DECT Handsets

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I'm looking for a new set of good DECT handsets (2 or 3). I have tried and rejected the Philips CD1753B because of a lack of speakerphone (terrible oversight), but also because of complaints received about poor microphone sensitivity. They are replacing an old pair of Binatones with LCDs on the blink, which also had poor sensitivity (but not as poor as the Philips) but at least came with speakerphone as standard!

Desired features:
  • Shared phonebook (so you can pick up either handset and have the same shortcuts available)
  • Speaker function
  • Answering machine not required - must be able to disable
  • Wall mounting (the Philips extension bases fell short on this)
  • Good sound both ways
Any recommendations? I'm thinking of looking at BT next.

On a different tack, did anything come of mobile phone (GSM) handsets that would connect to the home DECT if in range, to take/make calls? It was mentioned a few years ago but not seen anything since.
I have a Siemens Gigaset (can't remember the exact model) - not cheap but fairly feature rich. The phonebook isn't shared (at least on my model) but can be synchronised between handsets.

They even have bluetooth so I can use my bluetooth headset with them and there's a dongle for a PC so that you can Skype directly from the handsets which was useful for a while.

EDIT: I think this is mine -
Synchronisable phonebook sounds a better idea - then each handset is not forced to share and can have a dedicated purpose if required. Thanks. Definitely on the expensive side though!

Anybody got any thoughts on Panasonic?
We have a pair of Panasonic DECT handsets, about 8 months old. They perform very well. Like af123's, the phone book can be synchronised between handsets. It also has an answer phone, but you can easily disable that. The model number escapes me for the moment. I will check when I get home from work and update this post.

Ironically, the reason we changed to these Panasonic's from the Philips units we previously used, was for microphone sensitivity. We have found the Panasonic's superior in every way.

edit: Panasonic Model Number: KX-TG8062 (2 handsets) or KX-TG8063 (3 handsets)
Interesting use of the word 'ironically'. It would have been ironic if you had swapped to the Philips from the Panasonic because of the microphone!

However, I thank you for the message and will put Panasonic high on my list.
I don't much like the styling though. I think I'll have a look around and do a bit more research. There are some other Panasonic models that are better looking.
I've got a 4 way set of Pannys, No problem, batteries last "forever" (unlike my mate's BT phones) Good sound. V pleased with them
I think I've seen those - 852x series, colour graphic LCDs? Very pretty, I did think about it for a few minutes and then wondered why I would want a colour GUI on a home phone handset. There are however several models which don't have the square-edged styling of the 806x and a reasonable sized mono LCD without going to the "excess" of the 852x. I am heartened that Panasonic in general have decent microphones, but I will buy from a source with a no-quibble returns policy (eg on-line, although a shop purchase can be cheaper to return).

Thinking more deeply, my base unit doesn't actually need a handset and I would like (ultimately) to site it at a high position in the house. I have seen sets which only have a transmitter as the base unit, but they do tend to be higher in price (notably Siemens again). Also I note there are variants without ansafone features - which would suit me, but keeping an ansafone (albeit turned off) would contribute to future-proofing.
The colour screen is a bit excessive, but I liked it ;=). You can access the answerphone from the handsets, so the base unit does not have to be within easy reach for that. But if you don't have a handset on the base unit, what will you do with the 'spare'.
The batteries do last a long time on both 'standby' and 'talk' though.
My base unit is downstairs in a utility room, about as far away from the most distant phone that it can be, but it still works OK. Unless you want to use it at the bottom of the garden or in the next town, pretty much anywhere in the house will give good comms.
If you're gonna do it, do it right (as they say). I'm intending to optimise both WiFi and DECT coverage by appropriate siting of the transmitters. As I now have a spare router donated by O2 when I thought they had bricked my existing one, I also intend to set up a "guest" WiFi network which only gets turned on when needed and has a rolling simple encryption key (my personal key is a max-length string of random characters which is a pain to type in). [This fork in the conversation has now been split HERE (click)]

There are DECT sets out there where the base unit doesn't have a handset in the first place, not even a charging point for one. It's like a small box you mount on a wall somewhere, with power and the phone line coming in.
I've got a BT Diverse 3010 (which I think is just a re-badged Siemens Gigaset) - as old as the hills but still performs really well even though the display is basic and the control system is cryptic. A few years back I bought a BT Graphite 1100 mainly for the handsfree capability ... and it was going cheap in Asda. My Dad recently mentioned he was thinking of buying a 3 handset system for his house (to replace his BT Synergy 700 answerphone and 2 handset system) but I suggested he should just get a GAP/DECT phone and pair it to his current system instead - after a bit of faffing about he finally settled on a BT Studio 4100... but IMO the Synergy and Studio series are mediocre at best - how come the newer phones aren't as good as the older ones and/or end up being a lot more expensive? GAP/DECT has been around a fair while now and it's a pretty basic and widely used technology... but this doesn't seem to have had any effect on the price or availability.
I've been looking around - Maplin, John Lewis, Tesco - and there are some half-price deals out there... but always the non-speakerphone models. Not many with a handset-less base station though, and I have difficulty identifying them on the Internet. I must have another look at the ones I saw in JL.
Does anybody have a Which? sub? I know it's only a pound for a month's trial, but I would rather not sign up because they'll hound me forever after that. I'm interested what they have to say about the Panasonic KX-TG2523. It's not flashy but I like the styling (actually I prefer the 2513 but you can't share the phonebook).

As mentioned before I'm not bothered about the answering machine function (252x v. 251x) as I have a TrueCall. Brilliant device - highly configurable, I have it set to divert all non-whitelist and number withheld calls straight to the built-in answering machine, whitelist calls ring the house phone for 40 seconds before answering machine. Marketing calls rarely leave a message! However, I have worked out that by using a second answering machine I will know that messages from whitelist numbers are on the phone, and all others are on the TrueCall (with potentially a different greeting).

The Gigaset C300A is starting to look attractive too...
After much deliberation, hands-on (though not operational unfortunately) at Comet, and a sojourn into VoIP-capable units that are about £50 too expensive for 'future proofing that might never be used', I have the three or four handset version of the Siemens Gigaset C300A at the top of my list with the Panasonic KX-TG8523 as first reserve. Comet have a very good price for the C300A Trio at the moment.

Although I prefer the overall styling of the Panasonic handset, I really like the display on the C300A (what little I have seen of it in Internet pictures), and my plan is to tuck the base unit away at a high point in the house (essentially ignoring the handset that goes with it, although if I can source a spare charger cradle it can be brought into use) which makes the C300A base unit a better prospect than the 852x. This way I have the coverage advantage of a repeater or a non-handset base unit model, without the associated cost. I am also really impressed with the spec of the C300A for the current selling price (it does far more than I will ever use, but that's probably typical of all modern gadgets - and there's always one little thing you wish it did).

Thanks for the input received so far. If anybody has any dirt to dish about the C300A (or the 852x) now's the time to pipe up.
GAP/DECT has been around a fair while now and it's a pretty basic and widely used technology... but this doesn't seem to have had any effect on the price or availability.

I looked into GAP and it is widely quoted on the compatibility list, but it seems penny-pinching at best. Although mismatched handsets will interoperate through GAP, that's limited to basic call functionality and not the more sophisticated control functions - eg sharing phone books or operating the ansafone system.

Bought the dual phone set and couldn't get it to work but then we had messed up with sticking to old cable (new one thrown away by over keen husband) so thought we could solve the problem by buying a single hand set to replace the lead. Still didn't work. Called Gigaset help desk, turns out they aren't designed to work with filters for broadband which seems amazing to me as I'm sure virtually everyone has that now and so if that's the case why isn't it spelt out clearly in the product description. Really unhappy about the wasted money.

This sounds very unlikely to be true. Does anybody actually have a C300/C300A?