When it comes to network equipment, users are constantly seeking the ultimate device that will render their internet connections able to deliver the best possible performance levels.
Whether through routers, modems, or other kinds of access points, manufacturers invest a great deal of time and money into developing the device that will blow users’ minds and become the top piece of network equipment on the market.
While most manufacturers are taking their first steps in that path, Netgear has taken a decent advantage with its state-of-the-art network devices. Their most recent series of modems, the Nighthawk, delivers computers and other devices as much room to run as they could ever dream.
Also, with their advanced features, Nighthawk modems are able to bring stability to a whole new level. While that is still not everything that there is to say about these outstanding modems, these features already put the Nighthawks among the best network devices ever designed.
For users who follow the latest advancements in network technology, Netgear Nighthawks are definitely a series to keep an eye out for. However, by being a series of devices, the Nighthawks have different specifications depending on the specific model.
This can lead users that are less interested in technology trends to opt for a device that doesn’t exactly fit their internet demands. If you find yourself falling behind with the latest network technologies and features, stay with us.
We brought you today the ultimate comparison between two of the top Netgear Nighthawk devices, the CAX30 and the CAX80. Through this comparison, we hope to help you better understand each device and make the best choice for your connection needs.
The Ultimate Comparison Between Netgear CAX80 vs CAX30 Nighthawk Modems
What Does The Netgear CAX30 Have To Offer?
The Nighthawk series comprises network devices that are called two-in-one, which means they are modems with in-built routers. This comes in quite handy when installing your internet set-up as you have to deal with cabling one fewer device. On top of that, all the configuration and settings may be done through the same interface.
Apart from that, having both devices bundled into one helps the speed and stability get a boost while the user has a higher level of control. The CAX30 was designed to work through multi-gigabit connectivity, which, as the name says, delivers connection speeds that break the 1Gbps threshold.
That, when allied with high-end wi-fi features, provides a performance level that has hitherto been undreamt of – especially with smart devices that help further enhance the connection’s quality.
No matter the use, the CAX30 is ready to deliver the best performance in streaming, gaming, large file transfers, or whatever other kind of intense internet usage. As for its specifications, the CAX30 has a built-in DOCSIS 3.1-based system, which means speeds are ten times faster than the latest 3.0 version.
Also, the connectivity is enhanced 2.5 times for faster connection establishment with the ISP servers. The DOCSIS 3.1 is also backwards compatible, which makes this device useful even for those who still don’t have the ultimate network set-up yet. The AX Wi-Fi feature delivers up to 2.7Gbps speeds with a 6-stream connectivity aspect.
The Nighthawk CAX30 modem runs a wired & WAN to LAN optimized dual-core 1.5GHz processor with a 3.0 SUPERSPEED USB port that delivers ten times the performance of its predecessor, the 2.0. With 4 gigabit ports, transfer speeds reach levels that have never been seen as the stability is enhanced by the port capacity.
Regarding its capacity, the CAX30 can handle a larger number of simultaneous connections with its enhanced features, and without compromising the performance levels of the connection.
The range of the CAX30 is also remarkable, preventing dead zones with its larger coverage area while delivering higher speeds and stability throughout. As for security, such an important aspect of internet connections, the CAX has a 1-year ARMOR subscription.
The ARMOR is the manufacturer’s own security platform that keeps threats away and prevents break-in attempts. With VPN support, users can virtually navigate safely from anywhere in the world. This increases the security levels as those carrying out the break-in attempt have more difficulty locating the network.
Also, the 802.11i, 128-bit AES encryption with PSK feature adds to the security features, preventing unauthorized access to your network. Furthermore, the GUEST NETWORK feature allows users to allocate a certain amount of data to a secondary connection that may be made available for guests.
That way, you get to keep all the sensitive information on your own network and have your guests enjoy the ultra-high performance too, without interfering with yours. Lastly, the WPA3 level passwords ensure the access credentials for your network are of the highest security level.
This is especially useful if your neighbours happen to be opportunists! Regarding its compatibility, the CAX30 was the choice of the top TV services in the country, including Cox, Xfinity, and Spectrum.
For all that has been said about the Nighthawk CAX30 modem, this device is a solid option for those who wish to access the top levels of network performance.
What Does The Netgear CAX80 Have To Offer?
Upon noticing that the network experience could be further enhanced and the performance levels higher, Netgear designed the upgraded version of the Nighthawk CAX30, the CAX80. For those who thought it couldn’t get any better when it comes to speeds, the CAX80 was a nice surprise.
Maintaining the DOCSIS 3.1-based system, the difference in speed and stability is due to the AX Wi-Fi version, upgraded with a 1.2+4.8Gbps with 8-stream connectivity. Leaving behind the 6-stream connectivity feature of the CAX30, the new model enhanced speeds and stability even further.
As per the MULTI-GIG experience and the 4 GIGABIT ports, both models have the same specs, but the CAX80 brings along a MULTI-GIG2.5G/1G Ethernet port. That brings transmission speeds up to 2.5 times what they were, enabling a higher performance from the cabled connection as well.
Much was said about the Nighthawk CAX30 and its wireless connectivity features, but users were not so surprised by the Ethernet performance levels. Seeing one more aspect that could be improved, Netgear enhanced the wired connection and brought it to the same level as the wireless features with the CAX80.
Regarding its capacity, as if the Nighthawk CAX30 wasn’t good enough, the CAX80 increased the amount of possible simultaneous wireless connections. The same dual-core 1.5GHz processor was kept from the predecessor as that proved to be more than enough for smooth performance – even for 4K UHD streaming.
The coverage, which was already enhanced in the CAX30, was kept untouched in the newer model as it was already considered top-notch. The greatest novelties brought by the Nighthawk concern the ease-of-use aspects.
The SMART-CONNECT feature automatically selects the fastest wi-fi band to connect to and keeps the same credentials for both networks. Also, the WIFI 6 supports all kinds of wireless connections and even offers backward compatibility. Talking about compatibility, the CAX80 runs the same TV services as its predecessor.
As for the security features, the outstanding ARMOR subscription, allied with the VPN SUPPORT, AES encryption with PSK, and GUEST-NETWORK functions were kept from the CAX30. There is barely a security system more advanced than the Nighthawk’s on the market today.
The only ‘downside’ – if there is even one – is that the CAX80 weighs 4.4 pounds, making it one of the heaviest network devices out there. However, if you consider it has an in-built router, that is not all that much.
To Make It Even More Descriptive…
In order to help you come to a conclusion as to which device is better for your internet needs, here is a comparison table with all the main aspects of each:
|BUILT-IN DOCSIS 3.1||YES||YES|
|AX WIFI||2.7Gbps – 0.9+1.8Gbps with 6-stream connectivity.||6Gbps – 1.2+4.8Gbps with 8-stream connectivity.|
|AX optimised Dual-Core 1.5GHz processor||YES||YES|
|Wired & WAN-to-LAN performance||YES||YES|
|SUPERSPEED USB 3.0 port||YES||YES|
|4 GIGABIT PORTS||YES||YES|
|MULTI-GIG 2.5G/1G Ethernet port||NO||YES|
|WIFI 6 with backward compatibility||YES||YES|
|802.11i, 128-bit AES encryption with PSK||YES||YES|