The 5 Best Cable Modem/Router Combos of (2017-18)Best Cable Modem Router Combo

People choose broadband connection over all others as it is more reliable and the connection usually comes along with its own modem, they end up paying extra monthly rental for this modem that is provided by the service provider.

Many people are buying their own separate modems to save this cost, now they can buy a Cable Modem Router Combo and save some more money on the hardware.

These combos are particularly affordable and it helps people save on their monthly bills since some service providers are charging a rental of over $10 per month.

 

Quick Comparison Guide of Our Top Picks

Router Name Max SpeedLan PortsStandardsChannel BondingCheck Now!
#1
NETGEAR N300
NETGEAR N300
(C3000)

 
(3.8 / 5)
 
300 Mbps
 
2x
Ethernet ports
 
802.11 N
 
8x4
 

#2
NETGEAR NIGHTHAWK AC1900
NETGEAR NIGHTHAWK AC1900

 
(4.3 / 5)
 
1900 Mbps
 
5x
Ethernet ports
 
802.11 AC
 
24x4
 
#3
ARRIS SURFBOARD AC1750 [SBG6782AC]
ARRIS SURFBOARD AC1750 [SBG6782AC]

 
(4.3 / 5)
 
1750 Mbps
 
2x
Ethernet ports
 
802 11 AC
 
8x4
 

#4
Motorola 16x4
Motorola 16x4 Cable Modem

 
(4.3 / 5)
 
1900 Mbps
 
4x
Ethernet ports
 
802.11 N
 
N/a
 
#5
TP-Link N300 DOCSIS 3.0 (8x4) Wireless Wi-Fi
TP-Link N300
Wireless Wi-Fi

 
(4.3 / 5)
 
300 Mbps
 
4x
Ethernet ports
 
802.11 N
 
8x4
 

 

Top Benefits of Buying modem router combo

cost-effectiveCost Effective:  These affordable cable modem router Combos are quite compared to buying each component separately, as companies discount such combos to encourage sales and customer satisfaction.

It also helps the user save some money on the monthly rental.

 

updateUpdated Technology: Internet Service Providers sometimes may use outdated firmware,  however, when you buy a separated modem you can get the latest technology.

The current telecommunications standard in the market is DOCSIS 3.0 and many service providers are still giving their customers DOCSIS 2.0 modems.

flexibility
Flexibility: These separately bought modems can be placed away from the router using cable extenders, and the users can even update their routers with third party firmware to further improve or tweak the performance.

 

Our Reviews of the Best Cable Modem Router

Router Name Max SpeedStandardsPriceRatings

NETGEAR N300 (C3000)

300 Mbps802.11 N$$

NETGEAR NIGHTHAWK AC1900

1900 Mbps802.11 AC$$$

ARRIS SURFBOARD AC1750

1750 Mbps802 11 AC$$$

Motorola 16x4 Cable Modem

1900 Mbps802.11 N$$$

TP-Link N300 Wireless Wi-Fi

300 Mbps802.11 N$$

1. NETGEAR N300 (C3000) – AFFORDABLE AND RELIABLE FOR  HOME USE

netgear c3000

 

Netgear has designed this router with an inbuilt modem that not only improves the speed but also the overall functionality.

Also known as the C3000 this router also lets users experience maximum speed from their internet plan.

This economically priced is a great deal as the modem is inbuilt and need no additional device or power source.

  • Great Speeds: Despite being an N300 router this cable modem router combo can easily deliver speed up to 340 Mbps down and 300 Mbps up. People can get more speed out of their existing plan because of this feature.
  • Two Ethernet Ports: This is a rare feature for an economical router and modem combo, the router allows users to connect two wired devices directly to the router. It also has a USB 3.0 port for sharing media and connecting wired printers.
  • Netgear Genie App: It becomes very easy to manage the network remotely from any device using this application, it also delivers 40% improved speeds while transferring files over the home network. Apart from this, it lets first-time users setup their network through fast and easy to understand steps.

What We Liked ?

  1. It comes in an all-in-one package – you don’t have to pay for cable modem rental fee.
  2. It has 8×4 channel bonding for faster downloading – up to 340Mbps.
  3. Easy to install and Comes with NETGEAR genie to let you control home network.
  4. It is compatible with all the reputed Cable Internet Providers.
The NETGEAR N300 cable modem router is great by all means. It does have its fair share of shortcomings, but if you are looking for best cable modem router combo on a budget, you should be settling on this one. The speed is Incredible to provide you with smooth HD streaming and uninterrupted gaming experience.

 

2. NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 – Our Top Pick

NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900

This is a highly recommended modem router because of its superb ncy, it works with the latest DOCSIS 3.0 technology for modems and delivers a truly reliable connection and staggering speeds.

The router is capable of delivering 1900Mbps and supports the ac standard, companies like Cox Premier & Ultimate, Comcast and many more suggested using this device for attaining better speed from their services.

  • Processor: The 1.6 GHx Processor let this router handle heavy tasks with ease, it can quickly process the data and send it across to connected devices for HD Streaming, Gaming and more.
  • Channel Bonding: This is a relatively new technology that effectively increase the download speed, users have experience speeds over 900Mbps. People experiencing speed issues during the prime hours of the day can use this modem router to get the maximum speed from their internet connection.
  • Genie App: Netgear has made a very user-friendly app for all its latest networking devices, the Genie App lets the users access their network settings from any compatible device like Smartphones, Laptops, PCs, Etc. Here they can see all the connected user and even manage these connections or control which sites they can visit.

What We Liked?

  1. It comes with an app, which makes the installation process really simple. The app can also be used to monitor the network.
  2. Even during peak hours, the speed is very good.
  3. It has better performance than what is provided by cable companies.
  4. Extremely easy to set up.
The reviews and rating of the NETGEAR NIGHTHAWK AC1900 are incredible. So, far on this list, it has the largest channel bonding and in terms of speed. If you are the kind of person who handles incredibly massive tasks, the processor on this model turns it into a beast, so you won’t suffer speed issues during peak times as thus will give you the maximum speed you need.

 

 

3. ARRIS SURFboard Ac1750 – best for gaming & streaming

ARRIS SURFboard AC1750

Many people may not know but Motorola is a leader in the modem industry, SBG6482AC is an excellent device from the same flagship under the name of ARRIS SURFboard.

The company claims up to 8 times faster download speed and also up to three times the wireless speed of regular networking setups.

Latest standards and features make it a recommended device among top service providers and has been approved by each service provider in the country.

  • Mimo Technology: This is a new antenna technology that boosts the range up to 450 feet which is enough for any home network, this is great for people who are looking for a modem router with a huge range.
  • Channel Bonding: This new technology delivers a better download speed by combing the eight downstream and four upstream channels, people who use their network to transfer huge file and data may find this feature very helpful.
  • Extended Compatibility: This device can be used with any operating system including Mac, Linux, Windows, and Unix, this makes it is a perfect choice for people who are struggling to find a truly compatible hardware which can help them used their internet connection to its maximum potential.

What We Liked?

  1. 3 in 1 product that has cable modem, WiFi Access Point, and 2-port Gigabit Ethernet Router.
  2. Faster download speed – can utilize up to 8 channels of download stream at 343 Mbps.
  3. It comes with a 2 year warranty period.
  4. Extremely easy to set up.
ARRIS AC1750 is your ideal option if you are looking for high speeds in a cable modem and wide range of connection. The extended compatibility on all operating system also makes it perfect for those looking for compatibility with their devices. Overall, this is not the cheapest, but it is a worthy option.

 

4. Motorola 16×4 – best docsis 3.0 cable modem router

Motorola MG7550 16x4 Cable Modem

The Motorola are a little conservative when it comes to design among the Best Cable Modem Router Combo introduced last year.

It offers a compact and space saving design, which helps it to minimize overheating, therefore enhancing performance, and durability.

Just like most other cable modem router, it comes packed with an upgraded DOCSIS 3.0 Technology and is does support 1.0 and 2.0 for optimal performance.

  • High Speed: This unit is a combination of a high speeds wireless router with an AC 1990 Wi-Fi as well as a Power boost, so you expect nothing less of high speed.The wireless power Boost feature means that there is an improved performance boosting the wireless signals to the maximum legal limit. This gives this cable modem router a significant boost in speeds as well as signals.It also features Anybeam Beamforming at 2.5 and 5.0 GHz, frequencies allowing it to focus signals to enhance performance and range.
  • Backward Compatibility: This is actually one of the few modems that you don’t need to worry when it comes to compatibility.Most of your devices can be connected to the internet through this cable modem router thanks to the latest AC standards with backward compatibility to the earlier standards.
  • Additional Features: The router has some of the most sophisticated additional features on the Modem Router Combo, among these features is a tower design that will be a great addition to any home or office décor.Along with this modem has surge circuit that protects the interior components from power surges and lightning to protect your investment. It’s designed to lasts, which is why Motorola provides a two years warranty.

What We Liked?

  1. Attractive design with extra safety features.
  2. Compatible with more internet providers.
  3. Offers the best internet speeds and faster downloads.
  4. Durable and designed to run cooler compared to competing models.
  5. More ports.
The Motorola 16* 4 has arguably beaten competitors in terms of performance, speed, and compatibility. It’s not the cheapest unit you will come across, but the features on this cable modem router do justify the price. With two years warranty and extra safety, you are sure your investment is protected.

 

5. TP-Link N300 (8×4) – Modem Router combo under 100$

TP-Link N300 300Mbps Wireless

The TP-Link N300 is one of the top contenders when It comes to cable modem router, specifically because of 8×4 Channel bonding not to mention the DOCSIS 3.0 technology.

If you are looking for a reliable and affordable modem router but with a strong signal, this is your best bet.

  • Speed: This unit gives you high speeds of downloads of up to 300 Mbps Wi-Fi speeds on a 2.4 GHz frequency.You know what that means, greater online gaming experience, faster file transfer, and incredible HD videos streaming.As mentioned, TP-Link N300 uses DOCSIS 3.0 technology, and eight downstream channels and four upstream for speeds of 343 Mbps and 143 Mbps respectively, increasing the unit throughput, which means faster speeds on your device.
  • Range: If you are looking for reliable signals in your home areas, TP-Link N300 has the best Wi-Fi long range.It provided a perfect wireless connection with the 2 Internal antennas provided for even better connectivity and performance.It actually has a customizable feature that lets you assist bandwidth to those devices you use most, keeping your connection stronger.
  • Easy Setup: The set up on this cable modem is incredibly easy, considering that its ISP compatible with Comcast Xfinity and other providers.All you need to do is configure a setup to activate your ISP, and you got the internet up and running in a matter of minutes. If you are stuck in a rut during set-up, just give you ISP a call to assist you with installation, but I am sure it won’t get there.

What We Liked?

  1. Easy to set up; it’s a plug and play device.
  2. Thanks to the simple installation instructions.
  3. Delivers fast and robust wireless and wired connections which support bandwidth intensive activities such as video streaming, online gaming as well as fast upload and download of large files
  4. The router increases the area of Wi-Fi coverage for convenient wireless connection access.
Overall, a capable high-grade modem and a better router. If you want greater online gaming experience, faster file transfer, and better HD videos streaming, then you have a reason to choose the TP-Link N300 cable modem router. It is one of the most affordable options out there but has not gone shot when it comes to performance.

 

How to pick the best Modem/Router combo ?

cable modem router buying guideBuying a new cable modem router isn’t something you are likely to do frequently, or, for some people, at all.

The modem-router-combo device is a rare breed, only getting rarer as more and more people are trusting their default, ISP-branded devices more than third-party models.

Still, choosing one that suits you can vastly improve your Internet browsing experience whilst also potentially lowering monthly costs by ditching that slow and expensive Router your ISP provides you with.

 

ISP support

internet service provider-min

ISP: On the subject of ISPs; the first thing you will have to consider when choosing a modem router is whether that machine supports your ISP.

Finding that out shouldn’t be a challenge as most, if not all modem router manufacturers tend to display such information on their respective websites.

Just make sure your device works with your provider, as, if it doesn’t, you just wasted a lot of cash on a useless machine.

 

Access Speed

speed: Next up, there’s access speed. Understanding this is very important for making sure your new modem mouter is actually in any way better than your old one.

Basically, access speed, the operating speed with which your cable modem router lets your PC connect to the Internet and manipulate data, is measured using DOCSIS.

DOCSIS is not really a unit of measurement in itself, rather, it is a software protocol that is used in almost all currently available modems and modem routers.

Docsis Version: The newest, and thus, fastest version of DOCSIS is 3.1. Modem routers with this version installed are pretty rare and expensive as of early 2017.The maximum speed for up- and downstream activity,i.e. both getting files from your PC onto the Internet and vice versa, allowed by DOCSIS 3.1 is about 2 and 10Gbps, or 268,435,456 and 1,342,177,280B/s (bytes per second), respectively.

 

Docsis 3.0: The earlier and more common version of DOCSIS is 3.0. This version was released in 2008, and as such is vastly more common than the relatively recent 3.1.

However, it has its limitations.Both up- and downstream speeds are ten times lower when compared to version 3.0.

docsis 3.0 featured

Still, if you can get hold of a DOCSIS 3.0 modem router, it should generally suffice for most usage scenarios.

However, if you plan on replacing your current DOCSIS 3.0 modem router with a new one, you should pay attention to the DOCSIS version and try to get hold of a 3.1 model.

Also, no matter what the manufacturer might tell you, DOCSIS 2.0 and anything older will not be satisfactory for most users due to its low speed. Avoid it under all circumstances.

 

 

Ethernet connectivity

Ethernet Port: Another thing to consider when getting a modem router is the availability of an Ethernet port. This should be a no-brainer for most buyers, but for the rest, here is a basic rundown:

An Ethernet port on your modem router allows you to connect multiple PCs with so-called Ethernet cables to create a LAN (Local Area Network).

This is an internet network that only PCs connected to the same Ethernet input—in this case, your modem router—can access.LANs are most commonly used in small businesses and for playing multiplayer video games, but the truth is that they have a lot of varied applications.

Generally speaking, even if it sounds like you are not going to use Ethernet now, it is always a good idea to have a few ports ready on your modem router, just in case.

The preferred version of Ethernet is Gigabit Ethernet. This is not really a unique version of Ethernet per se, but rather a disclaimer used to describe any Ethernet connection that can transfer 1 Gigabit—one eighth of a Gigabyte—per second, which should be a satisfactory speed for most users.

Always check whether or not the Ethernet ports on the modem router you plan on buying are Gigabit-certified. If they’re not, you may be looking at a fraud trying to sell you outdated hardware!

 

Additional features

Features: Moving on, there are a few additional features you might want to look out for on your search for the best modem router. These extras may not be essential for a good Internet experience, but they might superficially improve it.

For example, a USB input might be an interesting feature to have since it allows you to share a USB Flash drive’s contents across a network, making local file sharing much easier. Also very handy, remote access is an additional feature that many modern routers support.

It allows you to remotely access your router’s settings via the internet without actually interacting with the machine directly. Looking out for other extras and features is, of course, also generally a good idea.

However, make sure not to pick something you are certain you won’t need, as it will probably do little more than increase costs.

 

Final Verdict

  • In conclusion, the best way to choose the perfect cable modem router for you should now be as clear as possible.
  • Buying a machine like this one might have seemed like a challenge due to the high number of technical terms, the prices involved and the questionable ISPs desperately wanting you to cling to their branded devices in the past.
  • However, you now know better than that, don’t you? Assuming you read and understood our entire guide, you know how to make an educated buying decision on this topic, so go out there and pick the device that suits you best!
    We assure you that you won’t regret it.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How can I be certain an upgrade is necessary if I already have a modem router?

    The easiest way to find that out is to look at your modem’s DOCSIS version number. If it is 3.0 or higher, an upgrade might not be necessary. However, if you are running on an older version, the jump to the newest 3.1 will be substantial.

  2. How can I know whether my modem router combo supports my ISP?

    You can find that out by looking at three things: The region you’re living in, your ISP’s website and the modem router’s manufacturer’s website.

    Your region, and your country, to a certain extent, generally determines whether or not it is in fact legal to own a 3rd party modem in favor of an ISP-provided one. Your ISP’s website should inform you about certain manufacturers and models they deem “supported”.

    If your modem router isn’t on the list, don’t despair, as the manufacturer’s website might include additional information. If the manufacturer says the device will work whilst the ISP says it won’t, contact their support team to get a clear answer.

  3. How does the number of users in a network affect performance?

    Slightly, but, under certain circumstances, noticeably. In short, when a lot of users are, for example, downloading a file connected to the same network via the same router/modem, the entire network’s overall speed will be detrimentally affected.

    Your modem router’s bandwidth and the amount of people accessing the network at any given time generally determine how noticeable this effect will be.

  4. How important are warranties? Should I get one?

    Getting a warranty is always a good idea with any high-value purchase. We definitely recommend it.

    Okay, so I will buy it. Should I go used, refurbished or new, then?

    Of course, quality-wise, buying a brand-new device is always the best option. However, if you don’t care about a few scratches and potentially weaker performance, a refurbished or used product could give you more bang for your buck. All in all, it depends on what you expect and what you’re willing to spend.

  5. What about renting?

    Renting a modem/router device is always possible, usually directly via the ISP. However, we advise against renting your modem router as most, if not all, rented devices on the market right now are particularly slow and outdated models.

    This is d
    modem, be aware that resetting erases any customized setting that might have been programmed on your modem.

    To reset your cable to default factory setting just:

    >> Turn the cable router modem off.
    >> Remove backup battery.
    >> Then re- inserts it back and that’s it.
    >> If there is a reset button, just press and hold it and as soon as the light on the modem starts to flicker, release it.
    >> Wait until the internet light goes green. You will also need to reprogram your modem.

  6. How to Setup a Cable Modem Router Combo ?

    Setting up a cable Modem router combo is pretty easy. First, you need to check whether your cable modem router works with the cable provider like cable division, Comcast, Cox, Time Warner and other major providers.

    Most cable Modem Router combo comes with an instruction guide, but if yours doesn’t all you need to do is;

    Self- activate the modem at cable provider’s website. If you configure with your ISP, you should have the internet up and running in no time.

    If it fails, just call your cable operator, and they will sure help with the installation process.
    When calling a cable operator makes sure, you have the modem serial number and modem router model number.

  7. How to Troubleshoot Cable Modem Router ?

    If you are having issues with connectivity, the initial step is to call your internet service provider to verify whether your device is activated.

    If you are experiencing slow speeds or having trouble connecting and your modem is activated, then the problem could be technical. So, start by checking the power levels on the cables that connect to your cable modem router. If they are low, contact your ISP.

    Try to remove splitters between the cable modem and router. Make sure you have the latest routers firmware version.
    Try to perform a power cycle, i.e., turning the device on and off and waiting for connection issue to resolve.

  8. How to upgrade firmware version of cable modem router ?

    To improve your router performance, you need to have the latest firmware version. In order, to upgrade your modem make sure you verify the hardware version to avoid damaging your device or avoiding warranty. Follow these instructions to upgrade firmware version of your NETGEAR router.

    Download the firmware version of your router then using a computer connected to the router launch a web browser.

    Go to http://www.routerlogin.net then enter the router login details
    · Select advanced then administration then firmware update.
    · When you choose the file you downloaded, and then proceed without interrupting the process, you should have the latest firmware on your device.

 
 
 
 
 
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