My design plan seems too cheap. Is there something wrong with it?

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Aug 10th, 2009
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Ok, so I've been doing some pretty intensive research on replacing our aging PBX system (with 4 incoming POTS lines) with a new PBX system, considering hosted vs premise-based, VoIP vs PSTN, etc, etc, etc.

It seems that the design I have in mind for the system (which, as the IT administrator, I'll install myself) using Cisco products seems significantly cheaper than any other system I've found from a lot of different vendors.

So, could someone tell me if I'm doing something wrong (or, more importantly, forgetting something)?

Here's the plan.  We have an Ethernet network fully deployed throughout the shop.  We have 4 incoming analog lines for regular phone calls (a fifth line is dedicated to the fax).  My plan is to place one SPA9000 on the network as the central hub of the VoIP system.  Two SPA400 boxes will be added; one box will handle the 4 analog lines through PSTN, the other will handle voicemail duties.  Each station (depending on available of Ethernet ports) will get either a SPA941 or SPA942 phone.  For our intercom paging, I'll be putting in a Valcom V-9970 to one of the FXS ports of the SPA9000 and assigning an extension for paging the shop floor.  The other FXS port on the SPA9000 will be for music-on-hold (which I still need to figure out how to setup and use).

Did I miss anything?  With the above mentioned hardware (14 total phones), I've got a price of about $2500, which is much less than the $6000 most companies are charging and $1000 less than other brands of equipment.  (I didn't want to go with an Asterisk server because the stand-alone box seems easier and cheaper than a dedicated server PC).

Thanks in advance!

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Patrick Born Mon, 08/10/2009 - 14:04
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Hi saluce659,

Consider reviewing the Installation Guide, especially the pre-installation worksheet in the back-matter of the guide.

It's available at:

Consider deploying a newer LAN switch that supports QoS and PoE. The Installation Guide suggests tested devices.

Keep in mind that 14 users is close to the 16-phone limit of the system.

The SPA9x1 series phones do not support PoE, do not have a switch port, do not have a backlight, do not enjoy feature upgrades like the SPA9x2 phones, so be sure that you don't want/need the SPA9x2 functionality when purchasing SPA9x1.

I encourage you to use the SPA9000 Setup Wizard to configure the system, else you could be in for a character building experience. :-) Configuring by hand is somewhat complex.





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