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  • Ham shack hotline

    Posted by N0pdg on 2024-01-31 at 21:34

    Does anybody know what’s the best ham shack hot line phone to get, any purchase site recommendations. Thanks

    Looks like most do not have a power supply. What does POE (Power over Ethernet) mean? How do I know if I have POE?

    k9fh replied 1 week, 4 days ago 5 Members · 6 Replies
  • 6 Replies
  • Jim

    2024-01-31 at 21:41
    25W posting rank

    First let me say that I am not familiar with the people or the process behind the link I am about to post (https://hamshackhotline.com/) I found them online. This is what they say on their site:

    Hamshack Hotline, herein after referred to as “HH”, exists to provide in-network voip communications services to Amateur Radio Operators, the greater Ham community. In-network services are defined as services provided within the HH network and not to mean outbound and inbound termination services to destinations outside the HH network. HH makes no promises of availability, or uninterrupted carriage of communications, or availability of emergency services (ie. 911, etc). Conditions which could affect HH availability could be the result of disaster, denial of service attack, other cyber threats, or maintenance windows as needed. HH will not be held liable for any failure to provide communications carriage at any time or for any reason. By using, or continuing to use HH, you understand and agree to all terms herein. For real emergencies, please use traditional telecom services in the event of imminent danger to life and property. HH will always make the best possible effort to achieve high availability and quality standards, and we will always try to provide advance notice of any planned downtime due to maintenance requirements.

    From what I gather, they are a rather ham-dedicated VOIP service. I am personally not sure of the added-value/benefit of using it nor whether there are others like it.

    If anyone knows more about them chime in.

    As for POE, ChatGPT, Power over Ethernet (PoE) is a technology that enables electrical power to be transmitted over standard Ethernet cables along with data. This allows devices like IP cameras, VoIP phones, and Wi-Fi access points to receive power and data through the same cable, simplifying installation and reducing the need for separate power sources.

    To determine if you have PoE, you can check the specifications of your network equipment, such as switches and routers. If they support PoE, it will typically be indicated in their documentation or on the device itself. Additionally, PoE-enabled devices will often have a symbol or marking indicating PoE support. You can also use a PoE tester, a device that can detect the presence of PoE on a network cable.

    In short, @N0pdg you have PoE if your equipment (routers, etc.) are PoE equipped.

    Not sure I’ve helped much.


  • WZ4K

    2024-03-15 at 00:40
    Newbie posting rank

    PoE – Power over Ethernet. The PoE device is powered directly from the ethernet cable without a separate power supply. You can typically use a wall wart power supply in lieu of PoE – just need to ensure the PS has sufficient capacity for the specific phone (load). Check the specs on the model you choose. PoE is very convenient if your switch or router supports it. There is also an option to use a PoE “power injector”. A power injector is inserted in-line with the ethernet cable to the load(phone) and, as its name implies, ‘injects the prescribed power – voltage – required by the load. Must be careful to select a compatible injector. Some phones are 48V, for example, other phones are 5V – like my Cisco SPA504G – a basic but functional IP phone.

    Hamshack Hotline is not the only hamcentric VOIP service. Another option is Hams Over IP – here is a link to their wiki with very helpful info:


    Depending on the VOIP phone you choose – you can have both a Hamshack Hotline number and a HOIP number programmed in the phone. Each will be assigned a unique number within their respective networks. Sometimes it’s convenient to pick up the phone and dial a ham buddy for advice or to just chat. 73, HW

    • This reply was modified 2 months, 1 week ago by  WZ4K.
    • Jim

      2024-03-15 at 01:06
      25W posting rank

      Excellent explanation. Quick question, do you use HH? Would you recommend using it?

      • This reply was modified 2 months, 1 week ago by  Jim.
  • AF7SJ

    2024-03-28 at 14:53
    Newbie posting rank

    I got some surplus Polycom phones for Ham Shack Hotline use. They work fine for me, but I haven’t found many to talk to.

    Cisco phones are generally nicer, but Polycoms (now Poly) and very common surplus because they are used by many of the VoIP phone providers as the budget phone option.

    Search for something like a vvx210 if you want to try the Poly route. The VVX line gets more features as you go up by hundreds, so the VVX100 line is very basic, VVX200 adds a speaker phone, VVX300 will be more line options, VVX400 color screens, and so forth.

    • Jim

      2024-04-01 at 10:35
      25W posting rank

      Had not thought of Poly. I use their headset when I’m driving. Will check out their phones.

  • k9fh

    2024-05-13 at 04:43
    Newbie posting rank

    For Hamshack Hotline I use an ATA (Analog Telephone Adapter), specifically the Cisco SPA112. An Analog Telephone Adapter connects between the Internet (RJ-45 cable from your router) and any old 4 wire telephone with a modular RJ11 jack. The SPA112 provides two phone lines so you can also configure it to use a VOIP provider, I use Localphone.com, who will provide you with a phone number and then you can have a real phone number with a real phone once again.

    I see the SPA112 is still available at Amazon. There is also a newer model, the ATA191-3PW-K9 which might be better.

    As far as usefullness of Hamshack Hotline goes, quite a few EOC’s are listed in their phone directory and HH does have many extensions dedicated to emergency preparedness. There are also a couple of similar Ham PBX’s, namely Hams Over IP (HOIP), and Amateur Wire. These last two appear to be more oriented toward hams who like to experiment with VOIP technology. You could probably find people there who would be willing to chat.

    My extensions, HH: 4648, HOIP: 100221, Amateur Wire: 1088

    Phil K9FH

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