What is an ISDN to SIP Convertor

ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) is a legacy communication technology that delivers voice services over traditional copper telephone lines. It has been widely used for decades, but its limitations are becoming increasingly apparent as businesses seek more flexible and cost-effective solutions, and with the 2025 end of ISDN it will be discontinued in the next couple of years.

If you have an old system then replacing it may not financially viable, however luckily there is a way to ensure old systems work while adding SIP to the mix

Enter SIP (Session Initiation Protocol)

SIP is an application layer protocol that enables voice, video, and messaging services over the internet. Unlike ISDN, which relies on physical connections, SIP trunking allows workers to connect from anywhere with internet access. It’s a future-ready solution that leverages broadband, Ethernet, or private circuits to transmit calls via the internet.

Why Switch from ISDN to SIP?

  1. Flexibility: SIP connections are not tied to specific physical locations. Employees can work remotely, and businesses can scale without geographical constraints.
  2. Cost Savings: SIP eliminates the need for dedicated ISDN lines, reducing expenses significantly.
  3. Reliability: As high-speed internet becomes ubiquitous, SIP connections are increasingly reliable.
  4. Unified Communications: SIP integrates voice, video, and data seamlessly, enhancing collaboration.

How Does an ISDN to SIP Converter Work?

An ISDN to SIP converter bridges the gap between legacy PBXs (Private Branch Exchanges) and modern SIP trunk providers. Here’s how it works:

  1. Product Set: converters come in different flavours:
    • BRI Converter (ISIP8): Converts Basic Rate ISDN (BRI) lines to SIP.
    • PRI Converter (ISIP30): Converts Primary Rate ISDN (PRI) lines to SIP.
  2. Connecting Legacy PBXs: The ISIP converter allows SIP trunk providers to deliver voice services to existing PBXs. It ensures compatibility between the old ISDN infrastructure and the new SIP-based communication system.
  3. Utilizing Existing Broadband: With SIP, you replace ISDN and connect analogue ISDN switches and IP-based switches to your fixed telephone network. Your existing broadband connection handles both voice and data traffic.
  4. Equivalent Call Quality: SIP maintains call quality equivalent to traditional telephony, ensuring a smooth transition.

Migration Steps: From ISDN to SIP

  1. Hardware Audit: Check if your current phone system supports IP technology natively or if you need an ISDN to SIP Convertor
  2. Network Bandwidth: Assess your network’s bandwidth requirements for SIP connections for ease of maths assume 100kbps for each concurrent call (so you’ll need a maximum of 3mbs to replace an ISDN30)
  3. Trial: Build SIP Trunks, connect these to the SIP to ISDN convertor and into your PBX – do calls work and is the quality acceptable?.

Remember, the switch from ISDN to SIP may seem daunting, but with proper planning and the right tools, your business can enjoy the benefits of modern communication.

And don’t forget with a SIP Converter from Becketts you can also benefit from integration to services such as Teams, Conversational AI and recording all on your old system!

We’ve helped hospitals, Councils and private businesses make the most of their old systems and SIP – simply give one of the team a call on 0118 940 9000 and we’ll be happy to discusses.