Pros:Time tested no frills design. Does not require AC power to operate.
Cons:Somewhat heavy handset. No LCD display.
The Bottom Line: Great telephone for people who don't need many features with their telephone, but require a proven, time-tested design.
The AT&T Trimline 210 is a very basic telephone. It appeals to those who need a simple, no frills telephone for the home or workplace. The most advanced feature the telephone offers is the ability to store 10 telephone numbers into memory.
Recommend this product?
The 210 consists of 2 main pieces, a base and a handset.
The base has very little in the way of circuitry, just the jacks to connect the coiled handset cord and the cord that you plug into a walljack, or an answering machine. The base also contains the directory card with spaces to list up to 10 speed dial numbers. The base can be wall mounted, or placed on a flat surface, such as a desk. A small tab, located on the base, is rotated so the handset doesn't crash to the floor when the unit is wall mounted.
The handset contains the "guts" of the telephone, so it is subsequently heavier than the base. The handset contains the standard 12 button arrangement, FLASH, REDIAL and MUTE buttons and 3 slider switches. The slider switch, located on the left top side of the handset, controls the earpiece volume. It has 3 positions ranging from NORMAL to LOUD. Another slider, located just below that FLASH button, controls the ringer volume. The choices are OFF, LO & HI. The last slider switch changes between Dialpulse (DP) and Touchtone (TT). All 15 buttons on the handset are backlit while the telephone is offhook. This a real handy feature when making a call in a poorly lit area.
The sound quality of this telephone is excellent. The telephone does not add a lick of noise to conversations. People couldn't tell if I was using an old Western Electric telephone, or a modern corded telephone! The buttons have a good feel to them and large enough that it's harder to press 2 buttons together by accident than on a smaller cordless telephone handset. The MUTE button is functional only as long as it's pressed and it's a little hard to get at unless you move the handset away from your ear.
Even at it's loudest setting, the ringer isn't exceptionally loud and may be hard to hear in a noisy setting. The ringer can be switched off for times when hearing the ringer isn't desired.
The handset is a little on the heavy side, so prolonged placement between the shoulder & ear might make for some stiffness.
The telephone has a Ringer Equivalency Number (REN) of 0.4. Most local service providers require than all of the telephones connected to your phoneline have a total REN of less than 4.0. The REN indicates the amount of power required to ring your telephone. Old Western Electric telephones had an REN of 1.0 and knowing this, Ma Bell would test telephone lines to determine how many telephones you had connected to your line. Given that everyone rented telephones prior to 1984, the telephone company could tell if you had more phones than you were paying for and they would send someone to check things out if there was a discrepancy.
If Caller ID service is added to your phoneline, you can simply add an adjunct such as the AT&T 436 or the Fanstel G99M.
All told, the AT&T 210 remains a true workhorse in the consumer telephone world. While the lack of frills may make it seem a little dated, VTech, the maker of AT&T branded products since 2000, has opted to leave this telephone's design basically unchanged from the way it's been made for years.
2 thumbs up!
The latest version of the AT&T 210 telephone has a button between the 2 slider switches on the handset. The button is used to program, among other things, telephone numbers into the telephone's memory. The telephone I reviewed is an older version that does not contain this button.
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