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Cisco Small Business Pro SPA3102 Voice Gateway with Router
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The SPA3102 supports one RJ-11 POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) FXS port to connect an existing analog phone or fax machine. The SPA3102 also supports one PSTN FXO port to connect to a Telco or PBX circuit. The SPA3102 includes 2 100BaseT RJ-45 Ethernet interfaces to connect to a home or office LAN, as well as an Ethernet connection to a broadband modem or router. The SPA3102 FXS and FXO lines can be independently configured via software controlled by the service provider or the end user. Installed by th
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We have a land-line/ADSL coming into the house, with the Internet cabled from the house router to my office at the bottom of the garden. I work from home. We had been using DECT between the house and garden office for the land-line, but wanted to migrate to VoIP primarily so that we could handle the doorbell using VoIP (so I can answer/ignore when no-one is in the house). The idea is that the doorbell can be answered by DECT phone in the house or office. I have an "always on" Linux server running in the office, which I use for an Asterisk PBX and I wanted the land-line to come into our VoIP system, so that a call to our known land-line rings our phones. I changed our DECT phones in the house to DECT/VoIP [didn't fancy an analogue converter to our old DECT system, because I wanted individual phones to be proper extensions for the PBX], and set up the SPA3102 to put calls into / out of the land line.
Here's what I found with the SPA3102:
Setting up the SPA3102 is reasonably quick via a web interface, when you follow the instructions, but you have to fiddle around with settings to get echo cancellation right and than means upgrading the firmware and investing some time with Google. I haven't had much time to do this, using a VoIP provider for most of my inbound and outbound, but the missus has (rightly enough) given me a lot of grief about the echo on the land-line. If you cancel it too aggressively you get loss of line quality. I haven't had time to find the sweet spot yet (still have wife and daughter grumbling) and have a rainy day task lined up to work at finding the right port impedance settings. It is supposed to be 370+620||310nF or 270+750||150nF in the UK according [...] but I need to experiment.
Assuming I finally get echo cancellation right (and I think I will), my last remaining grumble is that it doesn't immediately pick up the call... yet. It seems to have to go through one ring cycle to pick up the caller ID from the PSTN. That would be fair enough if our local PSTN had caller ID enabled. I'd like to be able to ignore this fruitless task and pass the call straight to Asterisk, but can see to way to do that. One lost ring cycle makes it much more of a scramble to answer the call. It looks like setting up PSTN Answer Delay appropriately is what's needed - I couldn't get 0 to work... I ought to experiment some more on that rainy day.
If you enjoy fiddling and have a sympathetic household, this is a great bit of kit. Don't expect plug'n'play, though. If you work from home, make sure you wait until you have a quiet period before you set this up.
An pain to get set up if you're using it to learn! ... I'm still working on it.
Great device though. Some attached telephones can play up with it (particularly BT phones!?!), and make sure you have good cables.
Check the info tab in the software, it will tell you almost everything. You can pick up a phone attached and dial "****" for its' built-in menu too.
I've set mine up with 3CX. Getting internal calls to work (dialling from softphone>attached telephone and back) was easy enough. I can dial out as well, with dialling rules set for numbers starting 9, then stripping that out before passing onto the 3CX. It's not meant to be supported to do both telephone incoming calls and trunk calls with 3CX, but it seems to be almost fine. The only thing I haven't figured out is incoming calls. It can ring the attached device - but not through 3CX yet.
I'm not recommending 3CX by the way - but I tried FreePBX and Asterisk and wasn't overly impressed. 3CX has much better default hold music too.
Still, it proves that it is capable of all these features. There's a lot of configuration too. I'm sure someone more experienced would be fine with it, and I'm very happy with what it does so far.
Generally, it does what you'd want and just works. However, we've had at least two occasions when people couldn't call in (line engaged signal when it wasn't in use) and when we checked, we found this box wasn't allowing outbound calls either. The cure, as it has no restart button on the web page, is to go pull the power cable out of it. Not very helpful if it's in a cupboard somewhere.
Bit more thought required, Cisco/Linksys.
My wife complained about the echo every time she used our DECT phone - said it sounded like dogs barking in the background - and no amount of tweaking could make it acceptable to either of us. This happened in passthrough mode (or whatever they call it) so there wasn't any latency or complication due to other equipment on my network, and also when sending it through my asterisk machine, with every variation of echo cancelling I could think of. Nothing worked.
Because I primarily bought it so I could answer landline calls on my home office voip desk phone, I tried unplugging the analogue handset and just using it as an external fxo. It was a little better without worrying about the fxs port, but after more days of tweaking the settings it was still impossible to hold a conversation due to echo.
To add insult to injury, I spent so long trying to fix it it that I left it too late to send it back for a refund. Should have spent the extra money and bought a proper internal fxo card in the first place.