Saturday, January 23rd, 2021

Netgear Orbi Wi-Fi 6 Mesh to Better Cable Users’ Experience at a Price

Orbi CBK752 BOX
The Netgear Orbi CBK752 comes in a 2-pack set.

Netgear announced today the latest Orbi WiFi 6 Tri-band Mesh System with DOCSIS 3.1 Built-in Cable Modem (model CBK752). As the name suggests, this is a mesh built specifically for cable Internet.

It’s a matter of convenience

Generally, you can use any mesh system with any Internet connection. For example, you can combine the Oribi RBK752 and one of the recently-announced Netgear modems and have the same result as the CBK752. In fact, a slightly better one.

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That’s because, at the core, the CBK752 is essentially the RBK752, which is a lesser version of the RBK852. But generally, Netgear’s Orbi Wi-Fi 6 sets are more similar than they are different.

What makes the CBK752 unique is its built-in DOSIS3.1 cable modem. Specifically, the router unit of the new mesh system is a cable gateway, or a “Cable Modem Router” as Netgear calls it. After that, it shares the same Obi satellites as those of other Orbi Wi-Fi 6 sets.

So, the CBK752 is the Wi-Fi 6 version of the CBK40 that came two years ago. It’s a matter of convenience, you have both a modem and a router in a single box and therefore can cut down the number of wires and physical hardware pieces.

In return, keep in mind that the new mesh will only work with a cable Internet plan. The gateway unit has a cable (coaxial) service connector instead of a WAN port. Consequently, it won’t work with any other broadband connection, such as DSL or fiber.

CBR750 Port
The back of the Orbi CBR750 gateway. Note the Cable connector and the lack of a WAN port.

Orbi CBK752’s hardware specification: Multi-gig Internet ready

Netgear says the CBK752’s built-in cable modem can deliver up to 10 Gbps of download speeds thanks to the support for DOCSIS 3.1. However, it’s backward compatible with older cable standards.

Just like the Wi-Fi 5 version, the CBK40, the new CBK752 works with all popular cable providers in the U.S. Its actual Internet speed will depend on availability and your Internet plan. Most importantly, keep in mind that the system’s Wi-Fi speeds cap at 1.2 Gbps, at best.

Availability and pricing

Netgear says the Orbi CBK752 WiFi 6 Tri-band Mesh System with DOCSIS 3.1 Built-in Cable Modem is available today with the retail price of $599.99 for a 2-pack, or about $150 more expensive than the standard version (RBK752).

Those living in a small home can also get just the gateway unit (CBR750) for $449.99. In any case, you can add more satellites at a later time.

The CBR750 is compatible with any Wi-Fi 6 satellite, namely the RBS850 and RBS750, which costs $379.99 and $279.99, respectively. It won’t work with any Wi-Fi 5 Orbi satellite.

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4 thoughts on “Netgear Orbi Wi-Fi 6 Mesh to Better Cable Users’ Experience at a Price”

  1. Can I plug an ethernet switch (Netgear GS308) into the Orbi Modem (CBR750)?
    Most modems require you to plug your switch into a router and then to the modem, i.e., (Switch > Router > Modem). My goal is: (Switch wired to Modem) + (Satellite wireless to Modem), using the Orbi CBK752 Package.
    I spoke with a Netgear tech yesterday and she said yes you can plug a switch directly into the CBR750, because it is a “modem/router”. (Based on the number of “hold please”, I am not confident in the answer.)

    Reply
      • Thanks for the quick reply and excellent article!
        In your reply above are you saying that the Netgear CBR750 is a “Gateway” (Modem+Router), and therefore can accept an ethernet cable from an unmanaged switch? (Gateway -> Switch)
        If yes, then this will really simplify my set up at home as follows!
        1. The Netgear CBR750 comes with 4 LAN ports, so 1 will be used with a switch (Netgear GS308), and the other 3 Modem Router ports will be used for nearby devices via ethernet cable.
        2. The CBR750 will still have WiFi capability too.
        3. The Satellite Router will be placed at the far end of the house to fill in current WiFi voids (complete the mesh).
        Does this about sound right?

        Reply
        • That sounds right, assuming the extra broadcaster is linked to the switch (or gateway) via a network cable — as an access point that is. You should spend some time on this post to make sure you understand stuff at the basic level, RJ.

          Reply

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