Should you buy or rent your modem? It’s a question as old as the internet. Mediacom will rent you a modem for $11.50/mo.*, but you can also buy one on your own for around $50 to $100. Add that up over a few years, and you can easily save hundreds on your internet bill.
Unfortunately, whether you’re new to Mediacom’s internet plans or you’re a longtime customer, purchasing your own modem can be a confusing process. When you rent, a Mediacom technician makes sure you have compatible equipment; when you buy your own, the onus is on you. In this guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know to make the right decision and find a Mediacom-compatible modem.
*Pricing per month plus taxes for length of contract. Additional fees and terms may apply. Pricing varies by location and availability. All prices subject to change at any time. May or may not be available based on service address. Speeds may vary. As of 06/10/19
Top 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. The key 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 a few options that are compatible with Mediacom’s service.
1. ARRIS SB8200 Modem – $$$$
This is the gold standard of modems, and it’s also one of the most expensive on our lists. That’s because it meets DOCSIS 3.1 standards, the latest industry requirements for high-speed internet. This means it will not only work with your current setup, but it’s also equipped for major upgrades to your internet speeds in the future. The ARRIS SB8200 can handle speeds up to 10 Gbps — five times faster than the fastest home internet currently offered (2 Gbps, available from Xfinity in select areas).
Needless to say, this modem is fast enough for every internet plan that Mediacom has, including its top tier 1 Gig option. Customers who bought the ARRIS SB8200 have largely been satisfied; it’s earned scores of four or higher out of five on both Amazon and Best Buy.
2. ARRIS SB6190 Modem – $$$
ARRIS’s SB6190 modem is a nice middle ground for customers who pay for one of Mediacom’s top plans, but don’t necessarily need the best-in-class capabilities of the SB8200. The SB6190 is only certified for DOCSIS 3.0 standards, so it’s not as up-to-date as the SB8200. That said, it’s still fast enough for all of Mediacom’s internet plans, capable of handling speeds up to 1.4 Gbps.
The modem earned high marks from customers for its easy installation and steady signal performance. If you’re looking for a high-speed modem, but don’t want to spend more than $100, the SB6190 is a solid choice.
3. Zoom Telephonics MB7220 – $$
If you’re looking for a more reasonably-priced modem that doesn’t need to reach the blazing speeds of the top two picks, the Zoom Telephonics MB7220 is a solid choice. It advertises up to 343 Mbps download speeds, but Mediacom recommends it for plans in the 60-200 Mbps range.
Customer reviews on Amazon note that the MB7220 was simple to set up and immediately improved internet speeds in many cases. If you plan on upgrading to a faster internet plan in the future, it might be worth opting for one of the top options. But for most houses, the MB7420 will do just fine.
A complete list of modems compatible with Mediacom
The modems listed above are great choices that work with all of Mediacom’s plans, but you have plenty of options if you’d rather shop around. Here’s a complete list of Mediacom-compatible modems that have been tested and proven capable of meeting the speeds they advertise.
|Model name||Max download speeds (Mbps)||Cost
|Zoom Telephonics MB7220||343||$
|Zoom Telephonics MB7420||686||$$
|Zoom Telephonics MB8600||6,000||$$$$
If you decide to purchase your own modem instead of renting one from Mediacom, you’ll still need to buy a wireless router. Fortunately, you’ll have a lot more choice in your router. Just make sure it still meets the maximum speeds that you’re getting with your internet plan.
For more information on getting the most out of your internet, check out our modem and router guide on maximizing your Wi-Fi at home.