the Headless Ghost, they will sell for £12 a unit plus shipping. Campaign backers will also have access to two special editions of the Headless Ghost. 50 will be made with custom display identifiers, so they will show up as whatever you like in the operating system and 20 Headless Ghosts will be made with a limited edition Kickstarter case.

Thanks to Kickstarter for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Kickstarter

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  • Dooner P. Jenkins