Comparitive evals for medium sized office VOIP PBX

Discussion in 'VOIP' started by hal, Oct 27, 2004.

  1. hal

    hal Guest

    I am looking into VOIP systems for a 100 + user office with no branch
    offices and two T-1s to the PSTN. I am looking heavily at the Mitel
    3300, and am vaguely familiar with Cisco Call Manager. I will also be
    looking at Avaya and ShoreTel. Searches turn up tons of marketing
    hype but so far no comparison tests or evals from third parties. Some
    market share specs would be nice too. If anyone can point me to any
    good links it would be greatly appreciated.

    hal, Oct 27, 2004
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  2. hal

    Mitel Lurker Guest

    Hi Hal.

    You will no doubt be extremely pleased with the 3300. My employer
    certainly is and we so far have 5 of them on our nationwide enterprise
    network. Our initial interest was simply to perform IP trunking. We have
    since begun actual IP phone deployment.

    We are also self-maintained (Mitel Certified COAM customer) and so have
    been to I&M school on the 3300 as well as the SX-200_ICP, SX-2000 and
    OPS-Man. We have been a Mitel customer since 1986.

    The embedded voice mail package in the 3300 could be better, but it's
    adequate for most folks. We're merely spoiled by having had OCTEL systems
    for several years. The OCTEL Overture, by the way, integrates fully with
    the 3300.
    Mitel Lurker, Oct 28, 2004
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  3. hal

    Mitel Lurker Guest

    PC Magazine did a recent review. For the entire article go to the Mitel
    web site <> and right there on the home page click on
    the article banner "PC Magazine Speaks Out on VOIP"
    Mitel Lurker, Oct 28, 2004
  4. hal

    Dmitri Guest

    I'm just wondering why does it have to be VoIP if you do not have branch
    offices and do not use VoIP trunking...

    Anyways, you could also look at Avaya's IP Office in its TDM incarnation
    for all your inside telephony needs, and then equip it with the Voice
    Compression Module(s) to support any VoIP telecommuters you may have in
    the future. It is a great system, and it has some incredible features like
    64-party conference bridge, which you don't pay any extra for. The IPO
    Voice Mail (Pro version) is also extremely capable messaging system with
    pretty much any feature you can expect from a messaging system these days,
    with integrated messaging, IVR, text-to-speech, database interface, you
    name it.

    In my opinion, IP Office is definitely worth to look at.

    Dmitri Abaimov, RCDD
    Cabling Forum, color codes, pinouts and other useful resources for
    premises cabling users and pros
    Residential Cabling Guide

    Article posted with Newsgroup Archiv
    no-spam read and post WWW interface to your favorite newsgroup -
    comp.dcom.voice-over-ip - 923 messages and counting
    Dmitri, Oct 28, 2004
  5. Hello,

    WBR, Andrew
    Andrew Zhilenko, Oct 28, 2004
  6. hal

    Dmitri Guest

    I thought it's kinda funny that runs Google AdSense ads of
    their competitors on their website. It tells you right away that the
    system does not sell, and the guys are trying to make some money by
    selling ad space on the site. Could be the boss has no idea what the
    webmaster is up to... Who knows what's going on, but it feels like
    something's wrong.

    Dmitri Abaimov, RCDD
    Cabling Forum, color codes, pinouts and other useful resources for
    premises cabling users and pros
    Residential Cabling Guide

    Article posted with Newsgroup Archive
    no-spam read and post WWW interface to your favorite newsgroup -
    comp.dcom.voice-over-ip - 930 messages and counting!
    Dmitri, Oct 28, 2004
  7. hal

    Me Guest

    I support a Cisco call manager installation. I'll try to answer any
    questions you might have.
    Me, Oct 29, 2004
  8. hal

    hal Guest

    Thanks, but more than specific questions about CM, I need product
    trials and comparitive tests. Customer satisfaction surveys and
    market shares. Stuff like that. Any links to third party product
    evals greatly appreciated.

    hal, Oct 29, 2004
  9. hal

    Mitel Lurker Guest

    Before you consider CISCO you need to be aware that their Call Manager is
    a cluster of applications all running on Microsoft SQL Server on a Wintel
    platform (Windows/Intel PC-based). Furthermore, CISCO's voicemail package
    for the CM (UNITY) requires yet another Wintel server. Need redundancy or
    resiliancy/survivability? That'll take still another server.

    Being Microsoft server-based means the Call Manager is open to the same
    worms, viruses, Denial-Of-Service attacks, etc as all other Windows based
    PCs. For security Cisco recommends creating a separate Firewall.
    Translation: You'll probably need another Server.

    Need 9-1-1 support? Yes, another server.

    Run a "Corporate Load" on all of your networked PCs? BZZZZZTT!! The
    Windows O/S is a CISCO-proprietary custom load. This means you will not be
    able to apply the Microsoft "Critical patches" without getting those
    patches directly from CISCO.

    Accustomed to using a specific Server/PC hardware platform? BZZZZTT again!
    My understanding is the Cisco CM application won't load on anything but
    CISCO proprietary hardware.

    Need service on it all? After the 90-day (!) warranty you'll need a
    SmartNet ($$$) contract on every component.

    See the direction this is headed?
    Mitel Lurker, Oct 29, 2004
  10. Oh, that's nothing. We have some Canon printers with embedded Windows
    NT 4. Not that Canon -told- us they ran NT. They're all vulnerable to
    the usual spate of Windows vulnerabilties -- and Canon has informed our
    head of PC support that if we go into them and run Windows Update, that
    this will void our warranty.

    Just Say No to Embedded Windows, or any other Windows you can't lock
    down and patch.
    Karl A. Krueger, Oct 30, 2004
  11. hal

    Me Guest

    Yep, they do run on Windows. Yes you do have multiple servers. Yes, you do
    get updates from Cisco instead of Microsoft. Wrong, there are many different
    platforms you can install on.
    I'm not aware of any application or appliance that comes with free lifetime

    Do you sell Mitel??

    Our system has been up 100% outside of SLA for 3 years (since install).
    Having multiple servers allows you to take one or two servers down without
    impacting the users. I could see having a stand alone system doing
    everything, but what if that device fails. I have multiple layers of
    redundancy. If our option 11 freaks, everyone is affected. I can lose 3
    servers out of 5 before users are affected. As for virus's or bugs.. Cisco
    releases patches that affect its application one week after MS does. I don't
    know about you, but it's really nice have a vendor do the testing on patches
    before they are applied to my application. It really simplifies things for
    me. A fire wall in front of you voice apps?? Any semi competent network guy
    could put some basic access lists in.

    I'd consider all vendors. I doubt Cisco will be a good choice if you have
    less than 100 users. And that's pushing it. You could look at CCM Express.
    You can actually install a unity voicemail module in a Cisco router NM slot
    now. So depending on your router choice, you could have your pbx and
    voicemail system residing on you router. Hows that for consolidating
    I'm sure Mitel guy has something to say about that. He's always got
    something negative to say about anything not Mitel...

    I just offered to be helpful. Wasn't trying to sell you anything. I don't
    know of any direct comparisons. I know that Cisco is selling the shit of
    their VOIP products. Even the open source guys realize that Cisco phones and
    gateways are the way to go. Look at it this way. VOIP is IP. Cisco is the
    IP king. These traditional PBX manufactures are playing catch up in the VOIP
    Me, Nov 2, 2004
  12. hal

    Mitel Lurker Guest

    No I do not. I am an enduser. (COAM)

    We do happen to have a CM in our communications lab, there only for sake
    of comparison and tinkering. It was actually the first VOIP platform in
    the shop. We bought it out of curiosity. After playing with it for a
    couple years it seems like quite an expensive platform to ever consider
    deploying, comparatively speaking.

    380 multiline (14-line) stations (Superset 5220), 6 PRIs to the outside
    world and a pair of Mitel 3300s (resilient config) including embeded
    centralized voice mail is right at $180,000 installed & running. And not
    so much as even one single Microsoft O/S in the call processing path. The
    whole thing is managed by Mitel's OpsMan, which runs on Win2K server, but
    that piece could go away without ever losing a call. I doubt we'd even
    know it was down until someone tried to do a MAC. And even with the server
    down we could still do the MAC via the fairly intuitive GUI interface on
    the 3300.

    By the way, in case you weren't aware, Mitel O/S upgrades are free. All
    you pay for are new features, and then only if you want 'em. If you're not
    COAM and have to go to the street for maintenance (after your initial
    1-year warranty is up) there's plenty of hungry shops out there that'd
    fight for the chance to service it on a T&M basis while trying to woo you
    into a MA. Even on an MA, it is far less expensive than a Smartnet

    Finally, Mitel's '9-1-1' application is 100% self-contained within the
    3300 and can output an INTRADO-compliant datastream *without* a separate

    If you've ever had an old KEY System, you probably know what "Common
    Ringer" is. (Multiple incoming lines all ringing one common outside bell
    or yard whistle) Can the Call Manager do common ringer? Bet not.

    Before anyone buys any VOIP system I would strongly recommend they talk to
    their users, especially their Admins, and ask them what multiline and call
    appearance and call handling features **they** need. When you get that
    answer you will realize your available choices are almost anything but

    The 14-line Mitel Superset 5220 can be expanded to either 26, 62, or 110
    lines (or feature keys) and still have less than $800 invested in the

    Cisco makes some nice stuff, but they seem awfully proud of it! The poor
    customer has to pay and pay and pay.
    Mitel Lurker, Nov 3, 2004
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