Quality issues solved

This forum includes tips for maintaining the best audio quality possible with the Ooma System. If your Ooma system is having issues with dropped calls, static audio or echo, look here for assistance.
Post Reply
Posts: 32
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2009 9:48 pm

Quality issues solved

Post by epetru » Sun Jan 16, 2011 6:51 am

over the past 8 months I had quite a few voice quality issues. I have determined that in my case they stemmed from two primary problems. The first was ISP performance problems. This surfaced as a cause when I got my streaming video player LG BD550 and wanted to stream Netflix and VUDU movies. Resolving this problem made some difference in call quality, as you would expect.

The biggest problems with quality were solved when I switched routers. I had been using a DLINK DIR-655. I upgraded the firmware and started having problems with my wireless N connections. I had tweaked the DLINK to no end, opening ports, changing QOS options, on and on. I must have spent 60 hours messing with the thing, calling OOMA, etc.

So to solve the wireless problem I bought a Netgear WNDR3300 refurbished for $29 and poof; all OOMA problems gone. The only settings I made on the WNDR were to put the OOMA Hub on the DMZ; I plug the Hub directly into Port 1 of the WNDR and give that port the highest priority; and I disable SIP/ALG in the router config. I also have WMM Enabled. That's it.

I later upgraded to the WNDR3400 and that has worked great as well. I use the same settings on it.

A simple test, buy one of these, see if it solves your problems:
http://www.zdnet.com/reviews/product/ro ... 0/34169558
http://www.frys.com/product/6333831?sit ... IN_RSLT_PG

If not, return it.

I tried the new WNDR3700 router, and all of the quality problems returned, both with the same configs as the 3400 and with the out of the box defaults. Garbled calls, voices cut out constantly, I plugged the 3400 back in and all is good again.

So, I have concluded that routers play an important role in my OOMA voice quality. It's the first thing to look at because it's so easy to fix. I now have the 3400 as my primary router and I have a 3300 for backup in case the 3400 goes down. The 3400 has a bit faster processor making it more responsive, it has Guest Mode, and a few other features. The 3300 refurbished is a great bang for the buck router at about $30.
Last edited by epetru on Sat Feb 19, 2011 11:44 am, edited 4 times in total.

Posts: 6388
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:41 pm

Re: Quality issues solves

Post by thunderbird » Sun Jan 16, 2011 7:03 am

Good For You Epetru!

To many times Ooma is blamed, when there is a problem with the Internet provider or in the home LAN setup. Thank for passing on your success. It will help others in this forum.

Again Good For You, and Good Luck

Posts: 32
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2009 9:48 pm

Re: Quality issues solves

Post by epetru » Sun Jan 16, 2011 7:42 am

Yes, and that makes sense. Until I had the wireless problems with the DLINK, everything else was working fine... so why wouldn't I think that the problem was OOMA's. I just didn't know how problematic the DLINK was until I replaced it.

Now the Netgear doesn't have gigabit ports; but I don't need that. I have 3 Netgear 5 port gigabit switches with devices plugged in. I use an 8-port DLINK gigabit switch that I plug into my Router. I plug everything, except my Ooma into the DLINK switch. This offloads much of the network traffic from the Router and isolates the Ooma. I plug the DLINK switch into port 4 of the Router (purely arbitrary) and the OOMA hub into port 1 of Router.

I also have an Aluratek 3G Wireless router with a Verizon UM175 card.

If my ISP goes down, I simply unplug the cable from Port 4 of the WNDR and plug it into the 3G Router. I then unplug the WNDR. My SSID on the 3G router is the same as the 2.4GHz SSID on the WNDR, so now all my wireless and wired devices are working on the 3G Router for backup. There are other things I could do, like keep the 3G running and have it automatically fail over, but I use the UM175 when I travel, so that's really not practical in my case.

Unfortunately, i have found that the OOMA doesn't work well with the Aluratek. I don't know if the problem is the router or if it is the 3G card. But voice quality is terrible and calls drop.

So I just have OOMA configured to forward to another line if the ISP goes down.

When the ISP comes back up, I reverse the process. Unplug the Aluratek, plug in the WNDR and plug the cable from the DLINK switch into the WNDR. Again, there are some other ways I could do this, but this works for me and prevents me from having 2 routers running at the same time :-)

Posts: 32
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2009 9:48 pm

Re: Quality issues solves

Post by epetru » Fri Feb 18, 2011 7:34 am


Quick question, what problems, if any, are you having?

Note this setup works for MODEM > ROUTER > OOMA configurations.

Got your email, but it didn't say what forum topic you were referring to, so hope this is it. Also, there was no email address other than info@ooma.com.


First step is to assign your OOMA a static IP address. The easiest way to do that is to go into OOMA SETUP | NETWORK | MODEM Port MAC Address | Use Built In | and write down the MAC address that is shown.

(If you don't know how to do that, you can still deduce the MAC address from the router's ATTACHED DEVICES list.)

In either case, next go into the router login and select ATTACHED DEVICES. On the right-hand side you will see the MAC addresses of all of your attached devices, make sure that the MAC address for the OOMA is showing up there. If it isn't then there's a problem with how the device is attached to the router or you wrote down the MAC address incorrectly. At any rate, you just want to locate the OOMA hub in your attached devices list and get the associated MAC address.

Next go to LAN SETUP | ADDRESS RESERVATION | ADD | select your OOMA from the ADDRESS RESERVATION TABLE and at the bottom make the IP address anything you want, prefereably outside of the DHCP range. Change the DEVICE NAME to OOMA. Jot down the IP Address you used. You'll need that for the next step. Apply / Save your changes to the Router Setup.

Next go to WAN SETUP | check DEFAULT DMZ SERVER | put the IP ADDRESS you just assigned the OOMA into this field for the DMZ. Apply / Save your changes.

That step is now done.


You wrote:
I plugged the OOMA into port 1 of the router. I went to QOS setup and
turned on WMM and then also selected "turn internet access QOS on" and hit
apply. I then went to setup QOS rule, and rule 3 was IP Phone. I selected
that, edited it, and changed it to say LAN 1 highest priority and saved it.
However it is rule 3, and there are several other rules set to highest.
Did you leave it as rule 3? Did you change any of the other rules or
delete rules to remove the other "highest" priority rules?

>> If I recall, there were a bunch of pre-defined rules in the router when I go it. I think I deleted all of them, since none of them applied to me. Most were for gaming, etc. You can use an existing rule, and edit it, or you can delete them like I did and just add what you want.

I have changed my rule so it's not dependent on the Port, in case I accidentally plug the wrong thing into the router port. for example. Now it's based on the MAC address of the OOMA which will not change.

My QOS RULES LIST shows a bunch of MAC addresses for devices, all with a PRIORITY = NORMAL; and 1 has a priority of HIGHEST, this is the OOMA rule.

The OOMA rules are defined as follows:

(Note the first field to select is Prioity Category... Netgear got this backwards)

QoS policy for: Pri_MAC_xxxxxx (where xxxxxx is the last 6 digits of my MAC address)
Priority Category: MAC Address
MAC Address: the MAC address of the OOMA, that you wrote down before
Device Name: --OOMA
Priority: Highest

I've recently added 5 NAS boxes to my network, and I am going to assign LOW priorities to those so they don't affect my interactive performance during large file transfers... haven't gotten around to that yet, but maybe this weekend.

Posts: 32
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2009 9:48 pm

Re: Quality issues solves

Post by epetru » Fri Feb 18, 2011 8:40 am

I should note that the MAC address on the label of my OOMA Hub is DIFFERENT than the MAC address under BUILT-IN and in ATTACHED DEVICES. You want to use the ATTACHED DEVICES mac address when defining anything within the Router.

Posts: 7176
Joined: Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:49 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

Re: Quality issues solves

Post by murphy » Fri Feb 18, 2011 9:29 am

epetru wrote:I should note that the MAC address on the label of my OOMA Hub is DIFFERENT than the MAC address under BUILT-IN and in ATTACHED DEVICES. You want to use the ATTACHED DEVICES mac address when defining anything within the Router.
The MAC address on the bottom is the MAC address of the Home port.
Add 1 to get the MAC address of the Internet (Modem) port.
Customer since January 2009
Telo with 2 Handsets, a Linx, and a Safety Phone
Telo2 with 2 Handsets and a Linx

Post Reply