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Kramer VIA Connect Pro vs. BenQ InstaShow S

  • BenQ North America
  • 2019-11-25
BenQ InstaShow S Wireless HDMI Screen Mirroring

The BenQ InstaShow S and the Kramer VIA Connect Pro are both premium wireless HDMI screen mirroring systems designed for corporate and classroom collaboration. On the surface, they both look similar: high-resolution 4K output, the ability to display four presenters on a single display, and connectivity for major notebooks, tablets, and mobile phones – including Chromebook.

So what is the difference between the two systems, and what should you look for when making a decision?
Difference #1 – The BenQ InstaShow S does not rely on your network bandwidth to do the job

The BenQ Instashow S breaks the traditional paradigm of burdening the corporate network with accommodating the bandwidth requirements needed for wireless presentation systems. Each BenQ InstaShow receiver creates its own encrypted private wireless network that does the heavy lifting to deliver smooth 60fps video and lag-free presentations.

By contrast, Kramer relies on having your network free up enough bandwidth to make the system work. How much bandwidth? For full video streaming with a single presenter, this can take up 25mbs. If a gateway is used for a collaborative session where the current presenter is doing Web browsing while 50 connected clients, your network must have enough bandwidth for approximately 5 Mbps of bandwidth between the VIA gateway and each connected client. In this scenario, up to 255 Mbps of bandwidth is used between the VIA and connected clients simultaneously.

Difference #2– The BenQ InstaShow S is easy to connect – especially for visitors

We all spend enough time in meetings, and having complex technology that takes up everyone’s time to connect is annoying – and expensive. The InstaShow S offers multiple ways to connect in seconds compared to the more complicated multistep process of the Kramer VIA Connect Pro, which includes logging onto the correct networks, running a proprietary app, typing in IP addresses, and entering codes. Kramer does make a VIA Pad, that enables devices to connect to the receiver using Miracast, but this is an extra cost.

By contrast, the InstaShow is simple. Just plug in a button to your device, press the button, and start presenting. IT administrators – and your guests – will appreciate that there is no exposure to your network and no apps that need to run on your computer – perfect for visitors with “locked down” machines. Mobile users have multiple options and can either connect directly, with an iPad Pro or Android using a USB-C button, or AirPlay, Miracast, or the BenQ InstaShare app.

Difference #3 – Total Cost of Ownership

The Kramer VIA Connect Pro has a lower initial price than the InstaShow S, but when calculating the total cost of ownership for a wireless presentation system, IT managers need to consider the identifiable and recurring costs that are associated with each product. For example, the Kramer unit requires an SSL certificate for security, while the InstaShow does not. Based on the user manuals for each product, here is a comparison of what costs would be associated with each unit.

Estimated TCO Comparison Table

BenQ InstaShow S Kramer VIA Connect Pro
Estimated MSRP
BenQ InstaShow S
Kramer VIA Connect Pro
Obtaining and installing SSL security certificate
BenQ InstaShow S
Not needed
Kramer VIA Connect Pro
$149-$1499 per year
Plug-in Buttons
BenQ InstaShow S
Includes 2 buttons and holder
Kramer VIA Connect Pro

$130 for one VIA Pad button

$60 for button holder

Network Set up labor and configuration cost
BenQ InstaShow S
Not needed
Kramer VIA Connect Pro

Over 40 ports that need to be configured

Application Deployment and Training
BenQ InstaShow S
Not needed
Kramer VIA Connect Pro

Initial deployment and training 

App updates and maintenance

New employee app training

Bandwidth Impact
BenQ InstaShow S
Kramer VIA Connect Pro
Up to 25mps required per user
Central Management Software
BenQ InstaShow S
BenQ Device Manager (DMS) Software - unlimited free license
Kramer VIA Connect Pro
Kramer VSM - extra charge after 3 devices

Other Considerations

According to Futuresource , both BenQ and Kramer are market leaders in wireless presentation systems, with each company selling over 10K units in 2018. The InstaShow has a more flexible mounting system – enabling the receiver to be mounted on a pole or ceiling above the projector, while the Kramer is designed for only a wall or flat surfaces such as equipment rack or table.

The BenQ Devices Management Software (DMS). that can be used to manage the InstaShow receivers can also be used to manage nearly any modern projector via the LAN port, as well as BenQ Interactive Flat panels. There is no yearly licensing fee associated with the program, and IT managers can use this to add buttons or update the devices remotely during low traffic periods.

If you would like to try a BenQ InstaShow for your company or campus, let us know how you can have a unit at no cost for 30 days – to see if the InstaShow S is the right Kramer VIA alternative for you.