Need a phone line recorder, and inexpensive "attendant"
Ok, this looks like I need 2 gadgets, actually.
First, we have a little home based business and need a phone call recorder - something that records every single incoming call on the line and has a USB port where I can save the MP3's from it, if need be. The problem I'm seeing is that people suggest using digital voice recorders with phone line attachments, for this, but we need a dedicated unit that can stay on the line, next to my PC, full time, and catch every conversation. ( We occasionally get threats from a caller. ) I've searched amazon.com and haven't seen anything that looks reliable, and we bought a British box that's a pain to use and hasn't worked from the start.
The second gadget we need, is a phone attendant box. When someone calls, we want to separate the humans from the spam robocalls, so we want a simple announcement saying that if they want to talk with us, press an extension, for example 11 ( or one we pick ). They call this a phone attendant, I found out, but they only seem to come in expensive answering machines that cost a few hundred dollars, and we don't even WANT an answering system, just something that does this one simple task and doesn't cost much, and separates the spam from the real people.
Re: Need a phone line recorder, and inexpensive "attendant&
I don't have any suggestions, but if you find/try some, I'd be interested in hearing your results.
|reply to Melissa2009B |
|reply to b_p_smith |
Am I calling it the right thing?:
When someone calls, we want to separate the humans from the spam robocalls, so we want a simple announcement saying that if they want to talk with us, press an extension, for example 11 ( or one we pick ). Then it would ring all the cordless phones in the house simultaneously.
The link I posted was to a phone recorder similar to what you said you needed in your first paragraph. 1 GB of Hard Drive disk space is supposedly equal to 2000 minutes phone time, or at least that's what one of the phone recorders I looked at claimed on their site.
Maybe this will meet your other request:
The Call Screener automatically answers a ringing phone and plays the following message:
"This number does not accept solicitation or survey calls of any kind. Place this number on your "Do Not Call" list and hang up. All others press "1" to ring through." (Message by CallmeNot.com)
Before the Call Screener delivers the spoken message, it plays the Special Information Tone (SIT), the same tone played before "the number you have reached is no longer in service" message the phone company uses. Automatic dialing machines used by telemarketers will interpret this tone to mean that the number called is useless for generating sales leads and your number will be removed from their calling lists.
Thanks for that first link, it looks good, will check it out.
With the screener, we want something a little more professional sounding, for example: Hi, you've reached XYZ company. To speak with an agent, please press 46.
I found something called a TriVOX VN100 which sounds interesting, but there's very little out there on it, it's not on Amazon or Ebay and most info seems like from years ago.
|reply to Melissa2009B |
One suggestion is to install the Asterisk program on a small PC, it works on just about anything old enough to run Windows XP or even older. It actually runs on a form of Linux which runs on almost any PC hardware.
The software is free but it can be a little daunting in configuring things to get it to do what you want. It helps to have a local "expert" on the system to configure things. There are many companies that support small business in configuring and maintaining Astrisk phone systems. Many computer clubs even have Asterisk "experts" who come to their meetings.
A little goggling in your area (like "Astrisk phone system Denver colorado" minus the quotes) should turn up a couple of venders willing to take on the task if you don't have someone in house that can handle it such as (not that I have had any contact with them).
A visit to one of them to see what and how the system works can make one wonder why you did not have one long ago. Some companies rent the entire system while others have you own the PC and they just maintain the (free) software for you, which they can usually do remotely once it is setup to allow that.
Using it you can record what and when you want as well as having a phone menu system that says anything you want it to say.
One last note, if you have any employees make sure they sign a disclosure that indicates that all phone calls will be recorded. Colorado law says only one party involved with the conversation needs to be aware of the recording to make it legal. Failing to have releases can cause a lot of grief in the future should things later get into the legal system. Ah yes, those pesky legal experts need a job too...
I just can't understand why someone hasn't come up with a $30 box to do this, years ago.
It goes on the phone line coming into your cordless base. You record a message, someone calls and it says XYZ Company, please press XX ( your choice of numbers ) to speak with a service agent. Then it rings through to all the cordless phones in our house.
This may not be exactly what you want but check out the options of Google Voice and see if that can take care of this for you.
You can create an account and test it with some calls you make from another phone. The new account's built in number can be forwarded to your existing number and the recorded calls can be accessed online later if needed.
More info at this link worth reading as well.
We actually have Ring Central now but want this for the home phones only, so it needs to be a box that goes between the incoming line and the cordless base. Because not all our calls go through Ring Central, only our small business 800 number calls, leaving our home number unprotected.
This box is kind of long in the tooth but they are still around.
It does not do recording of inbound, or outbound for that matter but it does allow you to replace the stock recorded messages with anything you want.
Plug it in between the wireless base and your other system and it should help eliminate most of the junk calls.
Again, that one has a canned message, and we need to customize for our business.
Here is an excerpt from the web site selling the box.
"Can I record my own voice?
Yes, a 20 second message can be used to record over the programmed message. We have even included a list of suggested scripts for you to easily create your own legally binding message."
So it appears the only canned message it has is easily replaced with your customized message as long as you can keep it with in 20 seconds.
Cedar City, UT
|reply to Melissa2009B |
I put an asterisks box on my home system, just so I can record business calls, I was able to setup my own message and everything. works very well and is fully customizable.
|reply to BlueMist |
I googled around and it appears the Spectrum Research that made the Screen Machine no longer exists.
|reply to moes |
What and where is an asterisks box?
Asterisk is like an Open source SIP phone system. it can be cheap if you know what your doing.
Have you looked into provider hosted services? there are a tons of provides who host auto attendant, Voice mail, conferencing etc and you just use your current phones. Its like Centrex service from the Telco if your familiar with that but a hell of a lot cheaper. Usually between 10-30 bucks a month.
Besides a SIP system or provider hosted services you can buy a Nortel Norstar 3X8 (3 lines x 8 extensions) and a Flash or star talk (the voice mail & attendant) for under 1000 dollars.
I used to sell install and maintain Norstar stuff and it last's forever. I still have systems from the 80's clicking away today.
Jeez, we can't afford that!
We're a part time home business!
I can get a 5 phone refurbed cordless system for under $100, but haven't seen any that can do this, though it's an EXTREMELY easy feature they could add!
Oh okay LOL sorry. as far as extension's and auto attendant your only other "Cheap" option would be a PABX system which is fairly simple and use's regular analog phone sets. Without integrated call recording those run from 60-100$ and the PABX systems with integrated recording go from 100$+
you can also try looking for an inline adapter that plugs into the actual cord for the handset that then has a 3.5MM jack you can run to the Input port on your computer and record via a sound recorder program? thats most likely your most dependable option in your price range.
We don't need multi-lines either. JUST a box that announces that if they want to speak to someone, dial an extension that we select, then it rings through to our cordless phone base which covers the 4 cordless phones around the house. Very simple.
Well thats the only thing thats going to give you an outgoing message and auto attendant under 100 bucks. you don't have to use all the lines you can just connect one. Im doubtful you'll find a cordless phone system that does that all self contained without some sort of key unit. its very simple. One line in.. and connect your portable phones to one port/Extension on the PABX.
I guess hit some search engines hard to find something else but im doubtful. good luck & happy searching.
You might even want to try talking to your local telco and explaining to them and you might be able to get some insight from them.
|reply to Melissa2009B |