Polycom, Aastra or Snom?


#1

Note: I posted this same question in the AAH forum, but it isn’t AAH specific and there are readers here to don’t use the AAH forum.

Question:

I’m looking for anyone who might be able to provide first hand data to help me narrow down on which of the following phones to purchase. I think I’ve narrowed my choice down to:

Polycom 501
Aastra 9133i
snom 360 (or maybe 320)

The following are my desired features in priority order. The first - sound and speaker phone quality, is by far the most important. Of these, I’m interested in any first hand knowledge to either rate these phones for these features, or just plane let me know if you have been able to do what I have listed.

  1. Best voice and speaker phone audio quality. (By far top priority)

  2. View MWI led of other mailboxes (these boxes would not be lines that this phone receives or makes calls on) and the phones attached to these lines may be other devices (sotphones, atas, etc.)

  3. View state of other lines from asterisk (via hint or other). So I can see if other line is busy or not. Ideally - this could be the same led as in (2) above - solid vs. blinking for example.

  4. Have some sort of ability to act as the receiving end of an intercom (auto answer or something). Should have this ability from another phone which is not the same - so through asterisk vs. phone to phone.

  5. view some/all parked calls and if possible program same button to pick up a parked call.

I am fine with doing some custom dialplan work and/or agi script to enable any of these scenarios. Just trying to determine which of my phone choices above can do these as well as how they compare (particularly in the voice quality) to make my decision.

thanks!


#2

I haven’t used the Astra phones yet but I’ve got a Snom 360 and 320 along with a Polycom 501 and 601. We did a demo for a client yesterday and they were floored at the noise reduction in the Polycom phones. The Snom phones would pick up all of the ambient noise in the room while you couldn’t hear anything except the caller if they were using the Polycom.

I’ll answer your email number by number:

  1. Polycom wins this category in my opinion but I haven’t used the Astra phones yet.

  2. Haven’t had to do this yet so I’m not sure if it is possible.

  3. Yes. Busy Lamp Field works great on the Snom and Polycom phones.

  4. I believe both phones will work as intercoms. I know the Polycom phones will because there’s a wiki entry about it. I’m sure I read that the Snoms will too.

  5. No idea, I still need to play with parking.

I hope that helps a little bit.

The one thing I like about the Snom 360 is that you don’t have to pay a huge amount of money to get the sidecar. The Polycom 601 is a great phone but $600+ for another 42 buttons is expensive.

Of course, from some of the pricing I’ve seen coming out of the traditional phone guys around town I guess $600 for 42 buttons isn’t bad when I can put in an Asterisk system for half of what they’re quoting.

Tom


#3

thanks for that great feedback - it is very helpful and the type of objective info I’m looking for (the side by side test)! Any others would be great from others.

p


#4

Tom,

I’ve been doing a lot of searching on some of these other features. It looks like there is a patch in the works (or just finishing) that will have parked calls subscribe to hints in asterisk, so there will likely be a way to see parked calls in a similar fashion to the buddies or led on the polycom. Since the polycom 501 has only 3 ‘line’ buttons with leds, it would be interesting to beable program one that would subscribe to the hints of all parking stations, and then when pressing it, go to the one that is parked or if more than one, prompt for the extension options where there are calls parked.

I haven’t come across how I might do the mwi or if it can be done on the Polycom.

Otherwise, still waiting for any feedback on the Aastra but for now it is sounding like the Polycom is the likely choice.

p


#5

p,

Interesting. I might have to take some time today and play with the parking to see what happens on the different phones. Thanks!

Tom


#6

Tom,

you’ll have to get the patch, unfortunately I don’t recall the number but if you search with parking and metermaid you should be able to pull it up.

p


#7

I use the Aastra 9133i phones. They can have up to 9 call appearances and 7 extensions programmed. They have LED’s for each button. The 1.3.1 firmware version allows for busy lamp capability using the Asterisk hint priority so you can monitor other extensions or parked calls (if you get the appropriate Asterisk patch loaded.) The voice quality and speaker phone is excellent (although I suspect Polycom will be a better standalone speaker phone just because that is their primary business.)

The Aastra will let you know if there are messages waiting on any of the lines you program on it and how many messages there are but I don’t know of a way in Asterisk to program a buttonn to show MWI for mailboxes that are not extensions on the phone.

The Aastra does the auto-answer for paging, etc. very nicely. It also has a headset jack built in.

The Aastra has two ethernet ports so that you can share your network connection with a PC.

For the money (about $160 USD) I think the Aastra 9133i is th best deal out there right now. This is a business class phone and I like it.

[quote=“p_lindheimer”]Note: I posted this same question in the AAH forum, but it isn’t AAH specific and there are readers here to don’t use the AAH forum.

Question:

I’m looking for anyone who might be able to provide first hand data to help me narrow down on which of the following phones to purchase. I think I’ve narrowed my choice down to:

Polycom 501
Aastra 9133i
snom 360 (or maybe 320)

The following are my desired features in priority order. The first - sound and speaker phone quality, is by far the most important. Of these, I’m interested in any first hand knowledge to either rate these phones for these features, or just plane let me know if you have been able to do what I have listed.

  1. Best voice and speaker phone audio quality. (By far top priority)

  2. View MWI led of other mailboxes (these boxes would not be lines that this phone receives or makes calls on) and the phones attached to these lines may be other devices (sotphones, atas, etc.)

  3. View state of other lines from asterisk (via hint or other). So I can see if other line is busy or not. Ideally - this could be the same led as in (2) above - solid vs. blinking for example.

  4. Have some sort of ability to act as the receiving end of an intercom (auto answer or something). Should have this ability from another phone which is not the same - so through asterisk vs. phone to phone.

  5. view some/all parked calls and if possible program same button to pick up a parked call.

I am fine with doing some custom dialplan work and/or agi script to enable any of these scenarios. Just trying to determine which of my phone choices above can do these as well as how they compare (particularly in the voice quality) to make my decision.

thanks![/quote]


#8

I have setup 26 snom phones in a factory for one month now.

Positive Side:
12 programable BLF keys compare to 3 BLF keys on Polycom501.
A lot of features.
A good looking analog clock
Good technical support.

Negative Side:
The sound quality during the call is fine, can’'t say excellent. The dial tone and key tone sound a bit awful.
All keys are all in black. some frequently used keys should have different colors and bigger like the Astra(Nortel Style) phones.

Some guys reported that Astra phones have echo problem. If astra did fix the problem in the recent production, Astra 9133i should be a good choice too.

If you have more budget, polycom 601 should be the best for you.

Check www.atacomm.com


#9

thanks for all the feedback.

for now I’ve decided to go with the Polycom 501. I hope to get some hands on evaluatoin for the other two but it seemed like the Polycom won out on voicequality from all I’ve seen here and elsewhere and 3 is adequate for my immediate need.

mine should be here Friday (from atacomm).

p