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This review is from: Obihai OBI100 VoIP Telephone Adapter with Google Voice & SIP
Pros: Simple Set-up
Trouble-free operation with Google Voice
Cons: This is a gripe against Google Voice more than it is against this product (because Google will be the right party to fix it, hence, I didn't drop any eggs on the overall rating), but E911 location capabilities currently don't exist with Google Voice - I wonder when the FCC is going to force that issue.
Other Thoughts: Having cut the cord years ago with the LEC (Local Exchange Carrier - the traditional Ma Bell / twisted pair telephony service provider that brings the telephone line to the premises), I went all wireless to save some money by eliminating expenses of things that I wasn't really using or from which I wasn't receiving value. On rare occasions, I have wanted to have traditional land line services at the house (i.e. to hook up a regular telephone, or leverage the fax capability of an all-in-one device), but it seemed silly to turn the twisted pair back up and pay for something that I was only going to use occasionally, and rarely so at that. Still, the engineer within me continued to nag at the fact that I rely solely on wireless services for telephony at the house. The wireless carrier that I have selected (and happens to be my employer) has provided wonderful, and very reliable service to me here at home, but I know better than to rely on it solely.
Having had a Google Voice account for a couple of years, I wanted to leverage that number, but didn't want to go through the expense and trouble to stand up some kind of VoIP-capable clunky PBX server (running Asterisk or something) and deal with the finer details of configuring my Google Voice account to work with it. I also didn't want to undo what I had done in the money savings department by adding services and $$$ to my monthly cable bill (provides my Internet access only - no 'channel package', and I don't want to pay more with these double play or triple play packages - Internet access charges go up annually, and I'm paying enough already).
So, after a little research, I found this gem, and it solved my quandry and meets my criteria of not paying more in monthly service charges for services I will rarely use! Since Google Voice includes free calls to U.S. and Canada numbers again in 2013, it is A LOT cheaper than paying Ma Bell for 'wireline' telephony and whoever for LD service here in the U.S., and my employee wireless plan doesn't even cover calling to Canada! So, if you're already paying for broadband Internet service, have a home network set up with an available Ethernet port to which you can connect this device, it doesn't take a highly-technical telephony genius to make this thing work with a Google Voice number. The wizards on the Obihai web site will walk you through the process of getting it up, and it just works! It doesn't take up much space or use much electricity either.
I can wholly recommend this device to anyone with even just a little bit of technical savvy related to home networks as a backup telephony solution for home, or for the more bold, a replacement to your traditional POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) line. If your like me, you won't miss paying a monthly bill for a service that you may not even use during the month.
Pros: Good bang for the buck ratio!
7,200 RPM, runs very quiet!
This drive shows a 5.9 in Windows Vista's Windows Experience Index (see other thoughts for how this rig is set up)
Cons: Had to RMA the first drive I received, took two weeks to turn around and get a working drive, plus another ~$12.00 in RMA shipping costs. The additional costs and lost time have made this less of a value for me than I had originally hoped and anticipated.
Other Thoughts: Purchased this drive, knowing it was a refurb. I ended up RMA'ing the first one, because it wouldn't even spin up. Ate 2 weeks of additional time finishing my own refurb project, and ate some additional shipping costs. Not such a great deal for me and my purposes this time around. Anyway, I purchased this drive to replace one of similar type and size in an old Dell Dimension E520 that has had a few other upgrades done to it. It meets the criteria for recycling for an Apple store gift card, which I plan to use in the purchase of a Mac Mini. Windows Vista is what was on the recovery DVD, so that's what I'm sending in for recycling / resale / reuse. This machine has been beefed up to an Intel Q6700 CPU, 4 GB of RAM, and now has a functional HDD again that is labeled with Dell OEM logo. I hope its a sweet machine for whoever is going to use it next!READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: Could have been a low-cost replacement for other failed drive of the same size
Cons: 1. DOA - Drive couldn't successfully start spinning
2. RMA shipping charges are left to ME - See other thoughts.
Other Thoughts: I generally like NewEgg, and this is the first less-than-positive experience I've had here. Still, I take some responsibility, as I knew it to be a risky practice to buy a cheap refurb drive from an on-line retailer. Here's what sucks about this -
The RMA / Refund return shipping price ( through UPS, but purchased through NewEgg is $12.01 - supposedly a cheaper rate than I could get on my own) on a $39.99 product that was free to ship to me makes my $39.99 'bargain' suddenly $52.00 through no fault of my own. I really hope the replacement one will work, or it suddenly will be the same amount of money I will have spent on RMA / Return shipping will have exceeded what it would've cost to just buy a brand new hard drive!
So, my best advice would be to strongly consider looking at brand new hard drives, and resist the allure of the cheap refurbished drives, that are of notoriously poor quality. I'm starting to think it might make more financial sense to perhaps purchase this kind of equipment from a local source, as the risk of RMA return shipping costs will VERY QUICKLY eat up any of the money I might save by purchasing from a retailer such as NewEgg.
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