ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Arris Surfboard SBG6950AC2 Vs SBG7400AC2. Which to Buy?

Updated on July 19, 2018

ARRIS SURFboard SBG6950AC2 vs SBG7400AC2

ARRIS SURFboard SBG6950AC2 (left) vs SBG7400AC2 (right). Except for the model number, both looks identical
ARRIS SURFboard SBG6950AC2 (left) vs SBG7400AC2 (right). Except for the model number, both looks identical

Technology is ever changing and doing so at a very fast pace...sometimes too fast, lamented my friend Francis, a bank VP "...I just cannot catch up." Well Francis is not the only one. Many of my friends are also in the similar situation.

With this in mind, I am making this comparison analysis between these two Arris cable modem Wifi router to be as simple as possible so that if you are like Francis, you can come to a decision on whether to get the Arris Surfboard SBG7400AC2 24x8 DOCSIS 3.0 or Arris Surfboard SBG6950AC2 without making further research after going through this hub.

I will make the explanation on the technology and technical terms here as simple as possible and in layman terms in order for it to make sense to non IT technical readers who need to make a quick decision without going into the technical intricacies.

The table below shows the salient points with regards to both the Arris SBG6950AC2 and SBG7400AC2. I have put them side by side so that it is very easy to make a comparison and see the difference between the two.

Comparing apple to apple

Arris SBG6950AC2 vs Arris SBG7400AC2

Dual band Wifi Router
4 Port Gigabit Router
Cable Modem Channels
Wifi Router
Wave 2 AC1900
Wave 2 AC2350
Max download speed
686 Mbps
1,000 Mbps
Cable Internet Service
IPv4 and IPv6 supported?
Wi-Fi beamforming
McAfee Secure Whole Home Internet
Approved cable provider
Xfinity and Cox
Xfinity and Cox
Compatible with
Spectrum (Time Warner, Charter and Brighthouse)
Spectrum (Time Warner, Charter and Brighthouse)
Not compatible with
ATT, Verizon, CenturyLink
ATT, Verizon, CenturyLink
Comparison of the main features of the Arris SBG6950 vs Arris SBG7400 wave2 Wi-Fi Router


ARRIS SURFboard SBG6950AC2 16x4 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem/AC1900 Wi-Fi Router/McAfee Whole Home Internet Protection
ARRIS SURFboard SBG6950AC2 16x4 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem/AC1900 Wi-Fi Router/McAfee Whole Home Internet Protection

Understanding the naming conventions

The official name for the SBG6950AC2 is ARRIS SURFboard SBG6950AC2 16x4 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem/AC1900 Wi-Fi Router/McAfee Whole Home Internet Protection.

SBG - Surf Board Gateway. A gateway is a combination of a modem and router

6950 - this is the model number

AC - denotes that this is an AC WiFi version. The other versions are A, B, G, N respectively

2 - this tells you that this model is the second wave of wireless networking gear based on the 802.11ac standard. I will discuss more on Wave 2 later.

The naming nomenclature for the SBG7400AC2 is also the same as the SBG6950AC2.

Through the naming nomenclature you can easily tell that both are Wave 2 modem routers.

What are modem channels and channel bonding?

Channels are used to transmit signal from one end to another.

The SURFboard SBG6950AC2 has 16 download and 4 upload channels while the SURFboard SBG7400AC2 has 24 download and 8 channels. They are usually stated as 16x4 and 24x8 for the SBG6950AC2 and SBG7400AC2 respectively.

Channel Bonding is the key to modem's performance.

Channel bonding is the technology that allows the modem to utilize multiple channels simultaneously to increase its overall performance.

A simple analogy is your water pipe. Instead of running water through say six small pipes, why not combine the diameters of the six small pipes into one big pipe. In this way you can get more volume through that big pipe.

Channel bonding in your Motorola SBG6950AC2 or SBG7400AC2 works in a similar manner for data. However many people tend to misunderstand some concept of the channel bonding.

The number of channels that can be bonded is actually dependent on your ISP and not on the modem. However the modem must have that capacity to bond.

For example, the SBG7400AC2 is capable of bonding 24x8 but it does not mean that you will get that amount of channels as your ISP may not have that many channels available to bond.

Do you want to catch the Wave 2?

The current cutting edge of Wi-Fi technology, also popularly referred to as the “Wave 2” is the second wave of the gigabit WiFi 802.11ac or the AC Wave 2 standard.

Wave 2 hardware offers more throughput and better handling of multiple connections through the use of MU-MIMO (multi user - multi input multi output). Standards older than 802.11ac (such as 802.11b, g and n) do not support MU-MIMO.


MU-MIMO hardware can service multiple client devices using its multiple antennae, wider channels and also adds a number of other bells and whistles.

When multiple users try to access the wireless network at the same time, the 802.11 protocol serves the users on a first-come, first-serve basis. Hence when the multiple users begin accessing the router at or near the same time, congestion occurs as the router services the first user’s request while the second (and third, fourth, etc.) wait in line.

Even though these wait times can be tiny, it will accumulate when more devices such as smartphones, tablets, computers, etc. and users request for resources. MU-MIMO was was created to overcome this situation by allowing for multiple users to access router functions without the congestion resulting in Wave 2 hardware offering more throughput and better handling of multiple connections.

Wave 2 performance enhancement

Some of the performance enhancements that you can expect to with Wave 2 hardware include:

1. Gigabit Wi-Fi possibilities with cable

Throughput rate of data transfer, is much higher in Wave 2 making it a possibility of achieving a gigabit speed

2. Support for more connected devices

MU-MIMO offers greater density than Wave 1 802.11ac because the spectrum is used more efficiently for multiple connected devices. As such the devices can more easily get on and off of the network.

3. It offers stronger performance

Wave 2 introduces a 160 MHz channel width option. With Wave 1, the only options were 20, 40, and 80 MHz. In theory this will make it easier to access and transfer large files.

The Wave 2 standard also adds a fourth spatial stream. Wave 1 has only three streams. According to the Wi-Fi Alliance, "Device speeds are proportional to the number of spatial streams." As such, more streams generates better overall performance.

4. Wave 2 provides more bandwidth and flexibility

802.11ac Wave 2 is that it supports additional 5 GHz channels. This is one of the biggest updates that comes with Wave 2. If these 5 GHz channels are assigned for Wi-Fi use, it could overall help support more users and devices.

According to the Wi-Fi Alliance, most devices (approximately 65%) now are dual-band; as such they can operate in both the 2.4 and 5 GHz frequencies without any problems.

Which is better for you?

The questions to ask are:

  1. Do you need the Wave 2 features?
  2. Does your current service provider support Wave 2? Refer to the table above.

Both gateways are similar except for performance. SBG7400AC2 has more upload and download channels, maximum theoretical bandwidth and download as compared to the SBG6950AC2.

Both also features the ARRIS Secure Home Internet by McAfee to provide the speeds you need for things like HD video streaming and online gaming as well as for keeping all the devices on your network safe and secure from online threats like malware and phishing scams etc with no more buffering or lagging behind.

It comes with a 3 years free service, after which you can continue with a subscription if you wish.

The crunch

Are both the SBG6950AC2 or the SBG7400AC2 really necessary for your current and future needs?

Generally, connection speeds are limited by other parts of the infrastructure, not the wireless connection.

Cutting-edge technology normally comes at a premium price. If the improvements over 802.11ac wave 1 are not important to you, then you may just want to wait for the next wireless standard – 802.11ax or continue with your 802.11ac wave 1 gear.

On the other hand the support of MU-MIMO is important for end users, as most people, especially so for those with family and children, tend to have multiple connected devices in their home or on their person.

If the growing number of mobile devices and IoT-connected devices have created some frustrations for you, then the addition of MU-MIMO support could help alleviate some of those headaches.

Some of my friends felt that it was justifiable for them to make the upgrade in view of the fact that the cost of the hardware is pretty reasonable. They could easily recover their purchase cost within a short period of time especially when they are renting their existing equipment from their service provider.

Arris SURFboard (16x4) Docsis 3.0 Cable Modem Plus AC1900 Dual Band Wi-Fi Router, Certified for Xfinity, Spectrum, Cox & More (SBG6950AC2)
Arris SURFboard (16x4) Docsis 3.0 Cable Modem Plus AC1900 Dual Band Wi-Fi Router, Certified for Xfinity, Spectrum, Cox & More (SBG6950AC2)

This is the "smaller" brother of the two. As mentioned earlier, this model has a slightly lower performance than the SBG7400AC2.

ARRIS SURFboard (24x8) DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem Plus AC2350 Dual Band Wi-Fi Router, approved for Cox, Spectrum, Xfinity & more (SBG7400AC2)
ARRIS SURFboard (24x8) DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem Plus AC2350 Dual Band Wi-Fi Router, approved for Cox, Spectrum, Xfinity & more (SBG7400AC2)

At the time of writing the price difference between the SGB6950AC2 and this is model is slightly over $30. Many of my friend felt that since this is a one time cost and they will be using the product for a long time, the additional $30 is a worthwhile investment.


If you are planning to upgrade but find that it is not the right time to invest in a Wave 2 technology now, here are some other good 802.11ac Wave 1 gateways from Arris that you may want to find out if it better suits you.

Did you managed to find the information you are looking for here?

See results

Does Wave 2 meet your current needs?

See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)