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Advice wanted: online chat - text or voice

  1. Dec 19, 2005 #1

    DaveC426913

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    Gold Member

    I (or more accurately, my beau) want to start up a chat room.

    - I am open about whether it is voice or text-only. In fact, I am open about whether it uses computers at all. (If someone could tell me how I could get a conference phone call going at a reasonable rate.)
    - it's for a select group of people (~ a dozen) - by invite only
    - the time is fixed, so we only need it open for a 2 hour window each few weeks
    - I'd have to get the intended participants up-to-speed software-install-wise

    I've tried MSN Messenger, but it's voice feature allows only two people.
    Yahoo doesn't allow creation of new rooms, thus, I can't make it private.
    Skype is just scary.

    Advice?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 19, 2005 #2

    dduardo

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    Staff Emeritus

    What's wrong with skype? It's free to use and has a conference feature of up to 4 people. Have you ever heard of the poweruser podcast?

    http://www.poweruser.tv/

    They use skype can it sounds very good.
     
  4. Dec 19, 2005 #3

    DaveC426913

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    1] As per my requirements, it needs to support more than 4.
    2] Their v2 s/w didn't work AT ALL last time I checked, it just fails outright. Maybe they've fixed it.
     
  5. Dec 19, 2005 #4

    dduardo

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    Staff Emeritus

    If you need more than 4 people then text is going to be the only way. The bandwidth requirements for more than 4 voice streams is just too excessive for an ordinary broadband user.

    How about an IRC chatroom?
     
  6. Dec 19, 2005 #5

    Evo

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    Staff: Mentor

    I agree, voice was an option with Cu See Me and when newbies would enter a reflector and start talking it would eat all the bandwidth, they either stopped at our "request" or got banned.

    Your only other option, that I am aware of, would be a pay service for voice, not sure what you consider cheap.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2005
  7. Dec 19, 2005 #6

    DaveC426913

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    OK, I looked at that and have installed it locally to test. (I guess I'm instralling a client, not a host. I thought I"d be setting up a host in my Domain or something.)


    So, are my users going to have to go through the same procedure? Do I set up my "channel" and tell them how to find it?
     
  8. Feb 4, 2006 #7
  9. Feb 4, 2006 #8
    there are voice programs that are commonly used in games that you might be able to use..You'd have to hav ea host server...but i think their free.

    Ventrilo and teamspeak are 2 commonly used in games...they house alot more than 4...and several chatrooms on one server..
     
  10. Mar 16, 2006 #9
    I personally use Ventrilo. If you have high-speed internet, you can use your own computer as the server. When I want to chat, I simply startup the server software. This then allows myself and those with whom I wish to talk to connect using the client software. It is quite simple.

    The initial setup up the host server simply requires forwarding a port, enabling DMZ on your local IP address (in most cases), opening the server, then connecting via IP address.
     
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