Zenitel/ Stentofon Turbine IP Intercom Tested

By Brian Rhodes, Published Aug 06, 2018, 09:16am EDT

IPVM has published reports testing an Axis door station and a Hikvision door station (tested). However, those companies are new entrants to this space.

By contrast, Zenitel's Vingtor-Stentofon is an intercom incumbent provider. We bought and tested their Pulse Turbine to see how it compares: 

We evaluated Zenitel's Pulse system and Turbine video door stations, the TCIV, to see how well they perform. We tested the following:

  • System Strengths & Weaknesses
  • Audio Quality
  • Noise Reduction
  • Low Light Image
  • 3rd Party Integration

Key ********

** *** *****, ***** Turbine ****** ******** *** performed ****, **** ******* pros:

  • ******, ***** *****: *** ***** ******* by *** **** ******* registered ~** - ** dB ** *' - 3' **** *** **** station, *** ******* ***** PoE *******, ***** *** loud *** ****** ***** from **** ***** *******, even ** ****** ** typical, ***** ******** *******.
  • ********** *******: ** *** *******, Pulse ******* ******** ******* features **** ************ ******** stations ********, ************ ***** between ********, ********** ***-*** calls, *** *********** ******* intercom **** ******* *** typically ********* ** ***** serverless Door ******* (**: *************) ** ***** ******** (**: ***********) ********. ****** **** intercom ******* **** *** a ******* ****** ** coordinate *******, ***** ** an ******** ****-**-**** ****** needing ** ********* ************ or ********** ******** ** route *****. 
  • **** ***** **********: *** ******* ***** ********* feature ******* ******** ***** in *** *****, ****** speech **** ************ **** loud ********** ***** ** the **** ******* ***. (~75 **).

*******, ***** *** **** weaknesses *** **** **** video ** ** ********* strong ***** ******** ******:

  • **** *****: ***** ***** ** low **********, **** ** low *****, *** ************ was * ******* ** testing. ******** ** *****-******* devices,****** *** * **** image-quality *********, ****** ***** onboard ***** ** ****** operators ********* ***** ** see *** ******, *** perform ********* **** ************.
  • ******* *************: **** *** ********** Pulse ****** ******** ******** points ** ************* ** work *** *** ****** of ******* *** ******** require *********** ******* ******** to **********.
  • ******** ******* *****: ******* ***** ** based, ****** ********* ** limited ** ******* ******** stations ****** ** ********** software '**** *****' *** 'cloud *****' ****** ******** are ********* *** ****** or ********* ******** *********.

************, ********** ***** ******* do *** ***** ************ with *** ***** *********. If ************ *** ******, another ******* ****, *** server-based************** ** ********, ***** connects ** *****, ******** House, *******, *************** ****** ****** *******. 

*****

*** **** ***********-* ******* ***** *** ~$1700 *** ******** ***** ********* for ** ** ** stations. ********** ******** **** 16 **** *** ~$*** each, ******** ********** ******* and ****** ********* ********* apply.

Physical ********

*** ***** ****** ** comprised ** **** ******** and * **** *****, supporting * ******* ** 64 ******** *** ** connected *** ***** *** devices *** ******** *******. For **** ************, * system ******** ** * video **** ***** *** two ** ***** ******* stations **** ** ****, as ** ****** ** our **** ******:

*** ******* **** ******* via *** *** ******** no ********** ***** ******** or ******* *******. *** ***** below ******* *** ******** features ** *** ******:

Making * **** *******

** *** *****, ********** and ******* ***** **** system ******* **** **** and *****, **** *** latency, ************ *****. 

** *** ****, ***** connected ******* (****** * second) **** ** *********** spanned ******** ********. ***** connects ** **** ** the **** ****** ** pressed, ** ********* *** view *** ****** ****** even ****** ********** ***** or ******* ** *** call.

Turbine **** ********

******* **** ******** *** surface ******* *********** *********, ** *** ** wall ******* ***** **** 2 **** **** *****. The ***** *** **** rated, *** ****** ** a ******* ********* *** metal *******.

*** ***** ** *** station ** ********* ** a ****** ** ****** and ********, ********* *********, and *** ************* ** call ******* ****** **** single (******) ** ******** scrolling ********* *****. *** Turbine's ******* ** ****** inside * ***** ****:

*** ******** ** *** station ** ****** **** the ********* ** ** RJ-45 **** *** *** unit's */* ***** *** connecting **** ******* ** signal *****:

Good ***** *********

******* ******** '****** ***** *********', ********* * ******* maximum ***** ********* ** 'over ** **'.  ** our ****, **** ******* made ******* ****** **** more ******* ** ***** environments.

**** ** ****** **** the **** ****** ***, ambient ***** *** **** reduces *************** **** **** stations. *******, **** ****** on, ********** ***** *** greatly *******, ****** ****** more *****. *** ***** below ***** *** **** of **** *******:

** ******** ** **** stations **** **** *****-*, *******'* ***** ********* is **** ************, **** up ** * ********* settings ****** **** ******** on/off. *******'* ****-****** ** noise ********* *** ****** in ****** ***** **** Axis *** ********* **** stations. ** *** ****, we **** **** ** filter *** **** ***** noise, *** ***** **** up ** ******* ******* at ******* '*', *** filter **** *** ***** still ******* ****** ** setting '*'.

*** ********** ******** ***** for ******** ********** ****** to ** ******** *** while ******* ***** ******* be ****** **.

Not ****** ***** ***********

** ******** ** *** high ********** *****, ******* video *********** ** ****. The ******** ****** ******* video ** *** *********** of **** * ***, although ******* **** ******** are *** * ***. The ***** ****** ** useful *** ******** ********* of *******, *** *** camera ** *** ******, nor ******** *** ******* surveillance ***.

*******, *********** ****** ******* or ** ****-******* ***** results ** ****** *****. *******, Turbine ******** ** *** **** integrated **. ** *** test, *********** ** ***** at *****, ** **** no ******** ***** ******* proved *********** *** *****, resulting ** **** ******* of ***** ***** ~****. 

********** **** ****** ** lights (***** ***), *** door ******* ***** ** essentially ********, **** *** subject ********* ** *** and *** **** ** the ***** ****** ******* dark.

Heavy ***** *************

******* ***** **** ******** audio ******* ******* *** automatic ****** ********* *** adjustable *** ***********. ** tested ***** ********* ** 25 **** **** **** the **** *******, *** with '*** ***********' *** to ******* *** ******* could **** ****** ****** conversations. **** ******** ** longer **** ******* **** and ********* **** ******** fixed ** **** ** audio ****** ***** ** devices, ******* * - 10 **** ***.

***** ******* ** **** broadcasted *** ******** ***** signals *** ****** ************, with ******* *** *** sensitivities *** ********* ****** settings *** ********* ** **** and ********* **** ********:

**** ** ***** ******** are ******** ** ****** 'push ** ****' ******** systems, *** ***** *** be **** ** ************ where **** ****** (*************) audio, **** ************, ** audio ********** *** ** needed. 

Limited *** ***** ***********

******* ******* *** *** directly ********** ** *****, nor **** ******* ***** ONVIF ******. *** ***** integrations ******* ** ******** central ****** (********) *** not ********* *** *****. 

*******, ************ ********* ***** the ******-***** ******** ****** (including ***** *******) *** ********* for**** **** ** ********* platforms, ********* ********* *******,******** ***** *-****,**** *******,*** ********** ********* ****** systems, ****************************** ***. ******* *********** ** handled ** ******* ******* ***** ***.

** *** ****, ** were **** ** **** live ***** ***** ** TCP/UDP **** ****, ******** subsequent ********* ** *** connected *** **** ** video **** (** *****), and *** ******-**** ****** detection ****. ** ***** **** automatically ****** ** ***** for *** **** *******'* call ******, *** ** could ** ******** ******* using ******** */* ******.

Dealer ****

***** ** **** ********* from ******* ******* ********* dealers. ******* *** ******* then ** ******* ******* those ********* *******.

Pulse ******** ** **** & ********* **** ********

*** ******* ********** ******* Turbine ***** *** **** stations **** **** ** Hikvision ** **** ******* of * ****** ******** device ********** ** * VMS, ***** ** * fully ********* ******** ****** for ********** ***********, **** notification, ********** *******, *** audio ************** ********* *** beyond ****** ******** *** echo ********** ** ******* automatic ****** *** ********** gain ********.

*******, ****** **** *** Hikvision **** ********, ***** video ** *** ********** with *** *** ** a ********* ****** *********, lacking *****-**** *** ***-***** features.

**** *** ********* **** stations *** ****** ********* via ************, ***** ******* is ******* ** ******* only *** *** ********* available ******* **** ***** channel.

Comments (17)

One thing I didn't see mentioned is these can be configured as standard SIP endpoints and used on most SIP PBX systems.  

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We did not test SIP integration, so it is not a focus of the test, but we did mention it in the integrations, ie: Genetec Sipella.

Do you integrate these using SIP? Which platform(s) do you commonly use?

The SIP protocol is widely used in certain verticals (like VoIP), so conceivably (again, we didn't test) adding Turbine to existing systems is made easy.

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We mostly use FreePBX which also supports SIP video calls.  But it works with many others too. 

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That's interesting.  I added a link above for those interested.  Do you sell other SIP-enabled products too, like phones?

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These units can be directly integrated into an IP PBX, eliminating the need for master stations (if you're doing audio only). We have two of these at our office entrances, part of our phone system. Even the door unlocking works, the unit is configured to trigger the relay when 6 is pressed during a call.

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The video is supported if using a PBX that supports video calls. 

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It would be nice to know an estimated street cost so that can be considered when comparing to the Axis and Hik systems. 

In a lot of ways this system sounds very similar to the Aiphone IX system. 

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Does the Aiphone IX system support SIP?  Can you connect their units to any SIP PBX or does it only work with other Aiphone devices in this series?  I would also be interested to hear the audio quality comparison between Stentofon and Aiphone. 

One really nice feature with Stentofon is the intercoms can work in any mode/system so you don't get locked into a system that can't grow.  The intercom that was tested can work as a SIP extension, Pulse mode or AlphaCom. 

 

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No it is not SIP compatible. I think it might be a closed loop system. 

It is a server less architecture. With a pretty good Ovif camera. Very scale able. Complicated programming. But when setup works very well. Expensive.   

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I will mention that there is an upcoming firmware update that will make the camera ONVIF compatible so it will be able to be pulled into most VMS’s. 

This is supposed to be released later this year. 

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UPDATE: TCIV now ONVIF Profile S Conformant

ONVIF now lists the TCIV camera updated with v 5.0.3.0 firmware as Profile S conformant:

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Thank you for this article, Brian!

Very helpful.

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Note that there is also an audio-only version of this product without the camera.  

When researching door stations a few months ago I noticed a pattern:

(1) very few door stations offer high-quality audio with noise-reduction features that live up to expectations and

(2) for door stations that do offer high-quality audio there is typically also a significantly more expensive premium version of the product with a camera but the quality of these cameras is nearly without exception extremely low

For example, one vendor sells the the TCIV-3 station mentioned in the article for around $1600, while selling the audio-only version TCIS-3 for under $850. In other words, the camera features are priced at $750. For this price you would expect a high-quality camera but from the article we know that this is not what you get.

My recommendation is to buy the audio-only version of this product and spend the savings on a separate high-quality camera. I've done this in real life and am very happy with my decision.

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This is useful feedback.  Thanks for sharing!

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Using the Axis F41 unit with a fisheye lens mounted above the TCIS-3 is very useful. 

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I just spec'd this type of Solution using the IP Verso by 2N.  Extremely scaleable, since the Axis Video Door Stations are all on Backorder, my Axis Rep sent me to the 2N Rep.  The IP Verso Uses Modules to add on the various parts needed.  Pretty sweet, plus the 2N Products intergrate well with Yealink and Grandstream, not to mention SIP and Astrick based IP PBX, like FreePBX.

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How does the image quality compare to the Axis version?

Did you purchase the extra license to enable ONVIF? 

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