SmartThings Community

Modem/Router Recommendations?

(Paul) #20

Another +1 for any of the SURFboard modems. Seriously great products.

The Wirecutter is a good source of info on this subject.

Routers are more of a coin flip. Start with a new modem and ISP, then think about changing your router if you’re still having problems.

(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #21

On the flip side of this, if you are concerned with speeds, bandwidth, and processing power, you should upgrade your router on average every 2 years. Sooner if your wallet is fat, but definitely no more than 3 years. You should make your ISP upgrade your modem every 2-3 years as well.

And while I’m talking about that… Cable and satellite equipment… When your two year contact is about to end, cash them and tell them you are not renewing. They will transfer you to the customer retention department, that is when you get brand new equipment.

(DLee) #22

Consumer wifi routers as we know them are going to die soon. If you have kind of a large or multi story home, I’d recommend just buying a dedicated cable modem since they are cheap. And get one of the new mesh wifi routers.

Ubiquiti Ampliphi performs the best (big antennas), is the cheapest, and they are planning to launch an add on home IoT hub that integrates with the main wifi router somehow. That could be fun. Ubiquiti has been around for years making some of the best affordable business and industrial wifi devices.

(Paul) #23

I don’t think that’s necessary for typical consumers. I bought my DOCSIS 3.0 modem 8 years ago. The new modems don’t offer any new features, and my old one works like a champ. By buying it instead of renting it, I’ve saved a lot of money.

I’ve owned two routers in 10 years. I’m finally tempted to upgrade to one of the mesh systems, but honestly my current system is fine. My local wifi network is still much faster than my cable internet. Why would I care about extra speed or processing power?

(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #24

I learned why to do it this way…

I moved and changed ISP. They connected my old router (2 years old) and tab a speed test. It was what I was used to.
They then connected a brand new one, same make and model. The speed test increased by roughly 40%.

My research taught me that the specs are the same. So when you read about the faeries and everything, nothing looks differed by. But, the differences are in the hardware, the way the processor works, the algorithms, the everything. It just works better.

And honestly, ever since then I’ve upgraded and I always document before and after and have always shown an improvement.

(Paul) #25

Sure… And of course YMMV.

All I can say is I get the full advertised speed of my internet plan, and I have ever since I dropped the cableco rented modem for a SURFboard. 3 cable companies and 2 states later, I’m still on the same modem. I can measure my speed directly connected to my modem, and wirelessly connected to my router and it’s the same.

“If it ain’t broke” is real.

(Diego Yong) #26

As I keep getting feedback, I realized no one really uses a modem+router combo unit, why is that?

(Paul) #27

Because they are pretty universally terrible. “Jack of all trades, master of none” comes to mind.

Plus, if you want to upgrade your router or your modem later, you’re stuck with tossing the whole unit.

(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #28

For the same reason no one buys the tv with the DVD player built in…they suck!

(Michael Hess) #29

I fully support this idea. It’s the only way to not get screwed after the initial discount period. And if you have Satellite, I really feel sorry for you, what a terribly overpriced pile of crap those services are…(used to install them)

Your point on processing power may be a bit overkill, I have routers from 5 years ago that can still handle 100Mb throughput. The reason to replace every few years is if the wireless standards continue to evolve. Or if you bought the $25 discount router on Newegg that’s already 3 years old. :slight_smile:

And modems don’t need to be replaced unless DOCSIS standards change AND YOUR ISP USES THE NEW STANDARD! A DOCSIS 3.1 modem won’t do any better than a 3.0 if the ISP is only running 3.0 on their CMTS’.

(Michael Hess) #30

Because they are the lowest common denominator. Both devices serve VERY different purposes so if you need to upgrade one or the other for whatever reason, you are out of luck, or your wallet takes a much bigger hit.

Like High End Audio, seperates are best, but in this case, it’s best for EVERYONE.

Plus, if you move from a DSL/Cable city to a Cable/DSL city, why buy a new combo if you have a perfectly good router? And if your ISP bakes the modem into the price, why buy a modem, you won’t save anything.


Like Michael mentioned above, combo units can get expensive in the long run. With separate appliances (modem + firewall/router + access point), you only need to replace the unit that gets obsolete. Of course, some of the separate appliances can get expensive the higher up the capability ladder you go, but they also tend to hang around longer in the network because of this.

The only combo-anything that I might consider is the combo meals from some restaurants/fast-food places :laughing:

(Bobby) #32

@dytkd see what you did? You made me spend $120 bucks! Not liking this forum, it’s a burden to my wallet…Honestly though, you might want to consider this router too…

(Diego Yong) #33

LOL, I saw the thread yesterday. How did you only spend $120?

(Bobby) #34

There is a promo for launching IFTTT channel.

“Enter the code GOIFTTT at checkout for a 40% discount”

(Diego Yong) #35

Can you elaborate on that please? I am on the google store, and it won’t take the code

(Michael Hess) #36

Directly from their website, in their web store. Not the OnHub, the Almond:

(Diego Yong) #37

so… almost a year later, I did not get a router since I switched ISP, and they gave me new equipment. Good equipment, but the signal/reach is not the greatest considering I live in a 2 story townhome. Anyway, I am also paying $10 for equipment which I much rather use to get a good reliable router to last for a few years…

[quote=“michaelahess, post:10, topic:57456”]
If you can get a Netgear R6300v2 you’ll be real happy.
[/quote] I was going to take this advice since this is only 69.99 on amazon today, but then I also saw that the OnHub (Blue and Black) is only 99.99 on the google store…

Any thought on which I should get?

(Michael Hess) #38

The onhub is good but not great and pretty inflexible. I’d recommend going with something else. The netgear is still solid. Check smallnetbuilder.ncom for more good recommendations.

Mesh Wi-Fi, is it what it's chalked up to be?
(CassieGriffin) #39

Bad Modem give low wireless connectivity. Check your modem or upgrade it or reinstall in your system.Router paly a for supper connectivity. So please check your router .Linksys router support is the best service for your system