Internet technologies have improved substantially over the past few years. Computers have gotten much more innovative, while routers and Wi-Fi have become immensely more reliable.
While this offers improvements to the consumer, the sheer number of options can make the decision process slightly more difficult. How can you know for sure you’re actually getting the best cable modem router combo?
There is an abundance of factors that must be taken into consideration. To help you make the right choice, you will be provided with tips and suggestions below. Before that, take a look at the comparison table below of our very best choice router modems to choose from.
What Is A Cable Modem?
First and foremost, it is wise to familiarize yourself with the basics of cable modems. This specific type of device makes it possible for modern consumers to easily access the Internet.
The modem is used to connect a computer to a broadband Internet service. At the same time, the modem can be used to connect a local network of computers to the world-wide-web. While the concept of the modem is fairly simple, the differentials that set the various modems apart are enormous.
Top 10 Best Modem Router Combo
|Names||Brand||Max Speed||Weight||Buy Now|
|Motorola 16x4 (MB7420)||Motorola||686 Mbps||9.3 ounces|
|NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900||NETGEAR||960Mbps||3.4 pounds|
|NETGEAR CM400 (8x4)||NETGEAR||340Mbps||14.4 ounces|
|ARRIS SURFboard (SBG6400)||Arris||343 Mbps||1.6 pounds|
|TP-Link (TC-7620)||TP-Link||686Mbps||2 pounds|
|NETGEAR (N600)||NETGEAR||600Mbps||12.5 ounces|
|NETGEAR N300 (C3000-100NAS)||NETGEAR||300Mbps||1.2 pounds|
What Is The Difference Between A Cable Modem And A Router?
Modems and wireless routers are commonly utilized throughout the world. Many consumers will have one or the other and some even have a combination. While they’re very similar, the two devices are also very different. In fact, both will serve an entirely different purpose.
In most cases, the difference is that the router allows the consumer to connect to a local network or LAN. In many situations, the router will not actually provide access to the Internet. Alternatively, the goal of the cable modem is to always provide access to the Internet.
Many consumers will invest in a router only to discover they’ll need a cable modem instead. However, it should be known that your cable modem will typically be provided by your Internet Service Provider. Nonetheless, a lot of consumers will invest in their own modem, so they can avoid additional monthly fees.
The Importance Of Your Cable Modem WiFi Router
Whether or not you know it, your cable modem is enormously important. Unfortunately, a lot of consumers will simply stick with the cable modem that they’ve been given by their ISP. In many cases, this is fine, but some consumers will yearn for something more reliable and more powerful.
The importance of your cable modem wifi router combo is truly enormous. Many people will realize that their modem is important for determining their speed, but this isn’t the only reason your modem is important.
Many consumers will utilize their cable modem as a Wi-Fi router. Therefore, the cable modem and WiFi router combo will also be important for range reasons. A stronger modem will ensure you’re able to access the Internet no matter where you’re located in your home.
To ensure you have the best signal, fastest speeds, and most protection possible, it is essential to choose the best modem humanely possible.
Read also: Best CenturyLink Compatible Modems
Do Modems Wear Out?
Believe it or not, cable modems are not designed to last forever. The majority will last for many years, but they’ll eventually wear out at some point or another. A handful of environmental factors can lead to your modem becoming unreliable or even inoperable. Dust, poor airflow, and even sun exposure can destroy your modem.
In some cases, vibration will also decrease the performance of your modem. To extend the lifespan of your modem, it is essential to keep your modem clean, ensure it has a sufficient amount of ventilation, and keep it out of the sun. Nonetheless, there will still come a time when you’re forced to upgrade or replace your existing modem.
Where Should I Place My Router?
Whether you opt for a traditional router or a cable modem and router combo, you will want to make sure you install your router in the appropriate location. Failing to do so could drastically reduce the performance of your router, while also decreasing your signal strength.
Many people will mistakenly unbox their router and install it as close to their desktop computer as possible. While this may give you the ability to easily connect the router to your computer, it may prove to be problematic for wireless devices, such as your smartphone, tablet, and laptop.
Instead, you should understand that centralization is absolutely essential. Installing the router in a central location will help to ensure your Wi-Fi signal is strong throughout your entire home. It is also important to remember that the signal can be weakened by some environmental factors, such as steel, windows, mirrors, and wire mesh.
Therefore, you should do your best to keep your modem/router combo as far away from these things as possible. Also, the router may be impacted by other electronics, such as baby monitors and wireless phones.
To reduce the chance of interference, you should place your routers away from other electronic equipment. A little experimentation can go a long way towards helping you find the most suitable location for your router!
How Do I Update My Router’s Firmware?
While you’re at it, you will want to make sure you keep your internet modem’s firmware up to date. Doing so will help to ensure your modem operates at maximum efficiency. Thankfully, updating your router’s firmware should be fairly simple. In some cases, your ISP will automatically perform updates for you.
Of course, if you’ve purchased your own modem, you may need to carry out these activities on your own. In order to do so, you will need to access your modem’s control panel. To access your control panel, you can simply enter the appropriate IP address into your web browser.
Then, you’ll need to enter your modem’s username and password. Once you’ve logged in, you will need to look around to find the update firmware option. The location of this page will differ from one modem to the next. Generally, you will find a button, which will allow the modem to detect and automatically install firmware updates. After this has been finished, the router will reboot itself.
Benefits of A Cable Modem Wi-Fi Router Combo?
Many consumers will be interested in simplifying their life. One of the easiest ways to do this is by purchasing a router-modem and Wi-Fi. This will give you the ability to condense the necessary equipment into a single device.
Instead of needing a modem router combo, you’ll only need a single box. This is best for consumers, who prefer to keep everything tidy and organized. And of course, purchasing this type of device will ultimately save you money in the long run.
By purchasing the singular device, you will be able to avoid making two separate purchases. And of course, this device will help you avoid paying for a cable modem fee. In the long run, the cable modem Wi-Fi router combo will actually pay for itself.
What To Consider Before Buying A Modem wifi Router
Now that you’ve learned everything there is to know about cable modems and Wi-Fi routers, it is time to learn how to choose one for your home. wifi routers are enormously diverse and the features associated with these devices will vary substantially. Below, you will learn how to choose a good router for your home.
Each modem will come equipped with a specific number of Ethernet ports. In most cases, the consumer will at least want two ports, but this isn’t always necessary. With a cable and router combination, there is no need to use one of these ports for a router.
Therefore, you will have an additional port to play around with. Ethernet cables can be utilized to connect your computer, scanner, printer, and even television to your network. Take this into consideration, when attempting to determine the precise number of ports you need.
Today, a larger number of routers and modems are compatible with dual frequencies. It is generally best to choose a modem that is capable of transmitted on dual frequencies. This helps to decrease the potential for interference, while simultaneously allowing you to take advantage of faster speeds.
A dual-band router will work on the 2.4 and 5-GHz frequencies. While these modems will be slightly more expensive, they’ll prove to be well worth it. Just remember that your devices will need to be compatible with the 5 GHz frequency, in order to reap the benefits.
RAM and Flash Memory
Modems and routers are common equipped with flash memory and RAM. Both factors can greatly impact the performance of the device. If you happen to play video games online and also intend to transfer a lot of data, you should opt for a larger amount of RAM and flash memory.
In general, routers come with flash memory amounts between 1 to 8 MB. Shooting for at least 4 MB of flash memory is recommended. As far as RAM goes, it is generally best to obtain at least 64 MB of data. Of course, more is always better.
See also: Best Gaming Modem of 2020
Wi-Fi routers have evolved substantially over the past few years. When attempting to choose one of these devices, it is essential to consider the standard. In general, routers are commonly available in G and N standards. The 802.11G standard is slightly older, while the 802.11N standard is the latest and greatest.
Just remember that the N standard is backward compatible. Therefore, if you have a device that is only G compatible, you can rest assured knowing that the N router will still work with it. The N standard can accommodate maximum speeds of approximately 600 MBPS, while the G standard only offers 54 MBPS. Therefore, you should always opt for the N standard.
It can be difficult to determine signal strength just by looking at the box or examining the router’s specifications. Therefore, you will need to dive deeper and inspect reviews from previous customers. Nonetheless, it is a good idea to opt for the strongest signal as possible. This will help to reduce the chance of dead zones, while ensuring everyone in your house is able to access the Internet, without any problems.
Finally, you will want to consider the modem’s warranty. Truthfully, a longer warranty is always better. You never know when something will go awry. Therefore, the added protection may save you additional money and a headache in the near future.
All in all, choosing a modem and router combo can be slightly difficult. Nonetheless, it is well worth it to take your time and research carefully. Doing so will greatly reduce the chance for problems while ensuring you get the most for your money.
Top 7 Best Cable Modem Router Combo (Reviews)
#1. Motorola 16×4 Modem MB7420 Review
If you have high-speed Internet you probably notice a monthly charge on your bill for a router-modem rental. Internet companies actually charge you an additional fee to rent their equipment. However, introduced on the market in 2016, the Motorola 16×4 Modem can not only deliver lightning-fast Internet speeds but also can save you that monthly rental charge.
The modem is a 16×4, which means that it offers up to 16 different channels to transfer data from the network and 4 different channels to transfer data to the network.
Certified By A Variety Of Internet Providers
Several of the leading Internet providers have already approved the use of the Motorola routers Modem with their services. Some of these providers include Comcast, Time Warner, and BrightHouse. Setup and installation are easy, with the step-by-step guide that is included in the purchase of the modem.
However, if you do experience problems, a fully trained customer service staff is on standby to answer any questions or walk you through the problems you are experiencing. The modem can easily be connected to computers, other Ethernet devices, and HDTVs.
Attractive Design With Extra Safety Features
The router has a tower design so that it will make an attractive addition to any home or office network. The space-saving design will help save you a little bit of shelf or floor space, as well. While the modem is backed by a two-year warranty, it does include extra safety features to ensure you will not experience any problems.
For instance, the modem is designed to run at cooler speeds, which will greatly extend the life of the router. Along with this, the modem includes several surge circuits to protect the interior components from lighting and power surges.
- Approved by a variety of leading Internet providers
- Backed by a two-year warranty
- 16×4 design provides a variety of different channels to send and receive data
- Connects to computers, Ethernet devices, and HDTVs
- Designed to run cooler than competitor brands
- Includes circuits to protect against lightning and power surges
- Attractive design that saves space on the shelf
- Step-by-step installation guide
- Customer service is only a phone call away
Save yourself a bundle of money over time with this affordable and lighting fast replacement modem. With the two-year warranty and extra safety feature, the modem is truly designed to withstand the test of time and perform under the most extreme conditions.
#2. NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 Wi-Fi Review
If you are thinking about upgrading your Internet router and eliminating that pesky monthly rental fee, you should Netgear nighthawk ac1900 c7000 consider the NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 Wi-Fi Cable Modem. The AC1900 can provide you with the fastest possible download speeds, even during peak hours.
Installed inside the modem you will find a powerful 1.6 GHz combined processor that enhances performance, when downloading or streaming movies. The router is ideal for faster Internet providers, such as Comcast and Blast/Extreme.
Take Advantage Of The NETGEAR Genie App
NETGEAR didn’t just want to bring you a great router they also wanted to give users complete and total control over the network. Not only does the NETGEAR genie app make the installation of the router almost effortless, but it also allows users to monitor, connect, and control their home network from a variety of different devices.
The app can be used on a PC, MAC, iPhone, Android device, or iPad. With a one-year warranty, you can rest assured that your router will be covered in the event that you experience any problems or mishaps during the first year.
24×8 Channel Bonding Provides Superior Speeds
One of the most unique things about that router is the 24×8 bonding. If you think of the Internet as a highway with congested traffic, the more roads you have to travel the faster you will arrive at your destination. The 24×8 bonding offers users 24 different channels to send information from the Internet and 8 different channels to send information to the Internet.
This basically gives you a variety of different channels to send and receive data through your router, which is what gives you peak downloading and streaming speeds. The 24×8 bonding offers speeds up to 960Mbps.
- Eliminate pesky monthly rental fees charged by the Internet provider
- 24×8 channel bonding provides fattest download speeds during peak hours
- Easy installation with the genie app
- Monitor and control your network with the genie app
- 6 GHz combined processor enhances the performance of the router
- Suitable with a variety of Internet providers
- One-year warranty included
NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 Smart WiFi Router R7000 Product Tour (Video)
The NETGEAR Nighthawk features a storable USB port, where users can save and store media files. These files can later be streamed on TVs or gaming consoles and shared with others. Backed by a one-year warranty, you can rest assured that you are purchasing a high-quality modem that will last and perform as guaranteed by the manufacturer.
#3. NETGEAR CM400-1AZNAS 340 Mbps Review
If you’re looking for an outstanding modem that can save you money, you will definitely want to consider checking out the NETGEAR CM400-1AZNAS. Since the modem has been manufactured by NETGEAR, you can rest assured knowing it is designed to withstand the test of time.
And of course, this product works fluidly with America’s most popular cable Internet providers, such as Time Warner, Cox, Charter, and Xfinity. Just remember that this modem does not support voice services.
Lightning Fast Speeds
Whether you download a lot of movies or play video games online, you will want to access the fastest speeds possible. This is one of the main reasons you’ll want to invest in the CM400-1AZNAS router. This router will provide you with maximum speeds of 340 Mbps.
The router also utilizes the latest DOCSIS 3.0 technology, which is approximately 8 times faster than the 2.0 technology. On the upside, this router offers maximum upload speeds of 131 Mbps. These speeds should be perfect for the mass majority of consumers.
This cable modem will provide you with a wealth of features. It includes 8 MB of flash memory and 64 MB of DDR RAM. This is the perfect combination for heavy data users and hardcore gamers. The product is also protected by a limited 1-year warranty. The router is compatible with IPv6 and offers a secure connection.
This combination makes the router suitable for all households. Finally, the device is equipped with a single Ethernet port. This will allow you to connect a single computer directly to the modem for faster speeds.
- DOCSIS 3.0 compatible
- Helps the consumer avoid the equipment rental fee
- 8 times faster than the older DOCSIS 2.0 technology
- Works perfectly with most cable Internet providers
- Offers maximum download speeds of 340 Mbps
- Maximum upload speeds of 131 Mbps
- Features 8 downstream channels and 4 upstream channels
- Supports IPv6
- Features a single Ethernet port
- Protected by a 1-year limited warranty
All in all, the NETGEAR DOCSIS 3.0 CM400-1AZNAS is definitely a solid investment. The device works exceptionally well and it works fluidly with most American cable Internet providers. Therefore, this modem will save you money, while simultaneously providing you with the fastest speeds possible. If you want to save money and still access lightning-fast speeds, this modem is well worth checking out in greater detail.
How to Install Your NETGEAR Router with the Nighthawk App
#4. ARRIS SURFboard SBG6400 DOCSIS 3.0 Review
Back in 1997, ARRIS launched its very first modem. Ever since then they have been leading the market with high-quality routers that perform like nothing users have ever seen before. Now the company is ready to present its latest product to consumers, the ARRIS SURFboard SBG6400 DOCSIS 3.0. This innovative modem can provide users with the fastest downloading and streaming speeds possible while enhancing the users’ overall Internet experience.
3 Products In 1
When you purchase the ARRIS SURFboard, you are basically getting three products for the price of one. This would include the cable modem itself, Wi-Fi access point, and a 2-port Gigabit Ethernet Router. The Wi-Fi connection is capable of producing speeds up to 1600Mbps.
The Ethernet connection can produce download speeds up to 343 Mbps. With this powerful connection, your download, streaming, and gaming experience will only get better. Along with all of this, the ARRIS modem offers 8 download channels and 4 uploads channels, which will always ensure a strong connection during the busiest times of the day.
One of the major problems that people experience with their routers is that it doesn’t produce a strong Wi-Fi signal, which can lead to terrible online performance with Wi-Fi enabled devices. However, that is something that you will never have to worry about with the ARRIS SURFboard.
The new ARRIS uses what is known as Beamforming Technology to send a strong, powerful signal through the entirety of the home regardless of the size. You can ensure that all of your Wi-Fi enabled devices to receive maximum signal strength, with the ARRIS SURFboard.
The ARRIS SURFboard is compatible with just about every Internet provider, so you shouldn’t have a problem replacing that pesky rental modem with this more powerful router. This router also supports IPv4 and IPv6, which is pretty much that standard in today’s market.
With a two-year warranty and a professionally trained support staff always on duty, you can rest assured that if any problems arise they will be taken care of in a timely manner.
- Two-year warranty
- Technical support staff available 24/7
- Offers 3 products in one
- 1600Mbps Wi-Fi speeds
- 343Mbps Ethernet download speeds
- 8 download channels and 4 upload channels
- Beamforming Technology ensures a powerful Wi-Fi connection throughout the home
- Supports IPv4 and IPv6
- Compatible with most Internet providers
Enhancing your Internet experience and getting rid of the troublesome monthly router rental fee is easy with the new ARRIS SURFboard. With a professionally trained technical support available 24/7, you will always have a professional backup team on your side.
#5. TP-Link DOCSIS 3.0 16×4 High-Speed Review
Are you tired of paying the monthly rental fee for that Internet provided router that doesn’t even deliver the performance that you are paying for? With the TP-Link High-Speed modem, you can not only eliminate that monthly fee but also you will be able to achieve a stronger Wi-Fi and Ethernet performance. The modem is compatible with most Internet providers that are available, so you shouldn’t have a problem linking this modem up with your provider.
16×4 Channel Bonding
The most impressive thing about the TP-Link DOCSIS 3.0 is the 16×4 channel bonding. This means that you have 16 different channels to download from and 4 different channels to upload from. This powerful channel bonding combination is one of the fastest available on the market and delivers uninterrupted, lag-free performance while streaming, downloading, or gaming.
With blazing download speeds of 686Mbps and 143Mbps upload speeds, you won’t have any problems transmitting data at the fastest speeds possible. Along with this, the TP-Link High-Speed Modem also comes with a Gigabit Ethernet port, which makes for speedy data transfer.
Excellent Customer Support
A lot of consumers are not tech-savvy and this can make life substantially difficult. If you run into a problem with your cable modem, you will want to make sure you’re able to gain access to assistance immediately. This is one of the reasons that the TP-Link TC-7620 is such a good bargain.
First and foremost, this product is protected by a 2-year warranty. If anything goes wrong during this period, you can rest assured knowing the company will fix it or provide you with a new modem.
Of course, the company’s customer support is even better. Those that buy this router will be provided with unlimited technical support, which is available 24/7. The tech support team can be contacted through phone or email. Suffice to say, you’ll never have to try and conquer difficult tech problems on your own ever again.
- 16 times faster than DOCSIS 2.0 modems
- Offers 16 downstream channels and 4 upstream channels
- Maximum download speeds of 680 Mbps
- Provides maximum upload speeds of 143 Mbps
- Covered by a 2-year warranty with access to unlimited technical support
- Compatible with the majority of Internet service providers
- Features a single Gigabit Ethernet port
- Works with IPv4 and IPv6 technologies
- Setup is almost effortless
- Helps the consumer save money
All in all, the TP-Link DOCSIS 3.0 High-Speed routers is great by all means. It works fluidly with the mass majority of Internet service providers and offers amazingly quick speeds. At the same time, this router is more than suitable for everyone. The setup is almost effortless.
Therefore, it is an excellent option for those that are not tech-savvy. Just plug the device up and contact your ISP. Within minutes, you’ll be enjoying lightning-fast speeds with your brand-new TP-Link router!
#6. NETGEAR N600 WiFi DOCSIS 3.0 Router (C3700) Review
NETGEAR is one of the most notable companies that designs and manufactures modems for residential settings. The NETGEAR N600 Wi-Fi DOCSIS is one of the company’s biggest selling products.
The router is embedded with premium components that are capable of unleashing 8x faster download speeds that are 340 Mbps faster than the average router. This is a necessity for homes, with multiple electronics connected to the same network.
There is a long list of Internet service providers located throughout the United States. It is crucial for the consumer to invest in a router that is compatible with their cable Internet provider.
With this said, the NETGEAR N600 WiFi is compatible with a variety of Internet providers, including Comcast, Cox, Time Warner Cable, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks and Cablevision. However, it is important to note that the router is not compatible with cable bundled voice services.
Supports Multiple Upload And Download Channels
If you have several people in your home that stay connected throughout the day, downloading and uploading files, you will need a modem router that is capable of keeping up. Well, that is exactly what the NETGEAR N600 DOCSIS can do, but much more.
The router will support 4 upload channels and 8 download channels for more efficiency and reliability. This will ensure a speedy process for everyone connected to the same network.
- Compatible with a wide variety of Internet service providers in the U.S.
- Dual-band Wi-Fi – 300+300Mbps
- Faster Internet speeds – 340Mbps
- Supports 4 upload and 8 download channels simultaneously
- No monthly rental fees
- Easy installation and setup processes
- Push N’ Connect design
- Supports laptops, desktop computers, tablets and i-pads
- Equipped with a USB 2.0 port
- Includes a power adapter
The NETGEAR N600 Wi-Fi DOCSIS 3.0 is the perfect option for a busy home. The unit has a tall, slender design, measuring in at 7.6” H X 4.5” W X 1.6” in thickness. It also only weighs 12.5 ounces, so you can lift it up and move it around with ease.
The router is embedded with WPA/WPA2 wireless security, so your personal data will be safe when sharing with others. Over time, the router will pay for itself, since you will no longer need to pay the Internet providers a monthly rental fee.
#7. NETGEAR N300 WiFi DOCSIS 3.0 (C3000-100NAS) Review
Almost everyone stays connected to their computer or laptop at least 6 to 8 hours a day, even longer for those that work from home. Whatever the case may be, you rely on your Internet service to provide you with super fast uploading and downloading.
If your Internet is lacking in any sense, your productivity will be compromised, which is why you should only rely on the NETGEAR N300. This router is embedded with DOCSIS 3.0 Technology, which will provide 8x faster cable Internet download speeds, which is a necessity for a home business.
The built-in USB port will allow you to wirelessly share the data stored on your hard drive with others. The port can also be utilized with a variety of electronics and interconnected products, such as an indoor camera or smart bridge.
The N300 Router supports a variety of third-party Internet service providers, including Time Warner, Cox, Charter, Cablevision, Xfinity, and many more. If you have any questions about Internet service provider compatibility, you can contact NETGEAR’s friendly customer service department.
- Built-In USB and Ethernet port
- Compatible with a wide array of Internet providers, including Xfinity, Cablevision and more
- Great for HD streaming and video gaming
- DOCSIS 3.0 Technology ensures 8x faster speeds than the 2.0 version
- Extremely easy installation and setup processes
- NETGEAR Genie app is very user-friendly and filled with innumerable features
- Parental controls to restrict children’s Internet usage
- Suitable for sharing data, emails, music, and videos
- Supports a variety of iOS and Android devices
The NETGEAR N300 WiFi DOCSIS 3.0 comes with everything you need to upgrade your Internet connection. The package includes a power adapter and Ethernet cables, so all you need to do is plug the router in and complete the set-up process.
The NETGEAR Genie app is embedded with a unique feature known as Turbo-Transfer, which will speed up file transfers by 40 percent. The N300 supports a variety of operating systems, including Mac OS, Microsoft Windows 7 and 8, along with Windows XP and 2000.
See Also: Optimum Supported Modems.