The 6 Best Cable Modems to Buy in 2017
Cable Modems are one of the misunderstood networking hardware in history. They are quite straightforward and easy to use and setup at least, as compared to the versatility of routers. There are different modems to use based on the problems you might face with your internet speed. There are modems for unusual fast internet connection. We have created this best modems list for users who are unsure on which modem would be best for them.
Best Overall: ARRIS SURFboard SB6141 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem
When you want something that is versatile or it could be that you are trying to build your own network which means you either know a great deal about networking or you’re learning. You would want something that is fast and reliable every time. This modem is different from its competitors in that it offers the DOCSIS 3.0 technology, which is common in routers. This allows it to unite 8 downstream channels and four upstream channels at a data speed of up to 343 Mbps (downloads) and 131 Mbps (uploads) depending on the ISP and connection. This modem comes in a range of speed, colors and is also available as a modem/router combo.
Best Budget Modem: TP-Link DOCSIS 3.0 (8×4) Cable Modem (TC-7610-E)
Modems are much more simple devices as compared to routers. If simplicity and affordability are what you are after, the TP-Link DOCSIS 3.0 (8×4) Cable Modem (TC-7610-E) is perfect. It’s nothing fancy but it gets the job done and does even more. The TP-Link DOCSIS offers a download speed of up to 343 Mbps. It supports the latest standards in networking and comes with 8 downstream channels and 4 upstream channels, which is very basic if you understand networking well. It does have some limitations, though. The good news is that its limitation is not a deal breaker. The TP-Link DOCSIS 3.0 (8×4) Cable Modem (TC-7610-E) won’t work with fiber-optic gigabit internet as much as you want.
Best for High-Speed Internet: ARRIS SURFboard SB6183 DOCSIS 3.0
The ARRIS SURFboard SB6183 DOCSIS 3.0 is good for those who are connected to fiber optic network with access to gigabit speed. The average household might not find a need for this modem as 1 Gbps is way more than what they will ever require. However, hardcore online gamers or offices with a large clientele who suck up huge data streams. The ARRIS SURFboard SB6183 DOCSIS 3.0 does have some requirements that need to be filled before you can expect it to work. You need to have an ISP subscription and your Service Provider needs to run fiber optic lines to your home. The ARRIS SURFboard SB6183 DOCSIS 3.0 offers a download speed of 1.4 Gbps with a cable speed of up to 686 Mbps. This modem doesn’t come cheap but it is definitely worth every penny spent on it.
Best Modem/Router Combo: ARRIS SURFboard SBG6782-AC DOCSIS 3.0
Having to deal with both the modem and router could be a hassle, connecting the Ethernet cords and coaxial cables. Most advanced users prefer to keep these two devices separate as it allows them to control and tweak the setup without losing control. For users who want less hassle and convenience, this is not advisable. These users prefer to go with a modem/router combo. The best modem/router 2-in-1 is the ARRIS SURFboard SBG6782-AC DOCSIS 3.0. This modem offers download speed of up to 343 Mbps while the router include four Gigabit Ethernet ports for connection and up to 1800 Mbps download speeds at 2.4GHz and 5GHz.
Runner-Up, Best Overall: Zoom 8×4 Cable Modem, 343 Mbps DOCSIS 3.0, Model 5345
Cable Modems come with a lot of redundancy between models and they are usually built in the same way with a few differences in speed depending on your networking situation. The Zoom 8X4 Cable Modem is an acceptable runner-up to the ARRIS SURFboard SB6141. It offers the same speed capabilities, downstream and upstream channels and it is compatible with most ISPs including Comcast and Cox. It is one of the most reviewed modems online and it is quite cheap. For those who want a bigger deal, keep in mind that you would get the same advertised speeds of up to 343 Mbps down and 143 Mbps us. It is important that you note that the internet speed is determined by a host of other factors.
Runner Up, Best Budget Modem: NETGEAR DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem (CM400-100NAS)
Finding simple and affordable modems is not as difficult as people think. There are routers that are quite affordable and functional like this NETGEAR DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem (CM400-100NAS). Its specs are similar to what we have in the NETGEAR CM400-100NAS and it offers the same networking experience. It comes with the standard DOCSIS 3.0 standard allowing for 8 downstream channels and 4 upstream channels of speed up to 340 Mbps and a Gigabit Ethernet port for faster-wired access via broadband. The NETGEAR DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem (CM400-100NAS) pack comes with a stand so the modem can sit in an upright position. It is a decent cable modem and it is worth every penny spent on it.