Modem vs. Router: What’s the Difference?
Your modem is a box that connects your home network to the wider Internet. A router is a box that lets all of your wired and wireless devices use that Internet connection at once and also allows them to talk to one another without having to do so over the Internet. Often, your Internet service provider will give you one box that serves as both modem and router, but they’re still different technologies; not all modems include routers and not all routers have modems. You need both, integrated or not, in order to provide an Internet connection for all the devices in your home.
We recommend using a separate modem and router, if you can. Since modem technology changes slowly, you can usually use a modem for years, until it breaks, but you might need to replace a router because you want better coverage, because you’ve added more devices to your network and your old router isn’t keeping up, or because you want to take advantage of the latest improvements in Wi-Fi technology. You can often save money on your monthly Internet bill if you buy your own modem and router instead of using the ones your ISP provides, though this is usually true only if you have cable Internet, not DSL or fiber, and the situation is more complicated if you get phone service from your ISP as well.
A modem modulates and demodulates electrical signals sent through phone lines, coaxial cables, or other types of wiring; in other words, it transforms digital information from your computer into analog signals that can transmit over wires, and it can translate incoming analog signals back into digital data that your computer can understand. Most stand-alone modems have just two ports: one that connects to the outside world, and an Ethernet jack that connects to a computer or a router.
If you use cable Internet service, your ISP probably gave you a modem when the company set up your service. But it didn’t do this out of the goodness of its heart—if you look at your bill, you’ll most likely discover that you’re paying an extra monthly fee (typically around $10) for the privilege.
That’s one reason why we recommend that cable Internet users buy their own modems.1 Good ones such as the Motorola MB or the Netgear CM cost between $60 and $80; the modem will pay for itself after a few months and last for years, even if you change cable providers.
If you use DSL or fiber Internet (like Verizon’s Fios service), your choices are more limited. Your ISP probably provides you a modem or a modem/router combo, and may not allow you to bring your own modem even if you can find one to buy in the first place. In many cases you can turn off the router features of a combination modem/router and use it as a stand-alone modem so you can add your own router, but the process for doing so (and whether that’s supported at all) differs depending on your service provider and the type of Internet connection you have.
Your router’s primary responsibility is to route data between devices in your home, and between those devices and the wider Internet. The system of interconnected devices plus the router itself is what we’re collectively referring to when we talk about a home network. Your modem connects to one port on the router—usually (but not always) labeled “Wide Area Network,” or “WAN”—and all of your devices connect to the other ports, or wirelessly over the Wi-Fi standard.
We recommend two kinds of wireless routers depending on the size of your home, how many devices you connect to your network, and where the router is in your home. Most one- or two-bedroom apartments with a couple dozen devices can be covered by a stand-alone Wi-Fi router. Good ones like the TP-Link Archer A7 are available for around $60, but great ones like the TP-Link Archer AX50 cost closer to $ These models function best if you can place them near the center of your home and give all of your devices the best wireless connection possible; even one or two devices with a weak connection can reduce performance for all the other wireless devices on the network.
If you have a larger home, if you have lots of smart devices in addition to your computers and phones and streaming boxes, or if your router has to sit far away from the center of your home, a Wi-Fi mesh-networking kit is a better fit. Good ones start around $, and great ones like the Asus ZenWiFi AC typically cost somewhere between $ and $ These kits usually come in two or three pieces, with one piece that functions like a stand-alone router and one or more pieces that act as satellites. Place each satellite in between your router and an area of your home with a poor Wi-Fi signal, and it will act as a go-between, increasing the range and improving the quality of your entire wireless network.
Unlike traditional Wi-Fi extenders, which don't coordinate with your router, these mesh Wi-Fi systems were developed to work together; they make sure that each of your devices is connected to the router or satellite that provides it the best, strongest signal. You can add more satellites to the network later if you’re still unhappy with the coverage in certain parts of your home or if you move to a bigger place.
If you want to know more about the way your router does its job, this summary of common networking terminology is a good place to start.
Troubleshooting and maintaining your router
Routers are complicated pieces of technology, and we can’t tell you everything you’d need to know to fix every networking problem you might run into. But these common troubleshooting and maintenance tips should help you keep your network running as smoothly and securely as possible.
- Make sure to position it well: A stand-alone router should sit as close to the center of your home as possible and out in the open, but all routers and satellites should have as few obstructions around them as possible (especially metal ones). Try not to stick them inside a desk, behind your computer monitor, or way back in a corner.
- Update the firmware: New firmware updates can improve your router’s performance, add new features, and (most important) fix security problems. Many recent routers will install firmware updates automatically, but others won’t, so consult your router’s manual for instructions on how to check for updates and install them. If your router hasn’t received a firmware update in more than a year or two, it may be time to consider a replacement.
- Change the default passwords: This means both the WPA2 or WPA3 passkey you use to connect new devices to the router and the administrative password you use to change settings and install firmware updates. The default passwords for each are usually printed on a label on the bottom of the router, and changing both reduces the risk of someone hopping on your network and using your Internet or changing the settings without your permission.
- Reboot your router and modem: If your router keeps dropping connections or can’t access the Internet at all, turn it off or unplug it, wait 10 seconds, and then turn it back on (do the same with your modem, if you have a separate one). It’s totally normal to need to do this every once in a while, but if you’re doing it every day, your router or modem may need to be repaired or replaced.
1. One possible exception is if you have a cable bundle that also includes landline phone service. “Telephony” or eMTA modems cost more than regular modems and are less widely compatible, and your ISP likely won’t allow you to bring your own anyway.
4G Modem vs Hotspot: Everything You Need to Know Before Making a Choice [Infographic]
With portable internet-connected devices becoming commonplace, home networks are outpaced by mobile ones. Many types of jobs and entertainment now require a steady, high-speed connection on the go. And once there is demand, the market is happy to deliver, with a broad selection of devices now offered to consumers, each boasting exceptional quality of service.
Such abundance inevitably leads to confusion as people pit a mobile hotspot vs 4G USB modem of their choosing. To understand which one suits you best, you’ll need to look beyond the marketing claims and understand which of itsbenefits you really need.
4G Modem vs Hotspot: What Exactly Are Those?
In the era when access to the Internet has become a necessity, words like “hotspot,” “router,” and “modem” are thrown around a lot. While there is a general understanding that all of those are connecting devices, there’s still much confusion about their roles and the differences between them. So, before we can make a meaningful USB modem vs hotspot comparison, we need to clarify what these devices are and what they aren’t.
4G Hotspot Definition
In the broadest terms, a hotspot is any location where people can get access to the Internet via a wireless network. In this sense, an access point in a coffee shop is as much of a hot spot as a personal router you have at home. There are several ways to create a wireless connection but the one most familiar to the public is the Wi-Fi protocol.
It is also common to refer to smartphones or other gadgets that provide access to the Internet as the hotspot devices, or even simply hotspots. Either way, these are usually standalone pieces of equipment that work as wireless Internet service providers for laptops, desktops, phones, or anything with networking capabilities.
4G Modem Definition
Strictly speaking, a modem is a device that can convert the signal from one format into another to enable data transmission. Think of it this way: your computer and the mobile network speak different languages, so you need a modem to translate it. Until recently, the most common variety was a USB dongle – a small device with a SIM card slot that plugs into your laptop and enables the 4G LTE connection. Nowadays, there is a wide variety of such devices that surpass dongles in functionality and service quality.
Take a look at the infographic below to understand what are the benefits and drawbacks of each:
To boil it down:
A hotspot is used for sharing the connection with multiple devices and usually has to be connected to the Internet in some way. A modem is a piece of equipment for establishing the communication to the Internet which can but doesn’t have to, allow connections of multiple devices.
This means that a modern USB modem can technically be a hotspot but not vice versa.
USB Modem vs Mobile Hotspot: A Detailed Comparison
Now let’s look at each aspect of Internet connection that can matter to data consumers and find out which device works best in each case.
The days of a single Internet access point per household are long gone. Today, we are surrounded by items that rely on a web connection. Here are but a few:
- Desktop PCs
- Gaming Consoles
- Voice Controllers
- Surveillance Cameras
- IoT appliances
When it comes to mobile hotspots, the number of connections a portable internet device can support depends on the manufacturer and the firmware. Of course, the more devices you channel through your mobile phone, the faster its battery is drained, so it is not a scalable solution. A dedicated modem or a router, on the other hand, is designed to support up to 10 devices, which ensures a stable connection.
Then there’s the question of bandwidth. The more devices share the same connection, the narrower the channel each one gets. Here is a comparison of typical data transfer rates:
|4G Modem||Mobile Hotspot|
As can be seen, while mobile hotspots may work fine for sending a few urgent emails, modems are better equipped for servicing home networks you rely on for work, education, and entertainment.
Read also: USB Tethering vs Mobile Hotspot: The Rundown
Another thing to pay attention to is the cost of the service you get with the equipment. Nowadays, simply browsing the web pages will gobble up gigabytes of data, and streaming videos will increase the number tenfold. So, unless you have an unlimited 4G hotspot, you’d want those bytes as cheap as possible.
In the case of a mobile hotspot, you are essentially sharing your cellular data with other devices. The price of the data is determined by your carrier’s data plan, which is not really suited for anything beyond a single device. High roaming charges make mobile phones incomparable to portable modems and routers in terms of global travel too.
At the same time, there is a common concern that buying a standalone hotspot will lock you into its internet plan and you won’t be able to update it without changing a device. To address this concern, we made our 4G LTE USB modem offer flexibility to choose between nect MODEM plan and a plan from any other provider of your choosing.
As computers and smartphones become essential for our work and recreation activities, we entrust them with an increasingly large volume of sensitive data. So, unless you are keen on sharing your bank account details with strangers, it makes sense to secure the entry point to your local area network. Here are four popular techniques that you can fall prey to (although there are dozens of more exotic ones):
- Fake networks
- Cookie sidejacking
- Man-In-The-Middle attacks
- Wi-Fi Pineapple
Theoretically, neither a 4G hotspot device nor a USB modem is immune to these threats. Fortunately, both can employ protective measures against them. In the case of mobile hotspots, you can rely on security updates offered by your phone manufacturers, even though it takes time to discover and address new vulnerabilities in complex devices that abound with functionality. On the other hand, a USB modem is a dedicated device purposefully designed for one task, so it is inherently easier to protect with a built-in firewall.
Even if you manage to secure your network against attacks, you are still leaking an insane amount of information about yourself. Here are just some things you tell corporations every time you go online:
- Your location
- Operating system and software
- Your device’s hardware
- Your Internet connection
- Social media status
- Browsing behaviors
At a glance, this might not look like a big deal. However, when combined, this data forms what is known as a digital fingerprint that can be effectively used to track you online in the most Orwellian way imaginable. Not only does it offer way more power to corporations than they should have, but it also violates our right to privacy.
The most widespread solution to this issue is the VPN, which is available for both modems and phones. In both cases, you will normally have to pay for VPN services (in fact, free VPNs are often privacy offenders themselves). nect MODEM has built-in VPN service, pre-equipped and pre-configured for optimal performance.
Read more: VPN Modem: All You Need to Know
If you have ever set up an Internet connection on an unfamiliar operating system, you know how much of a hassle that can be. In this sense, the best wireless USB modem for laptop is probably the one that is equally easy to configure on Linux, Mac, and Windows. To be fair, mobile hotspots can also be set up for all three systems nowadays. However, the number of hoops you are expected to jump through in the process will vary. In contrast, all you need to do with a modem is plug it into the USB port – and in a few seconds you’re good to go.
All hardware needs a power source to operate, and Internet devices are not an exception. Since we are talking about a portable Wi-Fi device for travel and working from anywhere, plugging into a power grid router-style is not really an option. It either has to be powered by its own battery or connect to another mobile source.
A Wi-Fi hotspot set up by your phone, at a glance, may seem like a good idea. After all, it feels like an autonomous solution, right? However, here’s what you get in reality:
- You connect to a mobile hotspot and start browsing
- Battery gets drained almost instantly
- No Internet on a laptop
- No phone with the Internet
Not only that, doing so regularly will dramatically reduce your phone’s battery life, rendering it useless as a hotspot and a standalone gadget. A modem, on the other hand, is plugged into the laptops USB port and uses its battery. The effect on the laptop’s battery life is tiny, and you still have your fully charged phone as a backup.
Shoving your bulky modem into a closet at home and never seeing it again is not an option in the world of portable electronics, which is why you hear the word “travel hotspot” being thrown around a lot. And, granted, either option can be carried around easily, making it a suitable portable WiFi device for travel.
However, with the 4G WiFi hotspot you’ll still need to find a place for it somewhere, whereas a modem can be attached to the back of your laptop – a neat little detail for those working on the go.
USB Modem vs Mobile Hotspot: The Rundown
As can be seen, both options have their strengths and weaknesses. The main advantage of the mobile hotspot is that it can be created on the spot without much fuss (unless, of course, you are dealing with an unfamiliar operating system). They also do not require dedicated hardware – given that everyone in the modern world has a phone with Internet connectivity. This makes them the perfect solution for an emergency, like when your home network is down.
However, once you need a reliable, secure, and fast connection that you intend to use on a regular basis – mobile modems are much better equipped for the job. They are designed for working with multiple devices, offer higher connection speed, have built-in security measures, and are compatible with all popular operating systems.
On top of that, they will not run out of battery in the middle of a videoconferencing session and have several neat quality-of-life features that make them more convenient overall. In other words, past a certain point, USB modems are objectively a better option for an Internet connection.
All illustrations are created by Lucy Ivanova, a Chief Creative Officer at nect.
Reddit reviews: The best modem router combos
Hey thanks again for the quick reply.
Once my computer is built, then I will look into the extensions and smaller things to make it look better, unless you have any brands or types off the top of your head. Like you said for the few wires that will show, it really isn't worth a basic kit after looking into it. Great tip!
Looking into the case fans I see what you mean about the noise vs the actual performance. I think those fans will suit me just great! Cool to see those videos about just how little of a difference it would make for me and I would have been sacrificing noise for pretty much no more performance. Good deal!
As for the routers. I used that wifi analyzer and surprisingly it is a lot worse than I thought. My signal is still the strongest but I have about 4 or 5 other people operating on the same exact channels as me under the G tab. Looking under the 5G tab, it was blank. Absolutely nobody. So I think I'll go with the 5G router! But I do have an issue. The modem and router I have are all in one unit. It is a modem/router combo. So I would have to get a modem as well. Any suggestions? Should I get a separate modem and router or should I get a combined unit? Just for extra information, my router doesn't need to push too far or go through many walls to get to me. I still like to have it broadcast a good ways so I can use the wifi on my phone when out in the backyard, but as far as reaching where my pc will go, it will be about 15 feet away going through two walls (non insulated walls). It is set up in my living room towards the center of the apartment and I get good signal as it is. Just need it to perform better I guess because I guess the issue is that the router (or modem?) gets flooded easily when searching for servers in a game. That is when it just cuts off my internet in the game and I have to exit the game, then I am back to normal. Just plain weird but that is the only thing I've found online that fits exactly what happens to me when I try to load servers on bigger games like KF2.
Also, I have no experience what so ever when it comes to setting up a modem or router. What do I need to do? I know I want the 5G frequency and the channels don't matter because no one else is on that frequency at all. Do I just plug in the new modem and router (or modem/router combo) and just let it do its thing? Will my network name stay the same or will I have to set up an entirely new network?
I said I don't want to spend a ton of money on this but what I meant was like some super $ wifi system that I can't even take advantage of without extreme internet speed haha.
This one is expensive in my opinion but has great reviews.
But this one on the other hand is cheaper and also has great reviews.
Ideally, I'd like to spend a little less than that, but I will if it means not having to mess with it again. I'm not sure what speeds are ideal for normal gaming nowadays but I know that the games I play now work alright, maybe laggy once in a while but it could also just be my computer. For now, I'd just like to swap out the modem and router so I no longer have to deal with copying ip addresses just to join servers on bigger games. Then in the future if I wish to up my internet speed for whatever reason, I know the router and modem can handle it. And with this new computer, I'll have all my bases covered! Let me know what you think!
Note: The points system is currently broken. We're working on it.
In case you missed it, click here for yesterday's Daily Simple Questions thread.
There may be some questions still unanswered! Below are a selection of questions with no replies. See if you can help them out.
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> So I posted this http://i.imgur.com/1O4Ii4E.jpg around 2 weeks ago asking people if my OC was alright, and it is.
> But today going back to Precision X I noticed that "Power target" slider maximum option is %. Why did it change, why is that I cant put it back to % anymore?
> edit: Also, my VOLTAGE slider is still at 0% should bump it?
> So I'm looking for a new router and modem to upgrade my current one and thought I'd ask for some suggestions.
> Currently I've been looking at the ASUS RT-ACRH13 Router and the NETGEAR CM modem.
> My current internet plan is /15 and looking to spend under $ and my isp is cox. Thanks for any help guys!
> Been trying to find a solution to this for a while. I'm getting this error out of my energy report.
> >PCI Express Active-State Power Management (ASPM) has been disabled due to a known incompatibility with the hardware in this computer.
> Here's my build. Any ideas?
> trying to connect 6 dualshock 4's so we can play Towerfall Ascension 8 player , anyone can help us out? we tried ds4 windows but that only supports 4 max it seems
> What does lastpass premium povide me that laspass free does not?
> My friend is offering me an Asus r9 for 55$. Is that a good deal? I'm basically looking to just play some pubg and rocket league. I plan on rebuilding a brand new PC around tax time so would that be able to hold me over until then? My Frankenstein PC right now has an i and 12gb ram.
> Edit: I had to sell my PC that's in my flair for financial reasons but I built a PC from old parts I had
> Does anybody know when the 8 series CPU benchmarks for gaming will be released? I want to upgrade my CPU but don't know if it's worth the wait or if I should just say fuck it and buy a 7 series CPU.
> Hey all.
> I just built a new PC and I'm not getting power from USB ports or a BIOS display on start up. What could be the issue here? Faulty motherboard? Any help would be appreciated.
> Hey guys,
> I'm looking for a good alternative to the modmic, I had a modmic and its attaching mechanism literally crumbled to pieces and they want to charge me 3usd + 15 USD shipping for their own piece of shit failure, so i'd rather avoid giving them any money.
> I've heard some good things about the zalman clip on, but looking to spend a bit more to get higher quality.
> Thanks in advance! :)
> Looking for a good new chair, always see people with those dx racer chairs. Are they good? I like that you can tilt it back up to ish degrees. Any other chairs with that feature anyone knows of?
> So I'm having an issue getting three displays working on a GTX It has 2x DVI, 1x HDMI and 1x Display Port. One of the DVI ports is most likely dead.
> I can have any two of the three displays working through the DVI and HDMI, but when trying to connect a DP to HDMI passive adapter for a third, that one never works. Even if it is the only display connected. I figure the doesn't support DP++?
> Is there anything else I can try?
> Looking to buy a " SSD for my laptop (ideapad isk running Ubuntu Gnome ). What are things I need to know about SSDs beforehand? Like keeping it healthy, storage and partitioning, things to avoid.
> I have two monitors plugged with dvi i and dvi d to my GTX I played alot with super dynamic resolution in the control panel so both have higher than native res at this point and I was wondering if using display port over dvi d on my 24'' LG could let me overclock refreshrate more (currently 74hz on 60hz native) and possibly increase quality of image?
> I need help with RBG :( I have a new pc (first time) and my mobo is the Asus Prime Pro x and my led strips are Phanteks RGB The strips work and all but I can only control them with the remote and not Aura Sync. I tried syncing them and it said they should be red but they weren't. Then it said they should be hooked up to the mobo, but idk how? Someone pls help me. I'm a n00b ik.
> I can't seem to get my RAM to run at full speed. This is my current setup, and I've tried A-XMP and Memory Try-It! but I can't get the memory to run at MHz. It worked once when I activated A-XMP, but then it stopped working again, I don't know why. The RAM is listed as supported by the motherboard.
> The hurricane is heading right for me. I'm gonna wrap my rig in big trash bags. In case this isn't enough to save her, will the manufacturer warranties cover hurricane damage?
> any good silent mouses? want to do cad work in a lecture class without being herd
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I work for Comcast and take part in pushing these new wireless gateways on our poor customers who have perfectly good, stable modems in place. My advice is to steer clear. If everything is working fine then why mess with it? Comcast has us pushing them so hard because they want to build their Xfinity Wifi public hotspot network. Not really that big of a deal considering that the bandwidth for strangers connecting to the hotspot is so limited that it has negligible performance impact to your actual in-home network and there really isn't any additional security risk at all. The problem is that our wireless gateways are built cheap and have a much higher failure rate than any modem we've leased in the past. There was even an alert sent out to employees a couple weeks back about a design flaw where the coax cable can become loose from the back of the modem and cause an ingress signal leakage which severely harms both upstream and downstream bandwidth and the solution offered by Comcast is to advise that "tightening the coax connection a quarter turn should resolve the issue."
As far as purchasing your own modem, I say go for it. At $10/month for your Comcast rental, it'll pay for itself in time. The SURFboard SB you posted is a fine choice, though I personally prefer the Arris CM or if you have phone service with Comcast then the Arris TGG (you'll notice the modems with phone ports are quite a bit more expensive but what can you do?) The only reason I prefer these over the SURFboard models is that they're built like fucking tanks. I guarantee either of those two would keep working until they've become obsolete and then even some time after that. I picked up the Arris TM new off Amazon more than 5 years ago and haven't had an issue with it yet. One other thing to note is that if you do pick up a modem that has built in wifi, expect to disable the wifi on it because I can almost guarantee that your dedicated wireless router will have a stronger signal strength anyway.
Lastly, this may not happen to you, but when I made the switch to my own, purchased modem and called in to Comcast customer support to have it added on and activated on my account, it took four or five calls before getting a rep that was competent enough to know how to even enter the serial number onto my account. More than one agent told me after trying for some time that they don't support that model, but it's the same fucking model they were actively leasing to their customers at the time and is even on the list of Comcast supported internet modems so don't get discouraged if you hit some static while going through that process. You will eventually find an agent that knows what they're doing. Anyways, best of luck with your ongoing relationship with Comcast :)
So you say duel band so it sounds like you are looking for a gateway. This is a modem router combo. You have a few options. If you buy of Amazon you could get this one. It's but is a modem with a duel band ac wireless router built in. Supports 24 downstream channels and 8 up. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ZUPOF7Y/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_ZzWnzbRC6T09V
If you are looking to save some money you could get this one, it's and supports 8 down and 4 up. This would work with the Meg tier but I recommend getting the higher channel one to future proof yourself. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IF0JAYE/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_PCWnzbFRRG
Cox in my area does sell this one below. They charge around or so for it( not sure don't quote me). On Amazon it's It supports 32 down and 8 up. If you buy from Cox it has a 2 year warranty and they will come swap it out if it goes bad. It says on Amazon Arris gives it a 2 year warranty also but you would have to ship it to them I assume.
Stand alone modems are different because you need a router to plug into it to get wifi. If you are interested in a modem prepare to spend around for it. They don't make docsis gateways yet that I know of. Cox doesn't even use docsis yet in any market but will be kicking it on within a year or so in select areas. The docsis modems that you can buy today are backwards compatible with and support 32 down and 8 up. I know I talk a lot about the channels down and up. This is how many different cable channels the modem can connect to at once. More is better because If one gets congested it reroutes packets down another that isn't. This helps maintain speed even during peak hours and also how they deliver the faster speeds.
Cox also sells Arris stand-alone docsis modems for and it comes with a 1 year warranty through Cox. It has 2 Ethernet ports on the back. Don't be wierded out by that it's for multi gigabit services in the future and only one will work today.
If you have any other questions let me know and I will try to answer the best I can.
Honestly, Spectrum is the way to go. Use your own modem and router.
I have been using a Zoom Modem DOCSIS for the past 3years, with no issues. Along with this ASUS RT-ACRH13 for the past 10 months. I had another, much cheaper router than that, but between these two I paid $55 for the modem and $70 for the wifi routerso basically $/month for the modem, and $7/month for the router = $ as opposed to whatever they will charge for their modem router combination, and when I first used theirs, it wasn't nearing as good. Just make sure you get one that is at least DOCSIS , which is easiest to view here. I am partial to Motorola, as they have worked great for me, though the Netgear and TP-Link I used before where a while back, and was provided to me, didn't work as well, so I am biased against them, even though a lot of people talk good about them, so I could be wrong about them. A good combination is this Motorola N router modem combo both for the same price at Best Buy and Amazon. Which, even if it only last 1 year, it would be the same cost as $/month renting, and then less as it will last more than one year.
Not sure how heavily you will be using the Internet, but I use it to stream all TV, constantly on reddit or whatever with my phone, and even some gamingmost going on at the same time. I like my router, but will be getting myself a new modem soon, which will probably be a Motorola MB or a ASUS CM
You can find what is compatible with Spectrum, and how to activate, if you go HERE and open this PDF file
Edit: formatting with links
I don't have RCN or Fios in my area, so I don't know specifics on their pricing, but i'll give you some generalized advice on getting the cable bill down.
First, an easy to shave your bill is to get those equipment rental costs down.
Cable providers in the US won't let you purchase your own cable boxes (closest thing you'll get to that is CableCARDs but there are very few devices that are compatible with them), but they will let you purchase your own modem/router for internet and phone service. Activation should be as easy as plugging the modem and the Xfinity activation screen will appear. And as usual if something goes wrong, Comcast support is the one you would call.
RCN will be the same way, but one thing to note that FiOS is the exception here as they are a fiber-based service and the router is required for TV services (if she gets rid of TV service you can use your own router but that's a little advanced because you would need to run ethernet from the box outside to the location of the router)
Popular modems with wifi and voice capabilities that are compatible with Comcast;
- Arris SVGAC
- Netgear CV-1AZNAS
- Motorola MT
You could also switch her phone service over to a VoIP provider like MagicJack, Vonage, or Ooma (but of course that will break her triple play deals). I think we pay $29 a year for MagicJack, and while it's a little buggy, it's worth the price. Then again, I mostly use my cell phone now, but we live in an area with bad reception so we still need a landline for emergencies.
Also, explore the streaming options as well, services like Hulu, Sling, Philo, etc are less than most cable packages at the moment (but the prices are going up), so check to see if her specific channels are part of the packages.
And you can always look into satellite providers as well. You can have both satellite TV and cable internet as long as the installer leaves one of the drops connected to the cable line, and the rest connected to the dish.
Hope this helps!
This! Sort of
For one, you will need a cable modem:
- $45 NETGEAR CMAZNAS Cable Modem 8x4 Bonded Channels
- $90 NETEAR CMNAS Cable Model 24x8 Bonded Channels
- $ NETEAR CM Cable Modem 32x8 Bonded Channels
Why multiple options and price-points?
In a nutshell, download and upload bonded channels supports how much up and down bandwidth your cable modem would have. 8 (8 download) x4 (4 upload) theoretically supports Mbps download and whatever upload speed. My current 2x2 supports + Mbps download.
Why get something beefier? You will get slightly better performance if each bonded channel isn't operating near it's ceiling. With Comcast, they have 16 and 24 download channels in most markets so that will help with your overall connection. Also having 24 or 32 download channels will help you break through speed barriers if Comcast offers faster connection speeds in the future.
Personal Note: I pay for /10 from Comcast and bought the $90 NETEAR CMNAS Cable Model 24x8 Bonded Channels for my new home. While the theoretical download speed from the modem far out paces what I will get from Comcast, the new modem will take full advantage of the 24 bonded download channels in my area.
Then you will need a router. With Ubiquiti, you can really go with one of two router options:
- ~$50 Ubiquiti EdgeRouter X
- ~$ Ubiquiti Unifi Security Gateway 9USG
There's a lot of YouTube videos that will explain the differences between each router. The short version is that they use the same hardware and have all of the same features available if enabled over command line but:
- The EdgeRouter X has more features available in it's existing UI, CAN be powered by POE and is less prone to crashing when making changes over CLI. The Edgerouter also has a built in switch (if you want) and POE passthrough so you can do: Cable Modem -> POE Power Injector -> EdgeRouter -> Ubiquiti Access Point (more on this shortly)
- The USG has fewer features in the UI than the Edgerotuer, CAN NOT be powered by POE and is more prone to crashing when making changes over CLI. What the USG does have is full integration into the Unifi family of products which means you can manage the router over the cloud along with any other Unifi product like your access points (APs We'll get to them in a minute).
Personal Note: I bought the EdgeRouter X because the price point is so good. This thing EASILY out performs my Linksys WRT AC or any other Linksys, Asus, etc. routers that I have ever owned. With that said, I will never fully leverage all of the controls in the UI and I wish I had gone with the USG as it integrates with the Unifi cloud stuff. I will eventually switch to a Unifi router.
Then you will need an Access Point (AP) to create an access point for your devices:
- $75 Ubiquiti Unifi UAP-AC-Lite Lite
- $ Ubiquiti Unifi UAP-AC-LR Long Range
- $ Ubiquiti Unifi UPA-AC-Pro Pro
If you get the EdgeRouter X, get a UAP-AC-Lite. They both operate off of 24v so you can do Cable Modem -> 24v POE power injector (comes with the UAP-AC-Lite) -> EdgeRouter X -> UAP-AC-Lite. This is what I have now.
You can upgrade to the UAP-AC-LR which has the longest range of all of the Ubiquiti APs or the UAP-AC-LR because of it's 3x3 MIMO which gives it a higher input/output than the rest of the Ubiquiti 2x2 MIMO. The latter two devices use 48v POE injectors.
Personal Note: I'm using two UAP-AC-Lites in my current two story home and will transition to four in my new three story home. Even at the cheapest price point, these far out perform the other routers and access points that I have ever owned.
No problem. I'm so annoyed with these cable/internet companies I feel like setting up an organization just to let everyone know how to best to work around them.
So I called WOW. I'm only getting internet, so I'm not sure what the bundle regular rate would be. But for their Internet ( mbps) they said my rate would only increase by $ So after 24 months I'd go to paying $ a month.
Another tip; if you do want to go with WOW or really any other company, you can save the monthly rental fee for the modem/router if you buy your own. (This is why I only have to pay $ right now). It'll pay for itself in less than a year and then when you need to switch companies again (because it's definitely going to happen again) you don't have to deal with returning their equipment. This is the one I'm getting for WOW, I called and checked and they said it would be compatible. According to the reviews it seems to work with most companies.
I have no personal experience with the Google WiFi ecosystem, but from a quick Google search, I could not find anything that shows it being supported.
I was able to find this netgear router that supports creating a OpenVPN server, and quite easily infact, just seems like a couple of clicks.
Netgear RPAS Nighthawk AC
I chose this router because of my personal trust for Netgear products, and their simple to use interface for a home user with some advanced functionality for the prosumers. For your Modem, heres one that I found: Netgear N
I would suggest googling your models and seeing what the specs are, and comparing those to what's available today. My bet is that it's time to upgarde. I'm not a super tech-y person, but buying a new router (having bought my old one only 3 years earlier) made a HUGE difference for me.
As for your modem, make sure yours is DOCSIS or better. In most situations, you want 8x4 channels or better, too.
This is the modem I have: https://www.amazon.com/NETGEAR-download-Certified-Cablevision-CMAZNAS/dp/BMRLES/ref=pd_sim__2?_encoding=UTF8&amp;psc=1&amp;refRID=A76TFGV21WDWMC6BK&amp;dpID=Y7zgKuBL&amp;preST=_SX_QL70_&amp;dpSrc=detail
Just based on age, I'm thinking yeah, probably time to upgrade. I can't seem to find solid data, but as my memory serves me, the average household broadband connection at that time was 5 or 10 mbps. Hell, when I got my first Charter package in , the best I could buy was 30mbps (vs. or when I left in August 17 though I couldn't get that speed at my house). And I would think that the mid-market technology available at the time would have been created for that kind of output vs what we have today.
Can you clarify - are you using this modem/router - Netgear N ?
That's reporting it only does Ghz A/B/G/N
Your Xbox One and Chromecast both support 5Ghz which is far better and definitely going to have less interference in your area.
The reason I ask is my Chromecast v2 with Ghz will buffer at p as well due mostly because there's other Ghz wireless signals.
Honestly, I would recommend getting yourself a separate modem/router like this SB and then a nice /5ghz dual-band router like this R and you'll be seriously set. On the cheaper side, you could get the E which is also dual-band and can run Tomato firmware.
5ghz will greatly increase the quality of your wireless.
It’s expensive but I’ve found it to be a worthy investment and expect it to operate for the next few years.
A less expensive but highly rated option would be TP Link’s Deco M5 which is Amazon’s deal of the day at $ I have no experience with this.
An even less expensive option would be using the most basic DOCSIS (I think that’s what they want you to have?) modem you’d need for your ISP, and a simple AP/Router combo as shes mainly wifi anyway.
A cost effective option I have experience with is this Modem/Router/AP at $80, specifically with Cablevision and Spectrum. It’s not officially supported but works perfectly. This was a great setup for a workplace setting for people’s phones, tablets, printers, and a few people streaming movies and Sling on chromecasts where their computers were hardwired onto another network.
Yes, there are plenty of better options out than that museum piece of modem you are using. That Ubee modem you have is using DOCSIS , in Kansas City (and most other places) the DOCSIS standard being used is DOCSIS The use of DOCSIS in your location is probably because the OSP isn’t updated quite yet or you need to get an updated price of equipment to ‘lease’.
If you are to buy a piece of technology always look ahead on future technologies that are backwards compatible for what you currently have ( for now) and will still be useful for several years to come for what is soon to come. Here is a link to a well worthy cable modem for you to consider.
NETGEAR Cable Modem (32x8) DOCSIS | for XFINITY by Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox, Charter & More (CMAZNAS)
Make sure that cable modem link above is approved in your area first! Also, if you do buy a used modem off of eBay make sure that the devices MAC address doesn’t have money due on another account or on another account with TWC. If the modem is assigned to someone else you will not be able to activate the modem you purchase and you’ll be out $
So you would probably want the EdgeRouter X - it's pretty basic, but for your use it should be more than enough. I have an EdgeRouter Lite, the two are similar, but the EdgeRouter X is PoE, a little slower, and has switched LAN ports (doesn't matter for your uses).
I don't know much about modems, but you want to get one that's basically "all modem", since your EdgeRouter is going to be doing all the routing for it. I went with this one but I'm sure there are better options.
You can then plug in the AP wherever you want on the internal network. Could be directly to the router, doesn't matter. You will need to use something called PoE - you can either pass that through the EdgeRouter X or use the included adapter directly in-line. It's not complicated, just take a sec to read the instructions. :) Basically you just need to make sure you plug the AP into the correct port, else you could damage things. It's pretty evident.
As far as which AP you buy Well, it's up to you really. This would probably be fine, but they also have long-range and AC versions. I've tried the Long-Range version and it's not super impressive. Not tried the AC version yet because very few of my devices actually support it sadly.
Let me know if you have any questions!
Sorry for the late reply, here is the Modem. I can't remember the one they gave me, I do know I had to return at least 2 of them over the course of 2/3 years (tech support requested that I return them). The thing to do is to go HERE and pick one that is more than your max speed that you are paying for (please note that the modem I linked before is actually rated x what they have on their site, which I think is a screw up on their chart). Basically, as long your modem's Mbps is higher than the speed your paying for, you're good. It's also a good idea to have some extra to grow into. I would shy away from the wifi modems. I prefer to handle all wifi access via a router (a Wi-Fi modem is just another security hole and you should always have a router just for troubleshooting and it's an extra security layer). Also, here is the ROUTER I paired with the aforementioned modem. They've worked pretty much flawlessly for over a year and it costs about $$90 for both. You can certainly find more robust systems, but this is a really good value in my opinion.
Saw you wanted a combo. I would never recommend an all in one because I don't like putting all of my technological eggs in one basket, per se. Keep in mind that combo units capable of supporting the latest wireless technologies and supporting higher near future internet speeds are quite pricey.
Personally, I have a separate modem, router, and wireless access point. That way, if a year from now some hot new WiFi technology comes out that I want, or my modem dies, I'm not paying to replace all of that technology just to upgrade or replace one component. At the minimum, I'd separate the modem and router/WAP. For those, I'd recommend Netgear CM and up for the modem and I found the TP-Link Archer C7 a reasonably priced router/WAP that functioned well.
If you absolutely must have an all in one unit, it looks like this Netgear is fairly solid in terms of both supported internet speed and WiFi technology.
So I just upgraded myself and I'm on Xfinity (Comcast) also. Check out the comcast Modem combatiblity list here. I first got a refurbished Arris SB and long story short I nor Comcast could get the Modem to activate. Then after doing some research I picked up the Netgear CM New for $60 and its been working great thus far. Since I only need n wifi capability I decided to get a TP-LINK N for $ But if you want a bunch of bells an whistles or ac its gonna cost you. Everything I purchased seems to work great, the new router reaches all the way to my upstairs bedroom chromecast, I highly recomend any TP-Link wifi router they have all worked great in the past. Hope I helped.
For routers, anything with decent reviews on Amazon will probably get the job done. I tend to go with Asus and TP-Link, but there are lots of good models out there. I've had mixed results with Netgear and Belkin in the past, but worth it if you find one on a good deal.
- Any of these TP-Link models would probably work for you.
- I would also highly recommend this T-Mobile branded Asus "refurb." (I've bought 3 of them in the past for various different uses, and they were solid each time).
For a modem, anything DOCSIS or up should do for most people. Eg:
Of course, if you have specific high-end needs, these might not quite meet those, but I doubt whatever xfinity has you using would either.
I'm also thinking of ending my rental of a cable modem from Comcast, but, I have telephone service as well. Does anyone have advice for a VOIP-enabled cable modem?
Xfinity recommends one of these (that is DOCSIS , I have Mbps service):
ARRIS Surfboard SBV $
Netgear V: $ with coupon on Amazon.
Motorola MT $
ARRIS SVGAC: $ with a coupon.
I'm tempted by the Motorola. I've heard bad things about Netgear customer service, although am considering buying an Orbi mesh router at some point as well. Also, the Arris SVG uses an Intel chipset that people are complaining about.
Any advice/words of wisdom would be appreciated immensely.
I just changed out my old ADSL only modem/router, the TP-Link TD-W for an ADSL/VDSL router, the TP-Link AC, in preparation from going from my old DSL to Fibre.
Everything seems in order, except that file transfers over the wired LAN now top out at 10MB/s rather thatn MB/s. I just put the old router back in to check, and it definitely sends them ten times faster.
Is this a setting of some kind? I'm sure I never had to select it before. I'm using the same LAN1 and LAN2 ports that claim to be Gigabit Ethernet on the router.
edit: just checked the ethernet connection settings on both computers. On the old router it tells me 1Gbit on each. On the new router Mbps on each. I can't seem to ascertain a reason for this. They're practically identical routers; one is just a few years newer. Cables are all seated fine and obviously work at that speed (have done for 5 years).
edit: it appears only ONE out of four ethernet ports runs at 1Gbit in vs my router I spent ten seconds picking out. How fun. That'll be going straight back to Amazon.
I would recommend this one for the best for what you would spend on it, if you want a modem router combo and are willing to spend the extra $$$ this one is awesome, current one I have
No. I thought about that too but that won't work. Since ISPs only give people one public facing IP address, it turns out if you try to use a splitter like that on the modem it will only give internet to either the router or the console.
I mean getting a modem that is also a wifi router at the same time. Like this one so you can connect your console straight to it while it still works as a router giving wifi to everything else
TPLink, Netgear, and ASUS are the best brands I know of. I always heard that Netgear is lenient towards gaming so that's why I went with them. The router I use is the C It's done me well so far. I haven't had any issues with it, and the interface is nice.
Idk if $ is considered mid-range, so here's the router on Amazon.
I'm guessing you're going with a cable provider? If so just make sure your modem/router supports the proper DOCSIS version for the speed the carrier is providing, and make sure it has gigabit LAN ports. Something like this ARRIS modem/router should work fine.
I use this netgear modem and this netgear router with 60mbps internet from Comcast. It is a bit pricey for the pair, but it is future proof in that it is docsis so it is capable of gigabit. This pair has been great for me, and even though I only pay for 60 mbps, I never have issues with sputtering or buffering when streaming and never have issues on xbox live.
I would assume this netgear docsis modem would also be reliable as well, and it is much cheaper. I've read on here about a defect in some docsis modems that could cause latency spikes which could affect gaming so I would look into that if I were you and come to your own conclusion on that.
What do you consider affordable? Just about anything would be better than using the modem/router combo. Wireless routers mostly are in the $ range but high end AC routers can be well above that (and almost certainly an unnecessary expense). Cheapest recommendations I would make are probably around $50, give or take $
All I have read about modem/router combos is that they are basically all universally terrible. I'm not sure if that it is the entire router functionality or just the wireless. If you are renting it would be much better to just get your own modem anyway. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06XH46MWW/ is a good router for $50 (after $10 coupon) which won't take long at all to recoup in modem rental fees.
Hey all, I wanted to share a "fix" I discovered for the constant 0x error code disconnects. It's not a great solution, but it % worked and I no longer disconnect. I tried everything from Port Forwarding, UPnP, DNS Settings, MTU Settings, DMZ host, static IP, clear cache, restart this/restart that, etc etc. None of that ever worked and I would constantly be disconnected.
I was using this modem/router combo: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GJ7Y7MU/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
I decided to upgrade to this one: https://www.amazon.com/NETGEAR-Nighthawk-CCompatible-Providers-including/dp/BZ5PCL/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=netgear+c&qid=&s=gateway&sr=
Ever since plugging that unit in and connecting my PS4 via wifi, I haven't experienced any disconnects. It's not a great solution as it comes with an $ price tag, but it % solved the issues I was experiencing. My only guess as to why this new Netgear unit works better is due to the amount of downstream/upstream channels. The old Arris unit was 8x4 and this Netgear one is 24x8. I'm not an expert, but that appears to be the biggest difference between the two units. Maybe someone else here has more insight as to why this new modem/router would fix the issue, but I hope this is helpful.
If you end up grabbing your own, I would recommend the Netgear CM or the TP-Link TC The CM comes highly recommended by most people and Spectrum themselves - probably the best two commercially sold ones for the /20 tier and lower. Gigabit requires a Spectrum modem (DOCSIS ) at the moment. I assume Spectrum will allow customer-owned DOCSIS modems at some point next year.
you can nearly always buy your own modem as well.
and in Denver, that is what my buddy did at both his business and home, comcast has a page with "compatibility ratings" of the different modems that they will activate. and there are still plenty of standard modems on that list. it is the same way here, those that on cable or DSL etc. theyre usually given/leasing a combo device, but you can always go out and buy your own single function device.
where I live, and work, its fiber to the home and fiber to the dmarc. so we have an ONT that that converts that fiber signal and gives us a cat5 for internet, one for tv and another for phone. I can plug a switch in and multiple routers each getting their own address, or a single router using one address, or a single router with multiple configurable interfaces to grab multiple ip's across multiple ports.
edit to add: this device, your standard surfboard no routing, no funny business. plug in a switch and a couple routers if you want. this surfboard has a router built in, and if you cant disable the router funny business, yeah you may have trouble pulling multiple IPs. you shouldn't have trouble activating either one on comcast and many other major cable isp's.(you will want to verify ahead of time of course but) and yeah, these aren't surfboards because arris bought that, but close enough.
Well, from looking at it you probably spend around $ on the netgear you have now, and for the price you can get a basic DOCSIS modem like this, and this Asus AC router for about the same price, maybe even less depending on how you order it. This is the same setup that I put together for my mom and sister a few months ago, and they are both pretty heavy netflixers and downloaders, and they have not experienced any problems.
Not sure if this is the right place to post this but looking for advice..
So I'm looking for a new router and modem to upgrade my current one and thought I'd ask for some suggestions.
Currently I've been looking at the ASUS RT-ACRH13 Router and the NETGEAR CM modem.
My current internet plan is /15 and looking to spend under $. Thanks for any help guys!
Netgear Nighthawk AC for router, Netgear CM for modem. I bought them 2 years ago on Xfinity mbps internet, I sometimes get I’ve had zero issues with this setup. Read the reviews yourself.
This should be a great setup unless you have Gig speed internet in which case I encourage you to get the CM for a little more
Yes I got that
I bought myself and my mom's modem like that
Problem seems to be the latest modem standard doscis is rarely available with emta(ie voice/home phone service support). I'm not sure if DOCSIS is usually much faster then or if makes no difference. According to https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-cable-modem/ which is a review site I trust it probably isn't worth it
> Though it’s overkill for almost everyone, you’ll need a DOCSIS modem to guarantee gigabit speeds from most cable ISPs, and the MB is also compatible with gigabit Internet on networks that still use the DOCSIS standard, for example Cable One supports both DOCSIS (32x8) and DOCSIS modems for its GigaOne service.
> Don't get a gigabit modem unless you already have gigabit service or know it's available. The added expense of the DOCSIS modems isn’t worth it until you’re on one of these new (and pricey) plans—especially since your ISP may roll out gigabit over fiber rather than cable. And they may not even let you bring your own modem once they do roll out gigabit service.
Expensive $ with DOCSIS + home calling
with home phone service $
So I'd go for the second one
Here's the one that I picked up, without antennas. AC I think the case itself looks like if it were painted white/gray, it'd be like a basic square-type shape, with the base removed.
As far as why to hide it, it's just so there's not a black-box-with-wires-and-blinking-lights sitting out in the middle of life. It'll be tucked away, semi-hidden, and frees up shelf space, countertop space, etc., wherever it otherwise would be. In my particular case, the most central location to the house is the kitchen, and it'd be nice to "hide" it from being an eyesore for my wife and guests, etc.
Basically, yes, or you'll need to rent a voice modem and have it added to your account along with you nether modem.
I addressed this by getting the Netgear CMV. It's a little more expensive, but you can at least play the Comcast game of getting a discounted triple play. If you don't want to use the voice line, just don't connect a phone to it.
I have the netgear nighthawk C modem/router combo and I have nothing bad to say about it. It’s been flawless and has very good range for not having external antennas, covers my 2K SF house and around feet outside the house too.
I have mbps cable from spectrum.
NETGEAR Nighthawk WiFi Cable Modem Router Combo (24x8) AC DOCSIS | Certified Xfinity Comcast, Spectrum, COX, More (CAZNAS) https://www.amazon.com/dp/BZ5PCL/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_0W5NBbSDXKMRH
do you think it's better to go modem/router combo -> WAP, or to go dumb modem -> Router/Wireless combo? I'm leaning towards letting the nighthawk do as much of the work as possible since it's got the most power and is the newest. The modem/router is something like this: Netgear C
I was looking at replacing it with something like a surfboard. Would there be any benefit to upgrading to a + Mbps modem over a + Mbps modem when my connection is only ?
the router i got was the Netgear R model AC (i assume you live in a house, so probably bump up your model number so you can get a bigger range, i got the cheapest one cuz im in an apartment)
and the modem was Netgeart CM (again, choose a pricier one depending on how many people will be using the internet and if you need 1gbps speeds or something)
both seem good so far, unsure on longevity but my previous modem/router from netgear was like 6 years old so they seem built well.
Thank you so much for the reply. I appreciate it tons. Here are the answers to your questions:
Is this a modem you ISP has provided?: no, we were initially having issues with the ISP provided modem so we purchased our own (https://www.amazon.com/NETGEAR-DOCSIS-Cable-Router-CNAS/dp/B00IF0JAYE)
What kind of internet service do you have? (DSL,ADSL,FIBER) we have Time Warner Cable/Spectrum cable internet
How is your switch wired to the modem? (what port is it in?) Port #1. But, I have tried other ports as well without success.
Again, can't tell you how much I appreciate your input.
No snark intended, just poking a little fun at the original post.
Its not really a secret that the stock equipment provided by spectrum is awful. I wanted to show you CAN have the Down speed you pay for, and maybe a little more if you know what you're doing.
First things first:
- Hard wired connections always, whenever it is reasonable. Even with a banging wireless router signal can dissipate rather badly even through one wall.
- Use your own (good) equipment. It's noted that spectrum's router/modem combo is crap. However, you're doing yourself no favors by cheaping out on your own equipment either. Make sure whatever modem you are buying is DOCSIS The difference between these is essential. DOCSIS modems can only support an upwards of 40mbps down while can support up to gbps
If you're curious, this is the modem I use:
- Use different channels than what your WiFi router runs by default. There's a really good chance that you and your neighbors are using the same ghz broadcast channel the router is set to use by default. Changing this can impact WiFi range and quality.
Never tried to cast a stream, and I have never checked If there are blimps in my up time so not sure if these will be of any help to you. However I haven't had problems in the past year streaming from Netflix or Amazon or extended outages in Woodfin with Spectum except during power outages. I've been using this modem off their approved list and this router
Netgear CNAS AC (16x4) WiFi Cable Modem Router Combo (C) DOCSIS Certified for Xfinity Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox, & more https://www.amazon.com/dp/BMRLLG/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_b2VWAbNCAR
I enjoyed this one and would recommend it at that price point. I have one I was gonna gift but can let it go to you for say $60 including reasonable shipping if you're interested. I switched to a different network setup at home which is why I no longer need mine.
EDIT: even if you don't want to buy mine its still a solid choice
Well, I doubt you'll find a modem/router combo for $ or less..
I'd got the separate modem + router route.. for the modem either the Netgear CMAZNAS, or the Arris SB
and for the router, something like a D-Link DIR this is an AC class router that supports MU-MIMO which is important if you have multiple WiFi devices in use..
Now I am not all that familiar with FIOS but I do believe that you can use your own router so whatever router you get, so long as it supports gigabit ethernet, you can use it with whatever service you end up with after your move.
You can buy a dual wifi router/modem device. I have this one. Some people will tell you that you sacrifice wifi quality with the combo modems, but if your space isn't too huge, it shouldn't be a problem.
But yeah, you need to check to be sure that you have a wifi router AND modem.
I use the Netgear CM
The spectrum modems aren’t horrible. They first gave me a Arris TMAP2 and I got expected speeds. But had the puma issue. In some markets they’re giving out this modem for even the Mbps tier
All spectrum modems are free, and if you want the WiFi its $5 with the Mbps plan and free with spectrum ultra.
Amazon has this one that should work with Comcast, for $ Of course I would check first with them to make sure it's compatible but it says certified by Comcast in the description.
I bought my own cable modem when I was with Time Warner Cable in New York (another DOCSIS 3 one), and saved the monthly modem rental fees, but I don't think I even have the option to use my own with AT&T.
I went through all this with TWC and now RCN, so here are my thoughts:
- I switched to RCN about 1 year ago. Very happy with it (service and price)
- I bought a modem for TWC and brought it over to RCN. Works the same way
- Currently, I pay for mbps and I get about
- DO NOT get a router + modem 2 in 1. A friend in the building that also moved to RCN has a 2-in-1 and he has problems that I never have. I have a separate Asus Router
About 3 years ago I bought for $ this
- NETGEAR CM (DOCSIS )- https://smile.amazon.com/NETGEAR-CMAZNAS-download-Certified-Cablevision/dp/B06XH46MWW - $60
- I used it at mbps on TWC without issues
- It still works flawlessly
But indeed now there is the
- Netgear CM (DOCSIS ) - https://smile.amazon.com/dp/BVN7W5 - $
Not every location in NYC can received at DOCSIS speed, so if you would go for a DOCSIS modem, make % sure you can get that speed and you are willing to pay more for the higher speed. I had at TWC but moved to at RCN as it is actually already plenty for me.
tl:dr: I am at mbps with RCN with the Netgear CM modem and everything works flawlessly.
As I suspected, you have telephone service from Comcast. This complicates things considerably.
I think you might be better off finding a more centrally located place in your house for your gateway. Is the current location the only place in the house with a free coax cable TV port?
Thanks for your insightful reply! I ended up going with a Netgear CM which I believe is DOCSIS More recent reviews mention it working with Comcast. My only concern is the reliability because it seems like every modem/router we've ever used always hiccups and needs to be restarted constantly. Hopefully all works out! So done with paying Comcast that "f you" fee
EDIT: I thought it wasn't supported by Comcast at first, but it was there!
I can't seem to find a 16x8 modem. I see a wall of numbers on spec sheets and my brain goes blank. This is the one amazon says people buy with it. Is this fine or should I look elsewhere? What am I even looking at?
This one is at my local bestbuy able to be picked up today. I don't mind spending an extra $ if it means good times on the internet can resume.
Just go to Amazon and Search "Cable modem docsis " make sure and get an all-in-1 wifi router/modem. I got a 4 port, 2 phone line, wifi router/modem for like 27$ ($ New!!!!) The cheapest one I'd purchase from the "used" section now is 33$ from Lyon's Electronics. I wouldn't trust the other lower priced ones.
You shouldn't have to upgrade unless you find you're always experiencing downtime or the speeds you're paying for can't be fully implemented due to your equipment being unable to operate that fast. Check router/modem documentation to see its max speeds.
The device was a simple modem with one Ethernet port. He bought this which is the exact same model I have.
It has only one Ethernet out port, which you can attach a device to get the internet, but if you need more than one device and/or wireless you need a router too.
I have this router at home attached to my modem and we bought him a similar model. It may be the exact same, I forget off the top of my head.
Also your other posts posted like 14 times.
I am using this one link, my internet speed is mphs so would getting 1 Gbps would help me or is it just for future proof. Do you have any MoCa recommendation? Also just wondering, do I need 2nd modem to connect the MoCa from downstairs?
> Your router really shouldn’t also be your wireless access point.
I agree: and it isn’t. My house network slowly resembles small branch office, and everything just works. But it wasn’t always like that, not at home in high school. A common fix for whenever the ubiquitous, granny-grade, modem+router+AP abortion turns to shit, was to just power cycle it. We don't know how it worked: it just did. Was it a bad modem SNR? Did the NAT table take up all 16M of RAM? Is the knockoff Qualcomm SoC bottleneck bottlenecking the Ethernet ports to 68Mbps even though the PHY negotiates M? Could the non-MIMO mini-PCIe (but still soldered in place) wireless radio not handle the 11 IoT light bulbs Delilah found on clearance at Fry's? There's no telling. I keep the one we had in highschool on my shelf at work, Just to keep me a lil humble.
I’ve never seen a BPG router. But I can see the CFO after he let himself in and power cycle any black box with wires and green blinky lights that looks like it could be the reason his Quickbooks RDP keeps disconnecting. That's how he fixes it at home, he should know; he bought the most expensive Arris that Walmart had
Don’t overthink the memes, friend
I’m not going to downvote you. But you should get a dual band router since he is in a populated city. Multi hundred dollar routers are not worth it for a single router. It’s not going to be any better than a cheap single router.
NETGEAR Cable Modem CM - Compatible with all Cable Providers including Xfinity by Comcast, Spectrum, Cox | For Cable Plans Up to Mbps | DOCSIS https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XH46MWW/
Return the original one and stop paying the rental fee.
TP-Link AC Smart WiFi Router - Dual Band Gigabit Wireless Internet Router (Archer A7) https://www.amazon.com/dp/BJD7F7G/
If house is big, you have poor WiFi in part of your house, buy this instead of TPLink router:
Google WiFi system, 3-Pack - Router replacement for whole home coverage (NLS) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MAW/
Doing a quick look your Asus has good reviews, which honestly surprised me as I can't find anything that mentions it having 5GHz or AC wireless. As for your modem it has mixed reviews stating its about 8 years old now and from what you are describing there is a good chance that it needs a Firmware update that might fix the issue but since you don't own it, it's something Comcast would have to do.
Personally, I also have Comcast (Great Lakes region) with download speeds "up to" 75MB and my speed test just pulled 63MB down and 7MB up. I ended up buying my modem so I can lower my bill and I run a Linksys router without issue.
So, long story short, I would try testing your system with a cable right into the modem. Though inconvenient it will let you know if it's your router or modem is the issue. I find it unlikely that it is having a hard time routing the traffic from all your devices and more likely that it's an issue with the modem itself. And as it's a rental you'd have to call Comcast to have them test and either replace it or buy one yourself and then call and have them set it up to their network.
Please bear with me - I'm not a total Neanderthal, but I'm far from an expert about this stuff. is telling me B/G/N mixed, 20/40 MHz, channel is set to auto. I have this router which says it has 2x3 MIMO and does not appear to be dual band. Does this help? What else should I look for?
If I were buying a 16x4 modem today I'd probably get the CM from Amazon for $50 (clip the $10 coupon). The SB was good, but its price seems to be unnecessarily high because it was once the go-to option. The CM uses the same Broadcom chipset as the SB
So could I get a router like so and just connect the coax in my room to it and then use the ethernet jack? Or do I need to just the main one in the living room?
This is to avoid wiring the cat5 through the wall
Ethernet switch, router and modem look strikingly similar if only judging by their appearance. However, they each play different roles and are deployed for various purposes in a network. So what is the key difference of switch vs router vs modem? How switch vs router vs modem each functions in a network. We would address these issues in this article by explaining switch vs router vs modem from scratch.
Switch vs Router vs Modem: All Are Major Network Devices
We’ll start from exploring what exactly network switch, router and modem are and the roles of switch vs router vs modem in a network.
What Is a Modem?
A modem is often provided by your ISP (Internet Service Provider) which enables a network access to the internet. In some cases ISPs provide hybrid modem/router combination, this device might be power efficient to some extent, it actually limits your network potentials. So suggestion is to request a standalone modem whenever possible to increase the available resources on the network.
What Is a Router?
When connecting more than one device to a modem, a router is generally required. A router acts as the traffic director of a network. It takes information provided by the modem and routes it to the devices attached to the modem, then the router creates Network Address Translated ( NAT) internal private IP address to the connected devices so they can be accessed. Devices like computers, game consoles and etc can be connected to a router wirelessly or through network cables. Some advanced features of a router includes built-in firewall to help protect the network from unwanted traffic.
What Is a Switch in Networking?
A switch (such as a 10GbE switch or Gigabit PoE switch) is used to provide additional ports, expanding the capability of the router. A network switch learns the association between the MAC addresses of connected devices and its switched ports. A switch only sends data to where it needs to go, thus reducing the amount of data on the network, thereby increasing the overall performance of the connected devices while improving security. Often connected to a router, a switch will not provide routing capability and should not be connected directly to the modem unless a DHCP server is present elsewhere on the network.
Switch vs Router vs Modem: Similarities and Differences
As standard components in Ethernet networks, switch vs router vs modem bears many similarities, but there are also some key characteristics to set them apart.
- Switch vs router vs modem are all small plastic/metal box-shaped electronic device
- They all allow computers to connect to it for the purpose of enabling communication among them via Internet Protocol
- They all have some physical ports on the front or back of them, which provide the connection points for computers, a connection for electric power, and LED lights to display working status.
Router vs Modem
Routers work at network layer 3 of the OSI model, and it deals with IP addresses. A router is specifically used to join networks together and routes traffic between them. When used at home, your router connect the internal local network to your ISP’s network. And it can be connected to your modem (provided by ISP) on one end and to a switch on the other end (local network). Usually, the Internet port on a router will connect to your modem and the rest of the ports are for switches. A modem has a single coaxial port for the cable connection from your ISP and a single Ethernet port to link the Internet port on your router. Modem is used to connect your ISP using phone line (for DSL), cable connection or fiber (ONT).
Router vs Switch
Like we’ve mentioned, a router works at layer 3 of the OSI model, thereby it allows you to connect multiple computers to each other and also allows them to share a single Internet connection. A switch, however, works at layer 2 of the OSI model (there are also some layer 3 switches that have routing capacities), which connects one point to another in a network temporarily by turning it on and off as necessary. Note that a switch only allows you to connect multiple computers into a local network. The following chart illustrates other differences concerning router vs switch.
Directs data in a network. Passes data between home computers, and between computers and the modem.
Allow connections to multiple devices, manage ports, manage VLAN security settings
Network Layer (Layer 3 devices)
Data Link Layer. Network switches operate at Layer 2 of the OSI model.
Data Transmission Form
Frame (L2 Switch) Frame & Packet (L3 switch)
LAN, MAN, WAN
In Router, every port has its own Broadcast domain.
Switch has one broadcast domain [unless VLAN implemented]
Mbps (Wireless); Mbps 1 Gbps (Wired)
10/ Mbps, 1 Gbps
Address used for data transmission
Connecting two or more networks
Connecting two or more nodes in the same network (L2) or different network (L3)
In a different network environment (MAN/ WAN), a router is faster than an L3 switch.
In a LAN environment, an L3 switch is faster than a router (built-in switching hardware)
Firewall VPN Dynamic hadling of Bandwidth
Priority rt range On/Off setting of port VLAN Port mirroring
Switch vs Router vs Modem: What’s the Connection Sequence?
The simple rule for connecting switch, router and modem is like this: modem-router-switch (access point)-multiple clients. Put the switch behind a router so all devices connected to either the switch or the router can access the internet simultaneously, while placing the switch right after the modem is just as equal to not putting it it will waste some of your hardware and cables since all your switch ports aside from the two going between the router and modem will be useless to you.
Here we’ve walked you through the basic concept of switch vs router vs modem, as well as the similarities and differences concerning router vs modem and router vs switch. Hope that has clear some of your confusions. For any further solution related to fiber switch or network router, reach us via [email protected]
Reddit router vs modem
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Considering Verizon Fios as your internet provider? You likely noticed the $15 fee that you have to pay each month to rent equipment. While Verizon doesn’t allow you to bring your own modem for its Fios service, you can save by buying your own router. The upfront cost is a little steeper, but it’ll make your monthly bill cheaper and you won’t have to be beholden to the equipment that Verizon provides, which might not fit your needs.
How we chose the best modem/router for Verizon Fios
There are lots of great routers out there, making it hard to pick which one is right for you. To help narrow it down, we scoured the specs, reviews and information for dozens of options to help select the best of the bunch. We took into consideration top speeds, connectivity, support for devices, range, and a variety of other factors that matter to consumers. Price and bang-for-your-buck are taken into account, along with situations that the routers would work best for. We considered the following:
- Supported speeds
- Price and value
- Specific customer reviews
- What device it is best for
Best router for Verizon Fios: Linksys Max-Stream AC
When it comes to picking a router for your Verizon Fios internet service, the most important aspect is staying connected throughout the house. The Linksys Max-Stream AC is perfect for exactly that. This router features tri-band technology that allows you to get a fast connection speed on multiple devices, even when they are using the internet at the same time. That means that streaming, gaming and more can all coexist at the same time within the same house.
While this router does not lack for speed, topping out at up to Gbps, it also has plenty of range. You can get up to 1, square feet of wireless internet coverage, which can support dozens of devices. Set up is simple and the MU MIMO (Multi User Multiple Input Multiple Output) systems makes sure that all of your devices maintain an optimal connection no matter where they are in the house.
Pros and cons of Linksys Max-Stream AC
No WiFi 6 support
Best bang for your buck: TP-Link AC
Great speeds and connectivity don’t have to come at a steep price. The TP-Link AC is all the proof you need of that. This router is ideal for anyone on a budget who doesn’t want to compromise. It provides top speeds of up to 1,Mbps and dual-band technology ensures that you’ll be able to stay connected with multiple devices without sacrificing top speeds to any of them. If you need gigabit speeds, you can connect via the LAN port for even faster connections.
You also won’t have to worry about any troubles with this router. It comes with a two-year warranty, among the best in the business. It has also won the J.D. Power award for highest customer satisfaction in and , so you know that you’ll be able to get the help and support you need if necessary.
Pros and cons of TP-Link AC
Fast top speeds
LAN ports for wired connection
No WiFi 6 support
Fastest router: NETGEAR Nighthawk R
Whether you’re gaming or streaming, you need speed. That is exactly what the NETGEAR Nighthawk R provides. This powerful router provides unmatched speeds, up to 1,Mbps, that can carry multiple devices in use at the same time. Streaming in 4K, play games without lag, browse the internet, support your smart home devices — you can do it all at the same time with this router. It supports as many as 30 connections at once.
You can get even faster speeds by hardwiring via the Ethernet port, and a dual-core processor helps to manage and prioritize traffic in a way that allows your household to stay connected. Make lag and buffering a thing of the past with this router.
Pros and Cons of NETGEAR Nighthawk R
Blazing fast speeds
Support for lots of devices
Gigabit Ethernet port
Extras require monthly subscription
Best router for security: Synology RTac
We hear about hacks and stolen data seemingly every day now, and while there isn’t a lot you can do about how other companies manage your information, you can at least protect your home network. The best way to do that is with the Synology RTac. This router is like having a vault for your home internet network. With built-in traffic monitoring tools, you won’t have to wonder if someone is trying to spy on your activity or join your network without permission.
And while security is a great selling point, this router is great at keeping you connected, too. It has an impressive range, capable of covering up to 3, square feet. And you’ll get great speeds, maxing out at Gbps.
Pros and Cons of Synology RTac
Security protocols keep you safe
Wide coverage area
Blazing fast speeds
Limited Wi-Fi protocols
No WiFi 6 support
Should you rent or purchase your Verizon Fios equipment?
Pros and Cons of Renting Equipment
Guaranteed software updates
Easy to return equipment
Guaranteed speed and plan compatibility
Repair service included
Monthly rental payments
Payments are thrown away on usage
Pros and Cons of Buying Equipment
Long-term investment in equipment
Lower monthly internet bill
Choose the equipment you want
Repair and equipment upgrades are your responsibility
Limited customer support after the warranty expires or device ages
What to look for in a Verizon Fios compatible modem
- Speed capability Your router can only provide speeds as fast as your internet plan, but if you get Verizon Fios, you’re going to want to be able to capitalize on its gigabit connection. Find a router capable of matching the top speeds of your plan. An underpowered router can limit internet speeds no matter what plan you’re paying for.
- Traffic management If you are in a household with lots of devices that may be in operation at the same time, you need a router that can handle that. Dual-band or tri-band routers are equipped to maximize speeds even with multiple devices connected at once
- Range You want your entire home to be blanketed with internet, so make sure you take into account range. The best and most consistent connection will come from being hard-wired but you should still get a steady connection throughout your home with a good router.
- Security Protecting your home network is important. Make sure your router has at least WPA2 or WPA3 encryption so you can set a password and ensure that your connection is secure. Check for additional safety features like traffic monitoring and VPN capabilities, as well.
Need a faster internet plan?
While a modem and router can be the difference between a steady connection and a spotty one and can help maximize your internet connection, it can’t speed up your internet. If you find yourself in need of a faster internet connection, you will have to change your internet plan. Contact your internet service provider or shop around for others in your region to find a faster connection plan that will better serve your needs.
The bottom line
You won’t be able to bring your own modem to Verizon Fios, but you can save on your monthly bill by bringing your own router. Keep in mind things like range, speeds and number of connections, along with security. Balance these needs when deciding which router is best for you. Also, remember that your connection will only be as good as your internet plan, so consider what plan you purchase.
Written by:AJ Dellinger
AJ Dellinger is a writer and editor based in Madison, WI. He has spent the last 10 years writing about the internet, gadgets, technology and a variety of other topics. His work has appeared in Wired, Gizmodo, CN Read more
Edited by:Robin Layton
Editor, Broadband Content
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