Hayes JT Fax 9600B. (evaluation)
by Eddie Huffman
For the most part, a modem/fax board eliminates the bulk and bad paper associated with fax machines. As wonderful as they are, fax machines can take up valuable space; and many people dislike having to cope with loading paper, clearing paper jams, and handling flimsy paper. A modem/fax device, on the other hand, fits neatly and discreetly into an expansion slot on your PC and allows you to print documents on your choice of printer paper.
The Hayes JT Fax 9600B covers all the advantages (no bulk, endless software applications) and disadvantages (you have to buy a scanner to transmit copies of physical documents).
Essentially techno-shy, I found the Hayes JT Fax 9600B mercifully easy to install. Just uncover the expansion slots, press it in, and plug in a couple of phone wires. The only disadvantage that I discovered was the size of the modem attached to the fax board. On my IBM XT compatible, I found it necessary to leave the expansion slot open next to it to make room for its bulk.
The software included in the package made sending and receiving fax transmissions as easy as selecting from a series of clear options. It would've been nice to have seen a menu appear when the program came up rather than having to press a hot key, though offering a menu might nullify the advantage of leaving the program in the background for use at any time. Displaying and printing received faxes was no problem, and enlargements were amazingly crisp. The user's guide provided clear illustrations and instructions, though I found it skimpily indexed.
The Hayes JT Fax 9600B may not be quite as convenient in some respects as an actual fax machine, but it makes up for the minor inconveniences with its size and flexibility.