Cable Modem Recommendations?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by zagato27, Feb 7, 2004.

  1. zagato27 macrumors 65816

    zagato27

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    Aug 10, 2003
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    The Hill
    #1
    Bout to switch over from dial up to Comcast cable for my internet needs. Know that I'll need a cable modem and would like your recommendations. BTW, G5 1.6 with Panther. Will probably also be getting a wireless router that will hardwire to my Mac but will use wireless to my son's PC. Am thinking about a NetGear router. Again, any recommendations appreciated. Thks.
     
  2. junior macrumors 6502a

    junior

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2003
    #2
    Netgear DG834G.
    I've never tried it myself, but people seem to really like it.
    It's a combined modem, router, and wireless (54mbps).
    Seems very cool and a decent price. Check it out.
     
  3. zagato27 thread starter macrumors 65816

    zagato27

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    #3
    Intersting and might just be what I'm looking for. Info says that it is a "ADSL" modem. Is that a cable modem????
     
  4. zagato27 thread starter macrumors 65816

    zagato27

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    #4
    Oh man! That was soooo close to what I need/want. BUT, I need a cable modem not a ADSL. I like NETGEAR, too bad they don't have the cable modem/wireless router that I'm looking for. Linkysis????
     
  5. jywv8 macrumors 6502

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    Jan 11, 2003
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    Chicago
    #5
    I've got a D-Link wireless router. It's a DSL router, but I know they make cable routers, too. It was easy to set up and has been solid for the 6 months I've had it. I've used Asante routers in the past, and I liked those, too.


    Edit: I set this one up for a friend with a PC/Mac network. Works great:

    http://www.dlink.com/products/?pid=20
     
  6. zagato27 thread starter macrumors 65816

    zagato27

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    #6
    Thks. I've seen some write ups in CNET regarding the DLink. They were impressed with the ease of set up, Mac compatibility, and speed. Most of the reviews were postive however I have seen one complaint....noise as in a constant humming.

    I'm looking at buying a Motorola Surfboard modem and a Netgear WGT624 wireless router. CNET was fairly positive about the Netgear router and the reader reviews were pretty much split as to love/hate. Specs are good, warranty of only 1 yr compared to Dlink (3yrs ?). Believe that performance is about equal. Fraid that I'm a sucker for style (one of the reasons I bought my G5) and the Netgear has my vote.
     
  7. jiggie2g macrumors 6502

    jiggie2g

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    Brooklyn,NY
    #7
    I am using a Motorola Surf Board 5100 that was given to me by OOL(Optimum Online) and i get Speeds up to 10mbps/1mbps on it so it's a very capable modem.
     
  8. superbovine macrumors 68030

    superbovine

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    Nov 7, 2003
    #8
    first off, goto the comcast site and find the list of approved cable modems that work with comcast network. as a former comcast subcriber i had a d-link. i would also recommend if its on the approved modem list a router/cable modem combo. the router/cable modem combo will let you allow multi computers to connect with the cable companies knowledge and provide you with a hardware firewall. the modem cability is just a bonus because firewall i can't live without. the disadavantage of getting the combo if you move or change service, take for example getting dsl, you modem/router combo won't work. in the long run it be better to get two seperate devices, but you'd save some cash if you got the combo.

    another thing if the comcast operator give you crap about well if you modem goes bad will just replace if you use our modem. if i remember correctly its between $2-$4 to rent the cable modem. so between $24-$48 a year. that doesn't justify renting one.
     
  9. jtown macrumors 6502

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    Jul 3, 2003
    #9
    Does Comcast provide a free (or less than $5/month) cablemodem? If so, that's the best one. Some package deals will include cable modem rental. Mine was $1/month for about a year and a half.

    There is a benefit to using the cable company's equipment when it's reasonably priced. It puts their responsibility one step closer to your computer. If you use your own modem, their responsibility ends at the end of the cable. If you use their modem, their responsibility extends to the cable modem as well. Seems like a minor thing but it can make a big difference in the event that you have trouble with your connection.

    If they charge an arm and a leg for the cablemodem rental, look around at the local electronics and office supply stores. Someone will almost certainly have a cablemodem on sale for half the normal price. Office Max has a Best Data modem for $50 after an instant (not mail-in) rebate. I saw another brand on sale for $40 at Best Buy not too long ago. Don't worry about the brand too much. As long as it's DOCSIS compliant, your cable company should have no problem with it. Doesn't hurt to call them first and ask, tho.
     
  10. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus

    SilentPanda

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    Oct 8, 2002
    Location:
    The Bamboo Forest
    #10
    I used my providers cable modem until it got zapped with lightning... they didn't charge me for it but I went out and bought a linksys cable modem... I now have my surge/lightning protection on everything that potentially could touch the computer's, cable modems, etc... it's odd how my cable tv comes in through the wall, goes in and out a surge protector, get's split to the cable modem and the Tivo,. Both the cable modem and the Tivo plug into the router... it's like a big loop... if my TV get's hit it'll go to the TV -> VCR -> Tivo -> Router -> iBook (except now I have airport so no biggie)... it's just weird to think of that fact that up until I had airport by Gamecube even somehow was linked to my iBook... (man I got off topic quick)
     
  11. numediaman macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 5, 2004
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    Chicago (by way of SF)
    #11
    Cable costs can vary based on community. I have Comcast cable in Chicago. I rent the modem ($3 per month). It's a Motorola S85100 SURFboard.

    I also have a Netgear wireless router with one Mac and one PC hardwired, and one Mac and one PC wireless.

    I highly recommend that you install the router at the same time as the modem. The Comcast guys came out and hooked up both (to one computer, I was resposnible for the others). I have heard that cable modems actually work better with a router attached. My experience has been that this seems true.
     
  12. applebum macrumors 6502

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    Jul 10, 2003
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    SC
    #12
    Re: Cable Modem Recommendations?

    Like another poster, I have Comcast and lease the Modem for $3 per month. I would highly reccomend this. If lightning strikes that modem, Comcast will come out and replace it. If you purchase a modem and that happens, your modem is gone. I also have a Linksys router. Absolutely no problems with it. I have never even had to do any set up on it. I plug the modem into the router, plug the router in then turn on the computer and I have internet. I have used a netgear router for my sister, but I had to go in and do some setup to get it to work. Linksys was easier.
     
  13. AdamR01 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2003
    #13
    Another thing to consider if you dont rent is the fact that they might charge you for it anyways. I know someone that bought their own cable modem, but comcast still charges for the rent apparently. He called and complained to no avail.
     
  14. windowsblowsass macrumors 6502a

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    pa
    #14
    most modems wwork about the same and they are cheaper in the long run then renting also i have a lnksys router now that works fine
     
  15. jtown macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2003
    #15
    Yeah, that kind of thing can happen. For a while, I was on a combo package that required me to take two digital receivers. There are 3 people in the house. With just one receiver, there was no argument. Put it in the living room so everyone had equal access. With two receivers, who ends up being the odd man out?

    The annoying thing is that they wouldn't let me "waive" the second receiver. If I wouldn't take the second receiver, I would have been stuck with a more expensive plan. And analog-only service is more expensive than analog+digital. Wacky cable companies. :rolleyes:
     
  16. zagato27 thread starter macrumors 65816

    zagato27

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    The Hill
    #16
    Just got back from a trip and am catching up. Would like to thank everyone for their experiences and advice.

    First, I did go to the Comcast web site and check to see if the Motorolla Surfboard 5100 was listed. Yup, and isn't it amazing that Comcast has actually supplied this modem to some of the subscribers. As to buying/renting. Think I'll be buying the Motorolla. I've seen it for about $57 but I am going to ask Comcast if the modem rent is included in their pricing and if you decline does your monthly fee get reduced. Seems only fair to me.

    I'm still going to go with the NetGear "G" wireless. I've read good things about it but I'm really hooked on it's appearance/style. I'm bad. I guess that's a reason why I got the G5, my Dell FP1901 and my wife's Murano. Well, they all have great performance and features too. One more addition to that list: add my wife....great looks; performance and features :D

    If anyone has any experience with NetGear routers please chime in. Cheers
     
  17. superbovine macrumors 68030

    superbovine

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    Nov 7, 2003
    #17
    be sure they register your router MAC address inside of your mac's MAC address. comcast to see if you are paying customer lets you connect by MAC address. if you don't register you router they will drop your connection about every hour or so. you could also clone the mac address of your computer. the netgear menus should let you do that too.
     
  18. zagato27 thread starter macrumors 65816

    zagato27

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    #18
    Well, the wait is over. Stopped by Best Buy today to ponder between the Dlink g and the NetGear wireless routers. While there I stopped to look at their cable modems and saw the Motorola SBG900. WOW, everything I wanted: Motorola Surfboard modem, wireless g standard and all in one package. Didn't hurt that I got 10% off (they had a 10% coupon in the mail for "routers"... I had to convince the manager that their own description said it was a router....so what that it has a modem too...anyway they gave me the discount) and then will be getting a 30$ rebate. That gets the price down to about $140. Only one ethernet slot but that's all I'll be using anyway. Right now I think I'm a happy camper. Now to set up a cable account with Comcast. Guess I'd best start reading up on how to configure stuff.

    If anybody out there has any experience with the SBG900 please let me know. I know that it is brand new, the guys at Best Buy say that they can't keep them on the shelf. I'll let you know how things turn out. Thks.
     
  19. Dreadnought macrumors 68020

    Dreadnought

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    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    Almere, The Netherlands
    #19
    He guys,

    I have a Motorola cablemodem hooked onto my g5 through the networkport. But want to hook it up through the usb port. Unfortunately you need a driver for it, and Motorola only makes those drives for Windoos. :( Does anyone know a third party app/driver that can do the trick?
     
  20. superbovine macrumors 68030

    superbovine

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    Nov 7, 2003
    #20
    why? my guess is the modem only support usb 1.1 which is max speed of 12 Mbits/s. your ethernet card has a max of 100mbits/s. you cable modem downstream maxes around 40 Mbit/s. i could be wrong about usb 1.1 though, but i doubt it.
     
  21. zagato27 thread starter macrumors 65816

    zagato27

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    #21
    The Rest of the Story

    Signed up with Comcast this weekend and they came out this am to set things up. First problem, the wall that I wanted them to "fish" a new cable outlet was too tall. The tech only had a 6' drill bit and my ceilings was at least 8'. I had to convince him to cut a 20' cable to go from my den wall outlet to my computer so we could at least set things up ( I didn't have an airport card at the time and was thinking I'd just hard wire from the Motorola SBG900 to Mac and then wireless to my son's PC). The tech was reluctant to do this because it violated code. I told him it was just to get things rolling. I don't want a cable running through my den. Anway, he finally gave in and we got things going. No problems with Motorola SBG900. Hooked it up and it connected within a minute. I did notice that the connect speed was no greater than dial up. What's wrong with this picture? Went out and bought an airport extreme card and installed it with the 3.2 software. Then downloaded the 3.3 update. The Mac recognized it as a Motorola and all was well. Found that the slow speeds were due to the dial up/phone line still connected. Dumped that and now things are fast. Had to reconfigure Mozilla to the new address. Sort of screwed up here as I set up a new account and dumped the old one. All my folders and old mail was lost. Oh well. Now I have to disconnect my second phone line since I won't be needing it and drop AT&T dial up. So far things are nice. We will see what troubles I get into when my son's PC gets here and we have to connect it wireless. Also, I guess I have to configure the modem to set up firewalls etc. Any help on that would be appreciated.

    Can't believe how small/compact the Motorola SBG900 is. Happy happy.
    cheers
     
  22. zagato27 thread starter macrumors 65816

    zagato27

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    #22
    How do you tell what kind of download speeds you get from a wireless modem???
     
  23. superbovine macrumors 68030

    superbovine

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    #23

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