Phone recommendation

Now that I have a fairly stable implementation of FreePBX, I am ready to buy a phone for it. I do have an Aastra 6751i RP (converted to generic SIP) that works fine, but I am looking for a multi-line phone. I am going to use the system for several different companies, and I will have a different extension (with different VM) for each. Obviously I don’t want to have several phones on my desk, so I am trying to combine all my extensions in one phone. What I am looking for is then a phone that does the following:

Establishes a connection with Asterisk/FreePBX for several extensions
Indicates which extensio was called, either through a light or on a display
allows me to select an outgoing trunk so that the correct caller ID is sent
Ideally is or has a wireless option (so I can take the phone around with me in the office)

I saw the Aastra 6757i CT, which seems to fit the bill. Does anybody have this phone and can confirm that the phone can do what I want, or does anybody have another phone that fits the bill and that they can recommend?


Every programmable button on the 57i can be a line appearance. With the four line keys and the 12 buttons (2 or which are burned up by more function) you can have 14 line keys.

In my opinion, you can’t go bad with an Aastra.


Here’s another vote for Aastra. Although some people still call it the 57i, the correct model # is the Aastra 6757i. It is the best SIP phone on the planet, according to Ward Mundy, and I like it a lot also.

Stick with Firmware version 2.6, however. The latest version (3.2) is supposedly very buggy.

I have experience with both Aastra and Cisco endpoints. Both are good from a user perspective, but as an admin, I far prefer Aastra. There are a couple things to watch for, low end Aastra phones do not have a backlit LCD and most only permit a very small adjustment to the angle that the phone sits on the desk, so you will find a few people complaining about Aastra’s lack of LCD visibility. It makes no difference to me, but Aastra phones all come with soft rubber buttons, some people don’t like them.

Another shortcoming of Aastra phones is that they sometimes introduce audio quality issues when using analog trunks. I don’t know how common this problem is, but I have run up against it and I know of one admin who has abandoned Aastra for this reason. There are effective fixes but you first have to realize that the phone is the problem, and a new user may not easily discern between aastra echo and other sources of analog echo. I have never heard of this issue affecting a pure VOIP system.

I have standardized on two models, budget is 6731i and executive is 6757i. Add my vote to the 2.x series firmware. If an Aastra phone comes shipped with 3.x firmware, job one for me would be a downgrade. I have no personal experience with the wireless handset supplied with the 57iCT but it does not enjoy the same reputation as the rest of the Aastra product line based on what I read.

We have also adopted a similar model, entry level 6731i, 6757i for managers and the 6739i for exec’s. For the “wow” factor the color touch screen phone just can’t be beat.

The Aastra phones are an integrators dream. We have a pre-assesment spredsheet with an excel macro that converts the extension and DID’s to the correct files to bulk import. We pre-provision the system then simply pull the phones off the shelf and send the installer out into the field. The phone is unboxed, connected to the network and auto-provisions. The next step will be integrating the endpoint manager so records created with the XML provisioning method will populate the EPM. Then the EPM can assign BLF’s,a and XML key assignments.

The tilt angle of the phone is indeed an issue and the tilt bases IMHO are mandatory with the 57i and 39i. This adds $15 to the cost of the phone.

On a personal note I cant stand the rubber keys, the handset is too light and can’t be cradled in your shoulder. The speakerphone is average. Better than Grandstream, Polycom 3xx, and Cisco SPA. The Polyxom 5xx, 6xx and Cisco 7xxx Speakerphones can’t be beat.

What do I use personally? At my home office for the last year I have been using an old Aastra 480i CT. These have plastic key caps, a heavier handset and a good speakerphone. I needed the CT for the home as I only have an office line appearance in my home office. At the office I have a Polycom 670 and color side car.

The Cisco SPA 5xx series can’t be ignored. They have great backlit displays, good speakerphones, plastic keycaps and a nice handset. The Cisco name is an easy sell and a phone exists at the same price points as the Aastra’s. If the provisioning manager would write out a good corporate directory for them they would give the Aastra a run for their money except in a call center.

In a call center environment the Aastra queue scripts offer a level of integration and sophistication that rivals any commercial system.

I love the rubber keys on the Aastra phones. They allow me to dial in the bedroom without waking up my wife.

Aastra has a high angle stand available for $15.00. Many people don’t know about it, but it allows you to stand the phones almost straight up if you don’t like the angles available out of the box.

The handset takes getting used to because it is different, but after a few weeks, I don’t even notice anymore.

I’ve always wanted to try the Cisco SPA 5xx, but I’m not sure I want to take the time to figure out how to configure yet another device. Plus, I find all of Cisco’s stuff hideously ugly…

AdHominem -

I mentioned the bases. They are key for user satisfaction.

The bedroom is a special use case. The Spousal Technology Acceptance Factor STAF (Patent Pending, Skyking) is at it’s highest. Technology, like many things in the bedroom, must be introduced carefully and with much planning and discussion.

We have an old SNOM 200 in the bedroom. She finds it aesthetically pleasing and functional. I am just blessed she does not apply the same criteria to allowing me in the bedroom.

Most folks are unfamiliar with the original SNOM’s. They supported BLF and Park Orbits 5 years ago. A guy who used the handle “Maine Telephone” was a pioneer with these devices.

The Aastra 6757i with a High Angle stand is a great choice. I use this as my primary phone and am very happy with both the quality and flexibility.

Thanks, everyone.

I just placed an order for an aastra 6757i CT. Looking forward to playing with it.

Looks like I am the only one who is was unaware of Aastra’s optional high angle stand. From photos on the 'net it looks like the angle is adjustable, can someone confirm? They are not stocked everywhere, and the few places I have checked have them well north of the $15 quoted above. Anyone want to point me in the right direction? Thanks.

Send me a PM with your contact info.

The FreePBX Store has them for $19.00.


Don’t forget to tell them how to find the FreePBX Store…