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Telephone System?

Telephone System?

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Does anyone know of any 'off the shelf' phones with at least 2 handsets where incoming calls can be transferred from one hand set to the other with the person who received the call in the first place being able to tell the person the call is being transferred to whom is on the phone...not asking a lot am I?

I am trying to avoid having to get a phone system installed with ludicrous contract lengths and heavy equipment costs...any thoughts or ideas would be most welcome.

Many Thanks.

Replies (18)

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By orchardacc
03rd Mar 2011 21:55

Not without a phone system!

I dont think you can without a phone system in place, but i might be wrong. I have mine done 3 years ago when i got an office and it cost about £800.00 and comes with one year free maintenance. Since then my annual maintenance is about £150 which really isnt alot.

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By cjtrevor
03rd Mar 2011 23:49

Consider VOIP?

You could have a look at the Siemens Gigaset range of phones.  These have a base station and then you register handsets to it.  You can certainly transfer calls between phones.  You would have to double check whether you can speak to the other extension before transferring the call or not.

Have you considered a VOIP solution?  This is where the telephones communicate using an internet connection rather than a traditional landline connection.

Approx £5 per month would give you one telephone number and 2 extensions with  With two of the Snom 300 phones you could definitely achieve the sort of transfer between extensions that you describe.  You also have the benefit that both phones could make external calls at the same time if required.  It is not mega complex to set up but I would recommend someone who is confident with computer / IT setup to get it all set up and work out how it works. 

The great thing with the VOIP solution is that if you want to add a 3rd, 4th extension, you can easily do so, and have the ability for all the phones to make simultaneous calls without having to invest in further landline rental.

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Adrian Pearson
By Adrian Pearson
04th Mar 2011 08:46

There is a software alternative

Have a look at Ring Central ( It's a really fully featured and flexible online telephone system (replaces a PBX) which you simply link to existing telephone lines and mobiles.

Even if it is not perfect for your needs, if you tweak your needs a little to fit, you can have a really cost-effective, powerful telephone system, with no long-term contract and a very low monthly cost.

Hope this helps.

Adrian @topaccountants

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By Richard Willis
04th Mar 2011 08:56

Not sure whether it is still the case but...

I was told a few years ago that a VOIP call takes up 1/3 of the bandwidth of a standard broadband connection so multiple calls would slow down the internet speed.  Worth checking out as you may need a second broadband line.

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By Bob Harper
04th Mar 2011 09:17

BT Featureline

Here is a link.

Bob Harper

Portfolio Marketing 

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By BigBadWolf
04th Mar 2011 11:29

Panasonic Cordless phone

We have Panasonic Cordless phones - with one base unit, and 3 additional handsets (so four in total)

They allow you to transfer calls from one handset to the other, as well as have an intercom facility and voicemail, So no need for a costly phone system.

I can't see a model number on the unit infront of me at the moment but is v. simillar to this one:


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By clegganator
04th Mar 2011 12:07


We have a couple of phones very similar to yours. However problems arise when they are left off the base overnight and start bleeping at you that the battery is low while your in a call!

I'm sure if you buy more additional bases you could have many more phones on the same 'system'. Though I think they have to be near the main base which the phone line goes into...

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Image is of a pin up style woman in a red dress with some of her skirt caught in the filing cabinet. She looks surprised.
By Monsoon
04th Mar 2011 13:35


We have an ordinary Broadband line with a router that will prioritise the traffic for us.

VoIP is £8 a month with Gradwell and we can transfer phone calls between handsets. We have Snom 320s but there are cheaper ones out there, and the VoIP contract is rolling monthly.

Given that if you want a traditional "BT" set up where you can transfer through, you will have to buy expensive-ish phones anyway, and you have to have Broadband anyway, so I think VoIP makes much more sense.

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By thacca
04th Mar 2011 14:46

Orchid System

I bought the above system. Order placed wednesday. Arrived this morning. And I had it up and running within 10 Minutes. Total Cost about £160 with extension cables. It can be used with conventional phones using the "R" button to tranfer calls. It can accept three incoming lines and has 8 extensions.

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By Bruce Roberts
08th Mar 2011 11:07

Domestic handset are fine

We have used both Panasonic and BT domestic handsets in the past with no problems whatsoever.  We currently have 4 handsets and transfer calls very easily.  Just buy off the shelf and away you go.  Worth checking that they can transfer calls between handsets but I'd be suprised if any on the market now don't have this facility.  The price for a full exchange system is ridiculous compared with the domestic phone prices so don't waste your money.

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By Witch-Queen
08th Mar 2011 13:14


I use BT Verve handsets.

There is a base unit with ansaphone plus 3 extra handsets. You can easily transfer calls between them.

Had them about 2 years but only cost me about £80 in Comet.

-- Witch-Queen

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By eagleaccountancy
08th Mar 2011 13:34


Thank you all for your replies.....very useful information and I will investigate further.


Many thanks once again.

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By richard leighton
08th Mar 2011 15:28

DECT sys Phones

I bought a DECTSys phone system from and it does all you are looking for and handles two phone lines. Currently 7 handsets all hands free, so can wander around the office finding a file while speaking to clients. Over three years use and only a minor problem with a handset. No ongoing maintenance contracts etc

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Della Hudson FCA
By Della Hudson
08th Mar 2011 15:39

Off the shelf

Most domestic phone systems can handle this now. We happen to have 4 BT Graphite handsets picked up at Staples £99.97 incl VAt but our preious system purchased at Tesco for about £60 could also do the job.

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By cdgodden
10th Mar 2011 10:30

Simple Telephone system

We use a BT Freestyle 350 phone with 4 handsets and a digital answering machine. You can announce and transfer calls between handsets without any problem. The phones cost us less than £80

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By cwilson
10th Mar 2011 13:12

Orchid 308+

 . . and it can be set up quite easily to detect and route fax calls on any incoming line (must be the 308+, though).

Also, can be used with 1, 2 or 3 exchange lines and/or VOIP lines. Similarly, you do not have to have all 8 extentions active.


(Got one - very pleased with it).



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By streetandberg
10th Mar 2011 14:31

Try a Fritzbox

You can use a Fritzbox (about £150.00). Five cordless phones can be added (any modern brand) allowing transfer between handsets. It has voicemail to e-mail, fax to e-mail, can handle ordinary landlines, ISDN and VOIP (simultaniously), has a night service setting etc and is your router for wifi. Android app to use your mobile as a handset. Range extenders can be added for long distance. You can add a networked HDD via USB and run VPN's through it. AND it's not difficult to set up.

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By richard.snape
10th Mar 2011 21:50

Siemens Gigaset phones will certainly do the job.  The S685ip can connect to one land line and have up to six VOIP connections.  It also has answerphone built in and includes caller ID facility.  When you have multple lines (using VOIP) each line can be programmed to ring a different combination of handsets, thereby providing a direct dial facility to individual handsets.  You can also programme outgoing calls to use particular connections so each type of call is routed by the most economic service.  Transfers and internal calls are easy with the facility to name each handset so you select the transfer from a menu on the phones lcd display. £85 for base and one handset at amazon and £45 for additional handsets.

I use Sipgate for VOIP who remarkably provide Geographic numbers free of charge, you only pay for outgoing calls which use their service.

It is certainly the case that VOIP calls use up sone of your broadband capacity, about 128kbits / sec in each direction and unless you have a router and ISP which can be set to prioritise voice traffic then you san get little drop outs.

A good commercial ISP like Andrews and Arnold can provide a comprehensive service including Broadband with VOIP services for only £1.20 per number per month

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