Internet Equipment

Learn about what you need for a solid Internet connection.

What Internet equipment will I need?

Modem

Modems are an essential piece of Internet equipment because they connect you to the Internet. If you have DSL or dial-up Internet your modem connects to telephone lines, while cable Internet uses coaxial cable to access the Internet. Modems take analog waves and convert them to digital so your computer can connect you to the web for streaming, gaming and surfing.

Router

Wireless routers work with a modem as part of a wireless network infrastructure. Routers take information via the modem and deliver it to your computer or wireless device. The best part is, a router allows multiple devices to connect to the Internet at once. Check out our recommendations for the best routers in the market on our wireless equipment page.

Ethernet Cable

While most homes use a Wi-Fi network to connect, Ethernet cables can speed up your connection. Ethernet cables are the most common type of Internet cables and can help home or office computers have a faster and more stable connection to the web.  Ethernet cables connect routers to the modem via the WAN port located on the modem. Need one? Our staff did the research for you – our recommendation is below.

Top Choice: Mediabridge Cat5e Ethernet Cable (Amazon)

Satellite Dish

Those who choose satellite Internet will need more Internet equipment than those with other types of Internet connections. In order to connect a home to satellite Internet and TV services, the satellite provider will install a satellite dish. This dish will then connect to its satellite in space which delivers the TV programming and Internet connection. Want to learn more about satellite dishes? Check out our satellite equipment page.

Do you need a router or a modem?

Cable vs. DSL

Which service is right for you?

DSL

DSL service providers connect your computer to the Internet via a modem and phone line. With a DSL modem you can access the Internet and also talk on the phone. Internet providers also have plans and pricing options depending on price and speed.

Cable

Cable modems transmit data via cable lines, but because you share your connection with your neighbors, speeds can vary throughout the day, depending on network traffic. Cable speeds are generally faster than DSL and dial-up, especially if you live in a larger city.