Completely New here

Hello. I currently work for a audio video company and my boss just recently put me on a project. I am to look into building a small Asterisk system and i just keep confusing myself. I know i can do it on a pc we are looking for a pc thats around 2ghz cause they’re fairly cheap (this is merely a hobby project to see the possibilities)But i am confused on the kinda card i need to hook my phone to my computer. I read the Oreilly book but got alittle confused cause they made a mention of multiple cards. I think i am suppose to find a NIC card but any specific kind i should find? and we want to be able to hook it up to just a regular phone. any help at all would be appreciated. Thank you

You CAN NOT hook a phone (analog device) to a NIC (Network Interface Card) directly. A NIC is supposed to plug into an RJ-45 port on a switch and/or router. What you want is a PCI card that has a built-in FXO port to connect to an existing PSTN line or an FXS port to connect a regular telephone device to it. OTOH, you can find a very inexpensive ATA device with a built-in of FXO/FXS ports, i.e. a Cisco SPA3102, to use with an asterisk PBX system.

Thank you that helps a lot for some reason i couldn’t find anything like that everything has been in reference to IP phones instead of analog

When I first started tinkering with Asterisk for home use, I went the cheap route and bought an X100P card which has 1 FXO port. I found it to be completely unreliable, particularly with callerid and hangup detection.

Next, I picked up a Linksys SPA-3102 which had horrible echo when connected to a PSTN line. No matter what settings I tried I could not reduce the echo to a manageable level. I now use it for SIP-only connections and it’s fine for that.

Finally, I bought a TDM410P PCI card with 1 FXO and 1 FXS port. This card, combined with the OSLEC open source echo canceler, has worked very well. Yes, it’s more money for a home setup but it was well worth it.

I also bought a Grandstream HT-286 recently just to tinker with. It allows you to hook up an analog telephone and it talks to asterisk via SIP. It was easy to set up and seems to work OK just from the little bit I’ve done with it.

I don’t own nor have ever used an HT-286 devicen; however, a search through Google will certainly reveal how troublesome this little HT-286 device is. I have used many Linksys PAP2v1 devices without any problems. This device has long been discontinued and been replaced with a new Cisco PAP2T device which I believe is a much better device.

Well ok this has helped me out with what an FXO is and what its for

I am trying to create a very basic system right now what i have is

1 Analog Telephone
1 Computer with CentOS with NIC card
and Asterisk

This is exactly all i have no other cards or device now my question is What else do i need to get a dial tone from my phone? or too hook my phone to my computer?? like listed please? i am slowly learning and making more sense

You can get dial tone to your analogue phone connecting to PSTN line
If you want to get dial tone from Asterisk - you need FXO card.
Or grandstream or some similar device.
You can read

You are right. I read a lot of postings too about people having problems. I was shooting for the absolutely lowest cost ATA that I could get for a very low budget project. The audio quality is OK and I think it will serve my purposes. Let’s put it this way, I’ve had a lot less trouble with my $28 HT-286 than I had with my $80 SPA-3102.