VoIP Phones For Asterisk?

I’ve spent quite a while today searching for SIP phones and phones tested with Asterisk, but I’ve only found some partial lists, and very little user information with them. I’ve heard that the Grandstream BudgetTone 101 is cheap in both senses. We have a tight budget, but I don’t want a junk phone either. Is there a respository of reviews from folks here on phones? Can anyone recommend some phones less than $100 (cheaper the better) that work well with Asterisk and with users? Also, does anyone have a recommendation for a VoIP phone for a receptionist who will be transferring to a variety of extensions? Thanks!!

You will need to spend 200.00 per seat and close to 300.00 for the receptionist…there is also third party programs which allow receptionist functions like Flash Operator Panel asternic.org/ which is a flash GUI for Asterisk cal handling

Look here for some idea on IP Phone pricing


Thank you very much for the information, it’s very useful. So the flash panel is something the receptionist can use to really manage calls completely, but she’d still need a decent phone to handle the basics. For a programmer who almost would prefer to not have a phone at all, I could use one of the free SIP software programs and a headset for them to take calls, etc. Alternatively, could they use the Grandstream GXP2000 mentioned on the site? I see that’s substantially less than the other phones, and I assume you’re suggesting that it’s really not a very good one, or has a whole lot of functionality. Does all of this sound correct? Thanks!!

Good morning, schalliol.

I purchased a Grandstream BudgeTone 200, received it in the Fedex a couple of days ago, and in my opinion it is fine.

I have very limited experience with all fo the various types of IP phones, but I have been a consultant or contractor for 36 years and have worked at many, many different companies, and in my opinion the Grandstreams are at least as good, professional-looking, and “rugged” as most of the phones used by employees at most of those companies. As long as you don’t try to use the handset to crush walnuts or drive nails, you should be fine.

The Grandstream BudgetTone 200 is around $65 plus shipping at VoIP Supply (www.voipsupply.com) and delivery is fast. Why don’t you buy one and evaluate it? That’s what I have done, and I have no qualms about buying more for our business, or recommending them to our clients who are on a budget (if we should decide to get into the business of installing PBXs).

Grandstream also has one for the receptionist, with expansion modules to add more buttons, although I don’t know anything about it other than what’s on their website (www.grandstream.com).

I see a post once in a while complaining about Grandstream, but these are probably from the same folks who say thay if you don’t drive a Mercedez Benz then you’re SOL…

I bought a Grandstream BT200 for $58 (plus $18 for 3 day shipping) and it works perfect. I can make and receive calls, transfer, place calls on hold…what more do you want a phone to do.

You can spend $$$ on Cisco and other lines of phones and if you’ve got the cash to burn then go ahead…but Grandstream phones will do the job, they look nice and will save you some bucks.

Grandstream also makes a model that will work well for your receptionist. I don’t know the model number but it has 11 extensions. Check em out.


If you are getting low-end phones, I recommend the Grandstream BT200 over the BT1xx series, as I understand it this phone has a similar board to the GXP2000 and thus will have a better speakerphone (echo cancelled) and supports intercom/paging and will if configured to, correctly hang up the speaker phone after the call disconnects (BT1xx does not, you just get annoying busy signal).

Grandstream phones- there is nothing ‘wrong’ with them, they are great phones especially if you are on a budget. The early model BT1xx series looked like toys, but I believe the BT200 looks nicer. There are just one or two things you should be aware of…

  1. Build quality. They are decently well built, but they are not heavy or anything. Many users will say they feel ‘cheap’.
  2. config files- for a config file to be processed by a phone it must be converted by the grandstream config tool. It is common to generate the files from a database, this is more difficult with GS for this reason.
  3. As far as I know, there is no way to remote-reboot the GS phones. Other phones will respond to a SIP NOTIFY command (check-sync usually makes them re-grab the config files or reboot).

For alternatives, try SNOM or AAstra. Both take formatted config files that don’t need conversion when remote configuring via TFTP. Both are very solidly built, you can feel a real difference in the handset between them and GS.

Grandstream GXP2000 now has a sidecar for a receptionist. The GXP supports up to 2 sidecars, with 56 buttons each, plus 7 buttons on the phone for 119 softkeys. As I understand it, these keys just dial stuff and have BLF. Features have to be on the * side.
Snom 360 has 12 onboard keys, and can take up to one (I think) 42 key sidecar for 54 total keys. These keys can also access phone features like DND, conference, parking, etc…