Using my computer as a telephone

By Phantasm66 ยท 65 replies
Oct 29, 2003
  1. What's the best software for using your modem to allow your computer to be able to make voice calls? I want to be able to talk down the telephone line, speak into a microphone I have connected to my sound card, listen to the other person speaking by having the sound played out of my speaker system.

    Does anyone already do this, and if so what's the best software, etc, to use?

    I've already looked at the dialer that comes with the supervoice software that comes with this intel 536 chipset (cheap) and I didn't think too much of it. I guess it would be OK, but I want to be able to specify which input to use (i.e sound card, not mic on modem) etc.... If there is such an option, I must have missed it.

    Ideally, what I want to be able to do is sit at my computer desk and be able to freely talk and listen to someone speaking to me on the phone. Surely in the 21st century this is a very easy thing to achieve??

    I am too busy thinking about C++, my coursework, and looking for a job to be bothered thinking too much, so for once you guys can tell me.
  2. olefarte

    olefarte TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 1,345   +13

    I"m not sure if this, Net2Phone, is what you want, but I used to use it when I worked in Haiti to make calls to the US. In the beginning it was free, but now there is a charge.

    I used it the way I think you are talking about, but instead of using speakers, I used a headset with a microphone built in. I did use it with the sound card the way you are talking about.

    Talking about this reminded me that I have $25 on account with them, from over four years ago, that I never used.

    It worked very well, except for a lot of lag, which was really no worse than calls that I made on a satellite phone that cost almost $10 a min. to the US.

    Edit: Phant, after rereading your post, I think I misunderstood. I think you want to use your computer to make regular telephone calls, not net calls, right?
  3. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 5,734   +8

    Yeah, just regular phone calls. I need a good program for managing that.
  4. Godataloss

    Godataloss TS Rookie Posts: 482

    I used to do it 5 or 6 years ago and the quality wasnt that bad over dial-up even, but I think the FCC intervened. Currently Vonage does voice over IP for about $20 a month- gotta pay for the switching. But it uses a router and a phone reciever, which is better than a mic and a sound card as there is a huge potential for nasty feedback.
  5. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 5,734   +8

    Really, its just for making regular phone calls, not internet calls (which would be over IP). I just want to use my computer as a regular telephone.

    Surely someone has the answer!??!
  6. Godataloss

    Godataloss TS Rookie Posts: 482

    The call would have to be routed from the pc to the telephone system- switched that is- requires more than a software solution if you want to call to a regular phone from your pc.

  7. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    I did that a couple of times using some software that came with an old USR 56K modem I had(probably about the same as the thing you mentioned above Phant) I didn't mess with it much, just enough to see if I could set it up. The way I did it was to run the line out from the soundcard to the mic input of the modem, this allowed me to use the mic on the sound card and feed the output to the modem.
  8. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 5,734   +8

    Yeah.... but is there any really good software around for doing this? Or am I just limited to the crappy stuff that comes with Supervoice along with the modem? Surely there is something better.
  9. roger767

    roger767 TS Rookie

    I have the same question.
    I just want to use my computer as a telephone, like for LOCAL calls.
    NO voip stuff like net2phone. No skype. Just want to use my computer (inklusiv soundcard, headset, modem) as a telephone instrument, on the phone line, dial number, talk. Instead of using a telephone. What is out there?
  10. cwy2000

    cwy2000 TS Rookie

    I had a program that came with my Gateway PC back in 93 that did just what you are asking for. It could serve as a voicemail system, auto dialer, phone passthrough, and everything. You could initiate the call from your list and it would dial, connect, and let you talk and listen through the headset. (or you could talk into the mic and listen on the speakers). [all on a 14.4 modem]

    But I have searched in vain for anything like it for some years now. That program is nowhere to be found.
    (unless they changed the name and went public and are charging big money for it now.)

    If you find one that does what you are wanting let me know too.
  11. SilverWeed

    SilverWeed TS Rookie

    I have the answer

    Ok its called SuperVoice it was mentioned up above.... you do need to pay for it but they will let you use the program for 30 days so maybe if you like it enough you can pay them the 6.99 but go check it out just go to yahoo and type in SuperVoice and the first search result will have the website
  12. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

  13. Mamdonk325

    Mamdonk325 TS Rookie

    Not Exactly...

    yeah, checked out that link. I am, like Pantasm, looking for a simple, one user (not 9000 user) phone-like program for my computer. PLEEZ HELP ME!!!
  14. PFJ

    PFJ TS Enthusiast Posts: 112

    good thread.

    Coinsidence or what? I was just about to install Skype that other colleagues in the company are using for the past two weeks. It's just a mic attached to the line/mic input at the rear of the PC sound card and sounds as simple as what Phantasm66 is looking for. Although Roger767 thinks not.
    Would location factor affect choice - for instance Phantasm66 is in Scotland and most of the replies are from the USA - like broadband/ISDN availability etc...?

    If there is something better than skype perhaps this thread will reveal it.
  15. scotiawhiskers

    scotiawhiskers TS Rookie Posts: 24

    Skype also has the option of Skype out - voip at user end but to regular land or mobile phone at the other. Supposed to be cheaper than normal voice call but I don't have anyone to call on it as have v cheap land-land calls anyway. Worth you looking at? Sounds similar to the systems mentioned in some of these replies.
  16. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Some people still fail to grasp that the idea is to use the computer as the telephone device - something that lets you dial normal telephone calls and talk just like the phone itself on your table.

    Nothing to do with networking or VOIP. No extra contracts or anything. Just another phone in the house.
  17. rowdy

    rowdy TS Rookie

    I guess I'm one then.

    I use Skype yes it's VOIP, and yes I have a contract for the computer to regular phone bit. Seems to me that if I can use my computer to call some one on a landline or cell phone, it answers the original post. I also don't understand the part of your post about no contracts, show me a way to get free phone service and I'm all over it. I don't know. Maybe I'm missing something.
  18. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    It was was extra contracts..

    And no, Skype is not the answer to the original question.

    "What's the best software for using your modem to allow your computer to be able to make voice calls? I want to be able to talk down the telephone line, speak into a microphone I have connected to my sound card, listen to the other person speaking by having the sound played out of my speaker system."

    Keywords: "voice calls" "down the telephone line"

    And a clarification a bit later: "Really, its just for making regular phone calls, not internet calls (which would be over IP). I just want to use my computer as a regular telephone.
  19. jshields13

    jshields13 TS Rookie Posts: 109

    Phant, don't know if this is exactly what you are looking for, but it seems to include a dialing out feature. I don't see anything that is just a "phone". There used to be lots, but I guess they are old fashioned now. Hope this helps.

  20. rowdy

    rowdy TS Rookie

    Ahh, now I get it Nodsu. Slightly brain dead the other day. Somehow I missed the"not internet calls" part. I'm going to blame it on a 73 hour work week. My bad, so sorry.
  21. bmurphywa

    bmurphywa TS Rookie

    Uhh ... MS Outlook Contacts has a calling feature.
  22. onecalifman

    onecalifman TS Rookie

    Phone calls on pc

    Is there any software from a fax company? Some faxes had phone calls and
    information transfer at the same time as early as the 1950s- maybe earlier.

    Late in the 1960s, I was able, on a US navy ship, to pick up a phone on the side of an IBM computer, dial a similiar number as the other end of the computer connection I had, and talk to a person at the same location. Say, the computer number was 78567890a- I would dial 78567890bx to talk to the person operating the computer at the other end.
  23. Littlejohn

    Littlejohn TS Rookie

    Defining the question

    In this case, i am looking for similar software to do the following.
    When i am not on the net at all. i am working on the computer and the telephone on the wall rings. Because i am in a whelechair, i have difficulty reaching it. i want to answer the phone through the headset of my sound card. what software will let me do this simply and without all the extra bells and whistles ?
    Nothing to do with internet.
    I sometimes use voice recognition software to dictate letters and when i using the headset, i dont want to have to take them off and rush arround.
    Please dont say get a phone on the table. (Not my house) But i can run an extention lead to my modem on the computer. I run win 98se. if you need any more info, please ask me but i realy do need this software ASAP.

    I hope that someone will help me please. :confused:

  24. ryantruck

    ryantruck TS Rookie Posts: 79

    Windows 98 has Phone dialer that wont work. All you do is enter the number and dial I used it before with my microphone

    Ryan ;)
  25. kol_indian

    kol_indian TS Rookie Posts: 316

    this worked

    yes this feature works the thing is u have to configure the mic setting correctly,
    bu i remeber only making calls from this thing not reciving calls.

    anyways worth a check what u say???? :approve:
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