cable modem - pros and cons of renting vs owning.

1)from your experience, what do you see as potential pros/cons of owning vs renting the modem from the cable provider?
2)if renting, do you try to ask for specific modem (based on research) or does it not really matter which modem is availed to you?
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25112Asked:
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Tony GiangrecoCommented:
Find one that provides the features and security you want. this eliminates the monthly rental fee but also puts the responsibility of maintenance on you.

If you are good with routers, there should not be a problem.

What ISP and state are you in?  We use Comcast and I'm considering installing my own also.
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Matt KmetyEnterprise Application AdministratorCommented:
I think it all depends on what you are trying to do with your home network.

Pros of owning: You can customize anything you want on the modem. Firmware, settings, etc. You also get to choose the modem that you want.

Cons of owning: You have to pay for the modem up front. If something happens to the modem (frys from a storm, goes bad, etc) you have to pay for a new one. You also have to contact your ISP and register the modem with them. In most cases, it won't work right out of the box.

Pros of renting: If something goes wrong, your ISP will typically send you a new one free of charge.

Cons of renting: You have to pay a fee to use it. At $5 (varies) a month, you can own your own cable modem within a year. Not all of the settings are always available for you to toggle and change. Some ISPS also make you log in through their portal which can get annoying.

Overall, I typically just buy my own and register it with my ISP. If they last for over a year (and they always have in my case) I feel that I am at least breaking even.
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Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
I'm on Comcast with one of their modems.  They have been updating their modem software/firmware fairly frequently which they won't do if it's not their modem.  They seem to do updates in the middle of the night when I'm trying to do something.
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Tony GiangrecoCommented:
I service many small commercial locations in the Chicago area and Comcast has been a problem. I discussed it with one of their techs. He told me all the modems he gets are refurbished. Apparently, Comcast has billions of them and they just rebuild them and reuse as needed.

I have one location that averages two or three Comcast Internet outages a year. It's on an APC750 battery backup with surge protection and the coax connection goes through the APC also.  The frequency of this problem is unusual, but reality for this one client.  They have the Comcast support number memorized.

This is just one of the reasons why I'm leaning toward installing my own. At least it won't be a refurbished unit.
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25112Author Commented:
Ah.. thanks for the input.. seems like many are on Comcast.. this is also comcast.. (northeast)

they have given TC8305C. how would I know if it is refurbished? apart from refurbished, would you see this modem as lower end or not necessarily. ( I assume you can't ask them what modem you want or prefer?)

if you want to buy your own, does it make a difference in quality of connection (durability/reliability) of connection, if you get a better than average or more costly (Good) device?
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Tony GiangrecoCommented:
The refurbished units look new. No way to tell if it's refurbished without asking the tech.

I'm plan to replace my rented router with my own when i have s chance.
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Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
Here is a list of the Comcast approved devices along with some of the features:  http://mydeviceinfo.comcast.net/
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Dr. KlahnPrincipal Software EngineerCommented:
Charter forbids the use of customer-owned modems, so if you're in an area exclusively served by Charter, customer-provided equipment is not an option.

If your provider allows you to provide your own modem, it's a good option because they're readily available on ebay and it generally pays for itself in less than a year.

One major downside is that if there is any problem at all, no matter where it is located, the cable provider is going to blame your modem even if the problem is nowhere near the possibility of being a modem issue.
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Tony GiangrecoCommented:
Have we answered your question?
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25112Author Commented:
thanks all!
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