The 5 Best Cable Modem

You will first find contact with ISPs. When choosing the correct cable modem, make sure that the modem is approved by your ISP for usage on their network. Many people believe that every modem operates with its service provider. That is not valid in most situations but using a professional modem. Measure your bandwidth on the internet. When your broadband service offers a capacity of 300 Mbps, an 84 channel modem (with a maximum potential bandwidth of 343 Mbps or roughly 215 Mbps in actual time) does not bring you the complete capacity you pay for from your ISP.  A 16-channel modem (max theoretical speed of 686 Mbps or around 372 Mbps at real level) will enable you to achieve your maximum limit, however.

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The first reason to purchase your own modem is to save money. ISPs may charge up to $12 a month to rent one of their old modems. Therefore, you can save up to $144 a year on rental fees. Of course, those rental fees will continue to increase every year as well. After five years, you could save up to $720! Consequently, you can buy a modem for as low as $40 and use it for years. Reason #2 for buying your own device: you can pick which features you want in your modem, as opposed to the ISP forcing a limited features modem on you. Therefore, you have control over the brand, color, and specifications of the modem.

While manufacturers of cable modems list a certain speed on their boxes, those speeds are unachievable. The NETGEAR CM400 modem, for example, specifies a speed of up to 340 Mbps on the box. For different reasons, however, ISPs may restrict the speed. Comcast reports that the CM400 can in turn hit rates of up to 215 Mbps on its network. The pace that you are having would only be a certain percentage of the listed kit. Who is it for? Specific variables, such as the form of device, total amount of network users, computing hardware, internet carrier providers, and other variables can limit the modem’s maximum performance.

When you see a 16-average-4 channel bonding modem, that means it has 16 download channels and 4 upload channels. The theory is clear-the higher the data speeds would be, the more channels a modem has. Therefore a 16 Umbrella channel modem reaches a higher data rate than an 8 Umbrella channel modem. In other words, the more data channels your modem has, the more power the ISP will send back to your home (if you have bought your ISP’s highest level tier).

1.Motorola MG7700 24×8 Cable Modem Plus AC1900 Dual Band WiFi Gigabit Router with Power Boost, 1000 Mbps Maximum Docsis 3.0 – Approved by Comcast Xfinity, Cox and More

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The Motorola MG7700 is relatively lightweight, with a gray finish and a black stand at 9.1x 2.6x 2.6 inches. You’ll see some warning lights at the front of the system asking you whether it’s turned on, if any traffic passes across your network, and if others are connecting to your wireless network. The light signs are quick to see and recognize — what the cable provider usually doesn’t see with a modem.

The MG7700 has a power port on the back and a coaxial port to link the cable from your service provider to the unit. Oddly enough, there is a black gap between the control port and the top LAN port that doesn’t have something in it, as if LAN ports are lacking. For more gadgets like smart home hubs allowing you to connect in via Ethernet, a couple more LAN ports on the rear should have been good to see.  Another factor you’ll want to keep in mind is that the stand of the modem makes the nine-inch unit better equipped for vertical placement. You may always place it on the hand but it causes a very untidy feel.

Since the Motorola MG7700 is a hybrid cable modem and router, you would need to connect it into the coaxial cable of your ISP to pip internet into your house. It will also restrict your placement areas, as your contractor sometimes installs coax cables in less than optimal places, particularly if you reside in an apartment complex. When you have the option of where it’s mounted, you typically want the coax cable coming in from an unobtrusive corner, not sprouting out in an unsightly manner from the center of the living space.

2.NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem WiFi Router Combo C7000-Compatible with all Cable Providers including Xfinity by Comcast, Spectrum, Cox | For Cable Plans Up to 400 Mbps | AC1900 WiFi speed | DOCSIS 3.0

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The Netgear Nightthawk C7000 is remarkably small and compact for such a high-end modem. It’s a big upgrade comparison with the Xfinity modem that we’ve been laying around. The Nighthawk C7000 is an appealing, modern style, black plastic tool. On the front of the modem is an assortment of LED lights that warn you of its output. A USB 2.0 socket, four Gigabit Ethernet ports, a coax cable socket and the power cord port are all situated along the rear.

It’s important to remember right out of the gate that modems aren’t as easy to set up as the typical router. Before we could get going, we had to collect all of our ISP info-account number, email, etc. Instead we linked the Netgear Nighthawk to the power and a coax cable (if you tried this at home, you will first have to remove your old modem). We linked one of our computers to the modem through Ethernet to set it up, opened a web browser, signed in to the backend of the modem and disabled it via our Xfinity service. The C7000 Nighthawk arrives with guidance about how to complete the configuration.

While the Netgear Nighthawk C7000 may not have the wealthiest tech, it is enough to handle the network easily with little or no hassle. You should be welcomed by six tiles on the home page after you login and get the configuration out of the way. Click here to monitor your cable link and cables, configure parental controls and change the wireless settings. Netgear makes this easy to use and understand — without getting too confused, even less tech-literate users will be able to manage anything from setup to defense.

3.MOTOROLA 16×4 Cable Modem, Model MB7420, 686 Mbps DOCSIS 3.0, Certified by Comcast XFINITY, Charter Spectrum, Time Warner Cable, Cox, BrightHouse, and More

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The Motorola MB7420 passed our test without any problems like every other cable modem we reviewed. It’s a 16x 4 DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem optimized for internet connection rates of up to 300 Mbps, but it held up with our four simultaneous checks on the 400 Mbps speed package of Comcast Xfinity, which reached above 400 Mbps for much of our research. Again, if you’re subscribing to Internet speeds over 300 Mbps, a cable modem with more channels like the Motorola MB7621 could suit your network better.

The Motorola MB7420 has the benefit of being inherently comfortable and easy to use, in addition to its good results in our studies. Although most modems are plain, set-it – and-forget-it apps, there are a few functional touches on the MB7420 which make it a bit more user-friendly than usual. The modem’s back panel is color-coded, so each port is specifically labelled to prevent you from crossing the wires. Such connections provide a battery supply, a coaxial interface and an ethernet link via Gigabit. The back even holds the control and reset keys and can be really helpful to all. Just around one third of the modems that we checked had a power button that is not needed for daily usage.

The coaxial and Ethernet ports are situated at the bottom of the back plate, which fits good as the MB7420 is fairly small and this configuration stops it from being top-heavy and falling over too quickly. To keep it from overheating the modem has to stand vertically with space along its ventilated side panels. A few adapters are included in the package, to further streamline the physical installation of the modem. There is a yellow Ethernet cable, a tiny screw to secure the coaxial link, and a cord tie to hold everything in place.

The Motorola MB7420 comes with a two-year manufacturer’s warranty, which is the longest term we found in our evaluations. Compared to Xfinity’s $11 per month rental charge, this modem can save you up to $186 over that two-year period. The modem is also protected against lightning and power surges. If you currently have an internet plan with speeds well below 300 Mbps, the MB7420 will both work great for you now and prepare your network in case you want to upgrade in the future.

4.TP-LINK Archer CR700 AC1750 Wireless Dual Band 16×4 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem Router, Up to 680Mbps Mbps Download Data Rates, Certified for Comcast, Time Warner, Cablevision and Bright House

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This is not often that we take a dig at cable modems here at TweakTown. This is probably the first I looked at myself and, to be frank, I was very impressed by this approach because it incorporates a 16x 4 DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem with a wireless router AC1750. The TP-Link Archer CR700 as I described above is a DOCSIS 3.0 compliant cable modem with 16x 4 bonded channels for 608 Mbit / s downstream throughput and 108 Mbit / s upstream throughput and Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cablevision and Bright House Networks accredited for XFINITY.

Nearly half the people in the world who use Wi-Fi networking products use TP-Link. With over 150,000 products shipped daily, substantial investment in research and development, and meticulous in-house design, manufacturing and testing, we’re proud to be the world leader in Wi-Fi. Two USB ports make it easy to connect external drives to the router for sharing files and media across your network. And you can create fast, reliable connections with your high-performance devices using four Gigabit Ethernet ports.

5.MOTOROLA DOCSIS 3.1 Cable Modem, 6 Gbps Max Speed. Approved for Comcast Xfinity Gigabit, Cox Gigablast, and More (Model MB8600)

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Motorola MB8600 is the newest system from the current wave of cable modems to join the DOCSIS 3.1 community (along with Arris SB8200 and Netgear CM1000) and, in addition to providing up to 32 SCQAM (DOCSIS 3.0) or two OFDM (DOCSIS 3.1) bonded channels to allow you to take advantage of your service provider’s highest and quickest Internet bandwidth, it also introduces several exclusive functionality to your service provider. It’s interesting to see that Zoom decided not to include its own brand name and keep the modem simply as Motorola (it can only use it for 5 years), while Arris created an association between its own modem line and the Motorola name (e.g. Motorola ARRIS SURFboard SB6183). Even so, Zoom has created solid cable modems over the years (and it steered clear of the Puma 6 incident), so let’s see how does the Motorola MB8600 perform.

If you are acquainted with the Motorola Arris cable modem series, you will realize that Zoom’s Motorola modems are entirely different looking machines (it just retained the branding and maybe the vibrant reverse side), so it seems like the designer has distanced himself from the previous Zoom cable modems by introducing a totally new style. Therefore, the MB8600 sports a sturdy elliptic-cylindrical plastic case with soft rounded corners (obviously) and although the main body is coated with a gray matte coating, a narrower top and a thicker bottom part (which is essentially a built-in stand) are filled with a glossy black covering.

Inside the case, Zoom has equipped the Motorola MB8600 with a Broadcom BCM3390ZRKFSBG chipset (2 X FPE G48506MN LAN transformers), 512 MB of RAM (Nanya NT5CC128M16IP-DI) and 128 MB of NAND storage memory (Micron). The MB8600 is able to handle up to 32 SCQAM downstream download channels and 8 upstream bonded channels using DOCSIS 3.0 and 2 OFDM download and upload bonded channels using DOCSIS 3.1.

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