Recommended Equipment for Comcast Xfinity


When we moved into our house in Etna, NH we assumed that Satellite Internet was going to be available, only to have the Sat provider tell us that our zipcode was full!  We had dial up for two years before Fairpoint brought DSL to the street.  DSL speeds have been fine for streaming music and movies, uploading photographs but uploading videos takes a long long time.

Now we are moving to a new address that has Comcast Xfinity.  I’m looking at my options and I’m anticipating doing a lot more work on my YouTube channel in the future.

You have a choice with Comcast and many other cable Internet providers to rent equipment from them for something like $10 a month (forever) or buy your own equipment.

Buying your own equipment saves you money and in most cases you can buy better equipment than what they would provide you.  Faster equipment can giver you better speeds than perhaps the rental equipment.

You’ll need a cable modem to get wired Internet and a wifi router to beam the signal around the house.  Or you can get a gateway which is an all in one unit.

A gateway is convenient but you do lose the option of upgrading the router if something new comes along and if one part of it goes bad, you have to replace the whole thing.  I considered this but then went with the ARRIS SURFboard SBG7580-AC Cable Modem/Router Combo as reviewed at the end of this blog because of the value and speed.  I’m starting with a basic 25 mps package but I might increase it if I need to – DSL was only 15 mps and the son is going off to college so I think we’ll be fine.

Note that DOCSIS 3.0 is the current standard supported by Comcast and other providers.

Here are some options:

Cable Modems

We recommend the Arris SB6141 ($54.99 on Amazon) . While it has been around for years, the SB6141 still delivers consistent performance while supporting the data-transfer speeds most home users get from their broadband service. Easy-to-interpret indicator lights, compatibility with most major ISPs and a two-year warranty seal the deal for the SB6141.

If your Internet plan delivers faster speeds than the SB6141 can handle, the SB6183 ($99), also from Arris, is just as dependable.

Current recommendations from Comcast:

If you want to future proof your purchase, consider getting one of these cable modems:

ARRIS SB8200 3.1

Up to 1001 Mbps
32 down × 8 up
DOCSIS 3.1

ARRIS SB6190

Up to 644 Mbps
32 down × 8 up
DOCSIS 3.0

 

Gateways

Gateways are cable modems and wifi routers in one device.  While it’s tempting to buy just one device, keep in mind that if any part of a hybrid device fails, you’re out both a modem and a router. Having a modem-router combo also complicates upgrading, since routers tend to add support for new networking features at a more rapid clip than modems do.

Comcast currently recommends this gateway:

Introducing the first Gigabit+ cable modem Gateway available in retail. The SURFboard sbg7580-ac is 3 products in 1: a DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem, Dual-Band concurrent 802.11AC Wi-Fi access point and 4-port Gigabit Ethernet router. With download speeds up to 1.4Gbps, upload speeds up to 343Mbps and Wi-Fi speeds up to 1750 Mbps it’s the most powerful Wi-Fi modem in the SURFboard lineup. No more buffering while streaming HD video. No lag while gaming with friends. And best of all, no more dead spots! stop spending on monthly rental fees and own your modem.

  • Cable Modem and Wi-FI Router. 802.11AC Wi-Fi Router provides speeds up to 1900 Mbps. Dual-band concurrent 2.4GHz and 5GHz
  • Works with Comcast, Time Warner, Cox, Charter and MOST Small Regional Cable Providers. PENDING approval Bright House Networks
  • 32 x 8 bonded channels with download speeds up to 1.4 Gbps and upload speeds up to 262 Mbps
  • Ideal for streaming HD Video and gaming on multiple devices at a time
  • Supports IPv4 and IPv6 – the latest Internet standard

In our opinion, the ARRIS SURFboard SBG7580-AC Cable Modem/Router Combo is an excellent value for anyone who wants to get the most of their internet connection. It’s advanced enough that you’ll be able to keep it for many years without having to upgrade. The fact that there is such a high quality router installed in the modem is just the icing on the cake. Usually the wireless routers found in modems are just an afterthought, and provide only the bare minimum service required to keep consumers happy. With it, the router is just as good as any mid to high level consumer router available on the market.

Another reason we love the SBG7580-AC is that it uses the DOCSIS 3.0 standard. Many modems use a modified version of DOCSIS and are only compatible with certain ISPs. The SURFboard, on the other hand, is theoretically compatible with every cable ISP in the United States.  – Full Review at: https://nerdtechy.com/arris-surfboard-sbg7580-ac-modem-router-review