I want to ditch the cable company's modem

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catdude
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I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by catdude » Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:29 am

I have a confession to make... and this may result in my Boglehead credentials being revoked. The ugly truth is that I've been spending 8 bucks a month to rent a modem from the local cable company. This has been going on for the past 3.5 years. :oops:

Actually, it's a combination modem/router, or "data gateway" to use the cable company's expression. I bought and installed a router yesterday, and that was a piece of cake to get up & running. So now, what I need to do is get a cable modem, and once that's installed I can give back the "data gateway" and stop paying the $8 a month.

I just need some help figuring out what modem to buy. Can anyone make a recommendation? I checked the cable company's website, and all they recommend is a handful of Arris "data gateways" that, based on personal experience, I think are probably not very good devices. I have 100 Mbps download speed / 10 Mbps upload speed, if that's a factor in making a recommendation. Any advice that y'all can give will be much appreciated. Let me know if more info is needed.
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Angelus359
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Angelus359 » Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:34 am

I have Arris/Motorola 6141. Works fine
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by pfranz » Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:48 am

I also have an Arris/Motorola 6141 and it's been working fine for a few years now.

One caveat I've noticed; while TWC/Spectrum has support for ipv6 in many places, the 6141 hardware version 8 isn't supported for ipv6 (hardware version 7 is). At least that was the status of things a few months ago when I was looking into it. I didn't call to confirm. I wouldn't consider that a reason not to go forward with it.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by DSInvestor » Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:52 am

Angelus359 wrote:I have Arris/Motorola 6141. Works fine
I also have this modem on my 100Mbps download 10Mbps upload internet service with comcast. Works great.
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catdude
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by catdude » Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:59 am

Thanks guys. I took a look at that modem on Amazon and the write-up says it works with numerous "regional cable providers." Which is what my local cable company is. So this may be just the ticket...
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Bud
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Bud » Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:51 am

Thanks for posting this... I have been thinking about this same topic for a few months.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by sperry8 » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:16 am

I bought mine at BestBuy - it was around $80 I think. Savings started after 8 mos and the router worked perfectly... super fast. Definitely swap yours out.
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Van-Guard23 » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:26 am

I replaced my modem a while ago. I don't know if your ISP is similar to mine but mine had a list of modems that would work on their network. You might want to check your ISP's website to verify the modem you are considering is on their "preferred" list of modems before purchasing one.
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just frank
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by just frank » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:45 am

I googled around for 5 mins until I found a list of approved models for my carrier/region. And it was good.

Before we restore BH credentials...did you buy router at list price, or get a refurb? :twisted:

AllMostThere
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by AllMostThere » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:52 am

Agree, why waste the money with rental. Purchasing your own modem will have payback in 5-12 months, then it becomes the gift that keeps giving every month. I recently did exactly this myself when I changed internet service from ATT Uverse to WoW. I purchased the Arris SB6183 (cost ~ $99) and the company cable tech installed it for me during their initial installation. No issues what so ever. Also, just last week I installed an Netgear CM400-1AZNAS (cost ~ $50) for my mother who has Comcast Xfinity. Again, no issues. I just followed the on-line self installation guide found on Xfinity website. I didn't even have to contact Xfinity. She is now saving $10 month on model rental for a 5 month payback! :moneybag

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by dcabler » Wed Feb 15, 2017 6:26 am

Picked up mine at Costco a couple of years ago and haven't looked back. One thing to note: at least with TWC/Spectrum with the modems they provide, any time the modem manufacturer needs to do an update to the modem's firmware, it happens automatically. That won't happen if you provide your own. And at least for the modem I purchased at the time, there was no way to do updates yourself. That said, I haven't had any issues at all.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by EZ James » Wed Feb 15, 2017 6:44 am

I also use the Motorola/Arris 6141 with TWC (Spectrum) and it's been on over 2 years with no problems.

You might also consider getting a digital phone adapter to replace your landline. I use an Obihai 200 and have not received a telemarketer or robo call since installing it. The downside is that it will not work for 911 calls unless you add that service for a small fee. The adapter uses Google Voice and there is no charge from them. Obihai dinged me $10 after the second year to get another year's service but the uspside swamps that out IMO.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Tamarind » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:03 am

Your ISP should have a list of models that will work. Pick one you like for performance and value. I paid $70 for a refurbished Motorola Surfboard (or something like that) from Amazon, plugged it in and voila. It paid for itself a long time ago.

Life is too short to rent modems.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Toons » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:33 am

Angelus359 wrote:I have Arris/Motorola 6141. Works fine

+1 :happy

https://www.amazon.com/ARRIS-SURFboard- ... B00AJHDZSI
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flossy21
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by flossy21 » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:36 am

Tamarind wrote:Your ISP should have a list of models that will work. Pick one you like for performance and value. I paid $70 for a refurbished Motorola Surfboard (or something like that) from Amazon, plugged it in and voila. It paid for itself a long time ago.

Life is too short to rent modems.
I second this recommendation. Your ISP should have a list on their website of approved & recommended modems. You should select one that is on the list of recommended modems because this means they have tested with it extensively.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by MikeZ » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:48 am

I bought a modem on sale for $50. Thought I was so smart to save the $5/month. Then six months latter it got hit by lightning and got fried. I had to go out that night to buy a new one (at full price) so my wife could work the next morning

Then a few months after that my cable company stopped charging for modem rental.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by health teacher » Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:01 am

On the topic of getting the same service and saving money, get insurance quotes for home and auto from other providers if you've been "loyal" to your current provider.

I'll save around $1600 this year because I made the switch a few months ago.

As for the the OP, I have an Arris Surfboard and it works fine!

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by sunny_socal » Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:16 am

Ditch it, just do it! I've never had one of the rental units or anything 'supplied' by the cable company, it's just another way to pull money out of your wallet.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by neilpilot » Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:22 am

sunny_socal wrote:Ditch it, just do it! I've never had one of the rental units or anything 'supplied' by the cable company, it's just another way to pull money out of your wallet.
I also have never had a rental modem or router, but a few years ago Comcast started to add a modem rental fee to my bill. When I told them I had my own modem, they had the nerve to ask me for the model and serial number of MY modem. I refused, and instead asked them for the same information for the modem that they said I was renting from them.

Of course, they couldn't give me that information since I didn't have their equipment. The rental charges were dropped.

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BrandonBogle
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by BrandonBogle » Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:27 am

Other than a one-year lease in an apartment about 8 years ago when TWC didn't charge a cable modem rental fee, I have always owned my cable, DSL, uverse, etc. modem.

The one thing I would say is to buy a modem new, not used, even if it is a few dollars more. I say this b/c if the old modem is still listed on the prior owners account, it can be difficult to get that changed ESPECIALLY if they have an outstanding balance. So b/c of the hassle, I would recommend just paying the few extra dollars and getting a decent one new (but on sale perhaps) versus a used one. You'll still come out ahead over paying the rental fee and avoid the potential for dealing with red tape trying to get the modem set up on your account.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by bottlecap » Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:58 am

Go to Costco and buy the motorola surfboard model they carry. $80. Done!

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by DSInvestor » Wed Feb 15, 2017 11:07 am

Amazon is selling the SB6141 for $67. Bestbuy sells it for $72.99 but they will price match Amazon's price. If you live near a best buy store, that's a good option if you want one today. On the bestbuy page, you can tell that the item is in stock at your local store if you see that it is available for pickup today.

The modem is easy to install but it does require that you contact your ISP to give them the particulars (MAC address) of your modem. When you return your rented modem, make sure you get a receipt for the return as I have heard that some cable companies may continue to bill you for the rental.
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MikeZ
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by MikeZ » Wed Feb 15, 2017 11:29 am

Modems show up on woot or deal sites like bensbargains for sub $50 sometimes.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by mptfan » Wed Feb 15, 2017 11:34 am

I have a related question...

I recently got Spectrum cable internet service at home (Spectrum purchased Brighthouse Networks last year). The technician who installed the service at my house provided a modem free of charge and I was told there was no charge for the modem, including no rental fee. The service works fine, and the modem is installed in my living room and connected to a WIFI router and most of my devices connect to the internet using the WIFI wireless router. So far so good, no issues. Here is my question...

I want to connect a computer in another room (a spare bedroom/office) using a wired connection with an ethernet cable connected directly to a cable modem and not using WIFI. There is a cable connection that runs to the bedroom/office from a splitter that splits off of the main cable where it comes in to the house, there are several cables that come from the splitter and go to several rooms, one of which is connected to the living room where the existing cable modem is connected, and another is connected to the bedroom/office where I want to set up my computer. My question is, can I purchase my own cable modem and connect the computer in the spare bedroom directly to the second modem? Are there any limits on how many cable modems can be used to connect to the internet from the same house? Thanks.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by chuckb84 » Wed Feb 15, 2017 11:51 am

DSInvestor wrote:Amazon is selling the SB6141 for $67. Bestbuy sells it for $72.99 but they will price match Amazon's price. If you live near a best buy store, that's a good option if you want one today. On the bestbuy page, you can tell that the item is in stock at your local store if you see that it is available for pickup today.

The modem is easy to install but it does require that you contact your ISP to give them the particulars (MAC address) of your modem. When you return your rented modem, make sure you get a receipt for the return as I have heard that some cable companies may continue to bill you for the rental.

I have the same one. Works perfectly. Most cable companies will have a list of approved cable "modems" (they aren't modems, but that's an aside on bad terminology). Just pick one they recommend. In truth, any "DOCSIS 3.0 compliant" modem should work fine. There is a pending DOCSIS 4.0 standard, but a 3.0 should work fine for quite a while.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Easy Rhino » Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:00 pm

Yeah just check your cable company for their requirements for whatever speed you are subscribed too. Probably DOCSIS 3.0 and a certain number of channels.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by catdude » Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:28 pm

just frank wrote:Before we restore BH credentials...did you buy router at list price, or get a refurb? :twisted:
I bought the router on sale at Office Max for $48 -- same price as Amazon. Will that suffice? :)
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by catdude » Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:34 pm

Thanks everyone for your input. I remember seeing a list of recommended modems on my cable company's website a couple weeks ago. I can't seem to find that page right now, but of course the modem I'm currently renting (the Arris DG860) was on that list. What I'll probably do is buy the DG860... I know that'll definitely work. Amazon has it for 80 bucks -- I'm gonna do a bit more shopping and see if I can find it for less elsewhere...
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by bardenay » Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:26 pm

If I may, I'd like to add an additional point of view to this discussion.

I work from home doing a type of work that requires a reliable Internet connection. For that reason I have a business grade Internet connection and I rent the modem from the cable company. Additionally, I have the modem installed on the inside wall opposite the outside cable company termination (demarc). This limits the amount of wiring to the cable company's modem.

The reason that I do this is because it makes the cable company 100% responsible for providing a live Ethernet port. If the modem goes out, they replace it. The amount of "inside wiring" is all of 4' of coax with no splitters. If there is ever an issue with connectivity, I plug a laptop into the modem and call Tech Support. There are no WiFi variables, "inside wiring" issues, etc. If my laptop can talk to the cable company's modem, but not get to the Internet, then it is on them to fix it. (Yes, I know there can be some other things going on. But it is a short list to trouble shoot with Tech Support. :happy )

In my case the cost of renting a modem from the cable company is really a type of insurance against downtime.

-Bardenay
Last edited by bardenay on Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by jrbdmb » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:01 pm

MikeZ wrote:I bought a modem on sale for $50. Thought I was so smart to save the $5/month. Then six months latter it got hit by lightning and got fried. I had to go out that night to buy a new one (at full price) so my wife could work the next morning

Then a few months after that my cable company stopped charging for modem rental.
Unfortunately very few of us will ever have that happy problem. In my neck of the woods (NJ) Comcast/Xfinity is charging $10 a month for their rental modem/router.

BTW 1: I would suggest the Arris 6141 or 6183 mentioned above, or the Netgear CM500 or CM600 modems. Something happened to my 6183 after about a year of use (frequent error / disconnects), which my new Netgear CM600 things are back to normal, and I'm still a bit ahead of the game.

BTW 2: Someone above suggested that any old DOCSIS 3.0 modem would do. I would advise against that because (1) your ISP is unlikely to provide much technical support if you are using a non-approved modem, and (2) firmware updates for cable modems are pushed out by the ISP, so a non-approved modem may never get important functional or security updates.

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Easy Rhino » Wed Feb 15, 2017 7:30 pm

i just noticed that this Asus model is on sale for the rest of the day at Amazon, the specs seems pretty good.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01M6 ... PDKIKX0DER

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by gunn_show » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:45 pm

DSInvestor wrote:
Angelus359 wrote:I have Arris/Motorola 6141. Works fine
I also have this modem on my 100Mbps download 10Mbps upload internet service with comcast. Works great.
+1 +1

Bought the 6141 off Amazon for $69.99. Paired it with the eero wifi system for 3 zones (2 story house, I work from home). I get 100mbps all day on Spectrum/TWC.
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Pajamas » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:57 pm

Before you actually buy a modem, call technical support at your ISP and confirm that it will work. Almost any current modem appropriate for your type of internet service should work, but they usually only list a couple on their website. Some companies supposedly have modems made specifically for them and will tell you that no other modem will work, but that is probably not true.

I bought a refurbished modem (probably not really refurbished in any way, just checked to make sure it worked and put in a brown box with a new user guide) and the ISP gave me a little hassle about that when I called to have it provisioned. They tend to hassle me about everything, though.

Oh, and don't feel too bad about renting yours for so long. My grandmother rented her telephones until the day she died, at which point two month's rental fee would have bought an equivalent, former Bell System company branded phone at any discount store, which I discussed with her several times. 8-)

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by kharpertsi » Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:01 pm

One more bit of advice -- save your receipt for your new modem. Every few years, Comcast tries to charge me for my modem as though I'm still renting it from them. I am not.

The last time, they got particularly aggressive and demanded I show proof that the modem belongs to me. So, I complained to the FCC, and Comcast fixed their problem...

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by blaugranamd » Thu Feb 16, 2017 12:03 am

https://www.amazon.com/TP-Link-DOCSIS-S ... B01CH8ZNJ0

Enjoy. I have this on TWC/Spectrum. Paying for 60/5, actually getting 70/6. Works great.
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by catdude » Thu Feb 16, 2017 12:33 am

blaugranamd wrote:https://www.amazon.com/TP-Link-DOCSIS-S ... B01CH8ZNJ0

Enjoy. I have this on TWC/Spectrum. Paying for 60/5, actually getting 70/6. Works great.
Thanks blaugranamd! That looks just dandy -- It's only 35 bucks, it's got good reviews, and it's Prime-eligible. I'm gonna call the cable company tomorrow and see if this modem is compatible with their service.
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by ShoogyBee » Thu Feb 16, 2017 12:45 am

I bought a Motorola (now Arris) 6141 a few years ago and I've had zero problems with it. Time Warner is my internet provider.

BTW I first tried the cheaper 6121 which worked for about ten days but then it would drop its connection every several minutes, even after rebooting it. Returned it and bought the 6141. Smooth sailing ever since.

...

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by 22twain » Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:02 am

mptfan wrote:the modem is installed in my living room and connected to a WIFI router and most of my devices connect to the internet using the WIFI wireless router. So far so good, no issues. Here is my question...

I want to connect a computer in another room (a spare bedroom/office) using a wired connection with an ethernet cable connected directly to a cable modem and not using WIFI. There is a cable connection that runs to the bedroom/office from a splitter that splits off of the main cable where it comes in to the house, there are several cables that come from the splitter and go to several rooms, one of which is connected to the living room where the existing cable modem is connected, and another is connected to the bedroom/office where I want to set up my computer.
Here's a possible solution that uses only your current modem.

First, if the modem has only one ethernet port, get a small ethernet switch. Move the modem and the WiFi adapter to the bedroom/office. Connect the computer and the WiFi adapter to the modem, via the switch if necessary.

Next, if the WiFi doesn't reach the rest of the house from the bedroom/office, get a pair of powerline network adapters. In the bedroom/office, replace the WiFi adapter with one powerline adapter. Put the other powerline adapter in the living room and connect the WiFi adapter to it.

I have a similar setup with a DSL modem instead of a cable modem. I also have my printer connected to the ethernet switch, and I can print via that connection from any device on the network, regardless of whether the device connects via WiFi or ethernet.

Alternatively, you can leave the modem and WiFi adapter where they are now, insert the ethernet switch, and use the powerline adapters to connect the computer to the network. The network speed to the computer will probably be slower than than a pure ethernet connection, but it may be fast enough for your purposes.
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by mptfan » Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:50 pm

22twain, thank you for your suggestions. Are you implying that using two cable modems (one in each room) is not an option?

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by 22twain » Thu Feb 16, 2017 7:19 pm

mptfan wrote:Are you implying that using two cable modems (one in each room) is not an option?
No. I was simply suggesting a second option. Compare the cost of a second cable modem with an ethernet switch ($10 for a 100mbps switch) and a pair of powerline adapters (about $40).

Now that I think of it, your cable company might charge a fee for connecting a second modem, even if it is technically possible. Maybe someone who has cable (I don't) can comment on this. It might depend on the company.
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CountryBoy
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by CountryBoy » Thu Feb 16, 2017 8:48 pm

I have Optimum/Cablevision box from Samsung for our WIFI television at $10/mo.

Does anyone know if Arris/Motorola 6141 will work with that? They say that I have to rent from them and I am told a chip somewhere will tell them if I am not using their box.

Any advice?

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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by DSInvestor » Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:21 pm

CountryBoy wrote:I have Optimum/Cablevision box from Samsung for our WIFI television at $10/mo.

Does anyone know if Arris/Motorola 6141 will work with that? They say that I have to rent from them and I am told a chip somewhere will tell them if I am not using their box.

Any advice?
That $10/month rental fee is probably for a cable TV receiver box or DVR cable box. The SB6141 is a cable modem which provides internet service. If your TV is compatible with CableCard, you can get a CableCard to plug into your your TV. According to Optimum Online TV, there is a $2/month rental fee for CableCard.

Using a CableCard with Optimum TV:
http://optimum.custhelp.com/app/answers ... optimum-tv

You should call Optimum to see what alternatives they have to avoid the $10/month fee.
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by richardglm » Thu Feb 16, 2017 10:45 pm

bardenay wrote:If I may, I'd like to add an additional point of view to this discussion.

I work from home doing a type of work that requires a reliable Internet connection. For that reason I have a business grade Internet connection and I rent the modem from the cable company. Additionally, I have the modem installed on the inside wall opposite the outside cable company termination (demarc). This limits the amount of wiring to the cable company's modem.

The reason that I do this is because it makes the cable company 100% responsible for providing a live Ethernet port. If the modem goes out, they replace it. The amount of "inside wiring" is all of 4' of coax with no splitters. If there is ever an issue with connectivity, I plug a laptop into the modem and call Tech Support. There are no WiFi variables, "inside wiring" issues, etc. If my laptop can talk to the cable company's modem, but not get to the Internet, then it is on them to fix it. (Yes, I know there can be some other things going on. But it is a short list to trouble shoot with Tech Support. :happy )

In my case the cost of renting a modem from the cable company is really a type of insurance against downtime.

-Bardenay
I see your point, but there is a critical part missing here. If you have a service level agreement (SLA) which sometimes exist for business ISPs but almost never for consumer/residential ISPs, then that is what contractually requires them to "fix it," fast, no matter what.

If you do not have a SLA then it does not matter whether you own the modem or rent. No connectivity with your rented modem? You'll be told the same thing as if you own, probably a service rep will come over in 2 days with a 4 hour window.

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bardenay
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by bardenay » Fri Feb 17, 2017 10:49 am

I see your point, but there is a critical part missing here. If you have a service level agreement (SLA) which sometimes exist for business ISPs but almost never for consumer/residential ISPs, then that is what contractually requires them to "fix it," fast, no matter what.
In my case there is a 4 hour SLA. The support crews are specific to the business side of the cable company. ie they are separate from the team that does residential support. Also, when they installed the service they ran a new line from the utility pole to the house because they didn't want to use the old residential cable line.

Angelus359
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by Angelus359 » Fri Feb 17, 2017 1:03 pm

just frank wrote:I googled around for 5 mins until I found a list of approved models for my carrier/region. And it was good.

Before we restore BH credentials...did you buy router at list price, or get a refurb? :twisted:

List on Amazon, on sale, with a 3% commission rebate, and 5% cashback.
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PFInterest
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by PFInterest » Fri Feb 17, 2017 1:07 pm


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catdude
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by catdude » Fri Feb 17, 2017 2:50 pm

Hi, OP here. I bought the TP-Link TC-7610 from Amazon yesterday; got it for $35. It's supposed to get here tomorrow. Before buying it I called the cable company's tech support and they told me it should work fine with their service. We shall see...
catdude | | All generalizations are false, including this one.

petiejoe
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by petiejoe » Fri Feb 17, 2017 3:38 pm

bardenay wrote:
I see your point, but there is a critical part missing here. If you have a service level agreement (SLA) which sometimes exist for business ISPs but almost never for consumer/residential ISPs, then that is what contractually requires them to "fix it," fast, no matter what.
In my case there is a 4 hour SLA. The support crews are specific to the business side of the cable company. ie they are separate from the team that does residential support. Also, when they installed the service they ran a new line from the utility pole to the house because they didn't want to use the old residential cable line.
It's not just about the SLA, it's about their willingness to own the problem. My advice to the OP would be to ask how reliable their internet has been and how much they trust their ISP. If they've had reliable internet and a friendly ISP, go out and buy a modem to save the money. However, if they've had frequent outages or they've noticed that their ISP likes to "accidentally" bill them extra for things, buying a modem is a great way to rack up service fees. I had comcast/xfinity for years and paid for the modem rental because I had prior experience with them blaming the modem for problems on their end. As long as I rented from them, they never suggested that it was a problem with the modem. It's a racket, but if you require reliable internet (e.g. for work), it's easier to pay than to convince a tier-1 support rep that there's not a problem with your modem.

an_asker
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by an_asker » Fri Feb 17, 2017 3:53 pm

catdude wrote:I have a confession to make... and this may result in my Boglehead credentials being revoked. The ugly truth is that I've been spending 8 bucks a month to rent a modem from the local cable company. This has been going on for the past 3.5 years. :oops:
[...]
I still have my credentials though we rented our modem as well, for nearly two years after they imposed their rental fee, albeit lower than yours, at $4/month. :oops: I roped in resident tech expert aka DS to do the needful, which involved calling the company to find out compatible brands, then connecting some wires together.

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catdude
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Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

Post by catdude » Fri Feb 17, 2017 7:06 pm

petiejoe wrote:It's not just about the SLA, it's about their willingness to own the problem. My advice to the OP would be to ask how reliable their internet has been and how much they trust their ISP. If they've had reliable internet and a friendly ISP, go out and buy a modem to save the money. However, if they've had frequent outages or they've noticed that their ISP likes to "accidentally" bill them extra for things, buying a modem is a great way to rack up service fees. I had comcast/xfinity for years and paid for the modem rental because I had prior experience with them blaming the modem for problems on their end. As long as I rented from them, they never suggested that it was a problem with the modem. It's a racket, but if you require reliable internet (e.g. for work), it's easier to pay than to convince a tier-1 support rep that there's not a problem with your modem.
My ISP has been quite reliable over the years... Whatever outages that have occurred, have been fairly brief. And their customer service seems to be pretty good -- no long wait times on the phone. I guess if I had a major complaint, it would be that their service seems expensive to me. But I'm in the process of fixing that. I bought an indoor OTA antenna for the broadcast TV channels, and it works great. Next I'm gonna get a Roku box and stream PlayStation Vue or Sling. Once that's in place I'll drop their TV service and just keep the internet service.
catdude | | All generalizations are false, including this one.

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