Not all desk phones are created equally. You need to choose phones that fit the features you need and the number of users you have. But, when shopping for phones you might have noticed that they all kind of look the same. That’s why we’re breaking down our most common user types to help you choose.
Note: Vonix is a Polycom reseller because we think it’s the best equipment for the right price. We’ve tried other systems and these are our favorites. While our phone services can work with other hardware, companies often end up switching to Polycom. That’s why we’re recommending their phones below.
The “Do I Really Need a Phone?” Type
Our pick: Polycom VVX 250 – $129 or $7/month
We see you, tech and marketing. Couldn’t that phone call be an email? Luckily for our barely-users, they can get voicemails transcribed to email so they never even have to check their voicemail box.
For the user that doesn’t really want to have a phone, try the Polycom VVX 250. Its color LCD screen looks similar to the higher level phones, but without the bells and whistles they don’t really need. It includes 4 programmable line keys and the ability to transfer in-call to someone who’s a little better at talking on the phone.
For those sales, service, and support roles that are on the phone all day, every day, you need a reliable solution to keep them connected. The Polycom VVX 501 and Polycom VVX 601 both offer high call clarity with extensive integrations. If you’re in a smaller office or don’t need features like video call integration, then the more budget-friendly Polycom VVX 350 is also a solid pick.
Employees who are always on the phone usually prefer to use a wireless headset, freeing up their hands to type and letting them sit in a more comfortable position. The VVX 350 and all models above it are compatible with USB headset systems. Try the Plantronics CS 510 over-the-head headset which provides up to 9 hours of talk time from up to 350 feet away from your desk. The lightweight design includes background noise cancelling technology and one-touch controls to start and end calls.
Wideband audio and noise-canceling microphone provide clearer conversations
Over-the-head wearing style
One-touch call answer/end, mute, and volume adjust for simple call management
Up to nine hours of battery life on one charge; adaptive power system helps conserve battery life
Use with included Electronic Hookswitch Cable to remotely answer/end desk phone calls
The “Can’t Sit Still” Type
Our pick: Polycom VVX D230 – $215
Need a phone for the one that’s always on the run? For those who can’t seem to stay near their phone, the Polycom VVX D230 is a perfect solution. You can say goodbye to missed calls with this handset, which stays connected up to 165 feet from its base. Snap on the belt clip and your on-the-go friend will always be close to their phone.
Alternatively, for fast-moving businesses that need the flexibility to grab a call and get to the next room, this handset also can mount to a wall. Place it in a high traffic area so whoever’s available can grab a call when needed.
Indoor wireless range: up to 50m (165ft) from the base
Outdoor wireless range: up to 300m (980ft) from the base
2″ TFT color backlit display
10/100 PoE Base station with pass-through
Supports up to 10 cordless handsets per base station
Supports up to 8 lines, 8 simultaneous calls
Wall mountable, with optional belt clip available
Support for HD Voice (G.722)
Low-delay audio packet transmission
Adaptive jitter buffers and packet loss concealment
Dedicated 2.5mm headsets port (ext 2.5mm to 3.5mm adapter)
Full-duplex speakerphone operation with acoustic echo cancellation and background noise suppression
The “Let’s Huddle Up” Type
Our pick: Polycom Soundstation IP 5000 – $599
Maybe we need a quick confab on this one. For those who want to get the team together, equip spaces in your office with a Polycom SoundStation IP 5000 conference phone. You’ll be able to dial into conferencing programs and join multiple people in one room with other callers. The patented Polycom technology lets every voice get heard with distinct clarity.
As an added bonus: do you have the restless leg employee in on the meeting? No worries – the IP 5000 picks up sound up to 7 feet away from the base. If you have a mid-large sized conference room, try the SoundStation IP 6000 for the best call clarity for more than 6 speakers.
Polycom HD Voice technology makes your conference calls sound amazingly clear and bring life to the room
Patented Polycom Acoustic Clarity technology delivers the best IP conference phone experience with no compromises
The microphone picks up voice up to seven feet (2-meters) away and its compact footprint is designed for executive offices and a small conference room, with up to six participants
It is the most feature-rich family of IP conference phones available, with advanced call handing, security, and provisioning features
Its compatibility with a broad array of SIP call platforms means it maximizes HD voice quality and feature availability while simplifying management and administration
The high-resolution display enables robust call status, on-board configurability, and multi-language support
It comes with Integrated Power over Ethernet (PoE) for easy installation. An optional AC Power Kit is also available
It resists interference from mobile phones and other wireless devices while delivering clear voice conferencing without distractions
The “Front Lines” Type
Our pick: Polycom VVX 450 – $189 or $12/month
For your superstar receptionist or the person who gets all the questions, the Polycom VVX 450 can’t be beat for high-use callers. In addition to the Acoustic Fence and Voice Clarity technology, the built-in HD Voice system provides excellent call quality for your people on the front lines.
Best of all, the VVX 450 comes standard with 12 programmable keys, but can be expanded up to a whopping 38 keys with the VVX EM50 Expansion Module. The additional keys make transferring calls and managing workflows and transferring calls a breeze with less room for mistakes.
Keep in mind that not all users have to have the same phone. We often see that a front office or reception desk may need more buttons for extension shortcuts while other users don’t even need a USB port for attachments. Review your current employees’ use cases to not overbuy while also giving everyone what they need.
However, it may sometimes make sense pricewise to get all your team members one unit type if the bulk price is better. If you want to keep training and everyday use simple, then you may want to choose one phone for everyone to use. If this is the case, then we suggest the best all-around phone: the Polycom VVX 450.
On its own, the VVX 450 is easy to use and provides all the shortcuts and transferring options you could need. But, it’s also compatible with the key expansion module and wireless headsets, letting you use one model but provide the features individual users need.