5 Best DSL modem router combo for 2017

Best DSL modem router comboIn current times where the internet continues to have a significant impact on our lives, having a fast and reliable internet connection is a necessity.

But, if you are faced with constant internet connection problems or tired of paying monthly fees to cable companies, you can opt to have your own device so that you have more control. One way of simplifying this problem is to use a modem router combo.

The best thing about this device is that it is a two-in-one package. With a combo package, you are guaranteed of steady internet connection. What stands out the most about it is the ease of setting up.

It is, however, important to know if the specific model you intend to buy is compatible with your ISP. This guide provides an extensive review of the Best DSL Modem router combo to help you make an informed decision.

5 Best DSL Modem router combo Comparison Guide

Router NameMax Speed StandardEthernet PortsPriceCheck Now!
#1
NETGEAR Nighthawk Router
NETGEAR Nighthawk Router

 
(3.9 / 5)
 
Up To 1900 Mbps
 
802.11ac
 
4x Ethernet
 
$$$
 

#2
Actiontec 300 Mbps Wireless
Actiontec 300 Mbps Wireless

 
(4 / 5)
 
Up To 300 Mbps
 
802.11N
 
4x Ethernet
 
$$
 

#3
TP-Link Archer D7
TP-Link Archer D7

 
(3.8 / 5)
 
Up To 1750 Mbps
 
802.11ac
 
4x Ethernet
 
$$$
 

#4
CenturyLink ActionTec
CenturyLink ActionTec

 
(4 / 5)
 
N/a
 
802.11N
 
4x Ethernet
 
$$$
 
#5
Zyxel C1100Z 802.11n VDSL2
Zyxel C1100Z 802.11n VDSL2

 
(4 / 5)
 
Up To 300 Mbps
 
802.11N
 
4x Ethernet
 
$$$
 

Why you Should use a DSL Modem Router Combo

A DSL modem router combo offers more flexibility in terms of getting the most value out of your internet connection. What most people find useful about a combo package is unlimited network control, future-proofing, and simplicity in configuration.Generally, a modem router combo offers fast speed internet and the flexibility to connect several devices. In addition to this, the built-in router in a combo reduces the hassle of strategically placing your modem to get a better signal. Actually, you enjoy a steady connection irrespective of where you are in your home.

Furthermore, a modem router combo features advanced technology that eliminates the technicalities associated with working with cables.

 

Advantages & Disadvantages of Buying a DSL Modem Router Combo

Advantages

  • Take less space and easy to maintenance: A modem router combo is an ideal solution if you prefer a non-technical connection that occupies less space. The fact that, the device has a built-in router means that you only create space for one device instead of two. This is a savior, especially if you have several other devices you are working with that require space. Apart from saving space, it also reduces the hassle of having to attend to two devices to ensure that you enjoy steady connection.
  • Cost effective: When you have your own network device, you eliminate the need to pay monthly rental fees to your ISP. At the onset, it may appear to be an expensive option but, actually, the device offers cost saving in the long run. It is more likely that your device will outlast your contract. Likewise, you save money by purchasing only one device instead of separate modem and router.
  • Easy troubleshooting and better compatibility: This is the oldest of the three firmware. This means it must have used the oldest technology in router management, which is the command line. Today, it has graphic user interface reducing the boredom of text in command line technology.
  • Flexibility: A DSL modem router combo offers much flexibility in terms of using your broadband connection. If you are not satisfied with your current ISP, you can switch to another without the need to change the device.

 

Disadvantages

  • Limited choices: Even though there are many advanced DSL combo packages in the market, they don’t match the quality of standalone routers. Most advanced routers have latest features that are lacking in combo setup.
  • Replacement: The ease of troubleshooting only one can also hurt. Just in case your device cease functioning, you have to replace everything, unlike if they were separate (modem and router) where you would only replace the one which has the problem. And, if you are upgrading, the same applies. You would have to buy a new combo or buy separate modem and router.

 

Difference Between a Wireless AC and Wireless N DSL Router

Sometimes, when you experience slow wireless connection, it is not internet’s provider’s fault, but rather the type of router you have. Basically, not all the routers have the same features, nor use the same technology. Most DSL modem router combos on the market today are either Wireless AC and Wireless N. Among the two, Wireless N standard is the older and cheaper option, but it has its limitations. Below is a deep dive of the difference between the two types of DSL routers.

  • Speed: Generally, Wireless AC offers better speed when compared to Wireless N. You can enjoy up to 2600Mbps with Wireless AC for a single band. Wireless N, on the other hand, can only offer a maximum speed of up to 450Mbps. This difference in speed makes a huge difference in terms of performance. The type router you will choose to go with will be largely influenced by what you intend to use your internet.
  • Price: Because of better functionally as well as the newest in technology, Wireless AC routers are slightly more expensive than Wireless N counterparts. To get maximum value out of an 802.11ac combo, you have to know, beforehand, what you intend to use your internet for. Although it is desirable to go with the latest technology, you can stick with 802.11 N combo if you are using your internet for light work.
  • Channels: Among the two types of routers, 802.11n uses both 2.4GHz and 5GHz channels while 802.11ac uses only 5GHz channel. This might appear that the former offer much flexibility, but it comes with limitations. Wireless AC routers use beamforming for transmission of signals. This means you will have stronger signal even in the furthest places in your home. Wireless N devices, on the other hand, lack beamforming technology.

 

5 Best DSL modem router combo for 2017

NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 – Best Wi-Fi VDSL/ADSL Modem Router to buy

NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 Dual Band Wi-Fi Gigabit Router (R7000)NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 is a dual-band modem router combo that is compatible with most ISPs. It features high-powered external antennas and amplifiers to enhance signal transmission. This device delivers fast speed internet which can extend up to 1900 Mbps.

It is also Android and iOS compatible. Generally, the device has high-end features that facilitate steady connection even in the remotest places in your home. Another desirable feature of this device is its black design that gives it a stylish appealing.

Considering all the features it has, the device is not among the cheapest modem router combos in the market.

 

With a NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900, you stand to benefit from the steady connection. So, if your budget can allow, why not invest in a combo that guarantees performance in all remote places of your home. However, you need to check with your ISP if it allows this device. It is not compatible with bonded VDSL from CenturyLink.

 

What We Liked?

  • It is a dual-band combo with a wide WiFi coverage.
  • It is ADSL2/2+ backward compatible.
  • Offer alternative of using USB HDD.
  • Setup is easy. It also has a NETGEAR Genile App for easier network management.

What We Didn’t?

  • Not compatible to bonded VDSL.
  • It is slightly expensive.

 

Actiontec 300 Mbps Wireless-N – Best affordable ADSL Modem Router Combo

Actiontec 300 Mbps Wireless-N ADSL Modem Router (GT784WN)This modem router combo is one of the most budget-friendly models in the market. This could be attributed to the fact that it uses 802.11n technology. Being a Wireless N device, it’s speed is not as fast as the modern models.

The device is, therefore, useful for light file transfers only. Even though the combo doesn’t work with cable systems, it is compatible with most DSL service providers.

Actiontec 300 Mbps, features two antennas for signal transmission, Ethernet ports, high-grade firewall, encryptions, and parental control. In fact, what most people find desirable about this device is its robust security features. Additionally, the setup process is simple since it has no configuration.

 

If you are looking for a modem router combo under $100, you can’t have a better option than this device. It is perhaps one of the best combos for light internet users. It is, however, not recommended if you intend to share the internet with many users.

 

What We Liked?

  • Simple setup. Configuration is automatic.
  • It has a variety of good security features and parental control.
  • It supports backward compatibility.
  • Affordable.

What We Didn’t?

  • It has no USB port to facilitate file sharing.
  • Not the best connection speed.

 

TP-Link Archer D7 AC1750 – Best ADSL2+ Modem Router for Gaming

TP-Link Archer D7 AC1750TP-Link Archer D7 is a dual-band modem router combo that supports the latest technology (802.11ac). The device is compatible with AT&T, Verizon, Windstream, and Fairpoint ADSL services, but it doesn’t work with VDSL.

Archer D7 is loaded with many high-end features even though it is comparably cheaper than other models with nearly similar features.

The USB port facilitates easier transfer files within your network while the three antennas ensure that you enjoy a steady connection in all places in your home. For maximum speed, utilize the four Ethernet ports or the USB 3.0 port.

 

The Archer D7 is suitable for anyone who is in need of a moderately priced device with powerful AC signal. It is, therefore, perfect for most home and office network. Since it works with a majority of the top ISPs you can easily switch the ISP without changing the device.

 

What We Liked?

  • Good wireless range. It has three antennas for stronger signal transmission.
  • Has a steady connection. There is no need for periodic reset to reboot the connection.
  • It’s a dual band.
  • 2 x USB ports for print sharing and storage.

What We Didn’t?

  • It is slightly bulky, and it doesn’t come with wall mounting option.
  • It only works on weak ADSL2+ internet.

 

ActionTec C1000A – best dsl modem Router for centurylink

CenturyLink ActionTecThis is one of the most robust Wireless N technology modem router combos. It comes in a boxy shape, and it is loaded with several features for best performance. First, the device has several ports including USB, phone, and ethernet ports.

It is also backward compatible. Its WiFi Protected Setup button makes it easy to connect devices to your network. The overall speed and wireless range are moderate. In that case, you might need a wireless range extender to reach into remote parts of the house.

 

Even though this device cannot be compared to Wireless AC devices, it offers satisfactory internet connectivity. It is, however, not ideal for use in bigger houses or office since its signals are not very strong. What is desirable about it is its ease of connection to various devices.

 

What We Liked?

  • ADSL2/2+ backward compatible.
  • Easy setup and connecting to devices.
  • It has USB and phone support.

What We Didn’t?

  • Weak signal in remote areas. Sometimes, you have to restart for better connection.
  • It needs a lot of ventilation to work great.

 

Zyxel C1100Z 802.11n VDSL2 Wireless Gateway CenturyLink

Zyxel C1100Z 802.11nZyxel C1100Z is another cost-friendly combo package on this list. It offers fast internet speed up to 300 Mbps. Actually, it is a CenturyLink branded device, so it detects CenturyLink network setting configurations automatically.

This modem router combo doesn’t have a USB port, but it has a built-in phone jack and four Ethernet ports for seamless connections.

It is ideal for wireless use only. Apart from the ease of connection, Zyxel C1100Z features robust protection and remote monitoring capability through TR-069. So, the device is capable of identifying malicious content or applications.

 

If you are looking for a budget friendly device with moderate speed, but a steady connection, then you won’t go wrong with this device. This is also ideal if you rely mostly on your ISP to sort out connection related challenges. Its flexibility in terms of remote management and control offers many conveniences.

 

What We Liked?

  • It has a WPS button for easier connection.
  • Support remote management using TR-069.
  • Relatively inexpensive.

What We Didn’t?

  • It lacks a USB port.
  • It lacks automatic timeout control.
  • Limited signal range due to Wireless N technology.

 

Final Verdict

  • To this point, you have a clearer picture of the benefits and the Best DSL modem router combo that will serve your internet needs. The good thing about modem router combos is that they offer to value your money. They also save on space you would need to set up various devices. In fact, a majority of the above devices are compact in design. And, if the technology is a challenge, you need not worry because the above models are easy to install and managed. Basically, what modem router offers you is a reliable internet system without having to rely so much on cable companies.