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Author Topic: If I buy an Obi Business Phone, do I also need to buy the Obi VOIP Adapter?  (Read 13017 times)
blinx77
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« on: September 29, 2016, 06:45:20 pm »


Or does the phone include an adapter inside it?  If not, what does the phone do that a non-Obi branded phone couldn't?

Also, if I buy an Obi VOIP adapter and plug a phone into it, is there a way I can have a second phone also ring in a different part of the house that is not plugged into the adapter?
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N7AS
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« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2016, 07:06:44 pm »

With the OBi1022, OBi1032 or the OBi1062 the ata is built-in. The audio quality of these phones are alot better than an OBi1xx or OBi2xx device with an attached phone.

To answer your 2nd question, Yes. The easiest way is to use a multi handset cordless phone.

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Grant N7AS
Prescott Valley, AZ
blinx77
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« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2016, 02:17:20 pm »

Thanks!

I assume the other handset cordless phone doesn't need to be an Obi brand (it doesn't look to me like they even sell those).  If I can just buy anything, how do I sync that cordless phone to the ObiPhone (I would probably just get the OBi1022)?

Also, I don't have any VOIP provider set up yet.  I was assuming I would just go with Google Voice as they are the 800 pound gorilla in this arena, but if anyone would recommend another VOIP provider, please let me know. 
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N7AS
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« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2016, 03:15:35 pm »

If you purchase the OBi1022 or the other Obi IP phones, you can not attach a cordless phone to it. If you need to have phones in other areas of your home you could purchase additional OBBi IP phones. That would be expensive. A work-around would be to purchase an OBi200 and connect a multi handset cordless phone to it. You then can have all calls that come into the OBi1022 ring those cordless handsets.
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Grant N7AS
Prescott Valley, AZ
blinx77
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« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2016, 08:25:30 pm »


I think I am going with the 1022 because I want to make sure the sound quality is crystal clear.  This is the main reason I am even getting a landline at all -- I am sick of using cell phones and having poor sound quality.  I also want to use a wireless headphone (the $200 planatronics one, because I had that at my old job and loved it) and they work best with a corded phone.

All that being said, is there any work around where one could hook up an extra cordless phone via wifi or bluetooth?  Or any hope Obi might release a compatable additional handset in the future?
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2016, 08:34:11 pm »


I think I am going with the 1022 because I want to make sure the sound quality is crystal clear.  This is the main reason I am even getting a landline at all -- I am sick of using cell phones and having poor sound quality.  I also want to use a wireless headphone (the $200 planatronics one, because I had that at my old job and loved it) and they work best with a corded phone.

All that being said, is there any work around where one could hook up an extra cordless phone via wifi or bluetooth?  Or any hope Obi might release a compatable additional handset in the future?

Hi:  Grant (N7AS) answered your question about additional handsets.  No, you can't hook up an additional handset to an OBi IP phone.  It is a pure digital IP solution, with no analog (RJ-11) jack.  Nobody knows what Obihai's future plans may be, but it would be safe to assume that they won't be selling handsets.  There just isn't a significant market demand, that can't already be met by doing what Grant said:  if you need this, then also buy an OBi 200 ATA, and plug in a DECT 6.0 cordless phone system into the OBi 200's RJ-11 jack.

For example, I have two OBi IP phones, in different parts of the house, and I also use a DECT phone system for roaming around the property.

RE:  headset use:  buy the OBi 1032, not the 1022.  The 1032 supports business-class headsets (e.g. Plantronics or GN Netcom/Jabra) that connect via an RJ-9 headset jack vs. the cheap headsets that use a 25mm or 3.5mm round plug.  The 1032 can use an optional "Electronic Hook Switch" or EHS cable, which allows you to remotely answer a call by clicking a button on your wireless headset.  This solution is costly, but since you mentioned prioritizing audio quality, this is, by far, the best sound you'll get.  If you are shopping for a headset, look for one that supports EHS.
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blinx77
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« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2016, 09:42:54 pm »


Great, thanks very much.  I cancelled my order and switched to the 1032.  My two goals here are low ongoing operational costs (that's why I didn't just call Comcast and pay $25 a month) and top-notch sound quality.  I am often on big business conference calls and have basically been unable to work from home given poor cell reception when compounded with the strain of having 30 people on a dial-in, all with their own background noise and connectivity issues. 

The headset I'd like to get is the Plantronics CS540, which does support EHS.  Would you recommend the EHS over the handset lifter?  It looks like the handset lifter is basically $30 more while EHS would be $90 for the two different cables.  Would you consider it worth the $60 premium? 

I won't be working from home every day, maybe once a week, so I am thinking maybe I'll start with the handset lifter and see how that goes. 

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SteveInWA
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« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2016, 10:31:31 pm »


Great, thanks very much.  I cancelled my order and switched to the 1032.  My two goals here are low ongoing operational costs (that's why I didn't just call Comcast and pay $25 a month) and top-notch sound quality.  I am often on big business conference calls and have basically been unable to work from home given poor cell reception when compounded with the strain of having 30 people on a dial-in, all with their own background noise and connectivity issues. 

The headset I'd like to get is the Plantronics CS540, which does support EHS.  Would you recommend the EHS over the handset lifter?  It looks like the handset lifter is basically $30 more while EHS would be $90 for the two different cables.  Would you consider it worth the $60 premium? 

I won't be working from home every day, maybe once a week, so I am thinking maybe I'll start with the handset lifter and see how that goes. 



That's a good question.  I started using business-class GN Netcom headsets at work, in the 1990s.  We didn't have EHS nor handset lifters.  It wasn't an issue at the time, since our headsets were hardwired, and we were sitting at desks.  The remote-answer benefit really only matters for cordless headsets.  When I got one, I got a handset lifter.  I used it for years, and it was fine, although it was held onto the phone with double-stick tape that would eventually peel off.  The OBi IP phones have a speaker grille between the two wells that hold the handset's ear and mouthpieces.  The grille is raised up in a dome.  It might interfere with the handset lifter attachment; I don't know.  If you can buy the lifter and can return it if it doesn't fit (and then buy the EHS kit instead), that's what I'd suggest.

My go-to source for business headsets is http://www.hellodirect.com, an online retailer owned by Jabra/GN Netcom.  They also sell Plantronics and Polycom stuff.  They're not the cheapest retailer, but they have expert customer support and decades of experience.

This is the product I use with the OBi 1032:

http://www.hellodirect.com/hellodirect/Shop?DSP=30102&PCR=1:1:5:15:150:1040&IID=13577&itemskuid=13577

One advantage it has over the Plantronics model you mentioned, is that it supports wideband audio, as does the OBi 1032.  This is more of a future-proofing benefit, as most VoIP calls are still narrowband (determined by the telephone service proviers in use on each end of the call).
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blinx77
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« Reply #8 on: October 05, 2016, 07:04:58 pm »

Thanks very much, Steve.  I did end up ordering the 1032 and the headset recommended.

Did you ever have trouble getting the Jabra headset set up?  I can hear the dialtone on the headset, but when I went to do the sound configuration, it couldn't connect to the Jabra number.  I also tried calling with a manual configuration but the sound quality was terrible.
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #9 on: October 05, 2016, 08:28:11 pm »

I was a beta tester/early adopter of the 1032 phone, and initially, there were all sorts of problems related to EHS in particular, and also some issues with setting up the Jabra headset.  Make sure your OBi phone's firmware is updated to the very latest version 5.0.0 (Build: 3497.1311) and that you also run Jabra's software on your PC to update the Jabra headset to their latest firmware version.

I think I had to skip the Jabra automatic setup routine and set it up manually at one point.  I did it so many times during the beta phase, I can't recall how it finally ended up.  I'll take a look at it tomorrow and let you know.
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blinx77
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« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2016, 06:25:58 pm »


Thanks.  As an update, I think I have everything working now.  I couldn't get the automatic setup on the Jabra to work so I called them and they walked me through it manually, but as a result I don't think it configured the audio the way it does if you call in the number.  There is a bit of quality loss between the Obiphone and the headset.  My mom said that when I used just the phone itself sounded extremely crisp, "like the way phones sounded in the old days," so that is great.  When I had the headset on, it was fine, and we could both hear each other, but the call quality was just average. 

It's a little disappointing that there would be this difference, I had assumed that with a $200 headset this wouldn't be a problem.  I'm not sure if it's worth it for me to rock the boat as I am going to be logging lots of overtime for work in the next few weeks so I may as well just move on, but based on my experience I might choose a different headset. 
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2016, 05:39:06 am »

I apologize for the delay in posting.  Here's my setup.

OBi 1032, with Jabra PRO GN 9470 headset, with Jabra EHS cable and OBi EHS cable (two cables connect to each other with a RJ-45 butt connector).

The auto-configuration on the Jabra base doesn't work with the OBi phone.  Instead, I used the base's manual settings:  "Clear dial tone" = "A".  Mic gain = 7 or 8.  The mic gain will depend on the mic gain setting on the OBi (they are additive).

OBi headset settings are shown in the attached screenshot.  If you aren't using an EHS, then you would not enable that setting.  You must make these settings via the OBiTALK web portal vs. the local web page or on the phone's GUI, to avoid the settings being overwritten at next reboot of the phone.  The settings are on the "User Settings --> User Preferences" page, under Expert Configuration.

You must be using the latest available OBi IP phone firmware (build 5.0.0.3497 as of today), because earlier versions had headset bugs.  http://fw.obihai.com/OBiPhone-latest.fw?v=2


* OBi 1032 Headset Settings.png (42.16 KB, 594x362 - viewed 257 times.)
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blinx77
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Posts: 8


« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2016, 11:24:58 am »


Thank you again for your help, Steve.  I have confirmed I have the latest and greatest firmware for both the Obihai 1032 phone and the Jabra 9470 pro headset.  I updated the settings as you suggest, but the sound quality is still markedly inferior when I use the headset rather than the phone, to the point where it is bothering those I am calling.  The only difference I can gather between our setups is that I am not using EHS (and I don't have it enabled).  But I wouldn't think that would impact the call quality so much. 

I have my modem / router / laptop / monitor / docking station / phone / headset all within a few feet from each other, I wonder whether there is some sort interference that is causing the problem.  Or maybe a different headset would solve the problem.   
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blinx77
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« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2016, 11:26:59 am »

I should add that I don't think just volume is the problem.  When I lower the volume too much, I am hard to hear.  When I raise the volume, I can hear feedback from my own voice.  And there is constantly static regardless of volume. 

When I switch from the headset to the phone, everyone call tell instantly, the difference is that large. 
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2016, 02:49:50 pm »

Yeah, I also found that the microphone gain can go from not loud enough for the other party to hear you, to distorted with too much feedback in your ear.  There's a setting to reduce the level of your own voice in your earpiece:  "HeadsetSideTone", on the same page I posted above.  The default is 5.  You could try lowering it to, for example, 3, and then increase the HeadsetGain from 3 to 4 or 5, and see if that helps.

Aside from that, if you can return the headset, perhaps a Plantronics would work better.
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wpsb
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« Reply #15 on: February 20, 2017, 06:43:55 pm »

Question for both of you. I have a 1062 and also a separate 202 using the same GV. If I pick up on one and need to then transfer to the other whats the easiest way to do that?
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #16 on: February 20, 2017, 06:55:22 pm »

Google Voice has a feature to do that.  Press the star (*) key on the phone that answers the call, and in a couple of seconds, the other phone(s) on your account will ring.  Answer the call on the other phone, and hang up the first-answered phone.

You need to enable this feature in Google Voice Settings, if it's not already turned on.

From a laptop or desktop computer's web browser, go here:  https://www.google.com/voice/#callsettings

If it takes to you to the brand new Google Voice user interface, click the three-bar "hamburger" icon in the upper left corner, scroll down the left side, and click "Legacy" to get to the old settings page.

Add a check mark to the left of "Call options".
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wpsb
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« Reply #17 on: February 20, 2017, 07:07:07 pm »

Thank you - this is great. I enabled but it didn't work. To be clear, I called someone on my 1062, then hit * because I wanted to pick it up on the phone connected to my 202, but the phone connected to the 202 didn't ring.
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #18 on: February 20, 2017, 07:12:16 pm »

I didn't say that it works for outbound calls.  It only works for INbound calls.  You can transfer the call locally from one OBi to the other on an outbound or inbound call if you wish.  RTFM.

You've now spent what, 11 days posting here about various ways to get around paying for conference calling service.  Are you really that cheap that you can't afford to pay one cent per minute?

http://www.obitalk.com/forum/index.php?topic=12413.msg79022#msg79022
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SteveInWA
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Posts: 3953



« Reply #19 on: February 20, 2017, 07:19:01 pm »

Learn to use the functions of your OBi phone by reading through the user's guide:

http://www.obihai.com/docs/OBi1000-IP-Phones-User-Guide.pdf

Transferring and otherwise manipulating calls starts on Page 34.
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