Modems vs. Routers, What’s the Difference?

Many homes use both a router and a modem, but what is the difference between them? A modem is used to provide access to the internet service provider (ISP) you selected. It converts radio waves into an analog signal transmitted over phone lines or another type of line. On the other hand, a router is used to connect two or more computers to the Internet, which is why it’s so often referred to as a ‘smart’ router. 

Differences Between Modems and Routers

1. Cost
Modems can cost anywhere from $30 to $100, while routers can cost anywhere from $40 to $250. The cost of the modem is usually associated with the speed that it can deliver.

2. Compatibility
Modems and routers are typically compatible with a lot of different types of networks. Most routers can be used with up to 3 or 4 computers. Modems have a limited number of connections, usually only one. 

3. Speed
Routers always allow for increased performance since most of them have at least 4 connections. Some of them can even be configured to support as many as 8. Modems, on the other hand, often limit you to speeds that are around 56k. 

Modem vs. Router; Which one should you prefer? 

There is no clear-cut answer to this question. If you’d like more than one computer to be able to access the Internet at the same time, you may want to consider purchasing a router. However, if you’re looking for an inexpensive way to access the internet, you may want to go with a modem.

Top Brands for Modems and Routers

1. Netgear Nighthawk X4S Smart WiFi Router
This is a dual-band router, which can transmit on both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands. It has four Gigabit Ethernet ports and two USB ports for connecting external drives or printers. Six antennas give this router range and signal strength in challenging environments.

2. TP-Link Archer C9 AC1900 Wireless Dual Band Router
This router can be used for wireless connections in homes that contain multiple floors. It has three Ethernet ports and an additional USB port, connecting it to your printer or other devices. It also has a QoS feature that marks packets as data as they move through the router.

3. Asus RT-AC86U Dual bands Gigabit Wi-Fi Router
This router has eight antennas, which give it a better range for high-speed wireless connections. It also has two USB ports and four USB Typ A ports, allowing it to connect tablets or smartphones. The Asus RT-AC86U can be used with a wide variety of devices.

4. NetGear Cable Modem CM-600
This modem is compatible with a wide variety of ISPs. It gives you an Ethernet port so you can have a wired connection to the modem. There’s also a USB port for connecting to printers or other devices. This modem supports download speeds of up to 343 Mbps and upload speeds of 131 Mbps.

5. Arris Surfboard SB6190 Cable Modem
This modem connects to both cable lines, allowing you to share the connection with multiple computers. It comes with an Ethernet connection and an additional USB port for connecting devices like printers or memory sticks. It also has two coax connections, which can be used for cable connections.

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A modem is great for people who already have a wired Internet connection at their house. However, adding a router to your setup is a good way to increase the range and speed of your wireless network. Smart routers can be used in a wide variety of situations, from gamers who want to use theirs for online gaming to people with large families who want more than one person to access the Internet simultaneously.