What hardware should i use (SPA ATA or Digium card)

I have a project of setting up asterisk for 4 initial analog lines that will be expanded to 16 lines within 1 year to be used by 30 operator.

in summary, i have a teleco company providing me with 4…16 lines.
Budget is very tight, so i need to make the most cost effective decision.
with budget in mind, i thought i’ll go with spa 8000 ( http://www.voiplink.com/Linksys_SPA_8000_p/linksys-spa-8000.htm ) X 4 (2 for backup just in case of failure)
and use separate switch to connect these to a debian box running asterisk with sip support.

Another scenario is to use a digium card. but it’s expensive. a 4 port card costs around 700$ (16 fxs port costs 1512 $ without shipping according to store.digium.com/boards/#search/1TDM880EF ) naturally i’ll be saving cost of switch and i’ll gain hardware integration within the sytem.

The cost of digium + server, is cutting it close in compared to acquiring a commercial pbx which does the same thing but has full commercial support for N years and hardware warranty

Any thoughts about this ? i’m worried about the robustness of the spa hardware/solution. (this is a mission critical solution, and a 99.9% up time is to be expected)

spa8000 provides multiple fxs ports to plug pot (plain old phones), you need fxo ports to plug your pstn lines. spa3102 gives you one each.

When it comes to a dilemma between a card and a gateway, I always choose a gateway. The only guidance I would give you is that you choose a good quality one and not a low-cost one. In the end you are setting up a phone system that needs to be reliable. Cheap hardware does not have any place in such an application.