Best Gigabit Modem in 2023 – our top picks
If you’re on the hunt for the best gigabit modem, you’ve come to the right place.
Internet Service Providers aren’t always going to give you the very best equipment when you sign up for them. With fiber and gigabit connections becoming more prevalent over the last few years, as well as the ever-increasing need to future-proof your connection in the event of speed jumps, it’s important for you to get a gigabit modem.
Gigabit modems come with one or more Gigabit Ethernet ports, which transmit Ethernet frames at a rate of a gigabit per second. You can benefit greatly from these ports if you have a gigabit internet plan. These should help provide a seamless streaming, online gaming, and browsing experience.
With so many gigabit modems available in the market, it can be difficult for you to select the right one for your needs. To help you out, we did the homework and complied a list of what we think are the best gigabit modems available in the market today. So, without wasting another second, let’s dive in!
Products at a Glance
How we picked
We’ve used our expertise to find and select the best gigabit modems. We took a look at several modems, compared them, and went with the ones that offered the best value for money. Our team is also constantly exploring the market for new routers, so make sure to check back here soon for an updated list.
Best Gigabit Modem in 2023 – our top picks
- DOCSIS 3.1
- Designed for cable plans up to 2 Gbps
- Four Gigabit Ethernet ports
- Overkill if not used with a high-speed cable plan
If budget is not an issue and you want a modem that ticks all the boxes of a great device, we’d recommend the Netgear Nighthawk CM1200.
To begin with, the CM1200 features DOCSIS 3.1, which is the latest and fasted DOCSIS standard. The modem is designed for cable plans up to 2 Gbps, but this will be different for every cable provider. For instance, it can work with up to 1 Gbps plans of Spectrum and Cox and up to 800 Mbps plans for Xfinity. The modem is also compatible with every WiFi router, so you can pair it with one of the best Netgear Nighthawk routers.
As far as wired connectivity is concerned, the modem comes with four Gigabit Ethernet ports, and link aggregation also combines two 1G ports into one 2G port for faster and more stable wired connections.
When it comes to compatibility, the modem works with Spectrum, Cox, and Xfinity and is not compatible with Verizon, AT&T, CenturyLink, DSL providers, DirecTV, DISJ, and bundled voice services. Overall, the Netgear Nighthawk CM1200 is the best gigabit modem and a solid choice for those who have a high-speed internet plan.
- For high-speed plans up to 6 Gbps
- WiFi 6
- DOCSIS 3.1
- 2,500 sqft coverage
- Utterly pointless on any connection less than 1Gbp/s
If you’re looking for something that combines a modem and router into a single device, we’d recommend the Netgear Nighthawk CAX80.
For starters, the CAX80 is meant for high-speed plans up to 6 Gbps. The modem features the latest DOCSIS 3.1 technology, while the built-in rotuer supports WiFi 6, which is the latest standard of WiFi and is around 40% faster than the previous standard.
When it comes to coverage, the CAX80 has a range of around 2,500 sqft, something that makes it a solid choice for a three to four-bedroom house or apartment. On top of that, it can connect with up to 30 devices at the same time, something that makes it on par with some of the best routers for multiple devices.
For wired connections, there are four Gigabit Ethernet ports and one 2.5G multi-gig port. The modem also features 2-port aggregation, thanks to which you can achieve speeds of up to 2 Gbps from a single port. If you want to create your own personal cloud storage, you can use the 3.0 USB port to connect your external storage device directly to the modem.
Overall, the CAX80 is the best gigabit modem router combo that can handle super-fast speeds.
- 686 Mbps download and 131 Mbps upload
- Gigabit Ethernet port
- Only one Gigabit Ethernet port
- Not DOCSIS 3.1
If you’re not planning to spend a fortune on a modem and want something that delivers decent performance without breaking the bank, then you should check out the ARRIS Surfboard SB6183, which is meant for cable internet speed plans up to 400 Mbps.
The SB6183 features DOCSIS 3.0 technology and comes with a 16×4 channel bonding, so you can expect decent downstream and upstream speeds – 686 Mbps download and 131 Mbps upload speeds, to be exact. It would’ve been better if the modem featured DOCSIS 3.1, but this is rare in budget options.
If you have a Gigabit plan, you’ll benefit greatly from the Gigabit Ethernet port located at the back of the modem. This can be used to connect your PC, console, or other devices directly to the modem to enjoy a seamless browsing, streaming, or online gaming experience.
As far as compatibility is concerned, the modem works with Xfinity, Cox, and Spectrum, but it only supports up to 150 Mbps cable plans for Cox.
How to pick the best Gigabit modem
Here are a few things to consider before making a final purchase.
Make sure the modem you’re getting is compatible with your internet service provider. For instance, if you get a modem that works only with Xfinity, it won’t work with other ISPs like Spectrum or Cox. So, look at the specifications of the modem or contact their customer support service to learn about its compatibility.
Speeds and performance
If you have a gigabit plan, you’d want to go with a router that can handle/support gigabit speeds. The modem should be powerful enough to handle high data transfer rates without affecting the performance.
If you’re using a cable internet service, ensure the modem supports the latest DOCSIS standard. At the moment, DOCSIS 3.1 is the latest standard, which allows for superfast speeds up to 10 Gbps. You’ll also find modems that come with the previous standard, DOCSIS 3.0, and you can go with them if budget is an issue.
A good Gigabit modem should have at least one Gigabit Ethernet port. While budget options usually come with a single port, you can find around three to four Gigabit ports in modems that come with a high price tag.
What is a gigabit modem?
A gigabit modem is a modem that allows you to access internet speeds of 1 Gbps or more
Is it worth buying a gigabit modem?
If you have an internet plan that is 1000 Mbps or faster, then buying a gigabit modem is recommended to get the very best out of your plan. However, if your internet plan has speeds lower than this (which most of us typically do), then it can be seen as a bit overkill.
Who are gigabit modems for?
Gigabit modems and internet connections are typically for those with extreme bandwidth requirements, such as in offices where there are many connections, or for those who frequently download or upload large files such as games and video content. For the typical household, these speeds are not required. However, future-proofing never hurts.
For us, the Netgear Nighthawk CM1200 is the best gigabit modem currently available in the market. It comes with the latest DOCSIS 3.1 technology, which provides a fast and stable internet experience. On top of that, there are four Gigabit Ethernet ports, so you can connect multiple devices directly to the modem. The CM1200 is also meant for high-speed cable plans – up to 2 Gbps.