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How much does a wireless presentation system cost?

  • BenQ
  • 2020-10-08

There are a lot of choices for Wireless HDMI screen mirroring– so what is the difference between them?

If you have a meeting room with a projector or flat panel display for collaboration, chances are you are looking at a wireless presentation system to eliminate the health risks of sharing a cable, and to better enable social distancing. This article will explain the common questions about how much these systems cost – and what you get when you upgrade to the higher quality systems.  

Wireless HDMI systems under $500

These systems were designed for home applications to enable you to play HDMI content from farther away than a standard cable. There is a basic receiver that goes onto the TV, and a transmitter that attaches to your Blu-Ray player or computer, and the better ones can send HDCP content. These are effective in a home situation where you have your source on one side of the room – and your display on the other and don’t want the hassle of running a long cable.   

Drawbacks

For work environments, there are two drawbacks. The first is that many are designed for only one source – so if you have two presenters that want to switch back and forth – there is no easy way to do this in a meeting. The other big drawback is that there is no encryption on these – so someone with a receiver can “listen in” on your wireless presentation.

Wireless Presentation systems under $1000

The next step up is entry-level systems designed for meeting rooms. The most popular systems use a simple button to connect to the notebook to securely transmit the presentation to the display, while other systems use an app that is loaded on the system – and send it over your WiFi network. Both Barco and the BenQ InstaShow use buttons that encrypt the transmissions, while there are numerous brands such as AirTame and Kramer Via that depend on your network to handle the additional bandwidth (up to 25mps per user) and can require modifications to your network configuration

Drawbacks

The best systems focus on getting the basics right – easy to connect and in the case of BenQ InstaShow and the Barco products – rock-solid security. The WiFi systems are very dependent on your network, and the video quality can be lower (only 30 frames per second) on many systems. Make sure to check out the video performance and bandwidth specs before buying.  

Wireless Presentation Systems over $1000

According to Futuresource, these systems are the most popular for businesses and governments where they need easy-to-use systems, solid security, and additional features like split-screen and support for interactive displays. For example, the BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20 can support four different presenters on the screen at the same time, and enable a presenter on an interactive flat panel to annotate a document on the panel – and send the annotation to your notebook at the same time. The best systems all have security white papers for IT managers to ensure that the systems are protected from bad actors trying to listen in on confidential meetings. The other nice features these have is the ability to centrally manage the units over the network, changing the meeting room backgrounds to customize the screens with logo’s and update the messages visitors see when they come in – such as social distancing guidelines.

Drawbacks – some systems have annual subscriptions

Because these devices are connected to the network (or rely on it), some companies charge an annual subscription fee for every unit to keep the product up to date with the latest security patches. For example, Mersive charges up to 10% of the price of the unit every year, which can add up over time if you have lots of meeting rooms. BenQ provides free updates for their InstaShow products and is a solid alternative if you are looking for a quality subscription-free option.

Recommended Product

 

Fast, Easy & Worry-Free Wireless Presentation System BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

Bottom Line

If you are looking for an easy-to-use solution for a wireless presentation system, here are a couple of options to consider. 

Feature

BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

BenQ InstaShow
WDC-10

Feature

Easy to use - Connection options

BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

USB-C Button
HDMI Button
AirPlay
Miracast

BenQ InstaShow
WDC-10

USB-C Button
HDMI Button

Feature

Easy to set up

BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

Very Easy - no networking or apps required

BenQ InstaShow
WDC-10

Very Easy - no networking or apps required

Feature

How flexible are they to use with other devices

BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

Mac OS
iOS
Windows
Android
Chromebooks
Media Players
Linux Devices
Any HDMI Device

BenQ InstaShow
WDC-10

Mac OS
iOS
Windows
Android
Chromebooks
Media Players
Linux Devices
Any HDMI Device

Feature

Security - Encryption

BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

128-bit encryption

BenQ InstaShow
WDC-10

128-bit encryption

Feature

# of Presenters on the screen at once

BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

4

BenQ InstaShow
WDC-10

1

Feature

Interactive Screen Touch back support

BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

Yes

BenQ InstaShow
WDC-10

No

Feature

MSRP

BenQ InstaShow S WDC-20

$1499 with two buttons and holder

BenQ InstaShow
WDC-10

$999 with two buttons and holder

Note that if you are considering multiple purchases, BenQ offers discounts to schools and other organizations, as well as the ability for your company to try one in your conference room for free to see if you like it.