Top 5 Wave Compatible Modems – Best Picks to Consider in 2022

Disclaimer: We are a team of Network Engineers and Computer Experts with a wealth of experience in networking. We employ our experience in testing modems and routers with different service providers and recommends the most optimal devices, suitable for you. Also, We may earn small commisison on the qualified purchases at no extra cost to you

Unlike other service providers, Wave broadband is highly nifty about the modems used with their internet. Thats the reason why most people prefer to have their own modem instead of renting one.

Owned equipment brings many benefits to the table. It can save all that cash you spend paying the rental fees every month. You can customize your access and bandwidth flow. But, most importantly, you experience a roaring change in the overall speed. But questions like, ‘what specification should a modem have for clubbing with Wave internet plans? How do you find out if a particular modem has the needed potency or not? troubles many buyers.

Therefore, keeping all these pain points in view, we have prepared a list of Wave compatible modems. Although there are countless options for an A+ performance with a decent price tag, stil Netgear CM500 is one of that worthy products.

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Top Recommendations

Arris Surfboard S33 – Best PerformanceNetgear CM500- Best BudgetD-Link DCM-301- Uncommon and Competitive
Aesthetic Design
High-speed processor
Supports heavy internet plans
Value for money
Front LEDs for easy monitoring
Low noise
Compatible with most ISPs
Quick web interface installation

Comparison Table

Netgear CM500  Modem only16 by 4680 Mbps128MB
Arris Surfboard SB6190Modem only32 by 8960 Mbps256 MB
Motorola MB7621Modem only24 by 8Up to 400 Mbps
Arris Surfboard S33Modem only32 by 8940 Mbps3 GB
D-Link DCM-301Modem only8 by 4343 Mbps32 MB

How Did We Choose The Models Below?

Below we list the qualities we doubled-checked about each modem before giving the green signal.

1. The DOCSIS Type

According to the official requirements stated by the Wave, only the modems with DOCSIS 3.0 and 3.1 are compatible with its internet plans. Hence, purchasing a modem, which doesn’t have the needed DOCSIS technology, is a run in the wasteland.

The DOCSIS 3.0 modems are great for Wave internet plans up to 250 Mbps. However, the DOCSIS 3.1 works for 500 Mbps or 1Gbps packages.

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2. Upload Speed

Next, we looked at the upstream speed of each of these modems. Since most internet activities are online, having a good upload speed is a must. Furthermore, it also provides a smooth speed in heavy bandwidth applications such as gaming and 4K streaming.

3. Channel Bonding

Channel bonding is the next feature we considered. It is essential to know how much traffic the given model supports. Does it have the capacity to utilize the potential of the package fully or not? Lastly, we hunted down only cable modems as Wave is a cable-based internet service. So only cable modems work for this ISP.

Also Read: Top 9 RCN Approved Modems

Things to Crosscheck When Buying a Modem

Choosing a suitable modem is a hectic task as there are not so many products available. However, you can consider the below guide to save a headache.

1. Compatibility With The ISP

A lot of ISPs work with most modems. However, still, some are fussy. Hence, before purchasing a modem, you must consult your ISP if their network supports your preferred device or not. Ensure that the model is compatible with Wave Broadband.

For local ISPs, you can consult their support to confirm the approved devices.

2. Compactness

Whether you are buying a modem for home or office use, compactness is a must-have. Of course, you can’t spare an entire desk for a modem only. Furthermore, you should look into the installation orientation of the model, as some models don’t have an excellent ventilating design.

3. Technology

Lastly, you need to know what kind of technology you want. Whether you want a modem only or a modem router combo, it is essential to consider because the price gallops when you move from simple modems to combos.

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1. Netgear CM500 – Budget Buy

Key Features

  • Compatible with Wave internet.
  • Fastest DOCSIS technology.
  • Flexible Ethernet ports.
  • Consistent connection speed.


Connectivity SoftwareNetgear Genie
OS compatibilitySystems running TCP/IP, up to Windows 7 and Mac OS
QoS supportYes

Product Review

If you are looking for a gadget that works for 300 Mbps or less internet connection, then Netgear CM500 is your go-to. Primarily certified as a DOCSIS 3.0/3.1 modem, it is faster than the previous-gen DOCSIS 2.0 devices. The alluring price tag makes the CM500 a golden nugget when you want to save money from your ISP’s rental fee.

Although the modem is known for its performance in a 300 Mbps connection, we decided to change the digits a bit. We installed the modem with a 400 Mbps router and operated four bandwidth-devouring applications. We downloaded individual game files on three of them and streamed 4K Netflix on the last one. To our surprise, the CM500 ripped it off!

No disconnections, glitches, or freezes. The CM500 features 16 by 4 bonded channels for streaming. According to the math, it can survive up to 680 Mbps, but practically it closes at a lower figure. Therefore, the company recommends a bandwidth of 300 Mbps.

Examining the exterior of the modem, it is sleek and light, with plastic as its primary constructor. However, the model carries a cheap design when it comes to heat dissipation. Resultantly, it gets hot during its operation, and if placed with other heat dissipating devices, it can get damaged.

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  • It delivers exceptional performance for the price.
  • It works efficiently for 300 Mpbs networks.


  • It attains a high temperature during operation.

Plus Point: Configuration and Setup of this Modem is very easy

Check out the complete review here:

2. Arris Surfboard SB6190 – Best For Gig Internet Plans

Key Features

  • Features multi-core SoC.
  • Works with Surfboard Central mobile app.
  • Allows download speed up to 1 Gbps.
  • Includes 256MB RAM.


Internet protocoliPv6 and iPv4
Supported technologyCable modem
Indicator indicatorsYes
Warranty2 years

Product Review

The SB6190 works well for users looking for a modem under the triple-digit price tag. The manufacturers are benevolent enough to bring all those facilities in an economical package.

Talking about the exterior, the SB6190 offers sly compactness. You can hide it behind a computer monitor or install it somewhere front. It will take the minimal space possible. Since we had a narrow testing space, it proved a praiseworthy feature.

The DOCSIS 3.0 technology infused with 32 by 8 channels provide unfailing internet speed. Theoretically, it can summon up to 1 Gbps of speed. However, the best we got was 800 to 900 Mbps, but the connection remained rock-solid. Even paired with a high-intensity Wave package, it provided the lowest pings. Hence, winning the crown of a good pick for Gig-level internet plans.

Most cable modems offer limited ports. The SB1690, following the same tradition, features only one Gig Ethernet port, one device connecting port, and one cable port.

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  • It works classily for gaming, HD streaming, and other online activities
  • It’s one of the Wave-approved models.


  • It only features a single Ethernet port.

Plus Point: No overheating regardless of operation duration.

Check out the detailed video review here:

3. Motorola MB7621 – Versatility Guaranteed

Key Features

  • Compact design.
  • Backward compatible with DOCSIS 2.0 and 1.1.
  • Features a GigE port.
  • An omnidirectional tuner ensures consistent speed.


Connection with RouterYes
Operating LEDs5
TechnologyLatest Broadcom

Product Review

Motorola MB7621 is another great option to consider when you are looking for modems to pair with your Wave internet. Coming to the structural arrangement of the model, it features the customary Ethernet port, a coaxial port, and a power switch. However, it saves a lot of rental fees from your ISP.

Featuring 8 by 24 download/upload streams, the MB7621 can efficiently juggle all internet plans up to 650 Mbps. Its good performance for various bandwidth-hogging applications makes it adaptable for most American ISPs. Including a warranty of two years, using this modem in-home networking helps you save a decent stack.

We tested the modem with a 400 Mbps internet plan. Connecting four heavy devices, the model performed exceptionally. Therefore, we concluded that the modem is a crowd-pleaser with its DOCSIS 3.0 technology and potential use of the bonding channels.

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  • It’s compatible with most ISPs.
  • It saves an annual $120 for rental fees.


  • It’s not as fast as other competing models.

Plus point: A multi-functional Ethernet port.

Watch the complete review here:

4. Arris Surfboard S33 – Best Performance

Key Features

  • Supports connection with routers, PCs, and other Ethernet devices.
  • OFDM DOCSIS 3.1 technology for superfast connections.
  • Fast download speed.
  • 2-year warranty.


Digital tuner1
Ethernet ports2
Dimensions5.14 x 1.8 x 4.74 inches

Product Review

Arris surfboard is mainly famous for its unprecedented throughput. Compact and efficient, the first impression of the S33 is sleek compared to other in-class modems.

The modem provides the downstream and upstream channels of 32 by 8. It can reasonably handle an upload speed of 10Mbps and a download speed up to 940 Mbps. Hence, it’s great for Gig internet plans.

Unlike the other models reviewed here, the S33 features two Ethernet ports. The intensity of the first Ethernet port is 2 GB. It is suitable for feeding in a router for a wide signal throw. Whereas the other one with 2.5 GB speed lets you plug in bandwidth-devouring devices like a TV screen or PlayStations.

Now, about the tests we conducted. Since the modem operates on the fastest DOCSIS technology, the 3.1, it is compatible with Wave broadband. The 3GB RAM and 256 MB of NAND memory are decent pieces for storing the configuration details of dozens of devices and operating efficiently. Lastly, the minimal weight of 1.5 pounds makes it preferable for offices and teenage gaming parties.

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  • It has LED indicators for monitoring the unit’s operation.
  • It features a decent chunk of NAND and RAM.


  • It’s relatively expensive.

Plus point: Best for pairing with multiple gig internet packages.

For a detailed review, click here:

5. D-Link DCM-301 – Runner Up

Key Features

  • Offers backward compatibility with DOCSIS 2.0/1.1/1.0.
  • Features a coaxial WAN port.
  • DOCSIS CableLabs Certified.
  • Perfect for HD video streaming.


TypeModem only
ProtocolsSNMP supported

Product Review

DCM 301 is not a familiar entity to cross your eyes when looking for Wave compatible modems. However, we compared it with the official requirements for the Wave broadband connection and, guess what? It is a reasonably competitive choice.

Firstly, we will take a look at the exterior unit. Although it follows a conservative design, the decent matte finish gives it a unique elegance. However, if you observe closely, you will find it standing similar to old DVR units. It comes with a stand, a power adapter, modem, Ethernet cable, and a guide.

The DCM 301 belongs to the magnificent family of DOCSIS 3.1. It is compatible with Wave ISP along with other popular ISPs as well. We tested it with various operating systems and found it can work with any OS working on the TCP/IP network.

Verbally, the max speed of the modem amounts to a figure of 343 Mbps. Since these figures don’t include any external factors, therefore we made some assurances. The D-Link DCM-301 could only conjure up a speed of 245 Mbps, and likewise, the download and upload speeds closed somewhere around 210 Mbps and 45 Mbps.

It was easy to set up using a web interface and gave consistent speeds. But if you want a better signal reach, you’ll need to pair it up with a router.

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  • It provides flexible connectivity for creating a network.
  • Plug and play setup.  


  • It is available in desk placement only.

Plus point: Compatible with top-tier routers like Asus RT-AC68U and Netgear R7000.

Find the complete review here:


Now it’s time to wrap our Wave compatible modem show. The above list includes some of the best-performing models. However, if you are looking for something more for your Wave internet plan, stick to our compatibility guide.

Each of the modems above is fit for certain kinds of internet plans. But, if you want an all-rounder, you should go with Arris Surfboard S33. As for smaller stacks of green, you can consider a relatively uncommon yet reliable option, the DCM 301.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What modem technology works with Wave?
Wave internet plans are only compatible with DOCSIS 3.1 and 3.0
What are the features of the best modem for Wave internet plans?
Firstly, the modem must employ the DOCSIS 3.1/3.0 technology. Next, the upstream and downstream channels are essential. For plans having speeds more than 250 Mbps, you need more than 8 downstream channels.
Does a modem-router work with Wave?
Yes, you can install a modem router combo with Wave internet; however, make sure that the model is approved by the ISP and fits your budget.

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