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Re: [hylafax-users] Eicon Diva vs Brooktrout

Albert Jumaquio (Helpdesk) wrote:

Is the error rate worth the price?

I guess it depends what type and level of error rate we're talking about.

Both the Eicon (using Eicon's drivers) and the BrookTrout card work in such a way that most errors attributable to fax protocol errors will need to be fixed by the manufacturers. If the error is not fax protocol, then it would be fixed with HylaFAX, and so with the BrookTrout solution you'd turn to iFAX for that, and I expect that they'd be as responsive as the open-source side (using the Eicon) would be.

There are two figures that you can get from xferfaxstats (for sending) and recvstats (for receiving) that will give you a general idea of "error rate". One is commonly known as "error ratio" (this is probably what you mean by error-rate) and the other is "page throughput" (this should be considered as well although most people don't look at it much). To get the error ratio you divide the number of errors by the number of pages received. The page throughput is given in the script output, but it is the total time used divided by the number of pages received. You have to be careful when comparing throughput, as factors such as average number of pages per job, V.34, MMR, and JBIG support can influence that figure (and thus throw off comparisons if you're looking for errors and not really looking for communication speeds).

I can't speak for any Eicon or BrookTrout installation (and I'd be delighted to see statistics from these), but you really ought to expect an error ratio of much less than 1%. On multiple installations that I maintain (Multitech, MainPine, Comtrol) the error ratio is at about 0.2% (one error every 500 pages received) and page throughput is around 2.5 pages/min for V.34 and 2.0 pages/min without V.34 (MMR support, average job of 3 pages, no JBIG).

Throughput will worsen as the number of image data retransmissions increase and as bitrate communcation fallbacks occur, and that's why it's a good diagnostic tool in conjunction with the error ratio.


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