Spectrum cable internet, owned by Charter, is the fourth-largest cable internet provider in the United States. Charter had purchased Time Warner Cable and Bright House in 2015 and is now offered under the Spectrum brand.
If you are a Spectrum subscriber, you might be renting your cable modem from them directly. When you decide to buy a modem instead, you will need to make sure that your modem has come from a list of Spectrum approved modems.
Buying your own Spectrum compatible modem is not always as straightforward as you might hope, however. First you need to know what you are looking for.
Owning vs Renting A Cable Modem For Charter Spectrum
If you are still using a modem from Spectrum, it is time to buy your own. The WiFi fee to use a Spectrum modem is $5 a month, which is $60 a year. Unless you are planning on moving soon, buying a modem will save you money in the long run.
Additionally, being able to choose the type of modem you have will give you more freedom to find the right one to meet your needs. You will be able to find a more diverse and powerful speed ability and will have more control over your modem, making it more secure.
Modem vs Modem Router Combo For Spectrum
When it comes to buying your own Spectrum compatible modem, you will be faced with the decision about whether you need a modem or a modem router combo. A modem is what connects to your cable port and then directly to a computer or television. A combo will include a router, allowing WiFi.
A Modem Router Combo Is The Better Choice, Because:
- Takes up less space than a separated modem and router
- Fewer wires means a stronger transmission
- Save you money on buying a separate router and modem
- Much easier to set up
While a separate modem can have its software updated easier than the combo, the combo is still the better choice.
How To Set Up Charter Spectrum Modem (Router)
Once you have purchased your Charter Spectrum modem combo, it is time to set it up.
Step 1: Plug in the modem. This means connect it to the power outlet as well as the cable port that is in your wall. You need a coax cable to plug it into the cable outlet.
Step 2: Connect one end of the Ethernet cable into the modem and the other into your computer.
Step 3: Login to your modem through your computer and finish setting it up. There should be a setup wizard available as well, allowing you to customize your modem as you see fit.
3 Best Spectrum Approved Modems For 2019
1. Motorola MG7550
2. Netgear C7000
3. TP-Link 7610
Budget Friendly (Modem Only)
1. Motorola MG7550 AC1900 Dual Band
Best Spectrum Compatible Modem (Editor's Choice)
The Editor’s choice for the best Spectrum approved cable modem is the Motorola MG7550. This is a dual band modem with a built-in router to handle your WiFi. It also has Power Boost, which adds high-performance WiFi- power amplifiers to boost the WiFi signal the best speed and range possible.
The dual band means it offers both the 2.4GHz and 5GHZ bands to choose from, letting you select the right band for your devices. With four 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, you will have the ability to supply wired connections to your computers, game systems, and HDTVs as much as you need to.
Having the router within the modem will give you a more streamlined connection, reducing the potential for interruption while ensuring that it does not take up much space. The modem is also made to not take up much room, with a vertical, antenna-free design.
2. Netgear Nighthawk C7000 DOCSIS 3.0
High Performance Spectrum Approved Modem
For a high performance Spectrum approved modem, you should go with the Netgear Nighthawk C7000 DOCSIS 3.0.This is also a dual band modem, allowing you to choose from either the 2.4GHz or 5 GHz bands. Complete with four Gigabit Ethernet ports, this modem also has a 1.6GHz processor to boost performance, and is compatible with Spectrum internet as well as other providers. This is another combo modem, meaning the router is built into the modem, allowing you to take up as little space as possible while keeping a clear connection.
This modem is a great choice if you need high performance for streaming and gaming, including 4K HD videos. The DOCSIS 3.0 has fast download speeds, making it great for online gaming. DOCSIS 3.0 is up to 8 times faster than 2.0. The 24x8 channel bonding, making it approved for plans up to 500 Mbps with theoretical modem speeds of 960 Mbps.
3. TP-Link TC-7610 DOCSIS 3.0
Budget Friendly Spectrum Compatible Modem
If you are looking for a more budget friendly option for Spectrum cable internet, the TP-Link TC-7610 is a good option. It is compatible with cable internet plans up to 150 Mbps. It also has an easy setup, meaning it is a plug and play kind of modem, making it a great choice for the less tech savvy users.
The TC-7610 has 8 download and 4 upload bonded channels, which are capable of up to 343 Mbps download and 143 Mbps upload speeds. This is a DOCSIS 3.0 modem, which means it can keep up with other high speed modems that are higher priced.
The biggest downside to the TC-7610 is that this is only a modem, with no router included. If you would like to extend your network or include wireless devices, you will need to purchase a compatible router separately. Despite the lack of router, this modem is compatible with Charter, and most other major ISPs.
Spectrum Approved Modems 2019 List
|Brand||Model #||Channels||Max Speed|
|NETGEAR||N450 (CG3000Dv2)||8×4||340 Mbps|
|SMC Networks||D3CM1604||16×4||640 Mbps|
|TP-Link||ARCHER CR500||16×4||680 Mbps|
|TP-Link||ARCHER CR700||16×4||680 Mbps|