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#81191 by gnowellsct
Thu May 12, 2011 6:21 am
I'm going to go a-hunting for a 3.6v battery to replace the ooma handset p.o.s. and solder the leads from the standard battery pack to a good one.

Only question is: how do I tell what the good 3.6v options out there are? Dimensions of Ooma battery are 2"x1.25"x.375". If I can't find something that will fit I'll tape it on the back. But there seem to be things out there that will fit.

The Ooma wire service is so amazing on a good phone. What a terrible shame that they're going to ruin their reputation with these lousy components.

Greg N
#81197 by gnowellsct
Thu May 12, 2011 7:03 am
I'm going to try one of these:

Empire Scientific CPH-464B http://www.emtcompany.com/empire-cph-464b-battery-3-6v-600-mah/bt402.html?gclid=CPGpxeHW4qgCFcq8Kgod502mEw

And solder the leads from the bad Ooma batteries if need be. Obviously there's no point in pestering Ooma for more batteries since all they have are bad ones and it doesn't solve the problem of getting a working unit. I'm not worried about what happens to the handset since it is a piece of junk w/o a good battery.

Near as I can see my recommendations will be: "Ooma is great if you can figure out a good handset to use with the system, but whatever you do, don't get Ooma handset."

I'm surprised that a lousy handset is their business model you'd think they're depending on word of mouth to sell the products.

GN
#81201 by nn5i
Thu May 12, 2011 7:32 am
I've never seen an Ooma handset -- nor, from what I've read on the forums, do I want to see one -- but almost any wireless base+handset system that works well with wired POTS ought to work well with Ooma.

Several posters maintain that only DECT 6.0 systems work well, and their stated rationale is reasonable, but the nice old VTech 5.8MHz phones I use aren't DECT 6.0, and they work extremely well. In my house I have two base units within two feet of the Telo (actually three, but one has no remotes and is used only as an announce-only answerer) and twelve remote handsets. All work perfectly.
#81203 by gnowellsct
Thu May 12, 2011 7:50 am
nn5i wrote:I've never seen an Ooma handset -- nor, from what I've read on the forums, do I want to see one -- but almost any wireless base+handset system that works well with wired POTS ought to work well with Ooma.

Several posters maintain that only DECT 6.0 systems work well, and their stated rationale is reasonable, but the nice old VTech 5.8MHz phones I use aren't DECT 6.0, and they work extremely well. In my house I have two base units within two feet of the Telo (actually three, but one has no remotes and is used only as an announce-only answerer) and twelve remote handsets. All work perfectly.



The question is how to get a nice old VTECH or other system that was made in the decade before total junk was the norm.

I do have two legacy phones, both well made, but it would be nice to have phones in the rest of the house. Unfortunately I can't go back to 1998 to buy them.

It's a pity about the Ooma handsets because the address book function is pretty nifty.

GN
#81217 by nn5i
Thu May 12, 2011 10:21 am
They're always richly available at low cost on eBay. I use VTech 5831 & 5881 base units (5881 has an answerer also) with 5801 and 5820 handsets (5801 has a slightly fancier display and can use personalized ringtones). Either handset, or a mixture of both, can work with either base unit. New batteries are easily available too, and the handset will go several days away from its charger.

Unless they're used to pound nails, just about the ony thing that goes wrong with these things is that the vibrator in the handset freezes up and won't work. Most people turn that off anyway, using only the ringer. Occasionally the speaker in the back of the handset (used for ringing and for speakerphone) fails. Be sure to ask the seller about these things.

The reasons SouthSound and others have advanced for preferring DECT 6.0 phones are actually quite sound; apparently they don't affect my installation though.

Incidentally, these things have phenomenal range. I can carry one almost a block away from my house, and it still works.
#81278 by I_Ooma_2
Thu May 12, 2011 5:01 pm
gnowellsct wrote:I'm going to try one of these:

Empire Scientific CPH-464B http://www.emtcompany.com/empire-cph-464b-battery-3-6v-600-mah/bt402.html?gclid=CPGpxeHW4qgCFcq8Kgod502mEw

And solder the leads from the bad Ooma batteries if need be. Obviously there's no point in pestering Ooma for more batteries since all they have are bad ones and it doesn't solve the problem of getting a working unit. I'm not worried about what happens to the handset since it is a piece of junk w/o a good battery.

Near as I can see my recommendations will be: "Ooma is great if you can figure out a good handset to use with the system, but whatever you do, don't get Ooma handset."

I'm surprised that a lousy handset is their business model you'd think they're depending on word of mouth to sell the products.

GN


I don't know if you've ordered that yet, but I might keep looking. The battery pack in the Telo handset is rated at 700 mAH, but the one you linked to is 600 mAH. Your new battery pack will likely perform worse (less talk time). Also, the Telo batteries are NiMH, and I cannot tell what the linked battery pack type is, but if it is NiCAD then those will have a "memory" problem and the performance will drop quickly as they get older. NiMH batteries stand up much better to constant 'on & off the charger' usage such as with a cordless phone.

I haven't looked around at other battery packs yet, but I would be certain that they are NiMH and I would also get the most mAH you can find in the same "size" (dimensions). I haven't checked the dimensions on this, but this is something I would look at getting (assuming the size is right): http://www.batteries.com/cordless-telephones/v-tech/ia5854-battery_R-418301-205550.html. Definitely NiMH and 1000 mAH. Should get excellent performance from something like that. If you can also find something in a "brand name", even better.

You also likely wouldn't have to solder the old connector directly to the new batteries, but rather could just cut the wires and splice the old connector onto the end of the wires coming off of the new battery pack. Just be sure to have the polarity correct (should be easy/obvious).

Edit to add that I bought one Telo handset for the sole purpose of screening incoming voicemails in my bedroom. While I only used it once for a call, judging from many peoples' reviews, I think you are better off buying a quality Dect 6.0 multi-handset cordless phone system. I have a slightly older Panasonic Dect 6.0 system with 4 handsets and it has been the best cordless phone system I ever owned.
#81399 by gnowellsct
Sat May 14, 2011 9:57 am
Thanks for the handset and battery advice. Although the battery that I ordered was fewer milli amp hours, my belief is that the Ooma battery isn't deliverning even a fraction of what it is rated at. As for battery lilfe: the Ooma battery lasted a week.

So I'll mess around and see what I can come up with. I guess a Pansonic cordless set is in my future, but I really wish that a light would go off and the people at Ooma would say "OH JEEZE MAYBE WE COULD SELL GOOD HARDWARE AND MAKE MONEY AT IT AND WITH A GOOD REPUTATION OUR BUSINESS WOULD GROW FASTER".

What a concept!

Greg N

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