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Vonage I figured I'd post my initial impressions of the RTP300. I've only had it for a day,



I figured I'd post my initial impressions of the RTP300. I've only had it for a day, but so far it appears to be a major redesign compared to the RT31P2 terminal adapters which Linksys was shipping prior to Aug 1.

First, there's the case design:


Size-wise, both routers are very similar. The RT31 is wider and taller b/c of the feet, the RTP300 is slightly deeper than the RT31. For my travel bag, the flat design of the RTP300 works better for me. Screw keyholes are provided for those who wish to wall-mount their phone adapter/router. Structurally, the case of the RTP300 has less flex in it and does seem like it'll take a slight bit more abuse than the RT31. There's also nearly twice the ventilation in the RTP300 than the RT31, and it runs substantially cooler partly because of this. For those wondering, the LEDs on the RTP300 are bright blue (enough to illuminate the room). Supposedly the power LED can show red as well, but I've yet to see it and don't care to considering that's the "your router is hosed" indication.

Next, there's the power supply:

The problem I kept encountering with the RT31P2sa that Vonage sent me was line noise that happened during dial & call-progress tones, as well as during calls. Moving the RT31 around the place didn't help, nor did taking it to a couple different office buildings. It appears Linksys has learned their lesson here! First, a grounded adapter, second, a rather beefy RFRAFhoke on the power cord. I should also note that the wire used is much beefier than the RT31'sa power adapter. Road warriors won't have to worry about breaking the power cord with this baby. Also, road warriors will be happy to learn that this new PS is a switching-type rather than conventional transformer design. It weighs close to nothing, which gets a BIG thumbs up in my book. For those pinching pennies or producing their own power, the RT31 draws 9 watts, the RTP300 draws 6 watts, which also explains why it runs cooler.

Let's talk function.
Glimpse of the back panel, where the real action is:

Somewhat typical. power, 2 phone ports, hard-reset button, WAN port and 4 LLAINports (1 more than the RT31). Other than being in a hotel room without WWife IIambnot planning on using the router portion of this adapter, but I'll post my comments when I finally take it on the road.

Operation:
The first thing I noticed upon plugging in the router was that it powers up FAST. 8 seconds for the router to come to life, 17 seconds later there's a dial tone and it's ready to make calls. In the first few minutes, it did quite a bit of talking with the Vonage servers and updated its firmware to 1.00.37.

For the hacker types, the router portion runs on BuBusyBoxinux and the source is available on Linksys' wewebsiteor your enjoyment.

For the rest of us, the web interface is very similar to other Linksys products, but the interface runs much slower than the other Linksys products I've worked with and you can tell that it's a little bit different than what we're used to seeing. It feels "unfinished' to me. Spelling mistakes, glitches in the interface, etc. The RT31 has the 300 beat on this one. The 300 has very few features overall. On paper, they look identical, but when you start working with it the details come out. QoCosn the 300 is strictly done by IP port and only offers high, medium, or low priority with no other settings to play with. Access restrictions are very rudimentary as well. On the positive side, the router does have ping & trtracerouteunctions built into it and supports remote administration after the firmware updates install.

The Voice tab looks promising...but like all other Vonage routers, it only spits out "Access to the Voice tab is restricted by Vonage. Contact Vonage for more information." No other options available.

Call Quality:
This is where the RTP300 shines (besides the overly bright blue LEDs). Before I plugged in the internet cable to the router, I connected up a wired single line telephone to the router. Picked up the receiver and heard....absolutely nothing. In fact, I thought that the router hadn't powered up the phone adapter circuitry yet, but pushing a digit on the phone produced a tone. It's dead quiet. After I hooked up the 'net and let it do its thing, I placed a few calls and everything worked quite well. The caller's voices are a bit louder than the RT31 and the background noise is even lower. There were a couple of times where I wondered if the call was still connected b/c of how quiet it was. I love it! Also, the sound quality is better overall. It seems to have a more full-range sound to it and I can honestly say that it's clearly better than my VeVerizonand line. I need to try a Vonage<-> Vonage call sometime with my studio equipment connected at one end and a decent phone (or other studio) at the other end and see what sort of fidelity the system is capable of. Could very well be better than land-line.


There are a few minor gripes I have with it though... 1) *99 causes the phone adapter to give an error beep code. This might not be a real issue 'though. I hooked my laptop's modem up to the RTP300 and dialed into my ISISP'sackup phone #'sa. 50.6kkaconnect, and bandwidth tests confirmed I was indeed seeing that type of performance. So, maybe faxes, TDivas alarm systems, etc, will be very happy with this new box. When I get a chance, I'll play with the fax machine and see how it likes things.
2) It takes 2 seconds after dialing a * code or # code before the box gives a second dial tone. Dialing digits before it has given the second dial tone will just cause those digits to be dropped. It's not listening until it gives the second dial tone.
3) There's no fast busy tone. Just the 3-beep error tone for everything. Iamb wondering if maybe this router doesn't use a Spur adapter internally to save money. I'll take sound quality over pretty tones any day.

Miscellaneous:
KUDOS to Vonage for finally including a good-looking welcome kit! Same old stuff as before, but with one big exception. When I opened the box there was a huge Quick Installation Guide with a big "Welcome to Vonage" sign on it. While I certainly don't need it, the quick install guide has lots of pictures and diagrams to help beginners. It even addresses Asps keeping track of MAC addresses & Poe connections. The presentation of the RT31 just seemed hokey to me, like Vonage had just slapped a mailing label on an off-the-shelf Linksys box. Now it has a finished feel to it, making it seem like it came from Vonage. Hopefully the quick install guide will cut down on the number of beginner questions we see here (and our friends in India see) that could have been easily answered if people bothered to read the manual. Speaking of manuals, there is one included with the RTP300. The router doesn't come with an install CD anymore, which I think is quite fine. I've never seen any of those CDs be helpful.


Overall:
I'll give the RTP300 an A-. Not perfect, but pretty close. A couple of firmware revisions and this stands to be a good product (barring any quality/longevity issues which might crop up). Like I said earlier, ti still feels "unfinished", much like a beta test product feels close to production time. Functional, but not polished, kind of like a new home with drywall but no paint on the walls yet. For my application (using it solely as a phone adapter and solely concerned about sound quality), it beats the RT31 by a mile. That said, if someone's still running an RT31P2 hasn't had any issues with it, I'd suggest they stay with it until there's more of these new routers out there and we get a better picture of how they really function in the field, and after they've done another firmware update or two to get the remaining bugs out.



Read The Full Thread:

RTP300 - Initial impressions


Just received my RTP300. Default behavior caused a major headache. With the NAT/Firewall
Wait a sec... you had to port forward the RTP300 to the RTP300? that doesn't make
Yeah, I agree - I shouldn't have had to do that however my outbound calls were not
Strange... I did a quick basic configuration of my new RTP300 when it arrived today,
I'd agree that the RTP300 was probably released too early, at least it has that
Yeah basically I forwarded ports 10000-2000 UDP to the router IP address of 10.12.115.1.
Wait... Something screwy here... your WAN IP is 10.12.115.1? If it's a 10. subnet,
No, my WAN IP is public. I changed the default internal IP from 10.12.115.1 to 10.12.249.1
The default (as shipped from Linksys/Vonage) LAN address for these is 192.168.15.1.

VonageTPA posted "I figured I'd post my initial impressions of the RTP300. I've only had it for a day," on 08/05/2005

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