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When you combine a good gigabit modem with one of our picks for the best fast internet providers, you can significantly increase your internet speed. A gigabit modem is a type of router that uses new technology to boost your internet speeds anywhere from 1-10 gigabits per second. If you pay for gigabit internet service, you should take advantage of it with a gigabit modem.
How we chose the best gigabit modems
When we identified the best gigabit modems for your money, we looked at many criteria, including speed, value, customer ratings, and features. The modem had to offer DOCSIS technology to give you fast internet speeds.
Best gigabit modem for DOCSIS 3.1 affordability: Motorola MB8600
The Motorola MB8600 DOCSIS 3.1 Cable Modem is a great option for those looking for affordable, fast Internet. If you’re looking for one of the most affordable introductions to the world of DOCSIS 3.1 speeds, this is the model to check out.
Advantages and disadvantages of the Motorola MB8600
Affordable, two-year warranty, compatible with DOCSIS 3.0 networks
Only uses coax
Best Gigabit Modem for Modem-Router Combination: ARRIS SURFboard SBG8300
The ARRIS SURFboard is a popular gigabit modem series, and for good reason. The SBG8300 model is highly rated by users. The ARRIS SURFboard SBG8300 DOCSIS 3.1 cable modem offers four gigabit Ethernet ports and has a built-in Wi-Fi router. This combo modem can help reduce clutter by putting two boxes in one. You may also be able to save money by buying this one modem-router combo instead of buying both.
Advantages and disadvantages of the ARRIS SURFboard SBG8300
Space-saving combination of modem and router
Currently not compatible with some major US carriers, expensive if bought to use only as a modem or router
Best gigabit modem for the middle option: NETGEAR CM1200 Nighthawk
The NETGEAR CM1200 Nighthawk cable modem offers DOCSIS 3.1, four Gigabit Ethernet ports, and more. It’s one of the best looking models listed here, if that’s a consideration for you. The NETGEAR CM1200 has one of the highest Amazon ratings of any model on this list. This model offers three more Ethernet ports than the next step down, the CM1000.
Advantages and disadvantages of the NETGEAR CM1200 Nighthawk
Looks good, easy to set up
A bit pricey.
Best Gigabit Modem for Gaming: NETGEAR Nighthawk C7800
The NETGEAR Nighthawk C7800 is a serious combination of cable modem and WiFi router that gives you the fastest Internet access available. We chose this model because of its impressively fast Wi-Fi and DOCSIS 3.1 cable internet speeds. Those who want a gigabit modem for exceptional high-definition gaming may be interested in what the NETGEAR Nighthawk C7800 has to offer.
Advantages and disadvantages of the NETGEAR Nighthawk C7800
Best Gigabit Modem for Ease of Use: ARRIS SURFboard SB8200
If you don’t need the WiFi router that comes with the ARRIS SURFboard SBG8300, check out the ARRIS SURFboard SB8200. This is one of the most affordable options on this list and a great starting point for DOCSIS 3.1 speeds. This cable modem is compatible with Cox, Xfinity and other major US cable internet providers
Advantages and disadvantages of the ARRIS SURFboard SB8200
Friendly looking than usual black cyborg options, affordable, quick and easy to install
Downgrade to two gigabit Ethernet ports, no compatibility with AT&T, Verizon, CenturyLink and other DSL or fiber internet providers
Best Gigabit Modem for the Future of the Internet: NETGEAR CAX80
The NETGEAR Nighthawk CAX80 cable modem with a built-in Wi-Fi 6 router is the most expensive option on this list, but it’s one of the best DOCSIS 3.1 modems you can buy. If you’re trying to prepare for the future of the Internet, the NETGEAR CAX80 is ahead of its time. The CAX80 can handle up to eight Wi-Fi streams and speeds up to 6 Gbps. Most users don’t need this level of power, but those who do may be interested.
Advantages and disadvantages of the NETGEAR CAX80
One of the most powerful options
One of the most expensive options, sometimes difficult to set up
Best gigabit modem for the most reliable and convenient experience: Motorola MB8611
The Motorola MB8611 DOCSIS 3.1 multi-gig cable modem is one of the most popular options on this list. It’s affordable, easy to set up, and offers plenty of features you might be looking for when switching to a DOCSIS 3.1 modem, such as a 2.5 Gbps Ethernet port. This model can be combined with any WiFi router and is approved to work with many top internet providers. If you’re looking for an easy experience of not having to pay for equipment rental from your carrier, we recommend looking at the Motorola MB8611.
Advantages and disadvantages of the Motorola MB8611
Quick and hassle-free installation, affordable, backwards compatible with DOCSIS 3.0
Only one Ethernet port
Best gigabit modem for budget DOCSIS 3.0 options: Motorola MB7621
The Motorola MB7621 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem is a great option for users who don’t need next-generation fast internet speeds. If you’re looking to save some money and don’t need the latest, greatest, and fastest modem, the Motorola MB7621 might be just the thing for your needs. It provides a gigabit Ethernet port that you can plug into your router or computer to potentially upgrade your internet speed.
Advantages and disadvantages of the Motorola MB7621
The most affordable option on this list, easy to set up
Not as blazingly fast as its DOCSIS 3.1 siblings
What should you pay attention to with a gigabit modem?
Gigabit modems use DOCSIS technology to boost your internet speeds. With DOCSIS 3.0 or higher, you can achieve gigabit speeds over your coaxial cable Internet connection. The best DOCSIS 3.1 modem for you largely depends on what you need it for.
If you do not have a router and do not plan to purchase one to match your new modem, you will need to purchase a DOCSIS 3.1 modem-router combo model.
Take a look at the number of channels your future modem will work with. These channels show how many Mbps the modem can run. If you want to make sure the modem you’re looking at can handle gigabit speeds, make sure you’re using at least 24×8 channels.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, check that the modem you are considering is compatible with your ISP. Check with your provider whether a third-party gigabit modem is also an option for you. Many cable ISPs allow gigabit modems, but fewer fiber ISPs allow it.
Need a faster internet subscription?
Of course, all of this is for nothing if your internet provider doesn’t offer a gigabit service. A modem can only be as fast as the internet that your provider offers. Find an Internet plan that offers the fast speeds you need to explore, play, and watch as much as you want. Allconnect makes it easy to find the fastest and most affordable internet providers near you, so start shopping today.
it comes down to
Having the right combination of internet service provider, modem and router can greatly improve your internet speed. Don’t forget to check your current ISP plan to see how fast your internet is even allowed to work. You may not want to buy equipment that enables speeds that your current plan doesn’t offer. Look for the signs of a good gigabit modem, look at your internet needs and find a well-reviewed option that fits your budget.
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