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View Full Version : OT - Magic Jack?



Howard Rosenberg
01-29-2012, 5:48 PM
Does anyone have any experience with the MagicJack telephone device?
The ads sound appealing and your insight and experiences would be appreciated.
Thanks.
Howard

Grant Wilkinson
01-29-2012, 6:06 PM
My buddy has one and I call him and he calls me using it. Not surprisingly, it is very dependent on the quality of the internet connection you have. At his house in Canada, he has cable internet and the Jack works great. In FL, he has satellite and it is touch and go.

Don Dorn
01-29-2012, 7:00 PM
I've had one for about three years. It's hit and miss with much more hit than miss so I've been happy with it. Don't expect it as a main system for voice mail, conference calling, etc, but to make long distance calls, and even receive them - it works fine. For awhile, I did business with a company in Ireland and while you have to buy minutes for overseas calls, it was 2 cents a minute. It worked fine, was loud and clear and never dropped a call.

Jim Barrett
01-29-2012, 7:23 PM
Have had one for over a year and works just fine. I have it hooked up to an old computer and then it goes to my house telephone wiring. I have 4 phones hooked up to it. The only issue I have is when Windoze does an update....Disconnected my local telephone service and saved $30 a month.

Jerome Hanby
01-29-2012, 7:59 PM
Biggest drawback that I see is that it is dependent on your computer. Other voip services use a dedicated piece of hardware that has a POTS (plain old telephone set) interface where you plug your existing telephone. As long as that device has power (and of course your internet is up) you have phone service. A UPS can keep your cable modem and one of these voip devices up for a long time...

Joe Scarfo
01-29-2012, 8:08 PM
This depends.. the new units do not need a pc, just a hard wired ethernet connection.

They use voice over IP (voip) so the quality of service depends on the internet activity going on at the time. If your house is full of heavy internet users, you may not like it.

You can usually make a QOS (quality of service) setting change in your router for the port into which the majic jack is plugged.

I have one but don't use it anymore. It was very cheap phone service and good for when I was broke and desperately needed it. Note.. not faxing or modems through it. Only voice.. At least, that was my experience.

I bought one for a friend of mine and it's working fine for them. It's not the pc version, but the new type that can plug directly into the internet.

Most places that sell them offer a return period if it doesn't work out..

Good Luck

Jerome Hanby
01-29-2012, 8:17 PM
They use voice over IP (voip) so the quality of service depends on the internet activity going on at the time. If your house is full of heavy internet users, you may not like it.

Also not typically a problem with the dedicated units. They should be connected so that your Internet DCE (cable modem for example) is connected directly to the voip unit and your router (or single PC if that's what you run) plugs into the voip unit. I've never seen a magic jack that plugs directly into an Ethernet connection, so one of those may be capable of operating the same way. Basically, your data speed going to your PCs can fluctuate a bit and you are no worse for it, starve your voip and call quality starts to get funky...

Dan Wiese
01-29-2012, 8:42 PM
I have a friend who uses the magic jack in the Cayman Islands and it has worked very good for him for a couple of years. Calls into our office are clear and the service seems to be very reliable as well as cheap. For a $20-$25 investment you can hardly go wrong, especially in this case when has calls are no longer international.

Jason Roehl
01-29-2012, 8:50 PM
Also not typically a problem with the dedicated units. They should be connected so that your Internet DCE (cable modem for example) is connected directly to the voip unit and your router (or single PC if that's what you run) plugs into the voip unit. I've never seen a magic jack that plugs directly into an Ethernet connection, so one of those may be capable of operating the same way. Basically, your data speed going to your PCs can fluctuate a bit and you are no worse for it, starve your voip and call quality starts to get funky...

I have one of the earlier versions of the MagicJack, which has two connections--male USB and female phone jack (not ethernet). I have it as a backup to cell service since we didn't have phone service activated when we moved here 4.5 years ago. I have been able to use it to send and receive faxes, though you have to fiddle with your fax machine settings to do it. I was hoping they would eventually come out with exchanges local to me, but that has yet to happen, so I have a number that is long distance if someone were to call me from a landline phone in this area. Outgoing calls are unlimited in the U.S. for $19.95/yr (going up to $29.95 this year).

From what I've seen of the latest, computer-independent models, they have 4 connections: male USB, female ethernet (TO router), DC IN, and a female phone jack, so I doubt that it could be installed inline between a cable modem and a router. They're intended to be installed inline between a router and a phone.

Ralph Butts
01-29-2012, 9:25 PM
I have family in Dubai that uses it with much success. They have some version of high speed internet as do I here in the states. It saves them a boot load since the two monopoly telephone providers charge through the roof for international calls. The voice quality was better than Vonage or cell phone in my scenario. Don't have any other experience other than inbound international calls. Hope that helps.

Sam Murdoch
01-29-2012, 9:44 PM
Been using the computer connected version for more than 3 years. It is our long distance connection. We have a 5 year contract. Prices have just gone up by quite a bit. You need a good (new) phone connected very close to the computer. We use a Panasonic with the base station at the computer and 2 remote phones. No issues really. We have found that if we leave the computer on for many hours we sometimes need to restart the computer in order to call out. I love that voice mail comes as an audio e-mail. NOT ALL LOCAL PHONE PROVIDERS ALLOW MAGIC JACK to use their phone lines (or something like that). We can call all over the US and the world with our MJ but we can't call anyone who lives in an area of a few neighboring towns because they have a different local carrier. Otherwise I give a thumbs up to MJ.