As per the guidelines from December 20, 2020, the internet service providers will no longer be able to charge you a monthly fee for owning a modem. It was a law that everyone was looking forward to.
Are you sick of getting those extra usage charges on your internet bill and want to get your own modem? Well, now is the time to invest in the modem and get yourself the best one at a much cheaper cost that will save you from spending extra money on your monthly internet bill.
Benefits of Buying Your Own Modem?
Before we start with our list, there is one thing we are sure you want to know, and that is what are the benefits of having your own modem?
While surely it is easy for you to choose the modem that is given by your ISP, buying your own modem is a good option for those people who are less tech-savvy and don’t want to get into networking and to route their modem on their own. But if you are someone who can optimize a network on your own, then there are a number of benefits that are waiting for you to unfold.
The very first thing you need to look for when you are buying a modem is its cost because, in the end, it all comes down to how much money you are saving from the purchase. In most cases, when you buy a modem of your own, it will pay itself off in less than 12 months.
The second thing is the speed and the performance of the modem. An ISP modem is specifically set to function with the ISP network along with its infrastructure, but that doesn’t really mean it is your only option. The modem provided by your ISP is more or less low-quality, and you have to suffer from underperforming wifi coverage.
With a modem of your choice, you get to access more channels, meaning it can easily handle the more number of wireless devices that you add to the network. Also, you can get routers to plug into your modem for better coverage all over the house.
On the other hand, you should look for a modem that gives you the easiest route to manage your networking and check your traffic. The modem that you are going to buy will show you much more information along with several options on how to manage your bandwidth.
You can even prioritize the devices. All these things you need to keep in mind when you are purchasing a modem for yourself as these will make the difference in your user experience and make it much better than your ISP modem experience.
How to Choose a Modem?
One of the phrases which you are going to see a lot and even we are going to use in this article is DOCSIS, which means Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification. DOCSIS is responsible for telling you the maximum speed at which the modem can operate to transfer files. In general, if you are looking to buy the fastest modem, you should look for DOCSIS.
On the other hand, the other common spec which you are going to find is DOCSIS 3.0, which means the modem can handle up to 1GB data transfer each second. The newest version of the DOCSIS 3.1 even manages to go all the way up to 10 GB per second data transfer speeds.
This is a huge difference, and if you have a gigabit connection, then you should go with the latest 3.1 version to take full advantage of your network. The 2.0 version only had a speed of 40 Mb per second so beware of it as most of the ISP doesn’t accept that much low bandwidth.
The 3.1 version is still fairly new to the market, and you need to double-check if your ISP can actually handle that much data transfer speed. At the same time, you need to ask yourself, do you actually need that much speed for your daily tasks.
Also, when you are making a decision to buy yourself a modem, you need to get in touch with your ISP provider as compatibility is the main issue that you need to get over in the first place. If you talk to your ISP and ask them about the requirements of a modem, you can save a lot of your time in setting things up for your wifi.
To find out the compatibility of the modem, you need to look at the modem’s product description along with its stats. If you are unable to find it, you must directly go to the ISP’s website, where they must have a list of approved modems that you can buy yourself.
Don’t go with the unapproved modems. The ISP providers can easily see which modem you are using, and they can refuse to provide you with their service. It can lead to wasting time and money.
Difference Between Cable Modem and Router
Well, it is simple, a modem is a device that helps you hook up with the outside internet. In contrast, the router is the device that enables all the wired and wireless devices to get onto the internet. Also, a router becomes a bridge between the connected devices so they can communicate with each other.
Some products offer both modem and router combo in one machine to make the setup clean and easier to manage. Going with your own modem or router at the beginning may seem like a huge deal as these devices surely cost a few bucks. But in the long run, you are not going to pay that extra amount every month to your ISP.
List of Best Cable Modems to Buy in 2022
So now you know the benefits of having your own modem and what are the things you need to look for when you are buying a modem, let’s move to the main part of the article; the list of the 10 best cable modems that you can buy in 2022:
1. Motorola MB7420
Starting our list with the bang for a buck cable modem which is Motorola MB7420. It is the best modern-day cable modem that you can place in your home and your office as well. It is ideal for plans which have a speed of 300 Mbps.
Motorola MB7420 can cover large office space as well as home. During our testing, we were able to get great connectivity even after having 3 to 4 walls in between the device and the modem. On the other hand, it easily handled multiple traffic from different devices and was able to deliver all the data packets on time.
It isn’t as bulky as other cable modems from this list, but if you are thinking it to be a compact modem, then you are in for a surprise. The MB7420 looks stylish, and it easily blends in with the home decor and doesn’t hurt the eyes. The blue and green notification lights are bright enough for users to read the notification lights from a distance.
On the other hand, it doesn’t turn your darkroom into a laser light show at night. So don’t worry about constantly waking up in the night due to the lights. The modem is easy to set up, and with the use of its coaxial connector sticking out from the backside, it is fairly comfortable to connect with it and not touch the lone ethernet port. Lastly, it comes with a 2-year warranty, offering better protection on your investment.
2. Netgear CM600
Second, on our list is Netgear’s DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem CM600, which can be used to connect with your ISP. The maximum speed at which Netgear CM600 can work is 960 Mbps for downloads. When it comes to uploads, the max you are getting is 320 Mbps, which is still good and better than most of the cheap cable modems that are out there in the market.
There are a total of 24 downstream and 8 upstream channels in CM600 that provide efficient and reliable internet access. Likewise, you are getting a robust firewall to protect your device and network.
Netgear CM600 comes with a 1-year warranty, and the booting time is fairly low than the other modems. You can also connect routers with this modem from Netgear and power up your router network for better internet connectivity on the other side of your home.
3. Arris Surfboard SB8200
One of the best cable modems that have satisfied the internet need of millions of people is Arris Surfboard SB8200. It’s a three-in-one product; it can be your wifi router while still working as a cable modem to provide internet service from your ISP.
The device comes with 16 downstream and 4 upstreams, and it is said to be best for internet cable plans that have a maximum speed of 400 Mbps. Additionally, it has 2 1-Gigabit Ethernet connections to help you save money on buying a router for wired connectivity. With just a few clicks and by visiting your ISP’s activation page, one can set this modem up for running.
4. Netgear Cable Modem CM400
This is the cable modem that is compatible with all cable providers, and this is the one modem that you need for all your networking needs. Unless you have a plan above 450 Mbps, then you need to look for something else; otherwise, the Netgear cable modem is enough to power the whole house with internet connectivity.
If you look at the stars and the rating of this modem on Amazon, Newegg, etc., you will find that it is one of the fan favorites as thousands of people are using it and are quite pleased with its performance.
CM400 can handle multiple devices with ease. Your Xbox, PS5, and multiple smartphones; all can be connected to it, and still, it won’t lose any data packets, and you will have the best internet experience.
Even when you are playing Netflix at 4k on one of the devices and playing an online multiplayer video game, the modem will pump out the downstream to both these devices at full speed without any stutter.
After buying this Modem, you will start saving money in just 3 months. The setup is pretty simple, and it’s a no-brainer for most of its part, as all you need to do is a plugin and call your ISP to help you configure it. On the other hand, you plug any router that you have, and it will work with it just fine.
5. Netgear Nighthawk CM1200 Multi-Gig Speed Cable Modem
If you want to keep up with the latest trends in networking and want to have the latest hardware to back your high-speed internet connection, then Nighthawk has a modem that is made for you. The 2 upstream and 2 downstream OFDM DOCSIS 3.1 channels will enable you to download files at the maximum speed of 2Gbps.
It is compatible with more common DOCSIS 3.0 plans that provide a download speed of 100 Mbps. This router is future-proof, and it can easily provide you with a network connection for the next 5 years. There are four gigabit ethernet ports at the back of the modem, which gives you the ability to form a gigabit connection with multiple devices all at the same time.
You can also assign multiple IP addresses to each individual port, which means it can support up to 4 separate home networks. Lastly, it has 802.3ad link aggregation, which means the user can link up 2 ports together and make it a 2-gigabit network.
6. Motorola MB7621 24×8 Cable Modem
In case a budget is your main concern, then Motorola MB7621 is a modem that can pay for itself in only a few months, and the price you will be paying for it won’t cost a dent in your savings. It has 24 downstream and 8 upstream DOCSIS 3.0 channels, which makes it possible for this modem to handle the fastest internet plans in 2022.
The upload speeds can go all the way up to 246 Mbps, and the downloads can reach up to 1Gbps (theoretically). Otherwise, you are getting a stable 600 Mbps download. Like any other modem from Motorola, this one also stands for its reliability and robustness.
The full-band capture digital tuner guarantees that you get a fast and stable internet connection with MB7621. It has a single gigabit port at the back to give users a full-speed wired connection, but it does lack the support of voice services.
The design is something, which we are fans of, as it comes with an attractive low-profile design that can easily leave in plain sight without having to worry about it being an eyesore. Also, it doesn’t take much space. Most of the ISPs work with it, so you can easily have it up and running in a few minutes after unboxing it from the mail.
7. TP-Link AC1750 Wifi Cable Modem
If you are someone who is not tech-savvy and not looking for the latest and the greatest modem but something that can fulfill all your needs while remaining budget-friendly, then TP-link is here to help you.
Time and time again, TP-link’s AC1750 has shown us why it is best in the business. It has 16 download channels, all of which support DOCSIS 3.0 and has 4 upstreams of the same. It’s a modem and a router, and when it comes to streaming a 4k video or playing a video game in 4k, you can rely on its performance.
It is such a slim unit, but it still packs a lot of horsepower under the hood. There are 2 USB and 4-gigabit ethernet ports, 6 internal antennas and the maximum download speed that you can get from this modem is 680 Mbps. It’s a good replacement if you are getting tired of paying the rent of your modem to the ISP.
8. Motorola MB8600
One of the best cable modems to buy in 2022 is Motorola’s MB8600. If you are already rocking a gigabit-speed from your ISP, then to take full advantage of that speed, you can get this modem without having any second thoughts. It is usually less expensive than its competition and comes with a 2-year warranty.
The modem is DOCSIS 3.1-certified; thus, all of its 32×8 channels support gigabit ethernet service. At the back of this modem, you will find 4-gigabit ethernet ports for a fast wired connection. Lastly, link aggregation is also available to make it easier for the user to reach their maximum data speed via a wired connection.
9. Netgear Nighthawk C7000
Nighthawk C7000 is one of the sleekest looking devices in the cable modem industry. It has 24 download channels, and runs smoothly under heavy load and can provide you with enough bandwidth to stream and play a video game in 4k resolution.
There are 4 ports at the back of the machine that support the gigabit connection. Moreover, at the back, you are going to find 2 USB 2.0 ports. It comes with parental control too, and the maximum download speed which one can attain on this cable modem is 400 Mbps, which is good enough for home and small business usage.
10. ARRIS SURFboard SB6190 3.0
Last on our list is Arris Surfboard SB6190, which is one of the most capable modems in the market. It holds the position of the first-ever cable modem to be made with a gigabit ethernet connection. If you now look at its price on Amazon, you can easily find it at a discount.
The download speed can reach up to 1.4 Gbps with the help of 32 downstreams and 8 upstreams, all supporting DOCSIS 3.0. It supports both IPV4 and IPV6 connections and comes with a 2-year warranty. In short, Arris SB6190 is a fast and reliable cable modem for everyday home use.
So these were the top 10 cable modems to buy in 2022. We don’t have any biased picks on this list. These modems are on this list due to their performance and ease of use. If we have to recommend one of the cable modems, we would definitely go with Netgear CM600 as it has everything that you need from a cable modem. Additionally, it costs less and easily fits in small areas.
Before you purchase any of the cable modems, make sure you get in touch with your ISP and ask them for compatibility. As we don’t want you to waste your money and time buying the wrong modem, we recommend researching well.
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