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Netgear Introduces Its First DOCSIS 3.1 Cable Modem Router

Julio Urquidi

News Editor
The C7800 Nighthawk X4S DOCSIS 3.1 Ultra-High Speed Cable Modem Router combines a DOCSIS 3.1 cable modem and AC3200 Wi-Fi router.

The DOCSIS 3.1 cable modem supports two upstream and two downstream OFDM channels and 32x8 channel bonding for DOCSIS 3.0 speed tiers to provision the Gigabit services currently being rolled out by cable internet service providers.

This Nighthawk X4S, not to be confused with the R7800 AC2600 class router with the same name, also includes a dual-band 4x4 AC3200 wireless router supporting maximum link rates of 1 Gbps in 2.4 GHz and 2.2 Gbps in 5 GHz, two USB 3.0 ports and four GbE LAN ports.

Other features include a 1.5 Ghz dual core CPU, Netgear ReadyShare for connecting USB storage devices for sharing and backup and Netgear Genie for simplified installation.

The Netgear Nighthawk X4S is available now and has a retail price of $399.99.


Very Senior Member
Netgear is slow to release firmware updates.

I'm not sure I would want a combo device stuck on old firmware.


Part of the Furniture
Netgear is slow to release firmware updates.

I'm not sure I would want a combo device stuck on old firmware.
It depends on the Netgear product. They're still releasing firmware updates for the R7000, which is going on 4 years old now. Fairly frequent updates for the Orbi and R7800 as well, but they're more current products. What that says to me is that you'll get updates as long as you pick a product that isn't going to be orphaned, but just about all the router companies will abandon the odd product that doesn't work out, unfortunately.

One is also very likely to find third-party firmware for Netgear products, partly because Netgear releases a lot of their source (GPL stuff). R7000 has several third-party firmware streams, the R7800 has at least a couple. I don't know if the Orbi will, it's a special kind of "system" product, and Netgear is putting out frequent enough firmware updates that fixes security vulnerabilities and bugs that I'm okay with that.


Part of the Furniture
I've heard that DOCSIS 3.1 has some built-in fixes for bufferbloat, so I'm interested in DOCSIS 3.1 modems. Don't like combo devices, so I wouldn't be likely to go for this one, but I'm glad that we're starting to see DOCSIS 3.1 products. Don't know when Comcast will start to support those 3.1 features here in River City, though. That remains to be seen.


New Around Here
Interested in DOCSIS 3.1 since Comcast says gigabit internet will go live here (Delaware) on August 19. However, I don't like combo devices since, if one goes bad, you have to replace the entire unit. Also, you can upgrade each individual device as technology advances (they don't advance at the same pace/time). I bought my DOCSIS 3.0 modem about 3-4 years ago instead of leasing so it has paid itself off many times over. I have been through 2 routers in the meantime.

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