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My Experience in the Field With Various SIP PSTN Gateways: SIP PSTN Gateway Review

After spending several years supporting SMB PBX's I want to share some of my experience and observations with some SIP PSTN gateways. This is not scientific but just an "experience dump". Also this is not a comprehensive list, just ones that we came across in our consulting--there are more. If you differ please don't say I'm unfair--just comment with your input as this is community! I'd love to hear your experiences in the comments and I'll adjust if I've been to harsh or lenient. ;-) Also, they are in alphabetical order--to avoid favortism. (but hey! this is a blog so I can have an opinion. I'll list it at the end.) Here we go!

AudioCodes MP 124D (MP-11x)

This unit is probably the one most used in Lync Labs to test PSTN connectivity. Actually Drago Totev has written a very detailed HowTo integrate this unit to Lync Server 2010.
Official Site: http://www.audiocodes.com/products/mediapack-1xx


Indicators for each FXO port, power, fail, ready and uplink.


Even the lowly MP-11x series has a power supply inside the unit.

It is plastic (like most in this class) and you can hang it on the wall if needed.

Pros:
Audiocodes is very active in the Lync world
Nice web GUI
Offers the only fax over https device which is incredibly reliable
Cons:
We've experience trouble getting audio levels nice (just us?)

Grandstream GXW-4024 (GXW-410x)
This unit is the low cost king.
Official Site: Click Here

Note the RJ11 as well as 50 pin telco connector. Power has an external transformer. LAN port has indicators which are nice.

Once again the Gs gateway has an indicator for power, ready, LAN and one for each port. Nice.


Rackmount included if a bent peice of metal.



Pros:
Easy to use Web GUI
RJ11 ports as well as 25telco pin adapter
Indicator lights for each port
Cheap (if that is a pro ;-)

Cons:
Runs hot
external transformer
Needs rebooted "regularly" to address anomallies
Ports tend to die regularly (every several months)

Patton SmartNode 4900 (SN 411x)
Patton seems to use a similar firmware on all their pstn units which they seem to have fairly hardened.
Official Site: http://www.patton.com/products/pe_products.asp?category=364


All the indicators once again on the SN-411x. This unit is very plastic with no curves to take the edge off that fact. ;-) That is a serial console port there in the front that should not be used under normal conditions.


Patton SN-411x does not have an internal power supply and has a top port density of 8. (one shown has 4)



This unit screams "plastic" and doesn't even sport wall mounts although thankfully it has little rubber feet. ;-) This is one of those units that looks awlful BUT performs like a TANK! We never touch these units after they are installed.

Pros:
Units run like a tank day in and day out
Patton support will help you config and troubleshoot the units and they have very knowledgeable techs available
Dual power supply option for high density units

Cons:
Complicated web GUI (figure on using cmd line or config files)
High density PSTN devices do not have RJ11 ports, only 25pin telco
No indicator light per port

Sangoma A200 (variants)
This unit is being embedded in solutions found from other vendors such as snom, HP? (not announced but see this speculation) and likely other vendors and solutions.
Official Site: http://sangoma.com/products/hardware_products/analog_telephony/a200.html

Pros:
Sell a single PC with all ports inside the unit for a nice package

Cons:
because of form factor no LEDs for inidividual ports
Ports seems to "blow out" more easily than some other units?
May require a PC reboot reset "stuck/hung" ports

My pick? Our choices are always biased I'm sure but I like the Patton units. Rock solid day in and day out performance. Patton support has also been stellar.

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