The 2U AS5400 lines, consisting of the AS5400, AS5400HPX, and AS5400XM, are big brothers to the AS5350, with 7 expansion slots supporting from 2 to 24 PRIs or CT3/DS3 circuit, and dual AC or dual DC power. All three models can be provisioned with one or more 2, 4, or 8PRI trunk cards or CT3/DS3 card, and either one or more 60NP or 108NP DSP cards, or Cisco's newer AS5X-FC with PVDM2-64 hardware (for the XM model only). These cards are identical to those used in the AS5350, and are interchangeable.
Pictured left is an AS5400 with 16E1s and 480 ports. Using the traditional 60NP and 108NP cards, the maximum number of ports in any of the models is 648 - due to expansion slot limitations. All models are universal access servers, supporting voice, data, and fax, plus routing and transcoding in addition to origination and termination capabilities.
The standard AS5400's 250MHZ CPU limits the maximum number of functional VOIP ports to about 350 (and less for higher complexity codecs and SIP traffic, although it can handle 648 dialup ports without a problem) and the HPX's limit is about 480 ports, although these limits vary on the type of traffic. Those wanting to use the full 648 ports for VOIP, or to use the full 672 ports in a DS3 circuit, can use a stacked configuration to handle a full DS3 circuit using AS5400 chassis or move up to the XM versions of the AS5400.
The AS5400XM and AS5350XM are able to support Cisco's PVDM2 DSP hardware (described below) and are able to function both as IP-IP softswitch-type gateways and transcoding gateways (for example in converting G711 to G729).
Although the AS5400, AS5400HPX, and AS5400XM are virtually identical in terms of physical capabilities and specifications, their capabilities differ depending on CPU speed, plus the XM model line's ability to use PVDM2-based DSP hardware. The table below provides an overview of each model's practical capabilities.For help in configuring an AS5400/XM access server, click here
| Model Comparison - AS5400, AS5400HPX, and AS5400XM || Maximum Useable Voice Ports || CPU Speed || Features |
| AS5400 || 380 (depending on use), 672 with stacked configuration. || 250 MHZ || 2 FE, for use above 300 ports consider stacking |
| AS5400HPX || 480 (depending on use), 672 with stacked configuration. || 397 MHZ || 2FE, for use above 450 ports consider stacking |
| AS5400XM || 672 (with PVDM2 hardware) || 650 MHZ || 2GE, supports softswitch capabilities. With PVDM2 hardware, the XM supports narrowband (GSM) Codecs, and enhanced transcoding. |
It is known that the base AS5400 can support up to about 384 ports of voice traffic before running out of processor resources. Even the faster HPX can only handle about 480 ports maximum. The AS5400XM was developed by Cisco to address this limitation. However, even with the AS5400XM, the traditional DSP hardware only allowed a maximum of 648 ports - not the 672 ports in a full DS3 circuit. So Cisco also developed newer PVDM2 hardware that enabled the AS5400XM to handle a full 672 ports of traffic. The street price of this solution, when configured to support G729 and lower Codecs, is above $50,000.
Here an affordable alternative is possible. It consists of two stacked, DRAM-maxed AS5400s, one with 2 CT3 cards and 324 ports, the second with 1 CT3 port and 384 ports. It works like this - for origination work the first unit brings in the external DS3 ciruit on its first CT3 card. Part of the traffic is processed on its 324 universal DSPs, and the rest is sent out on its second CT3 into the 2nd AS5400s only CT3 card. The 2nd AS5400 then processes the remainder of the calls. Each unit sends the voip traffic out via its fast ethernet ports. For termination work, the process is similar but in reverse. This configuration provides great performance and redundancy by spreading the traffic over two complete units - although not comparatively tested, it could even better than the AS5400XM, at a fraction of the cost.
AS5400 Stacking for Reverse Mux Operations: Other stacking configurations could include a second unit that routes out multiple E1/T1 PRIs. Contact us for details and a price quote.