Cable Equipment

Everything you need.

Cable Internet Equipment

What do you need?

Cable Modem: How does it work?

If you have cable Internet, you can’t connect without a cable modem. A coaxial cable connects the ISP modem at the server’s hub to the cable modem at the customer’s home or business. Cable Internet signals can travel over longer distances than DSL because the wiring is already in place for cable TV.

Benefits of a Cable Modem

Having cable Internet is convenient for those living in a large urban area because there are plenty of providers, plans and options. Plus, cable modems provide faster Internet than dial-up and, in some cases, DSL. You can still have a phone line and be connected to the Internet with a cable connection.

Cable Router: How does it work?

Cable routers work with a modem to allow multiple devices to connect to the Internet. Many people don’t think they need a router when getting cable Internet, but if you have more than one device in your home, a router let’s everyone connect.

Benefits of a Cable Router

Aside from allowing multiple devices to connect to the Internet, a router has helps keep your network safe from hackers with password protected access. Routers also lets users share data and access printers on an office network.

Our Top Picks

Our staff took a look at the best equipment options.

Cable Modems

If you don’t purchase or rent through your ISP, here are our recommendations for off-the-shelf cable modems.

Top Choice: ARRIS SURFboard Cable Modem (Amazon)

Best Value: NETGEAR CM400 Cable Modem (Amazon)

Wireless Cable Routers

You likely need a router too. Here are our picks.

Top Choice: Netgear Smart Wi-Fi Router (Amazon)

Best Value: TP-LINK Wireless N300 Home Router (Amazon)

Coaxial Cables

Need an extra cable to connect your equipment? Here’s what we recommend.

Top Choice: Mediabridge Coaxial Cable (Amazon)

Comparing Cable vs. DSL

DSL

DSL uses a modem to connect your computer to a phone line to access the Internet. DSL lets you use your phone and the Internet at the same time and is faster than dial-up.

Cable

Cable modems transmit data over cable television lines and, unlike DSL, it doesn’t rely on the provider’s central location for fast speeds. Cable is typically faster than DSL, but you do have to share bandwidth with your neighbors which can slow things down during high traffic times.

Factors that can slow down your Internet connection

Shared connections

With a cable Internet provider, you have access to Internet, TV and phone services, but you are also sharing your connection with your neighbors which can slow down broadband speeds. Mid-afternoon and evenings are the heaviest traffic times.

Price

Depending on what provider you choose, price can affect how fast your Internet speeds are. Price hikes are common as well.

Network

During bad weather, your cable connection can be affected. The copper cables are subject to static interference and corrosion. Fiber-optic Internet, which is available in certain areas, is more reliable, even in bad weather, and the speeds it delivers are much faster.