The 5 Best WOW Compatible Modems- Worth Buying in 2022 (Full Review)

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

For the best internet speeds on the Wide-Open West network, WOW recommends their leased equipment that they claim to be tested in labs for their internet. But is this claim real? Most people don’t even bother testing the rental equipment themselves, for which they pay excessively as compared to purchasing their own modem. So, they end up using outdated equipment when they should be purchasing new.

After an in-depth analysis of different modems, we have seen ARRIS SURFboard SB8200 as the best match for the WOW internet service. Because it provides great speeds, efficiently and reliably. Considering the gigabit speed support, it is future-proof too.

We’ve also listed four other options that performed relatively well throughout our testing and might suit your networking needs. So, before you’re handed over another bill, let’s grab this one.

Also Read: List Of Best Mediacom Compatible Modems – Detailed Review

Top 3 WOW Approved Modems

Top PickBudget PickRunner-up
ARRIS SURFboard SB8200 Cable ModemMotorola MB7621 Cable ModemNETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem CM1200

Robust performance at well pricing Compatible with major service providers Two Gigabit Ethernet ports with support for link aggregation Simple setup through the mobile application Two years of the warranty period

Compatible with major service providers Establishes a speedy and stable connection Easy installation Advanced additional features Two years of warranty

Excellent speed and performance Four Gigabit Ethernet ports for more connectivity Multi-gigabit speeds support Works with major service providers Five minutes setup

How We Did the Test?

As we prepared to begin testing, we initially chose 12 different well-rated modems, regardless of manufacturer influence. We ran multiple tests on these modems to recommend just the best-performing ones, so you can make an informed decision. Our testing included consideration of the following factors:


We judged the performance of each modem through several stages in which we made it perform networking tasks like streaming, gaming, and downloading files of massive sizes. We also kept checking the consistency of the network, as consumers frequently report connection drops upon switching their modem.

Setup & Features:

Since few people are familiar with the use of a modem, we kept a close eye on the ease of use of each modem during the testing. And rated modems based on the greatest user controls and additional security features for the best network performance.

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It’s important to note that certain modems have circuitry faults due to the unreliable Intel Puma Chipset. We also made certain that our choices are reliably built. We read previous consumer reviews to learn about their experiences with each modem.

Also Read: List of Suddenlink Compatible Modems with Updated List

5 Best WOW Approved Modems Comparison Table

ARRIS SURFboard SB8200 Cable ModemMotorola MB7621 Cable ModemNETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem CM1200 
Product typeCable ModemCable ModemCable Modem
TechnologyDOCSIS 3.1DOCSIS 3.0DOCSIS 3.1
Channels32 x 824 x 832 x 8
Max Download Speed2 Gbps800+Mbps2 Gbps
Gigabit Ethernet Ports214
NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem with Built-in WiFi 6 Router (CAX80)Motorola MG7700
Product typeModem/Router ComboModem/Router Combo
TechnologyDOCSIS 3.1DOCSIS 3.0
Channels16 x 424 x 8
Max Download Speed6 Gbps1000+Mbps
Gigabit Ethernet Ports44

Things to Consider Before Selecting Modem (Buying Guide)

Modems are more than just plugging in and connecting to the internet. There are many technicalities that most people are unaware of. Adding a modem to the cart without first checking a few crucial factors may cause a useless purchase. So before you make a purchase, double-check the following things to ensure you make a good buy.


The first thing that you might not want to miss is the approval of the modem with your network provider. Every ISP maintains a list of modems that work with their network. Luckily, in the case of WOW, you’re not bound to hold a list when you search for a modem. 

WOW suggests you buy a modem from a reliable manufacturer and make sure it’s capable of delivering the speeds that you’ve subscribed to.


Next up is to make a choice between a standalone modem or a gateway (modem-router combo). It depends on what you want. If you want complete control over your network setup, then purchasing a standalone modem and connecting it with a separate router should be your choice.

However, if you want to cut the clutter and save time in buying and setting up a separate router, then you should pay for a gateway.

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DOCSIS Technology:

Wi-Fi devices, for example, are installed with technologies such as Wi-Fi 6 and others. Modems, too, are based on DOCSIS technology, which allows them to give optimum speeds. DOCSIS 3.0 and DOCSIS 3.1 are the current DOCSIS technologies supported by ISPs.

If you have a WOW subscription plan ranging from Internet 15 to Internet 600, a DOCSIS 3.0 modem will work. Otherwise, if you use the Internet 1000 plan, which is a gigabit subscription, you must purchase the latest DOCSIS 3.1 technology modem. However, WOW suggests that whatever plan you’re subscribed to, a DOCSIS 3.1 modem should be your choice because it’s backward compatible with DOCSIS 3.0 technology and handles lower speeds, too.

Modems Having DOCSIS 3.1 Technology


Channels are another consideration if you use the DOCSIS 3.0 modem for lower-speed plans. The speed of a modem is defined by its channels. Depending on the speed of your internet service plan, you can pick between 8 x 4, 16 x 4, 24 x 8, or 32 x 8 channels. WOW‌ recommends 24 x 8 and 32 x 8 channels as minimum requirements for all internet services up to Internet 600.

Review of the Best Modems for WOW Internet

1. ARRIS SURFboard SB8200 DOCSIS 3.1 Gigabit Cable Modem (Top Choice)


  • Two Gigabit Ethernet ports
  • Approved with major service providers
  • Simple and quick setup with the  SURFboard Central app
  • Two years of the warranty perioOr d


Weight1.46 lbs
Dimensions5 x 2 x 5 inches
IPv4 SupportYes
IPv6 SupportYes
Telephone Voice PortsNo
Wi-Fi Standard

Product Review:

First up is the market’s top-rated gigabit modem, the ARRIS SURFboard SB8200. This lightweight, white-plastic built is installed with the latest DOCSIS 3.1 technology and provides maximum speeds through the 32 x 8 downstream and upstream channels. That, upon analyzing, enabled it to nail the WOW’s Internet 1000 gigabit plan, establishing a smooth and fast connection to make massive downloads across various devices simultaneously.

We really like how simple the setup process was through SURFboard’s mobile application. The ARRIS SURFboard SB8200 notably has vent holes on its sides to show the excessive heat created by heavy usage. So you’re free to place it anywhere you want.

Topping the list with the best performance for WOW’s gigabit plan, this modem has the added benefit of being future-proof with its latest technology, as well as two link-aggregation enabled gigabit Ethernet ports that expand connectivity for you.

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 Plus Point:  ARRIS SURFboard SB8200’s hardware is configured for exceptional performance against high-bandwidth network applications while maintaining low latency.

Excellent gigabit speedsUnsatisfactory customer support
Supports link aggregation
Easy and quick installation
Comes with two years warranty

2. Motorola MB7621 Cable Modem (Best Budget)


  • Compatible with most ISPs
  • Fast and simple setup through Quick Start
  • Full-Band Capture is a digital tuner for even faster connections and a more stable Internet experience
  • Two years of the limited warranty


Weight1.0 lbs
Dimensions7.25 x 2.25 x 7.88 inches
IPv4 SupportYes
IPv6 SupportYes
Telephone Voice PortsNo
Wi-Fi Standard

Product Review

For people with a limited budget, we have the Motorola MB7621 as a go-to product. The MB7621 is a gray-black tower with the same Motorola modem’s standard design, having vent holes on both sides for heat dissipation.

The standard design doesn’t portray its incredible performance. It has the DOCSIS 3.0 technology with 24 x 8 downstream and upstream channels. Which is best suited for up to 600 Mbps internet speed plans. When tested, after a short and easy setup process, we actually had fun streaming some 4K videos with its stable, never-dropping connection. 

However, as compared to other modems, Motorola modems are best known for the additional features they include, and the MB7621 is no exception. It also contains a slew of other features to help you get the most out of your network.

Therefore, with all this, the Motorola MB7621 will undoubtedly be a remarkable purchase and an improvement to your internet setup if you get this low-priced, premium modem for your lower service plan usage.

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Plus Point: The Motorola MB7621 is built with ruggedized lightning and power surge circuits to prevent failure and safeguard your investment.

Provides a great valueMight not be a compact option
Applaudable performance under stressed network
Designed with a power button
Offers two years of warranty

3. NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem CM1200 (Best Performer)


  • Compatible with major service providers
  • Multi-gigabit internet support
  • Four Gigabit Ethernet port
  • One year of the limited warranty


Weight1.22 lbs
Dimensions6.1 x 3.4 x 10.3 inches
IPv4 SupportYes
IPv6 SupportYes
Telephone Voice PortsNo
Wi-Fi Standard

Product Review

Fortunately, the market is blessed with another name providing quality modems, NETGEAR. Their NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 ended up as a runner-up in our tests through its future-proof performance.

This aggressive appearing modem is a black box with sharp edges. The attractive appearance is further enhanced with vent holes that allow heat to pass through. The CM1200 is installed with DOCSIS 3.1 technology and 32 x 8 downstream and upstream channels to provide up to 2 Gbps speeds.

Despite the fact that WOW does not offer a two-gigabit internet package, the speeds it delivered when tested with the Internet 1000 were a clear increase in network bandwidth. In addition, unlike our top performer, the ARRIS SURFboard SB8200, which has two Gigabit Ethernet ports, the CM1200 has four Gigabit ports, allowing it to connect to more devices and obtain more IP addresses.

You’ll see for yourself after only a five-minute quick setup, which is simple to complete with the help of the installation guide that comes with it.

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Plus Point: The NETGEAR CM1200 includes multi-IP address capability, allowing up to four home networks and numerous servers to function concurrently.

Excellent multi-gig performanceDoesn’t support manual firmware upgrade
Stylish futuristic design
Easy and quick installation

4. NETGEAR Nighthawk Cable Modem with Built-in WiFi 6 Router (CAX80)


  • Approved by various service providers
  • Two-port aggregation supports faster speeds
  • Powerful Dual-Core Processor
  • One year of the limited warranty


Weight4.45 lbs
Dimensions12.44 x 10.24 x 5.24 inches
IPv4 SupportYes
IPv6 SupportYes
Telephone Voice PortsNo
Wi-Fi Standard802.11a/b/g/n/ac

Product Review

Just like NETGEAR’s Nighthawk CM1200, next ahead is their relatively stylish, powerful, and quality gateway, the NETGEAR Nighthawk CAX80. Although most gateways deliver an underperforming experience on the router side, the CAX80 is a complete power option.

The first appearance is futuristic, with a massive black, arrow-shaped plastic box. The modem includes vents on the front and back to dissipate excess heat generated by both parts of the gateway. On the inside, the modem part is powered with the DOCSIS 3.1 technology having 32 x 8 downstream and upstream channels for speed support of up to 2 Gbps.

While the router part carries the Wi-Fi 6 support for boosting these speeds to up to 6 Gbps. This modem, when tested, delivered the best out of the Internet 1000 gigabit plan with a perfect connection for gaming sessions. The router appeared to work quite well with broad coverage across our office, that in actual, it claims to be 2500 square feet across 32 wireless devices.

We didn’t actually connect it to this many devices, but there’s no reason to doubt this claim because the connection was smooth on all of our 20 devices. Because this is a gateway, the setup time that you spent at separate units is now half with its simple setup.

The 5 Best WOW Compatible Modems- (Full Review)

 Plus Point:  The NETGEAR CAX80 is included with a 1.5 GHz dual-core processor that effortlessly manages multi-gigabit LAN/WAN traffic.

Board Wireless coverageWeighs a little heavy
Rapid fast connection speeds
Stylish modern design
One year limited warranty period

5. Motorola MG7700 Modem WiFi Router Combo


  • Full-Band Capture digital tuner
  • Wireless Power Boost
  • AC1900 Wi-Fi Gigabit Router with 4 Gigabit Ethernet Ports
  • AnyBeam beamforming at 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz for better range and performance


Weight1.50 lbs
Dimensions8.6 x 2.6 x 9 inches
IPv4 SupportYes
IPv6 SupportYes
Telephone Voice PortsNo
Wi-Fi Standard802.11a/b/g/n/ac

Product Review

When it comes to gateways because both a modem and a router are combined into one, the price of a gateway is double that of a modem and router. Therefore, expecting a reasonably priced gateway becomes difficult. However, the Motorola MG7700 came out to be one offering the same premium experience and quality at an affordable price.

The MG7700 possesses the same Motorola modems’ design but is relatively compact as compared to the NETGEAR Nighthawk CAX80 which is huge to handle. It has the same heat-kicking vents on the sides. The modem connects to WOW’s network without a hitch. The MG7700 modem features DOCSIS 3.0 technology with 24 x 8 downstream and upstream channels, which appeared to provide 650 Mbps speeds when tested using WOW’s Internet 1000 service.

The router is an AC1900 dual-band wireless 5 router with maximum Wi-Fi rates of up to 1000 Mbps. It could cover two floors of our office with a wide coverage of up to 2000 square feet. This modem/router combo is a must-have for delivering internet access to dozens of devices at once while also being quick and simple to use.

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Plus Point: To add an extra layer of security to your family’s networking, Motorola’s MG770 has user-friendly features such as powerful firewall protection and built-in parental controls.

AnyBeam Beamforming technology is supported to increase the wireless range.Not ideal for large spaces.
Comes with advanced security protocol
Installation is quick and easy


Unlike other ISPs, WOW does not limit you to a list of compatible modems that function on their network. They recommend buying a modem from a reputable brand. They also recommend using the latest DOCSIS 3.1 modems for the greatest results with their plans.

So, it’s now much easier to bring your own modem and ditch their leased equipment. In our tests, we discovered that the ARRIS SURFboard SB8200 has the upper hand because of its serious fast performance and reliability for the WOW internet. We’ve still listed other options, so you can find the one that’s right for you.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Which modems are approved to work with the WOW internet?
Except for outdated DOCSIS 3.0 modems with 4 x 4 and 8 x 4 channels, DOCSIS 2.0 modems, and older, any modem should operate with WOW internet service. WOW suggests DOCSIS 3.1 modems for the best outcome of their service plans.
Will WOW sell me their own internet equipment?
WOW exclusively rents out its gateways and does not sell them. However, they have provided you the option of purchasing and using your own modem on their network.
How is DOCSIS 3.1 better than DOCSIS 3.0?
DOCSIS 3.1 is a more advanced modem technology that allows 10 times faster downloads than DOCSIS 3.0. While DOCSIS 3.0 supports downloads of up to 1 Gbps, the DOCSIS 3.1 supports downloads of up to 10 Gbps.

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