The SBG8300 also provides Wi-Fi performance to match, with dual-band 2.3Gbps speeds spread across the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, plus four Gigabit Ethernet ports on the back so you can hardwire in at gigabit speeds as well. Even without the external antennas, however, it can cover 1,800 square feet at speeds of up to 1.3Gbps over the 5GHz band or 600Mbps on the 2.4GHz side. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links. It's one of the first modem/router combos to include a built-in DOCSIS 3.1 cable modem, so it not only works with all of the major cable providers right out of the box, including Xfinity by Comcast, Cox, and Spectrum, but supports the kind of broadband speeds that were once the exclusive domain of fibre connections, with download performance up to 1Gbps. Unless you have really specialized needs, a cable modem/router combo can be a win all around. DOCSIS 3.0 8x4 or higher devices are required for all new Cox High Speed Internet … ", "The Netgear C3700 is a sleek and affordable option that provides all the connectivity and more of a rental modem. In addition to dual-band routers, you can also find tri-band routers, which can be a boon if you have a really busy home with a lot of Wi-Fi 5 devices. Almost every Wi-Fi device on the planet supports 2.4GHz as a minimum standard, and this is the only frequency that most older devices and inexpensive internet-of-things devices support. Our testing demonstrates that the MG7700 can handle cable services with speeds of up to 1Gbps and also includes four Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, so you can hardwire your PC or gaming console into it if the 802.11ac speeds aren't cutting it for you. Note that while you may still find cheaper modems around that use older DOCSIS standards, these days DOCSIS 3.0 should be considered the bare minimum, as it not only offers better performance but fixes a number of security problems that plagued the older standards. In most cases this usually isn't a big deal, unless of course you're dealing with a security vulnerability or a serious bug that needs to be patched, in which case you may find that you'll be waiting longer for an update than you would be if you simply had a standalone router. As we explained earlier, the performance you get from the cable modem side of a modem/router combo will be determined by the DOCSIS standard and number of channels it supports, as well as by your actual internet plan, of course. 20 Mbps. This often means that important firmware updates can be delayed while manufacturers wait for the big cable ISPs to certify them to make sure they're compatible with their networks. Remember that the modem is your network’s translator, while the router is more like an air-traffic controller, communicating with the “planes,” keeping order, and making sure everyone is safe. The router manages all the information going to and from each device and the modem and makes sure it all ends up safely in the right spot. Each modem has an assigned public IP address that identifies it on the Internet. review process here. Just because you have a wireless router doesn't mean you necessarily want to be giving up on wired connectivity, especially if you have a fast cable ISP connection. He's installed, tested, and configured just about every type and brand of router, firewall, wireless access point, and network extender in places ranging from single-family dwellings to office buildings. AT&T Wi-Fi gateways and modems. Bear in mind that there's more to getting good coverage than just raw distance, as you'll want to make sure that your router can still offer good performance at the periphery of its range. Set up is also a snap thanks to Netgear's easy user interface, so you don't need to be a network engineer to get up and running, although power users who want to get into the more technical settings still can. A modem is your gateway to the internet—a cable, fiber optic, or telephone line comes through your neighborhood, to your house, and connects to your modem.The modem translates the … Plus, it comes equipped with two Gigabit Ethernet ports for hardwiring in a PC, smart TV, or game console, plus a USB port that can be used for sharing a printer or hard drive. The beamforming four-antenna array also delivers AC3200 Wi-Fi speeds of up to 3.2Gbps across 3,000 square feet of living space—1Gbps on the 2.4GHz band and 2.2Gbps in the higher 5GHz range. The 2.4GHz band is the most common Wi-Fi frequency, and it's been used for over 20 years. Arris Surfboard SBG7600AC2 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem & Wi-Fi Router, Best Budget: Some ISP-supplied modem/router combos don't even let you fully disable their router features, which can make it even more of a hassle to add your own standalone router into the mix. As the new numbering system implies, Wi-Fi 5 is better than Wi-Fi 4, and it's the fastest standard that's in widespread use right now. You can choose to create a LAN without Internet access. When you connect to Wi-Fi, you’re really connecting to your router, which forwards traffic between the internet … The best cable modem/router combos combine all of the great features of high-performance cable modems with the top-rated wireless routers in one simple package that’s not only less expensive than buying two separate devices, but also means you can return your rental cable modem, saving you from paying those monthly fees as well. You may also have heard of the Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax, but while there are a few standalone routers out that offer support for this leading-edge standard, Wi-Fi 6 cable modem/router combos are still just emerging. Like most DOCSIS 3.1 modems, the SBG8300 also supports the more common DOCSIS 3.0 standard, of course, so it's backward-compatible with 32x8 channel support for maximum throughput, meaning that you can invest for the future without having to jump up to a higher speed plan right away. Don't despair if you can't find one, however, as you might be able to continue using your ISP-provided rental modem strictly as your voice gateway alongside a better cable modem/router combo for your actual internet access. DOCSIS 3.1 channels are much faster than DOCSIS 3.0 channels, with each one offering 1.89Gbps download speeds or 0.94Gbps upload speeds. Combining the cable modem and the router in a single device gives you one less piece of equipment to worry about managing, and many can offer even tighter integration with your cable service as well as improved security and performance since you don't have to worry about whether your router will actually talk to your cable modem properly, which can especially be a challenge if your still relying on the cable modem that your ISP provides. The modem connects your home to the Internet, while a router creates the network inside your house. All newer DOCSIS standards are compatible with older ones, so you'll have no problem using a DOCSIS 3.1 modem even if your cable ISP only supports DOCSIS 3.0 right now. "While some DOCSIS 3.0 cable modems advertise speeds of 1Gbps or higher, most cable internet providers will only give you up to 600Mbps over this standard. While Arris' cable modem/router combos are fairly spartan on the router side, they're really easy to setup and provide decent coverage for smaller spaces. Most people use their home network to access the Internet, but many have no idea how these networks work. Talk to your Internet service provider about your options for the optimum home network connection. — Bill Thomas, Product Tester, Lacks advanced features like MU-MIMO and QoS. A modem is what establishes and maintains a consistent connection to your Internet Service Provider (ISP). For an optimal experience, we recommend updating your browser. Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our But it won’t work with Verizon, AT&T, or CenturyLink internet plans. ", "This DOCSIS 3.1 modem/router combo delivers true 1Gbps internet speeds with Wi-Fi performance to match. ", "A powerful 24x8 DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem and AC1900 Wi-Fi router in an unobtrusive package. A cable modem and WiFi router are the heart and brain of your home network. This is why tri-band routers have higher speed ratings. Hence the architects of Wi-Fi decided to begin using the 5GHz frequency range in order to avoid these problems, and as an added bonus, higher frequencies also offer faster throughput. via either an Ethernet cable or WiFi signal. The router connects to your modem and then to your devices (laptops, smart TVs, printers, etc.) With support for 24 upstream and 8 downstream DOCSIS 3.0 channels, along with AC1900 Wi-Fi performance, this router is no slouch either. If you have a device that was not provided by AT&T, please refer to your … Once the initial connection to the internet is established, a router enables Wi-Fi access within … ... Modems and Routers Search. If you’re looking for the ultimate in future-proof cable modem and router technology, Netgear’s Nighthawk CAX80 has you covered—it’s the first modem/router combo that combines the newest and fastest DOCSIS 3.1 cable standards with advanced 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 support, giving you the most advanced technology available in both the modem and the router. AC1900 WiFi Cable Modem Router for XFINITY ® Internet & Voice … We think you'll be pleasantly surprised by the performance offered by the wired connection, however, which performs well even with more than a dozen devices connected to your network, as our testing showed. Offering all the connectivity of a rental modem and more, it's perfect for a small home thanks to its two Gigabit Ethernet ports and dual antennas. With DOCSIS 3.1 support, the CAX80 is ready to give you full gigabit speeds and beyond, with two downstream and two upstream OFDM channels offering download speeds of up to 3.78Gbps. The router connects to your modem and then to your devices (laptops, smart TVs, printers, etc.) If you subscribe to voice telephony services through your cable ISP, this can make your situation a bit more challenging, since you'll need to find a cable modem/router combo that can act as a voice gateway. Netgear C3700 Cable Modem Router, Best Value: IPv6, Vectoring B, 2.4 … The additional 5GHz band won't double your performance for a single Wi-Fi 5 device either, as it can only use one band at a time. ADD TO CART. Keep in mind, however, that these ratings represent the maximum total throughput for all of the devices on your network, which is the reason that these higher numbers are so important. Bill has also worked as an editor at Future. There’s also no need to compromise when buying a cable modem/router combo, as there are a wide range of models to suit every possible need, whether it’s just casual surfing in a small apartment or covering a large home with strong multi-gigabit speeds so everyone in your family can stream Netflix in 4K and enjoy the latest fast-paced online games. Jesse Hollington is a tech writer with 10+ years' experience. This modem/router is approved to work with Xfinity and Cox internet plans. While the CAX80 doesn’t come cheap, when you consider that it could very well be the only cable modem/router combo you ever need to buy it may well be worth the higher price of admission, especially when you factor in what you’ll be saving on rental fees. A cable modem-router combo is a highly efficient setup. internet and Telephone modems purchased in third-party retail are not certified for use with the Cox network. For DOCSIS 3.0, each download channel is 43Mbps and each upload channel is 31Mbps, and these are simply additive, so a 4x2 DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem will offer download speeds of 172Mbps (43Mbps X 4 channels) and upload speeds of 62Mbps (31Mbps X 2 channels). They began writing for Lifewire in January 2018, but you can also find their work on TechRadar. ARRIS is waiting on approval from Spectrum and other cable … If you find yourself in this situation, however, we recommend checking with your ISP before purchasing a new cable modem/router combo, as not all ISPs allow you to use two cable modems on the same service. If the cable modem/router combo that you're renting from your ISP isn't meeting your needs in terms of Wi-Fi range or performance you'll end up needing a standalone router anyway, and if you're going to go down that road you can just as easily purchase a router that already includes a cable modem for about the same amount of money and lose the monthly rental fee in the process. Nonetheless, while it's nice to invest in technology for the future, it will be a while before you're likely to need Wi-Fi 6 in your home, or really even be able to fully take advantage of it. The DOCSIS standard used by your cable modem determines the maximum performance that's possible, however not all cable modems will take advantage of the full capacity. A tri-band AC3200 router gives you 600Mbps over the 2.4GHz band and 1,300Mbps over each of the two 5GHz bands, and an AC5400 router is capable of speeds of up to 1Gbps on the 2.4GHz … By using Lifewire, you accept our, The Ultimate Cable Modem/Router Combo Buying Guide, Best Overall: While it doesn't offer any advanced features like MU-MIMO or QoS, it's not a serious omission for most home users considering that the available Wi-Fi bandwidth well exceeds the maximum speed of the cable internet connection. So an AC1900 router will offer you 1,900Mbps, or 1.9Gbps, an AC3000 can do 3Gbps, and so forth. 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