The modem is a transceiver device with modulation and demodulation functionality, that is, it mainly has two operating systems: the modulating one, which consists of an electrical or electromagnetic signal, containing specific information (such as audio, video or data), and the demodulating one who takes care of receiving and restoring the modulated signal.
A modem (DCE Data Communication Equipment), in association with a network terminal, or a PC (DTE Data Terminal Equipment), is capable of coding, decoding and converting an electrical signal from analog to digital and vice versa.
They are thus allowing to carry out transceivers of data of all kinds, in the field of communications or transmissions, both digital (PC) and analog (twisted pair).
Here we had listed out some of the best fiber optic modems that are present below.
- 3 products in 1: DOCSIS 3 0 Cable Modem, AC1600 dual-band Wi-Fi Router, 2 Port Gigabit Ethernet Router (cable digital voice service not supported)
- Wi-Fi 5 AC1600 dual-band concurrent Wi-Fi Router with 2 Gigabit Ethernet ports
- Setup and manage your network with the SURFboard Manager app
- Compatible with major U S Cable Internet Providers including Cox, Spectrum, Xfinity & others. Cable internet service required. Not compatible with ATT, Verizon, CenturyLink or other DSL or Fiber internet providers
- 16 downstream & 4 upstream channels. Best for cable internet service plans up to 400 Mbps.
- Compatible with CenturyLink VDSL/ADSL2+ Services (Not compatible with fiber connections or ATT)
- Conform to IEEE802.3ah standard.
- Support Ethernet service layer 2 switching and wire-speed forwarding of uplink and downlink services. Support frame filtering and suppression. Support standard 802.1Q Vlan function, support VLAN conversion.
- Support 4094 VLANs (802.1Q). Support Dynamic Bandwidth Allocation (DBA) function. Support QoS, including traffic flow classification, priority marking, queue anddispatch, traffic shaping and traffic control, etc.
- Support IGMP Snooping. Support Ethernet port ratelimit loop detection. Support power failure alarm. Support lightning protection for power supply and lightning protection for service port.
- Single ONU supports up to 1 LLID.
- Support port-based rate limitation and bandwidth control; Support IGMP Multicast,effective use of broadband; Support VLAN division and user separation to avoid broadcast storm;
- Support CTC interworking mode;Support ONU auto-discovery/Link detection/ OLT remote upgrade of software;Support DHCP option 60 and power-off alarm function ,easy for link problem detection
- Support Remote loopback and network status diagnosis;Support Dynamic Bandwidth Allocation (DBA);Support IEEE802.1Q VLAN protocol;
- Support IEEE802.1p VLAN protocol;Support flow statistics;Support storm control
- In compliant with IEEE802.3ah Standard
- Integrated VDSL2 modem, supporting Bonded ADSL2+ and Bonded VDSL2
- Modem & WiFi Router Combo Device - No Extra Equipment Needed!
- 200Mbps Download Speeds & 100Mbps Upload speeds
- Compatible with CenturyLink Service
- Dual Band Wireless - 802.11ac / 802.11n
- MULTI-GIG NETWORKING: The SURFboard S33 features a 2.5 Gbps Ethernet port plus an additional 1 Gbps Ethernet port for a 2nd network
- Cable internet service required. Does NOT include Wi-Fi and does not support cable digital voice service.
- DOCSIS 3.1 Cable Modem approved for cable internet speed plans up to 2.5 Gbps
- 32 downstream x 8 upstream DOCSIS 3.0 bonded channels, 2 downstream x 2 upstream OFDM DOCSIS 3 1 channels
- Connects to any existing Wi-Fi router for blazing-fast internet.
- Compatible with all major cable internet providers with internet speed up to 1Gbps. Currently certified with Spectrum and Cox (up to 1Gbps), Xfinity (up to 800Mbps). Not compatible with Verizon, AT&T, CenturyLink, DSL providers, DirecTV, DISH and any bundled voice service.
- Save monthly rental fees: Model CM1000 replaces your cable modem saving you up to dollar 168/year in equipment rental fees.
- Works with any Wi-Fi router: Connect any Wi-Fi router to this modem's Ethernet port to support all your wireless devices.
- Ethernet connections: 1 Gigabit Ethernet port connects to your computer or separate Wi-Fi router.
- DOCSIS 3 1 Cable Modem best for cable internet speed plans up to 2 Gbps. Note, a 2nd IP address is required from your cable internet provider to reach 2 Gbps.
- 32 downstream x 8 upstream DOCSIS 3 0 bonded channels, 2 downstream x 2 upstream OFDM DOCSIS 3 1 channels
- Two 1-Gigabit Ethernet ports
- Not compatible with ATT, Verizon, CenturyLink or other DSL or Fiber internet providers
- Cable internet service required; Does not inlcude Wi-Fi and does not support cable digital voice service
- Top Internet Speeds for all Multi-gigabit Speed Tiers - Wirecutter recommends this model as the best cable modem for people using Gigabit Internet plans. Built-in DOCSIS 3.1 and DOCSIS 3.0 32x8 capabilities give top Internet speeds for all cable Internet services.
- Save Money - Eliminate up to 168 dollars per year in cable modem rental fees (Savings are shown for Comcast Xfinity and vary by cable service provider.) Approved by Comcast Xfinity and Xfinity X1, Cox, and CableOne for all speeds including Comcast Gigabit services and Cox Gigablast. Not compatible with RCN. No cable modem is compatible with fiber optic, DSL, or satellite services, available from Verizon, AT&T, CenturyLink, Frontier, and others.)
- Flexible Compatibility - Pair with any Wi-Fi router you’d like, including Whole Home Wi-Fi or Mesh routers like eero, Google Wi-Fi, and Orbi. A 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet port allows connection of any SINGLE device with an Ethernet port including a router, Windows or Mac computer, HDTV, or game station. This cable modem does not have a built-in wireless router or telephone call capability.
- Proactive Network Security - A broadcom chipset provides advanced security from denial-of service attacks.
- Active Queue Management (AQM) - AQM significantly reduces Internet latency on both DOCSIS 3.1 and 3.0 services, resulting in faster page loads for all Web traffic and enhanced interactive applications like online gaming and video conferencing. The MB8600 also includes a full-band capture digital tuner to enhance speed and save energy.
- Designed to convert 1000BASE-SX fiber to 1000Base-T copper media or vice versa.
- Works at 1000Mbps in Full-Duplex mode for both TX port and FX port
- Supports auto MDI/MDIX for TX port and provides switch configuration of Force/Auto transfer mode for FX port
- Extends fiber distance up to 550m (1,800feet) using 50/125um Multi-Mode Fiber, 220m(720 feet) using 62.5/125um Multi-Mode Fiber
- Easy-to-view LED indicators provide status to monitor network activity easily
Everything You Need to Know About Fiber Optic Modem
Types of Modems
Even before starting with reviews and rankings, it is right to describe and differentiate the various types of modems. In shopping centers, on Amazon or in any other technology product store, modems are classified and categorized according to their kind.
The main types of modems are:
- Modem router;
- Wireless repeater;
If you were an expert, we advise you to go directly to the next paragraph, otherwise, read on to understand the substantial differences between these devices.
The Modem Router is a technological device able to connect to the Internet line through the telephone cable and to access any devices connected to the Wireless (WiFi) network.
In America, it is identified with the term “Modem Router Combo,” since it does a job both as a modem and as a router. Surely this is the kind of product you are interested in, and in fact, the whole page is structured to advise you on the best based on various circumstances.
The router is a device capable of allowing the exchange of IP packets from one network to another. Since it does not contain a modem inside, with a simple router, it is not possible to access the Internet.
The modem is a device that can connect to the Internet through the telephone cable, but does not guarantee connection to multiple devices. In all cases, tools such as the modem are not equipped with wireless technology, but with a single Ethernet port that allows the connection.
Wifi Extenders may look like modems or routers visually, but in reality, they perform a different function. Technically, they are only able to extend the potential of a wireless network.
They are all those devices that are purchased, for example, to bring a WiFi network in the garden, or on different floors of the same house.
How to Choose a Fiber Optic Modem?
Many features must be taken into consideration when buying a WiFi router, some extremely simple to understand, and others a little more “technical” that require a little study by us users. Here they are all in detail.
WIFI Classes, Data Transfer Rates and Frequency Bands
The first features that need to be considered are the Wifi classes and the frequency bands supported by the router. Wifi classes are different, and each of them supports a different transfer speed.
Class b allows you to transfer data up to 11 Mbps; the class g reaches up to 54 Mbps; the class n reaches up to 450 Mbps, while the class called wireless AC reaches up to 1.3Gbps (equal to 1331 Mbps).
If you have an Internet connection higher than 11Mbps (e.g. a 20 Mega) make sure you don’t use a very old router that can only support class b.
As for the frequency bands, if you want to exploit them all and you want to avoid interference, I highly recommend you opt for a dual-band router.
The dual-band routers, in addition to supporting the classic 2.4GHz radio band, can transmit the signal on the 5GHz frequency band.
The 5GHz group avoids the problems related to interference that can be encountered on 2.4Ghz radio channels – now crowded with wireless devices of all kinds – and therefore ensures generally better performance.
There are, however, a couple of “cons” to keep in mind: the range of action of 5GHz networks is less than that of 2.4GHz systems and to use them you need to have computers and devices compatible with this technology ( not all computers, smartphones, and other accessories are compatible with 5GHz networks). It should also be noted that to take advantage of the speed of the wireless AC standard, it is necessary to operate on the 5GHz band.
The most advanced routers with 5GHz network support also have Beamforming + technology, which improves the performance of 5GHz networks over the long haul by directing the signal precisely to the devices that need it.
Some high-end routers are even called tri bands as they manage to use the 2.4 GHz band and two 5 GHz bands simultaneously to ensure faster data transfer speeds.
At present, routers of this type are still costly, so I recommend considering them only if you have specific needs related to the use of inter-band technology. Another “abbreviation” that can be found on high-end routers – but also some mid-range routers – is MU-MIMO.
Routers that support MU-MIMO technology (short for Multiple User, Multiple Input, Multiple Output) can handle requests for multiple devices simultaneously without compromising the speed of data transfer to any of them.
They, therefore, ensure greater efficiency in data transfer than the so-called traditional routers, which instead can communicate with only one device at a time (in the sense that they transmit data to a client, await its response, and then pass to the other clients following the same diagram).
To exploit the potential of the MU-MIMO, it is necessary to use devices compatible specifically with this technology and with the wireless AC standard.
Remaining on the maximum supported speed, there is also the connection protocol provided by the telephone operator, which can be ADSL2 (up to 12M) or ADSL 2+ (up to 24M). Purchase a router that supports the protocol used by your connection.
The most advanced modems/routers also support VDSL / VDSL2 technology, which allows reaching a browsing speed of up to 300 Mega. Many providers call it “fiber,” but technically, it is not a pure optical fiber.
Yes, it provides the connection from the street cabinet with the fiber optic control unit, but in homes, the connection comes through the classic copper twisted pair (the so-called Fiber to the Cabinet).
Another important thing to underline is that VDSL profiles can be multiple, and not all routers can “hold” them all: if the vast majority of routers on the market “digest” profile 17a.
This allows you to navigate up to 100 Mega, and not everyone can support the 35b profile, which instead allows you to browse up to 250 Mbit / s in download (if you are within 250 m of the street closet).
To learn more about these connection technologies, see my post in which I explained which operator has the fastest Internet and this Wikipedia page.
Ports and Connections
Now let’s talk about the ports available on routers. As mentioned above, routers and modem-routers have ports that allow the connection of various devices. These doors can be of various types.
Chipset, Ram, Cpu, and Antennas
Other features to be taken into consideration are those relating to the components, both internal and external, of the router. Components such as the chipset, RAM, CPU, and router antennas can greatly affect the performance of the device.
The chipset, for example, can play a role in connection stability. As I also explained to you in my tutorial on how to increase ADSL speed, there are some router models – almost all those equipped with Broadcom chipsets.
This allows you to adjust a parameter called SNR margin thanks to which it is possible to mitigate the instability of the network and increase connection performance when you are away from the control panel.
CPU and RAM, on the other hand, play a fundamental role in traffic management: the more powerful they are, the better the device behaves in “stressful” situations. However, these are features that only those with particularly advanced needs must look at.
To be taken into consideration, then, there are the number, the position (internal or external), and the power of the antennas with which the router is equipped (which is expressed in dBi). The more powerful the antennas are, the greater the range of the wifi network.
Router with Mesh Support
If you have a huge house (or office) and you need to spread the WiFi network in every corner of the latter, you can buy a router equipped with support for mesh networking technology.
Mesh networking is a technology that allows you to have a single network, with the same name, the same access key and no problem of disconnections or loss of speed, using a router (to be connected to the ADSL or Fiber modem) and one or multiple satellites that thus share the connection in all corners of the house.
Mesh networks are distinguished from traditional ones formed, for example, by a router and a series of separate repeaters in that there is no hierarchical order between the various nodes of the network.
Each node, therefore, each router/satellite that makes up the network, communicates with each other – often using a dedicated radio channel – by expanding the coverage of the WiFi network and creating a single large network available throughout the home.
The number of satellites can be increased freely, and there is no loss of performance in the connection, also because all the nodes send and receive data at the same speed.
At the time of writing, mesh networking systems are not yet widespread in the consumer sector, so they are still costly, but if you have a huge area to cover with the WiFi signal, they may be worth the expense.
In addition to the hardware features we have talked about so far, before purchasing a router, you must also evaluate its software side features.
For example, it is necessary to check whether the device offers parental control functions to inhibit access to certain websites and limit access to the Internet during certain hours of the day.
If you can create a guest network to share your Internet connection with other people if you can adjust the percentage of traffic to reserve for the various devices connected to the network and so on.
Another feature worth considering is WPS support: a technology that allows the modem to communicate with other wireless devices (e.g., printers, repeaters, etc.) with the press of a simple button. It is not always recommended for security reasons (in the past this technology has been the subject of numerous security holes), but it can be useful.
Last but not least, it is good to inquire about the ease of use of routers: if there are a lot of functions but they are all difficult to use, it is useless to have them.
If you are not an expert in the subject and you are not willing to go into it, it is better to buy a router with a few fewer functions, but which is simpler to configure.
Portable Routers and 3 G / 4 G Support
Some routers have support for data SIMs and Internet Keys, thus allowing you to browse 3G / 4G. They are instrumental in those situations where the ADSL connection is not available due to a failure, and you do not want to be completely disconnected from the network.
There are also home modem routers that only support 3G and 4G networks and thus allow you to quickly surf the Internet (provided you sign up for an adequate data plan) bypassing the limitations of the traditional ADSL network.
Portable routers deserve a separate discussion: these are compact devices, often battery-powered, which allow you to connect to 3G and 4G networks on various devices simultaneously. In the final part of the article, I will point out some that might come in handy.