DIY Systems

Our review of PBX 308 plus

When we were deciding whether or not to sell the small office telephone system, we ordered an Orchid PBX 308 plus, so we could put it through its paces. We recorded what we did and this is the result of our findings :-

The parcel arrived in a neat box with everything included. As you can see, the telephone system, 2 telephones and all fitting materials neatly stacked up on the cutting mat on my desk.

The first thing I did was open the box containing the PBX and have a good look at it. It came with an instruction CD. So before turning any power on , I read the instuctions to see if it was OK to turn on the power with nothing connected up. It said "Make sure the power switch is turned on", and made no warning about turning it on with nothing else connected so that is what I did.

The next photo shows the neat small PABX (compare it with the size of my pen) and the reasuring glow of the red "ON" led.

They say you can often get the system up and running "Without a screwdriver in 10 minutes". If they made the instructions clearer, I think that is true but it took me a bit of head scratching to work on what went where. Here are all the bits and pieces which were supplied as part of the installation equipment:-

I had to phone the supplier to find out what they were all for. The reason there were so many bits and pieces is because they allow several different methods of installation.

On this page, I will concentrate on the simplest type of installation. i.e. where you might have between 1 and 3 existing BT outside lines, with their sockets in the same room in which you wish to put all your telephone handsets.

Getted Started - simple installation

I started off with the Black Line Cord (BT-plug ~ RJ11-plug)and the White Phone Adapter (BT-socket ~ RJ11 plug) They look like this:

I plugged them into the back of the small telephone system PBX 308 plus so it looked like this:

I had an ordinary BT phone and a spare BT extesnion lead floating around in the office. I plugged the phone into the White Phone Adapter and the Extension lead onto the Black Line Cord.

Below, you can see how neat the whole thing is. Off picture, the mains lead and the extension lead is plugged into the Mains supply and a BT Master Line Socket. I used the Extension Lead because the BT socket was 10 Meters away.

Having got so far, I wanted to see if I had achieved a working system. So I lifted the handset, dialled 9 and got an outside line, then phoned 1234 and got speaking clock. I then arranged an incoming call and answered it with no problem on the BT blue phone. That was it - a working telephone system up and running with no programming required and easily done in under 10 minutes!

The next thing would be to add an extra phone or two. This was the cue to try out the two phones which came with the system and which are recommended by the manufacturer.

That will be the subject of my next review.

March 19th 2010