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Stop leasing that cable modem
Posted on 01-21-2012 19:38:04 UTC | Updated on 01-21-2012 20:38:19 UTC
Section: /hardware/modem/ | Permanent Link

The bill

I got my Comcast bill again (they keep sending those things) and saw my charge for leasing my cable modem was now $7. The last time I remember looking it was $5 (close to as bad). I could not believe I was spending $84/yr to lease a cable modem. I had looked years ago at cable modems and remembered the price being close to $100. I seemed to have bad luck with them in the past and would have one or two go wonky on me at least once a year.

Leasing a modem

Since I would loose about 1 modem a year I could just have it replaced because of the lease. I figured at around $100 a pop it was worth it. If I ever upgraded my service to a faster speed and needed a DOCIS 3.0 modem it would be the same amount of money. Right now I have a plan that is well within DOCIS 2.0 speeds. For those that don't know DOCSIS 2.0 speeds are 42.88 Mbit/s down and 30.72 Mbit/s up for one channel. DOCSIS 2.0 has a maximum of 1 channel.

Buying a modem

I decided to do some research on modem prices. First I looked at DOCSIS 3.0 modems. The DOCSIS 3.0 modems are in the $75 and up range. For this price if you fry a modem a year it might be worth leasing. My internet speed plan with Comcast did not need DOCSIS 3.0 speeds so my next search was for DOCSIS 2.0 modems. I was hoping that DOCSIS 2.0 would be the older tech and that the price would have dropped by now. After searching Amazon for DOCSIS 2.0 modems let me tell you the price has really dropped. I found tons of slightly used DOCSIS 2.0 modems for $10-$20. $10-$20!! Are you kidding? I could buy 3 of these modems and it would still be saving money over leasing a modem. Hell, I could do that each year and it would still be less than leasing a modem. I looked on Comcasts approved cable modem page to ensure compatibility with their equipment, and bought one of these Comcast blessed modems (Webstar DPC2100) for $17 on Amazon.

Up and rocking

The modem came in a plain Amazon box with just the modem, power adapter, and a Cat-5 cable. I unhooked the old modem and plugged in the new modem. Then made the call to 1-800-COM-CAST, and gave the nice lady my MAC address off the cable modem. She put it in and just like that I was back on the interwebs. It has been a week with no problems. Speed tests confirm that this modem and the old modem are the same. Why did I not do this sooner? Ugh! Do yourself a favor and get a cheap used cable modem and stop paying for the leased one.

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