How to Beat the Top 5 VoIP Problems Without Tech Support

It’s easy to spot and troubleshoot the most common VoIP problems you’ll have without the support of tech professionals. Next time, before you reach for your phone and call the technical support services, first try these common ways to correct your VoIP services, which could save you time and money.

1. Choppy Quality of Voice

Generally speaking, insufficient bandwidth is the cause of voice quality issues. It’s hard to find the exact culprit in many situations, but there are some ways to try and pinpoint it. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the internet service provider is the culprit, or even that there’s too much traffic in the network; it could even be another application that’s eating the bandwidth. Sometimes, even using the wrong compression code is the reason you are having problems.
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  • Turn off the other computers in your network.
  • Test your bandwidth speed with any number of free websites that offer this service.
  • Check your running applications for bandwidth usage.
  • Double Check for Malware and Spyware Protection; and you can find several of these free services online.
  • Configure your router’s QoS settings to guarantee priority to voice applications

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A good thing to remember is that two-way conversation uses approximately 90 kbps for both uploading and downloading. You’re going to want to test your bandwidth usage to check and see if bandwidth is the reason for your choppy VoIP services.

2. Poor Sound Quality/ Echo

Typically speaking, there are three reasons you might be experiencing echo in your VoIP: acoustic, electromagnetic interference, or faulty equipment. You will experience acoustic echo when your earpiece volume is louder than your mouthpiece volume and they’re overpowering each other. Electromagnetic interference refers to having your VoIP hardware too close together. Bad equipment creates a “bounce back” effect from various impedance variations. It’s easy to remedy these types of problems, just follow the following steps:
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  • Cover your mouthpiece; and listen for the echo to lessen. If it does, simply turn the volume of your earpiece or speakers down.
  • Try moving the router away from the computer’s monitor, CPU or power strip
  • Disconnect any other devices from your router and phone; like splitters and caller ID devices.
  • Inspect all of your system’s wiring, making sure that the cables are dry and not too long to impede connection.
  • Replace any old, faulty equipment.
  • Try replacing a cordless phone with a corded one.

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3. Jitter or Jitter Buffer Problems

This troubleshooting tip refers to the variation of time that it takes for voice packets to arrive to your VoIP services. To ensure understandable conversations, jitter buffers work to collect the packets first and foremost and then send them back to the receiver at the same, even pace. The problem is when the jitter buffer is wrongly configured, dropping packets and lowering voice quality in calls.

There is a hack that people try to improve the dynamics of the jitter buffer itself; which is software based and can be reconfigured easily. Simply have your network administrator do the reconfigurations depending on what kinds of things you’re experiencing; typically, this is a period between 30-50 milliseconds in depth.

Typically speaking, packets are dropped when the buffer between jitter buffers are too small; and you’ll experience conversational gaps when this is the case; but on the flip side, if your buffer is too large, you’ll experience delays in voice packet delivery as well.

4. Problems with Bandwidth

Some VoIP problems can be easily solved simply by reconfiguring your router’s particular QoS, which all modern routers allow administrative access too, allowing administrators to assign priorities to applications, based on usage.
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  • First decrease the impending equipment between your computer/SIP phone and network connections. This would include simply connecting directly to your router/switch rather than having it access the net through Wi-Fi.
  • Check your equipment and wiring; as damaged equipment and wiring causes delays that are sometimes attributed to bandwidth problems.
  • Try doing a power cycle (resetting the power) to see if simply renewing the connections speeds things up.
  • Turn off other applications that are using a lot of bandwidth, like gaming apps.
  • Set your QoS so that it’s allotting top priority to Voice Applications and de-prioritizing others.

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5. Constantly Monitor your Network and VoIP Services

The key to ensuring that your VoIP is in peak performance is to ensure in a 24/7 type of VoIP monitoring service provider like VoIP spear, that does round the clock testing of performance parameters related to VoIP services that send alerts when action is needed, so that you can troubleshoot all of these steps yourself before crisis hits, or in the worst case scenarios, contact tech support to solve the problem.

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