Semi-OT: Comparing two VOIP cable modems...


There is a lot of knowledge in here, so just throwing this out in hopes that someone has experience with these two modems and can make a real world comparison.

I'm currently using a Motorola Surfboard SBV4200 for cable internet + VOIP service. Recently, I was given the option to swap this modem out for a Scientific-Atlanta Webstar DPX2203. From the specs sheet, the two appear to basically identical (at least with what is relevant for the cable internet service.) Only major difference seems to be that the SA Webstar DPX2003 is DOCSIS 2.0 compliant, while the Motorola is DOCSIS 1.1. (Cable service isn't currently supporting DOCSIS 2.0 though.) The SA Webstar DPX2003 has, of course, higher up/down max rates but they wouldn't be realized. (Currently capped at 5 Mbits. Speed tests with the cableco usually are around ~4.82 Mbs.) Logs with the Motorola have remained clean and signal levels seem well within tolerance. (Downstream: Power Level -3 dBmV, SNR 37 db. Upstream: Power Level 41 dBmV).

Prior to subscribing to VOIP, I had just owned by own cable modem. After subscribing to VOIP, I had to use theirs though. Gave my old modem to a family member, who is now using it.

I hate to try to "fix something that isn't broke", but one feature that looks inviting with the SA DBX2203 is that a battery pack can be used with it. I believe to cableco is even proving the modem with the battery pack. Guessing if the cableco has backup battery power on the poles, then this would allow for continued telephone use in the event of power loss. (At least until the battery is depleted.) The SA modem is also more aesthetically pleasing. The Motorola SBV4200 is quite ugly as it sticks out like a big white fish tail. The SA modem could easily be stacked horizontally on other equipment, while the Motorola has sit vertically -- making it awkward. The Motorola SBV4200 was released in 2002, while the SA DBX2003 was released just recently.

As I haven't ever used any SA hardware, just throwing this out in hopes of any feedback. Is SA hardware prone to any problems such as overheating as such? Is it worthwhile to "upgrade", since they are offering it?



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Oops, finger got ahead of brain. Change all the references to "DPX2002" to "DPX2203".

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