Multicast Paging Audio Quality



  • We've been using multicast paging at our shop for about 3 years and have never had a problem until recently. The audio has been severely breaking up over the past week or so. I assume it's a switching issue, and I haven't had a chance to reboot my switch yet. Is there anything else that might be causing these problems? Any logs or performance stats to look at? Side note, I just updated my Ubiquiti Edgeswitch from version 1.0.1 to 1.7.1 about a month ago, maybe that had something to do with this?


  • Service Provider

    If it is pure LAN, basically the only issue that there is likely to be is either equipment failing or network saturation.



  • It is a pure LAN, and I highly doubt the network is saturated. The admin page is showing 95% CPU utilization on the switch, and GUI seems really sluggish compared to the old version... Nothing has really changed at all on my network except for that firmware update. Maybe I'll try rolling back if the reboot doesn't fix it.


  • Service Provider

    @bnrstnr said in Multicast Paging Audio Quality:

    It is a pure LAN, and I highly doubt the network is saturated. The admin page is showing 95% CPU utilization on the switch, and GUI seems really sluggish compared to the old version... Nothing has really changed at all on my network except for that firmware update. Maybe I'll try rolling back if the reboot doesn't fix it.

    I have switches on the firmware without that result.
    Here is one.
    0_1510679736034_7e2f5b36-232f-40ff-a8b3-84b433682d3b-image.png



  • Not enough power to going to the speakers?



  • @black3dynamite There is only one speaker for our shop, the rest of the paging is through our Yealink phones, which have the same quality issues, but only while paging. Everything else with the phones works just fine.


  • Service Provider

    @bnrstnr said in Multicast Paging Audio Quality:

    @black3dynamite There is only one speaker for our shop, the rest of the paging is through our Yealink phones, which have the same quality issues, but only while paging. Everything else with the phones works just fine.

    Each paging unit is a normal phone SIP extension? Nothing unique about them?



  • This config in every phone, and our Snom PA1

    alt text

    alt text



  • @scottalanmiller I don't page to the SIP extensions, I broadcast the "paging" over multicast and the phones are always listening for that unless they're busy. Please excuse me if I'm not explaining it correctly lol I don't understand exactly how it works.

    I can't remember exactly why I didn't do paging through the PBX to extensions, but I want to say there was a ridiculous lag doing it that way.


  • Service Provider

    I have never noticed a lag with normal paging from the PBX.

    Why don't you call the speaker's extension and make an announcement see how that sounds?

    Or is it ONLY setup for multicast and does not exist as an extension?

    Also what if you *80EXT and intercom to a phone. does that also sound normal?

    This would clearly indicate that the multicast is the issue.


  • Service Provider

    @bnrstnr said in Multicast Paging Audio Quality:

    @scottalanmiller I don't page to the SIP extensions, I broadcast the "paging" over multicast and the phones are always listening for that unless they're busy. Please excuse me if I'm not explaining it correctly lol I don't understand exactly how it works.

    I can't remember exactly why I didn't do paging through the PBX to extensions, but I want to say there was a ridiculous lag doing it that way.

    Sorry, was just me missing the info.



  • @jaredbusch Everything sounds fine if we call other extensions, it's almost certainly a multicast issue. I'll try rebooting the switch tonight to see if that clears it up, I was just trying to get a feel for if anybody else had ever experienced anything like this.

    I've been planning to migrate my Elastix install over to FreePBX for quite some time now, I've got everything setup on FPBX, just haven't had the time to switch everything over. Once I do that I'll try out the extension paging again and maybe get rid of the multicast completely.


  • Service Provider

    @bnrstnr said in Multicast Paging Audio Quality:

    @jaredbusch Everything sounds fine if we call other extensions, it's almost certainly a multicast issue. I'll try rebooting the switch tonight to see if that clears it up, I was just trying to get a feel for if anybody else had ever experienced anything like this.

    Yeah, just trying to test a few other things to verify as rebooting your switch is not currently an option.


  • Service Provider

    With multicasting being identified as unique to the affected system and the switch at 95%, I'm guessing that we found our culprit.



  • Not only did restarting not work, but it completely broke the paging on everything but my PA1... for some reason that's the only device still getting the multicast audio.


  • Service Provider

    @bnrstnr said in Multicast Paging Audio Quality:

    Not only did restarting not work, but it completely broke the paging on everything but my PA1... for some reason that's the only device still getting the multicast audio.

    Well, that is not how any of that works. So something is obviously all screwed up. I wonder what it is?



  • @jaredbusch I've lost the multicast settings in my switch every time I've rebooted it. I always click the save config button and make sure it's good. I'm not sure if it's a bug? Maybe I'm the only one using this? Who knows?

    I can't figure out how to set it up like I have in the past with the massive changes to the GUI from versions 1.0.1 to 1.7.1. I'm guessing it's time for me to learn some CLI stuff.

    edit: I've rebooted this switch maybe 3 times in the 3 years I've had it, so it's pretty rare.



  • Still no idea what is going on with this.... The multicast randomly started working again later in the day, but the audio was still broken and could barely understand what was being said.

    So I migrated my Elastix install over to FreePBX last night and changed from multicast paging to extension paging groups and it's working flawlessly. Only annoying bit is the announcement tone that gets played before you can talk. We hear all the phones beeping at different times, but once you wait for the beeping to stop, the audio quality is perfect with almost no lag at all. I've changed all the settings in the pbx to no announcement tone, but it's still doing it. I don't know if I need to change settings in my phones or what. Looking into that now.


  • Service Provider

    Yes there is a phone setting for that.


  • Service Provider

    In a Yealink, it is here. I do not have the config file setting handy.

    0_1510847846931_5cf60037-b964-4f7c-ab0b-cb4b076b4735-image.png


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