The only reason I’m looking at the Polycom (aside from price, the Polycom is slightly cheaper) is with the Polycom, I dont have to buy an expensive PoE injector for my network.
My question is, how do the phones compare? I hear the Polycom phones have excellent sound quality. I would appreciate your opinions.
I haven’t used polycoms (i stay away from them due to their broken firmware policy) but i can comment on the aastra.
The aastra 9133i’s i’ve gotten in the usa have a power brick included. PoE works too but the ones i’ve gotten also have the brick.
AAstra’s are awesome. build quality rocks, it is very solid, good business quality product. You could throw it at a wall and it would be fine. Configuration is very easy too. Config files (on tftp/http/https server including password protection for http/https) are just text files with easy params in them, ie
sip line1 proxy ip: 22.214.171.124
so you can generate them out of a database if you want, and if you make them manually it is much simpler than polycom XML. If you want to encrypt the files you can using symmetric encryption. AAstra supplies a command line tool that lets you generate keys and create encrypted files.
audio quality is excellent, speakerphone is (IIRC) full duplex, either way I can turn it on and walk around the room and i still sound great on the other end. Supports distinctive ring and intercom by sip header. Documentation is excellent and freely available, as is firmware, which is for the most part bug-free and new releases are worth the few month wait. (in contrast, polycom only makes recent firmware and admin guides available for polycom ‘certified resellers’ and you have to jump through some hoops to become one.
The only downside to the AAstra is that they cannot accept custom ring tones, at all. You are stuck with the 5 or 6 ‘warble’ tones that come with it.
OTOH the main polycom quirk I know about- once the phone boots, it takes ANOTHER minute or so for the web interface to come up.
Hope that helps.