Most manufacturers will tell you that you loose your warranty if you use a different power supply than the one provided by them. That said, you are likely to need a DC-DC converter for two reasons: (1) to step up the voltage from 12V to 16V and (2) to filter transients that are likely to happen in your main DC system.
I have two monitors connected in my boat via a VGA splitter. One (a 20" LCD screen
from DELL, with VGA and Composite Video inputs) is in the main cabin's bulkhead, right on top of the dining table. The monitor
is connected to the boat's computer (VGA) and to a DVD
player (composite). The computer system is setup with a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse. The monitor
is powered by a DC-DC converter (90W) I got this in e-bay for about $30 total (shipped to Seychelles), check this link
The other monitor is a sealed industrial type 15” touch screen
that works directly out of 12V. This is located in my cockpit
, right on top of the companionway
, and is used almost exclusively for navigation
(I run maxsea
in my computer). Initially it was connected straight to the boat's 12V system, but end up connecting it through an adjustable DC-DC converter with isolated input/output. The hydraulic autopilot
pump would generate a transient each time it started and that was getting to my nerves.
This setup has worked well. The kids
can watch movies even when I’m using the computer to navigate (with the DVD player). When the computer is not used for navigation
, they can play educational computer games or do homework. The wireless keyboard/mouse works great, since we just put them on the dining table even if the computer is in the nave station, and the 20” monitor on 1280 x 1024 resolution shows things big enough to read from the sitting position across the table.
Marco Garcia (S7SY)