Cable Modem Thoughts/Recommendations?

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4,679
Location
South Carolina
Well after Spectrum screw up after screw up over the last two weeks and for the first time in many years it became unreliable, which now more then ever hurt as my wife works from home. Fact was they were upgrading/switching channels for data in SC resulting in outages for many people scattered around due to a filter in the line that was installed a decade ago filtering out the new data channel frequency or something like that. Anyway, as of yesterday Spectrum fixed it but my wife, rightfully concerned also wanted to get a new modem because some people were able to reset and get back online, we now know that was because they were thrown off over night because of the upgrade but their house was never filtered so were able to reset. (keep in mind this was all a rush and I was insanely busy at work unable to research I rightfully told her to go with and buy anything that made her comfortable as if our internet is down, she loses a PTO day because she cant work.) SO anyway, our modem was a TP Link TC-7610 and god I LOVED this modem. Purchased ourself back maybe 5+ years ago when we went back to cable from DSL. It has been dead on RELIABLE and would recommend to anyone..they can still be bought. With that said it has now been running for 5 years (guessing how long we had it) and know its only a matter of time before it quits and I just want something new, also feel if we go more "mainstream" updates might get automatically pushed by Spectrum if we go with a Arris or whatever. My wife felt comfortable with Arris and I am good with anything she wants because its her job that relies so much on it and she relies on me for out network in the home and they are all good. Anyway, any thoughts? We now have replaced the TP Link TC 7610 with a new Arris SB6190 which is way overkill for our 100Mbps connection, wife actually gets up to 110 Mbps on her desk top and me over 80 on mine both over our wifi What bothers me is the SB6190 is a high performance router but has the Intel Chip in it which is TRASHED for its problems and EVERYONE on the internet says dont buy any modem with an Intel chip in it. But I kind of think this is like an oil discussion such as dont put synthetic in a new engine. Here we are YEARS later, these higher end Docsis 3.0 modems are still being turned out with new generation Intel chips in them, I find it hard to believe all the posts I read on how bad they are. I have two weeks where I can return the Arris SB6190 for something else, I actually was considering downgrading to the Arris SB6183 because it has the Broadcom chip in it, even though the SB6183 is a lower performing modem, its claimed to be much better, more stable and secure. Since both these modems exceed the capacity of my internet speed I could go and return the SB6190 and go with the SB6183 instead, its actually less money but could care less about that. With that said, if I keep the Arris SB6190 which is WAY more powerful then I need, in a way it will be running much cooler since it will not be stressed at its capacity. Wife asked our cable service tech and he says they are all good and the same and would stay with the SB6190 being its new and up to date and the TPlink has been in use over 4 years. I agree with that but wondering if I should go to the Broadcom based Arris SB6183 OR even a Netgear CM 600 even if they are a small level below the Arris SB6190 that I am now using?
 
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Messages
25,442
Location
Upstate NY
A cable modem is not like a car purchase. Its under $100. Use it until it craps out and then get one that supports Docsis 3.1. At the church camp where I support WIFI we have a spare cable modem. With a quick call to Comcast we can be using the spare.
 

alarmguy

Thread starter
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4,679
Location
South Carolina
Originally Posted by Donald
A cable modem is not like a car purchase. Its under $100. Use it until it craps out and then get one that supports Docsis 3.1. At the church camp where I support WIFI we have a spare cable modem. With a quick call to Comcast we can be using the spare.
Well, disagree, we are in a computer thread not automobile :o) I dont agree with a 3.1 and I replace equipment before it dies on me. I dont need to make a call to Spectrum to change my modem, I can enter the MAC ID myself which makes switching even simpler.
 
Messages
81
Location
USA
Charter/Spectrum provided my modem when I switched to them from DSL. There is no rental charge, so it must have been provided as part of the deal. An Arris TM1602, modem only as I already had a router and access points set up. I prefer separate pieces so that I can upgrade modem, router, and wireless as needed. I don't plan to replace the modem until it dies or Charter tells me I need a new one because of system upgrades. I have at least 100Mbit now. Enjoy the new modem, you always have the old one to fall back on if you have any issues.
 
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Messages
4,947
Location
VA
From my little research, I would keep what you have. You have twice the downstream and upstream channels over the SB6183 and I'm assuming that is better. I'm always leaning for having that little extra whether I need it or not. LOL
 
Messages
25,442
Location
Upstate NY
Originally Posted by alarmguy
Originally Posted by Donald
A cable modem is not like a car purchase. Its under $100. Use it until it craps out and then get one that supports Docsis 3.1. At the church camp where I support WIFI we have a spare cable modem. With a quick call to Comcast we can be using the spare.
Well, disagree, we are in a computer thread not automobile :o) I dont agree with a 3.1 and I replace equipment before it dies on me. I dont need to make a call to Spectrum to change my modem, I can enter the MAC ID myself which makes switching even simpler.
My point was that I give a lot more thought to a $1000 or $25000 decision than a $50 decision. In my experience, its lightning that usually takes out a cable modem. Quality does not matter. But having a spare is good.
 

alarmguy

Thread starter
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4,679
Location
South Carolina
Originally Posted by ozric
Charter/Spectrum provided my modem when I switched to them from DSL. There is no rental charge, so it must have been provided as part of the deal. An Arris TM1602, modem only as I already had a router and access points set up. I prefer separate pieces so that I can upgrade modem, router, and wireless as needed. I don't plan to replace the modem until it dies or Charter tells me I need a new one because of system upgrades. I have at least 100Mbit now. Enjoy the new modem, you always have the old one to fall back on if you have any issues.
Without question I agree on separates, I have never had anything but. and ... just made that decision to stick with the SB6190 and like you say, a spare if I need it. Spectrum makes it so easy to swap out modems on your own, which I just learned the other day.
 

alarmguy

Thread starter
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4,679
Location
South Carolina
Originally Posted by Gebo
From my little research, I would keep what you have. You have twice the downstream and upstream channels over the SB6183 and I'm assuming that is better. I'm always leaning for having that little extra whether I need it or not. LOL
Yeah, pretty much just decided that unless someone makes a compelling case otherwise. Yes the older slower 6183 has a chipset known for stability. The SB6190 much higher performing has the intel chipset known for issues. With that said, to me I think that is years old issues propagated all over the internet that keeps repeating itself and have since been resolved by Intel or these internet companies would not be recommending and supporting them, it would be too costly for them to do so. Not only that but since it can handle MUCH, much higher speeds then we have (more or less overkill) it will be happily idling along completely stress free. I always like having more then I need when it comes to this stuff, for all I know our speed will get bounced up again from Spectrum.
 
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Messages
15,405
Location
NE,Ohio
6183 is very good modem. I recently upgraded(yesterday) to 400mbit service so I need a 3.1 modem. All 4 spectrum stores near me are out.. so they are mailing me one. hopefully not intel based. Also 3.1 modems tend to run over $150 and there is no fee now from spectrum for "modem renting"
 
Messages
2,191
Location
CA
In my area Spectrum eventually made cable modems free, but they weren't free way back when I signed up. I bought a Motorola SB series. Probably every 9 months I'd have integrity issues (with the Motorola you can look at several parameters related to signal quality). It would take a couple of calls to get someone to come out and work on their side of the line to fix the issue. Technician always first complained it must be my modem. As a result I've bought about 4 of them over the years (usually upgrading to newest DOCSIS rev-level). As far as I'm concerned the condition never is solved by my modem purchase; it's the line. Only one go-around did I get a good technician who knew how to look for line integrity. Other times I got marginally-okay technicians. The line got "fixed" but the problems returned after 9 months. Last go-around (Feb 2019) I got too tired fighting the technician "it's your modem" and took their modem, along with a speed upgrade from 30/3 to 300/20. Left my grandfathered plan. I have line problems again I phoned in a trouble call. Technician starts blaming the next piece of equipment I own, and claimed the line was perfect, which set me off big time. There is no such thing as "perfect". There is always signal degradation, *always*. The transmitter has noise, the receiver has noise, the board traces have noise. It's just a matter of how much degradation, and, he'd have equipment that measures field-level degradation. He should have been able to tell me what the bit-error rate is, what TX and RX dB levels are, etc. Wanted me to sign a phone app saying I agree all information provided to Charter is accurate. I asked "what information"; he said it's just my name and address above. I told him I saw him typing a lot more than that into his phone. He insisted it was only my name and address. I didn't sign. A couple days later he came back, entered my yard without notice nor my permission, fixed something on the pole. A week later the bill came *with a service charge*. I phoned and complained if everything was perfect why did he come back, and after that my problem went away. Got the charge reversed. The lady kept claiming "the technician said..." and "I'm just reading back what the technician wrote; we have to rely on the expertise of the technician." I've had maybe 3-4 outages since. No truck roll yet. So far it's always been maybe a 3-5 hour outage very early morning that I catch because I wake up so early for work. If you get a Motorola modem make sure it's on their list of approved models. They push a firmware upgrade to it, but the modems are only supported for a couple of years, and there are security vulnerabilities in the older models. So I wouldn't get attached to anything older than a couple of years. FYI, their modem here has FCC ID XCNE31U2V1. Can Google that to see what they consider "a perfect modem".
 
Messages
1,594
Location
TX, USA
I bought a Netgear CM600 which is at the same spec as SB6190. It is not that bad, around $70 at Amazon. CM600 is based on Broadcom Chips instead of Intel Puma. Another trick I do is attaching a cooling fan on the side of the modem (using 3M double sided tape) hook up to a USB power source. CM600 have a lot of ventilation holes to keep it cool.
 
Messages
6,447
Location
New England
TP-Link stands for Toilet Paper in my mind. All their stuff failed for me including 2 routers and 1 switch. My Arris Cable modem works great.
 

blupupher

Site Donor 2021
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6,824
Location
Katy, Republic of Texas
If Spectrum offers a no charge modem, take that. One less thing for them to blame, and if you have an issue, let them swap it out. Keep your old modem as a spare. I would return the 6190 regardless, I have heard nothing but bad as well about PUMA 6. The SB6183 is a solid modem and being a 16x4 modem is good for up to 300Mbs. Looks like it is about $58 on Walmart.com right now. I have Comcast and they still charge a $13/month rental fee for their modems. My modem is a SB6141 (Puma 5 chipset) that has been in use since 2014. Works great for my 65Mbps plan. Last year I bought my mom a Motorola MB7220 (Broadcom chipset) for <$50 for her 100 Mbps plan and works great.
 

alarmguy

Thread starter
Messages
4,679
Location
South Carolina
Old guy = yeah, made that decision to keep it. Madriver = Can not disagree with you more on my experience. Loved TP router and modem, rock solid for 5 or so years, rarely ever, ever, needed a reset and if it did once a year or whatever it was the cable company fault. With that said, moving forward we are keeping the Arris modem as an "upgrade" since the TP link modem was older and been running faithfully for so long, its time maybe coming to an end :o) and rather be proactive and replace, as well as we know how long that is technology wise/time. I can tell you one thing, dont know what the heck ARRIS was thinking with this modems status lights, they are sooooo STUPID bright its retarded. I mean, stupid bright, goes to show how brainless such a highly respected company can be at times. Doesnt matter to me as its in a center closet, but just ugly to look at compared to the TP link its replacing, the TP Link is a class act in the "looks" dept. At this moment we are keeping TP link router AC 1750 C7 Ver 2.0 never an issue in our 3000 sq ft home handling roughly 20+ maybe 24 wifi devices (including security cameras) plus my wifes work Cisco VPN router plugged into the back of the TP link via a AC line adapter and Ooma hardware for the house phone plugged into it.. pointing this out to show how reliable the TP link modem has also been handling the data for so long. Been so impressed with this router that we bought our daughter the newer version of this one, AC 1900 they love it. The day may come where we replace the router as well but not because it was TP link, it would be because I think a replacement cycle every fives years or so makes sense. Will see and quite honestly I would be afraid to try anything else besides a TPlink router but next time I just might try an American company being TP link is China.
 
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blupupher

Site Donor 2021
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Katy, Republic of Texas
Originally Posted by alarmguy
... I can tell you one thing, dont know what the heck ARRIS was thinking with this modems status lights, they are sooooo STUPID bright its retarded. I mean, stupid bright, goes to show how brainless such a highly respected company can be at times. Doesnt matter to me as its in a center closet, but just ugly to look at compared to the TP link its replacing, the TP Link is a class act in the "looks" dept. ...
Go to the modems settings (should be 192.168.100.1), and see if there is an option to turn off the lights. I know in my SB6141 it is there, but in the MB7220 it is not. I still say return the SB6190 and look and see if you can get a free modem from your provider.
 
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5,989
Location
Texas Hill Country
Spectrum stopped charging rental fees on cable modems a couple years ago. My suggestion is to have them bring you a free modem and sell yours on ebay like I did. Generally I have had no problem with a particular brand of modem. When you accept the cable CO's modem, its their problem to replace it not yours. At my house spectrum provides me a Technicolor modem, and I put it in bridge mode, and run my own wireless router and firewall. Also get a router that can do QOS settings, as I find Spectrums service to have high latency.
 
Messages
25,442
Location
Upstate NY
Originally Posted by JustinH
Spectrum stopped charging rental fees on cable modems a couple years ago. My suggestion is to have them bring you a free modem and sell yours on ebay like I did. Generally I have had no problem with a particular brand of modem. When you accept the cable CO's modem, its their problem to replace it not yours. At my house spectrum provides me a Technicolor modem, and I put it in bridge mode, and run my own wireless router and firewall. Also get a router that can do QOS settings, as I find Spectrums service to have high latency.
The issue is how many days do you want to be down because of a modem that no longer works and what is it worth to you?
 
Messages
3,368
Location
Chicago
I support the idea of either 1. a $10 craiglist modem ideally a Motorola/Arris unless you need really high speeds... 2. Sb6183 with broadcom chip not a puma(you have been doing your homework,good) 3. Sb8200 to future proof yourself Make sure it is plugged into a surge protector I am currently using a sb6120 that I bought new in 2009.... Comcast tells me it is end of life but I tell them I want to provision it anyway. Still running great.
 
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