USRobotics 56K* USB Controller Faxmodem with Voice
Overview & Features Specifications Awards & Reviews Data Sheet Support
USB Modem works flawlessly on Linux systems"As we operate in remote areas, we still need access to hardware modems and I just wanted to say that we have ordered your external USB hardware modem and it works flawlessly on our Linux systems ... You guys have always been top notch, this just puts you guys head and shoulders above everyone else. "
Email – Ocotber 2008 (CA)
Linux at Last (or Why I Love This Modem)
“All in all, this seems to have been the perfect solution. It's compact and, therefore, portable. It doesn't interfere with any of my other hardware or accessories. And, most importantly, it plays well with Linux."
*** 1/2 USRobotics 56K USB Modem review
“Designed for portability, the USRobotics 56K USB Modem is small enough to slip into a pocket, case or backpack when you're travelling, and draws its power from a USB port on a PC or Mac."
PC Advisor – 2008 (UK)
*** US Robotics 56K USB Modem networking
“A slimline USB modem that provides dial-up internet access ... that's going to be when the broadband connection isn't working, or when travelling, and that's when the US Robotics 56K USB Modem comes in useful."
*** 56K USB Modem Don't laugh – it could come in handy when you hit the road with your laptop"The 56K USB Modem could turn out to be very useful for business users or other people that spend a lot of time checking in and out of hotels. It could even turn out to be a lifesaver if you need to check your email and find yourself holed up somewhere that doesn't have broadband internet access."
Macworld – June 2008 (UK)
If you're looking for a Linux dial-up modem, this is the one to get.
The bottom line is that this modem is worth every penny”
If you're looking for a Linux dial-up modem, this is the one to get. It's truly a hardware modem and uses the USB communications device standard. Linux detects the device using the standard USB communication driver and it woks with “pppd” and KDE KPPP.
If you're looking for a Windows modem this is still a great modem but you can get less expensive software modems. One advantage for Windows users is the bundled BVRP Phone Tools fax, terminal and phone book software. I've used this software with other US Robotics modems and it works great on all versions of Windows from Windows 2000 through Windows 7. Please be aware that it only works with the US Robotics modem and not other modems you may have installed. Since the modem is a true hardware modem it won't use as much of the computer's processing to communicate over dial-up. It's also less likely to cause operating system problems and crashes since it doesn't use a special OS service or driver.
The modem is light, small and well constructed. It comes with a decently long phone cord including a ferrite donut to cut down on radio interference. It works fine with any phone cable but the phone cable may affect nearby radio devices without the ferrite donut. I haven't had any problems with any phone cord.
There is a small green power light and a small phone communication light to show what the modem is doing. I thought those were a nice feature since I could tell immediately when the OS detected the modem (the power light came on). I also could tell when the modem was communicating because the data light would blink.
As I mentioned the software included is BVRP Classic Phone Tools for Windows. It has a CD with drivers and software, including a “README” file for Linux users. If you're having trouble figuring out the Linux device name, look at the Linux README on the CD.
A printed manual is included, but it doesn't have a lot of information. There's just enough to get the modem installed and working so you need to read the Phone Tools documentation. The printed manual is in multiple languages and that makes it seem like it has more than it actually does.
It may not be obvious but this modem also can send and receive faxes. The Phone Tools software for Windows has a fax capture driver that will let nearly any program print a document to the fax. Phone Tools gives you a chance to add a cover page and review the document before you send it. My only complaint about the print to fax driver is that you have to print all the pages using the same program. You can't add more pages to a fax after creating it. I've had to resort to pasting multiple pages into word documents or merging Acrobat documents so that I can make everything into one fax. Considering what the software does for the price it's a great program.
The modem does get warm after a while but not even enough to be uncomfortable to hold in your hand. I haven't had any problems with long-term operation and it communicates as fast as the phone line quality allows. The best part is that it doesn't have any noticeable effect on the speed of the computer and doesn't require any special software.
My only complaint about the modem is the price, but it isn't exorbitant compared to other true hardware modems for PCI or PCMCIA. Since it uses USB it is much more compatible with any computer, from a desktop to a netbook. Almost everything has a USB port and most operating systems support the USB communications device standard. Even though it's not cheap this modem will be useful for a long time, even with the inevitable computer technology changes. A PCMCIA or Expresscard modem might not be compatible with older or newer laptops and is no more convenient to plug in and use.
For Linux, you only need to buy one of these modems and connect it to whatever computer you happen to be using. Linux HAL detects it and you can use it immediately after plugging it in. You don't have to reboot or type in shell commands. If you're hesitating about the price, consider that it will save you time on every Linux computer where you need to use dial-up. The software modems included with most computers (especially laptops) are hard to get working and may stop working when you install newer versions of Linux. Also the software modem drivers tend to require undesirable kernel options such as no preemption in order to work. You have none of those issues with this little modem because it uses no extra software on Linux.
The bottom line is that this modem is worth every penny in spite of the rather high price. Amazon super-saver shipping takes a bit of the sting out of the price.
* Capable of receiving at up to 56 Kbps and sending at up to 48 Kbps (or 31.2 Kbps with V.90 server). Due to FCC regulations on power output, receiving speeds are limited to 53.3 Kbps. Actual speeds may vary. V.92, V.90, and V.22 features require compatible phone service and support from your Internet Service Provider (ISP). USR modems featuring V.92 enhancements are backward compatible and will negotiate the highest possible speed when connecting to an ISP.