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But they are critical for residential VoIP service. That’s why it’s important to understand VoIP adapters before you purchase one.
What’s the best way for you to do that? Why it’s to learn more about VoIP adapters!
Hopefully, that’s why you’re here as what follows is a hefty helping of information about VoIP adapters.
A VoIP adapter is a device that converts analog voice signals into digital IP packets for transport over an IP network. A VoIP adapter also converts digital IP packets in analog voice streams.
Standard VoIP adapters connect to analog telephones via an FXS port. The VoIP adapter then connects to your Local Area Network (LAN) via an Ethernet cable and an RJ45 port. Some VoIP adapters also feature an FXO port so you can connect to the PSTN.
FXS and FXO ports are important to know and not confuse.
An FXS port is an interface that connects station devices such as your phones or PBX to a VoIP adapter. An FXO port is an interface that connects your POTS line to a VoIP adapter.
The number of telephones, PBX systems or POTS lines you are looking to connect to a VoIP adapter determines how many of each port you will need.
VoIP adapters are rather simple.
A VoIP adapter works as a bridge between an IP network and an analog station device (desktop telephone) and or the PSTN. Depending on where the voice traffic originates from a VoIP adapter will convert voice traffic into the proper form for receipt by the destination network or device.
If the voice traffic is originating from an analog telephone or the PSTN a VoIP adapter will convert the analog voice signal into a digital signal. This digital signal is then compressed using a codec and broken into a series of packets that are transferred across the IP network using a signaling protocol.
If the voice traffic is originating from an IP network the VoIP adapter will decompress the digital packets into a digital signal that is then converted into an analog signal for receipt by the station device or sent across the PSTN.
If you’re only looking for a basic VoIP adapter for your home or business feel free to skim this next section. Protocols and codecs have a tendency to confuse people. Confused is the last thing you want to be.
Now that the public service announcement is out of the way let’s learn more about protocols and codecs!
Hopefully your head’s not spinning from the explanation of how a VoIP adapter works. Because it’s now time to talk about VoIP protocols and voice codecs.
Even if you’re not technical you still need a basic understanding of VoIP protocols and codecs. In order for your adapter to work properly it must use a protocol and codec that is compatible with your VoIP phone system and or VoIP service. The protocol and codec you use can also drastically increase or decrease the quality of your calls.
A VoIP protocol determines how your voice packet is transported across a network. A VoIP adapter will typically support a single protocol.
The most common VoIP protocols are:
A voice codec is responsible for the compression of your voice stream within a digital packet. It also determines sound quality and bandwidth required to send the packet. A VoIP adapter typically supports multiple voice codecs.
The most common voice codecs are:
Unless you’re the person responsible for the set-up, installation and maintenance of VoIP adapters for a VoIP service provider you don’t need to spend a ton of time worrying about protocols and codecs. Simply make sure your VoIP adapter supports the same protocols and codecs that your VoIP service and or VoIP phone system support.
Oh and if you are that person responsible for deploying thousands of VoIP adapters for a VoIP provider make sure you further your knowledge in the area of protocols and codecs.
There are three different types of VoIP adapters. They include:
Now you might be thinking, “What if I need to connect more then two telephones or POTS lines?”
For that you’ll need a VoIP gateway. VoIP gateways perform the same essential functions as a VoIP adapter but are built to scale (up to 48 ports).
VoIP adapters are simple and so too are their features:
These are merely the standard features found in the majority of VoIP adapters. Each VoIP adapter will have its own subtle differences. For more information on a specific VoIP adapter please refer to its full product description on VoIPSupply.com.
Well, that’s it for now. Hopefully you’ve found this information educational.
From here you should check out the other VoIP adapter resources that can be found below or give one of VoIP supply’s VoIP adapter experts a call at 800.398.8647 to ensure you get the right VoIP adapter for your situation.