gaming modem

A modem for gaming is an essential component in your gaming tech arsenal. If you enjoy gaming, investing in a high-quality modem that delivers a fast and steady connection will help ensure smoother gameplay and prevent frustrating issues like lag and lost connections.

Our expert reviewed dozens of modems for gaming to identify the best of the best, based on factors including speed, coverage, value for money, and customer feedback. After careful consideration, they selected the NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem CM1200 as their top pick among the gaming modems they looked at. It stood out during the course of their research thanks to its high-speed performance, versatile connections, and compatibility with major cable internet providers.

Best Overall

NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem CM1200

A speedy modem for gaming that’s compatible with all major cable internet providers.
Our Expert’s Top 5 Modems for Gaming

Here are the top picks from our expert. Compare the ratings and features of different models.

Editor’s PicksBrandRatingInternet Plan SpeedDOCSIS VersionVoltageWeight
Best OverallNETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem CM12004.4Up to 2Gbps3.1100240 Volts2.25 pounds
Best Budget BuyNETGEAR Cable Modem CM7004.4Up to 500Mbps3.0100240 Volts3.53 ounces
Best Cable ModemARRIS SURFboard SB82004.5Up to 2Gbps3.1100240 Volts1.65 pounds
Best Modem and Router ComboNETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem Wi-Fi Router Combo C7100V4.3Up to 400 Mbps3.0120240 Volts4.71 pounds
Best for Gaming and StreamingMotorola MB8611 Cable Modem4.6Up to 1Gbps3.1100240 Volts1.1 ounces

*Ratings are on a scale of 1 to 5 and based on reviews, feedback, and opinions of actual customers

Who Should Buy a Modem for Gaming

  • Serious gamers – If you spend a lot of time playing video games, it’s worth investing in a modem for gaming that will help ensure smoother gameplay.
  • Anyone who wants to ensure a fast and steady internet connection – Modems for gaming are an excellent choice if a fast and steady internet connection is a must for you.
  • People who stream HD video – Since modems for gaming are designed to deliver a speedy and reliable connection, they are ideal for people who stream a lot of HD video.

Who Should Not Buy a Modem for Gaming

  • People who rarely or never play video games – If you’re not much of a gamer, a standard modem that delivers regular speeds may be adequate for your needs.
  • People who don’t need a fast internet connection – If you use your computer or other devices for light tasks like web browsing and listening to music, a modem for gaming is not necessary.

Research Tips from an Expert

As an expert, I often get asked how to choose a good modem for gaming. Here are some tips and best practices to consider when purchasing a gaming modem that will meet your specific needs. Make sure to do adequate research on the product you are considering purchasing to look for key features such as speed and performance. It’s also a good idea to ask friends and family who enjoy gaming if they have any recommendations.

  1. Check the maximum speed rating – It’s important to check the maximum speed rating of a gaming modem before making a buying decision. Choose a modem with a network speed of at least 300 Mbps.1 High-end modems for gaming will offer maximum speed ratings of 2 Gbps+.
  2. Ensure compatibility – When choosing a modem for gaming, make sure it’s compatible with your ISP, gaming rig, and equipment. This information should be provided in the manufacturer’s product description.
  3. Consider a modem and router combo – If you don’t already have a router, it’s worth considering a modem and router combo. However, dedicated modems for gaming often offer more advanced features.
  4. Get the right DOCSIS version – Modems for gaming offer different DOCSIS versions. DOCSIS 3.1 is recommended by many experts as it offers excellent network performance and stability.2

How Much Do They Cost?

Between $100 and $300

For most modems for gaming, you can expect to pay between $100 and $300 and still get a high-quality product. At the lower end of this price range, you’ll get a reliable cable modem that can handle speeds of around 500 Mbps. Expect to pay more for modems with higher speed ratings, modem and routers combos, and modems with a wider range of features.

Our Methodology: Why Trust Tech Pro Daily

As a technology expert familiar with devices like modems for gaming, I know that it’s important to choose a high-quality product that will perform well. The choices listed were selected based on factors including their speed, compatibility, and overall performance. You want a modem for gaming that will deliver smooth and steady gameplay, and I’m confident you’ll be happy with these models.

The Best Modems for Gaming: Full Reviews

Best Overall

NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem CM1200

A speedy modem for gaming that’s compatible with all major cable internet providers.

The NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem CM1200 is our top pick of the modems for gaming we looked at. The feature-rich modem supports cable internet plans with speeds up to 2 Gbps. This ensures ultra-reliable internet speed for heavy-duty 4K HD streaming, multi-player gaming, and more.

This modem works with any WiFi router and is compatible with all major cable internet providers. It also features the latest DOCSIS 3.1 modem technology and comes complete with 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports. Overall, this modem is an excellent choice for anyone who needs a reliable, high-speed modem for gaming or HD streaming.

  • Compatible with all major cable internet providers
  • Works with any WiFi router
  • Versatile connections
  • Tech support could be improved
  • Can be challenging to set up
Best Budget Buy

NETGEAR Cable Modem CM700

This affordable modem for gaming will save you monthly rental fees.

If you’re looking for an affordable modem for gaming that will save you monthly modem rental fees, check out the NETGEAR Cable Modem CM700. It’s best for cable provider plans up to 500 Mbps in speed and is compatible with all major cable internet providers.

Other key features of this easy-to-use modem include 1 Gigabit Ethernet port and DOCSIS 3.0 modem technology. Many reviewers say the modem is fast, reliable, and easy to set up.

  • Compatible with all major cable internet providers
  • Easy 5-minute setup
  • Works with any WiFi router
  • Not as fast as some other modems for gaming
  • Tech support could be better
Best Cable Modem

ARRIS SURFboard SB8200

A powerful cable modem that harnesses the newest and fastest technology.

The ARRIS SURFboard SB8200 is a great option for serious gamers. It is approved for cable internet speed plans up to 2 Gbps, features DOCSIS 3.1 modem technology, and is compatible with major U.S. cable internet providers including Cox, Spectrum, Xfinity, and others.

The modem is easy to set up and use, so your network will be up and running in no time. Reviewers are impressed with the speed, performance, and affordability of this product.

  • DOCSIS 3.1 modem technology
  • Supports cable internet plans with speeds up to 2Gbps
  • Compatible with major U.S. cable internet providers
  • Not compatible with some cable internet providers
  • Support could be improved
Best Modem and Router Combo

NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem Wi-Fi Router Combo C7100V

A versatile modem and router combo that’s built for serious speed.

If you’re looking for a fast and dependable modem and router combo for gaming, look no further than the NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem Wi-Fi Router Combo C7100V. This model is designed for fast WiFi performance and excellent coverage. Key features include 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports, 24×8 channel bonding and DOCSIS 3.0, and voice phone support.

The modem and router combo is certified by Comcast for Xfinity. It is not compatible with Verizon, AT&T, CenturyLink, DSL providers, DirecTV, DISH, and non-Xfinity voice services.

  • Offers fast WiFi performance
  • Up to 1800 sq ft of wireless coverage
  • Voice phone support
  • Only compatible with Xfinity by Comcast
  • Confusing setup
Best for Gaming and Streaming

Motorola MB8611 Cable Modem

This fast, easy-to-use modem is ideal for gaming and streaming HD video.

If you’re looking for a simple modem that’s built for gaming and HD streaming, check out the Motorola MB8611 Cable Modem. It works with Comcast Xfinity, Comcast Business, Cox Communications, Charter Spectrum, and other U.S. service providers to deliver speedy WiFi performance.

The modem features the latest DOCSIS 3.1 modem technology and active queue management to reduce internet latency. It is suitable for internet speed plans up to 1 Gbps. Reviewers say this product is fast and easy to use.

  • Ideal for gaming and streaming
  • DOCSIS 3.1 modem technology
  • Compatible with most cable internet providers
  • Inconsistent performance with some providers
  • Can disconnect unexpectedly

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need both a modem and a router?

In most cases, you will need both a modem and a router, since a modem can only connect to one device at a time. If you want a device that will do the job of both, consider a modem and router combo.

Does a better modem increase internet speed?

Yes. A high-quality modem can offer faster, more reliable WiFi. However, it’s important to remember that your internet service also affects the speed of your connection.3

Does a modem affect gaming?

Yes. If you want to ensure smooth and steady gameplay, it’s important to invest in a modem that utilizes modern technology and has an adequate maximum speed rating.

Is a modem and router combo faster?

Modem and router combos are no faster than separate modems and routers. In fact, separate modems and routers tend to be faster as they utilize the latest technology and have more advanced features.


Article Sources

Tech Pro Daily uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

  1. Xfinity. What is a Good Internet Speed for Gaming? Published July 26, 2021. Accessed August 9, 2021.
  2. White G. How DOCSIS 3.1 Reduces Latency with Active Queue Management. Published June 6, 2014. Accessed August 9, 2021.
  3. Xfinity. How Fast is My Internet? Kbps vs Mbps? Internet Speeds Explained. Accessed August 12, 2021.