So, Im trying to put together a phone system for RainFurrest, in trying to figure out how to get all of this working, I have found that Cisco phones would work the best for the situation. Cisco is like many other brands and it means expensive no matter what it is, but I already had 4 single line display phones (7910s), so I went to a place I had dealt with in the past called 3R Technology and managed to snag a 7961g (6 line phone) and a Cisco branded IBM x345 for $120. That made me feel happy about 3R Technology, but I guess that would be the last time I feel that way about them. I tried barganing for the other phones they had, but ultimately failed. This saturday I went in and tried to bargain them down to $35 for another 7961g phone, the guy there talked alot about how expensive these phones are and all that and I tried explaining that this is for a not for profit and we dont have much of a budget at all and all that... but it didint work, so I ended paying $45 for a phone with no handset. We found a handset anc cord somewhere else, and finally I get it home and...
It boots to a gradient and thats it. After fiddleing, testing, spraying chips with ice-it and all that crap, I find that theres no rhyme or reason to where it boots to except it just wont boot past anything useful.
So, I paid $50 after tax for... a Cisco paperweight.
Now, I know that its hard trying to run a business these days, but christ, these people get paid to take these things and then they sell them. Can you imagine a racket like that anywhere else? Its crazy, and Im not shopping at 3R Technology anymore.
So, in other news Im searching for CHEAP Cisco phones, mainly some 7960s and some single line units. This is for use in Rainfurrest Operations.
EDIT: These phones are to be used at the convention, but will not be owned by the convention, because this is a technology test and Im assuming all the capital costs for this test, as we may find that one brand is better than another between now and the next convention, or the hotel may come forward and offer us use of their phone system or some other change.
I also want to make this equipment portable and usable in sitiations like Amateur Radio Emergency Service and such.