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#9432 by mhowie
Sun May 10, 2009 4:16 pm
The Ooma package I bought (Costco) includes one Scout. With the setup I have (dry loop, no landline), is a Scout even necessary? Could I install it in conjunction with a cordless phone on a different level of the house in order to have a second place to check messages or does the fact I have the Ooma hub connected to the house wiring via the "Phone" port negate a Scout's viability?

#9443 by Carl
Mon May 11, 2009 4:07 am
You don't need to use the scout in your case but you can if you want. It would allow you to check your messages from another location, see Ooma status (blue light), or see if the line is in use.

Yes, you could connect a phone to it, or you could just leave it on its own.
#9478 by jtykal
Mon May 11, 2009 1:01 pm
Howie -
If you are connecting the PHONE port of the ooma hub to your in-wall wiring, your house wiring is simply acting as a splitter so you can plug multiple phones into your ooma hub. Since each of these phones connects to the same physical "line" on the hub, you cannot take advantage of some premier features like the instant second line. You need a scout for this.

The scout is designed to talk to the ooma hub through the WALL port (not the PHONE port). If you were to plug a scout into a phone jack you would be connecting the scout to the PHONE port of the ooma, and it would not function. Depending on how your house is wired, you might be able to (with the proper type of splitters) use one twisted pair of wires for the phones connected to the hub and another twisted pair for the hub<-->scout "WALL" connection. This would allow you to put a scout somewhere else in the house for easy voice mail access. If you plug a phone into the scout, you could use that phone to access your second line.
#9495 by mhowie
Mon May 11, 2009 8:12 pm

Thanks for the feedback thus far. I will play around with the Scout in order to see what limited functionality, if any, is available by simply plugging it into an unused wall jack. From Carl's description it sounds as if it might be able to be used to check messages and provide some other low-level capability with the way I have the hub set up...?

jytkal- I currently seem to have a second line whenever I press "flash" on any of my cordless phones. Is your description of the instant second line different from what I (think) I have?
#9508 by jtykal
Tue May 12, 2009 7:05 am
You can switch between the two lines but you won't be able to talk on both lines at the same time with different phones. All of the phones connected to the PHONE port on your hub behave like one phone.
#9509 by WayneDsr
Tue May 12, 2009 7:46 am
Just for clarification:
With Premier service and one number, you can connect a phone to the scout and use 2 lines with the same number.
If a caller is on the phone on the hub, you can pick up the phone on the scout and call out, as if you had a second number. (and vice versa)

Or if a second call comes in, instead of flashing over to the second caller, you can answer the call with the scout's phone.

I have the scout side by side with the hub and use them as a line one and line 2 from my desk.

#9552 by mhowie
Tue May 12, 2009 8:07 pm
Good info guys. Thanks. I think I am finally beginning to discern things. I especially like the idea of the Scout next to the Hub for second line usage...

Just so I am clear... the only way to accomplish a "true" second line (from one number) with a dry loop setup is to use a Scout? And that Scout must be plugged into either the Hub's "Wall" port or, if a splitter is used at the wall jack near the hub and those two wires are connected to the "Phone" and "Wall" ports on the Hub, possibly plugged into a different wall jack (I say possibly as viability may vary depending on how one's house is wired)?
#9553 by jtykal
Tue May 12, 2009 9:23 pm
Most home phone wiring has 4 wires. A single phone line only uses 2 of these. There are 2-line splitters available that separate the 4 wires into two 2-wire jacks, generally labeled LINE1 and LINE2. You would use a splitter to connect the PHONE (LINE1) and WALL (LINE2) ports from your hub to the house wiring via a wall jack. You would use another 2-line splitter in another wall jack to connect the scout's WALL port to LINE2 of the splitter (thus connecting the WALL ports from the hub and scout to the same pair of wires). An extension phone could be plugged into the LINE1 jack on the splitter, corresponding to the pair of wires connected to the hub's PHONE port.

In theory, this should work. Can't speak for it in practice...
#9572 by WayneDsr
Wed May 13, 2009 7:29 am
If you are going to use the hub and scout next to each other, connect the hubs WALL port to the Scouts WALL port.
No need to connect the Scout to the house wiring unless you are using ooma WITH a landline.

#9578 by jtykal
Wed May 13, 2009 9:03 am
I've got the same setup -- hub (office number) and scout (home number) next to each other with a 2-line Polycom desk phone able to access both. I also use a splitter to connect my scout's PHONE port to my house wiring, so the home number is live on other phone jacks throughout the house.
I would have liked to have my scout located in the kitchen so it would be easier for the family to see/check voicemail messages, but that would require wiring like I described earlier -- one pair of wires running between my office and the kitchen to connect the hub/scout WALL ports, and a second pair of wires to feed the scout's PHONE port back to my office for my 2-line phone. Wasn't worth the hassle just to get a flashing red light in the kitchen, so I taught the wife & kids how to check voicemail through the telephone handset by dialing our own number.

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