What’s the right Mediacom-compatible modem for you?

Joe Supan

May 8, 2024 — 4 min read

Buying your own modem could save you hundreds of dollars every year. Learn more about which models are compatible with Mediacom.

Should you buy or rent your modem? It’s a question as old as the internet. Mediacom will rent you a modem for $13.00/mo., but you can also buy one on your own for around the same price as a year’s worth of rental payments. Add that up over a few years, and you can easily save hundreds on your internet bill.

Whether you’re new to Mediacom internet plans or a longtime customer, purchasing your own modem can be a confusing process. When you rent, a Mediacom technician makes sure you have compatible equipment. You’re responsible for your modem and router repair and operation when you buy your own. We’ll walk you through everything you need to know to make the right decision and find a Mediacom-compatible modem.

The 2 best Mediacom-compatible modems

Before choosing the correct modem for your internet, you’ll need to know what kind of download speeds you’re getting. (If you’re unsure, you can use our speed test here.)

While you can purchase a modem capable of handling higher speeds than your plan’s getting, they’re usually more expensive. But even more important is to make sure you’re not getting a modem that tops out at speeds lower than the internet plan you’re paying for.

Here are two options that are compatible with Mediacom’s service.

Best for top speeds: ARRIS SB8200

Best for the money: Arris CM8200A

 Best for top speeds: ARRIS SB8200

Arris SURFboard SB8200 cable modem

This is the gold standard of modems, and it’s also one of the most expensive on our lists. That’s because it meets DOCSIS 3.1 standards, the latest industry requirements for high-speed internet. This means it will not only work with your current setup, but it’s also equipped for major upgrades to your internet speeds in the future. The ARRIS SB8200 can handle speeds up to 10 Gbps — faster than the fastest home internet currently offered by any top ISP (6 Gbps, available from Xfinity in select areas).

Needless to say, this modem is fast enough for every internet plan that Mediacom has, including its top-tier gig option. Customers who bought the ARRIS SB8200 have largely been satisfied; it’s earned scores of four or higher out of five stars on both Amazon and Best Buy.

Best for the money: Arris CM8200A

Arris modem CM8200A

If you’re looking for a more reasonably-priced modem that doesn’t need to reach the blazing speeds of the top two picks, a renewed Arris CM8200A is a great option. It advertises up to 2.5 Gbps download speeds and Mediacom recommends it for its plans up to 1 gig.

Customer reviews on Amazon noted that they needed some tech help to set it up, but overall it performed better than their older rental modem.

A complete list of modems compatible with Mediacom

The modems listed above are great choices for Mediacom plans, but you have plenty of options if you’d rather shop around. Here’s a complete list of Mediacom-compatible modems that have been tested and proven capable of meeting the speeds they advertise.

How to pick the best modem for Mediacom

To ensure your chosen Mediacom internet plan performs at its highest potential, Mediacom suggests a DOCSIS 3.1-certified modem.

If you decide not to use one of the recommended Mediacom modems listed here, Mediacom says, “You should ensure that it is an appropriate modem for your Internet Service Plan or downgrade your Internet plan accordingly so that you are not paying for capacity that you cannot use.”

Pros and cons of renting or purchasing a Mediacom modem

Pros and cons of renting a modem

  • Mediacom will service your rented modem.

  • Your rented modem will be compatible with your Mediacom plan.

  • You will have a fee due each month for a modem rental.

  • You don’t get to pick your own modem.

Pros and cons of buying a modem

  • Buying a modem allows you to pick a model that you want.

  • Buying a modem will require a large upfront cost.

  • You are responsible for any maintenance on your purchased modem.

Mediacom’s equipment rental policy

Renting a Mediacom modem will run about $13/mo. Mediacom’s rental policy states, “If Mediacom does not supply necessary equipment, you are responsible for obtaining it at your own cost. If you decide to obtain Purchased Equipment, you agree to pay Mediacom for the amount as disclosed to you by Mediacom at the time and in the manner established by Mediacom.”

Remember to return all rented equipment to Mediacom for any deposit return or to ensure you don’t incur more charges.

Deciding on the right Mediacom router

If you decide to purchase your own modem instead of renting one from Mediacom, you’ll still need to buy a Wi-Fi router to connect your devices. Fortunately, you’ll shop a lot more router options. Just make sure they still meet the maximum speeds you’re getting with your Mediacom internet plan.

Mediacom also has a list of modems issued by Mediacom for phone service: HERE 

For more information on getting the most out of your internet, check out our Resource Center for more tips and tricks.

Mediacom modem rental FAQs

What routers are compatible with Mediacom?

There are several ARRIS brand routers that work with Mediacom.

A rental modem will run you $14/mo. from Mediacom, which is about industry standard.

Allconnect: Let us compare providers for you

Why should you choose Allconnect? We’re the #1 broadband marketplace in the U.S, meaning you can trust us to search, compare and order internet and TV service for your home.

Get started
Illustration of a father and daughter in a living room. The father is sitting in an armchair and reading a newspaper, and the daughter is playing with a toy on the floor.
Joe Supan

Written by:

Joe Supan

Principal Writer, Broadband Content

Joe is a senior writer for CNET covering home technology and broadband. Prior to joining CNET, Joe led MYMOVE’s moving coverage and reported on broadband policy, the digital divide, and privacy issues for the br… Read more

Robin Layton

Edited by:

Robin Layton

Editor, Broadband Content

Read bio