NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 Cable Modem Reviews

NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 Modem Reviews

One of the first multi-gig modems released, the NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 delivers speeds up to 2 Gbps. This makes the CM1200 a future-proof modem. It is compatible with all XFINITY residential and Comcast business internet. The CM1200 also has 4 built-in gigabit ports for Multi-IP address support, not for routing.

Above all, the Netgear Nighthawk cable modem CM1200 is built for Gigabit internet service plans available today and ready for future upgrades.

NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 Overviews

NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200-100NAS is a wireless cable modem router that has DOCSIS 3.0 and speeds up to 343Mbps, which supports 8 downstream and 4 upstream channels. It’s compatible with major Internet service provides like Comcast/Xfinity, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications, and more (for detailed compatibility check the table below).

The company and model name of the device might be the same as those of conventional routers but NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 (“Nighthawk”) is designed exclusively for high-speed cable internet plans. A majority of people still use conventional routers for cable internet but they can’t deliver the highest possible speed as compared to cable modems because cable modems are optimized for performance.

NETGEAR CM1200 Quick Specs View

Top Compatible Speed2 Gbps
DOCSIS Version3.0 / 3.1
Bonded Channels32×8 / 2×2

NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 Reviews


The CM1200 is a decently sized router, being significantly larger than most other competitors on the market. On the top of the router are two short antennae, each with two LEDs on them indicating line/activity. Beneath those are four LAN ports and one WAN port, all neatly lined up in a row beneath the antennas.

The back of the router holds most of its important components. On the left-hand side is a USB 3.0 port for connecting to devices, an on/off button, and a reset button. To the right is where you can find four more LAN ports, one additional WAN port, another USB 2.0 port (for printers apparently), power input, and a power button with an LED indicator. Overall it’s decently sized compared to other routers I’ve used in the past but it’s also significantly larger than most modern smartphone models so space-wise it would be hard to fit.

Firmware Updates

If this router’s firmware is already up-to-date then please disregard this section as it won’t apply to you but if not then please read on. For those who do have out-of-date firmware, you will have to go to the “Main” tab in your control panel and scroll down a bit until you find an option listed as “Router Update”. Click on that and follow the instructions.


The CM1200 is about an average to slightly below range when it comes to specs; it features 802.11ac support at up to 600Mbps, three external antennae that can be aimed in different directions (but not detachable), and runs off of AC 1200 (a bit lower than other routers on the market now that are running off AC1750 to AC2400).


The user interface for the CM1200 is a bit faster and streamlined than other Netgear routers I’ve used. It gets right to the point with a mostly dark screen, offering you quick access to things like QoS, advanced settings, or Wi-Fi setup. The router also has a built-in speedometer that calculates your Internet speed based on how many devices are connected to each of the five Ethernet ports at once (rather helpful when trying to figure out if your network slowdown is from the ISP or from an overloaded device), as well as a control panel where you can see all sorts of information about how your WiFi works and what clients are connected to it in general.


The CM1200 is a solid router that can be found for about $150. For those that balk at the price tag but still want to support Netgear’s Nighthawk series, there are several other routers on the market also running 802.11ac that cost significantly less than the CM1200.

CM1200 Setup and Activation

NETGEAR CM1200 Bottom Panel View

The Bottom View of the CM1200 XFINITY Modem Shows the MAC Address and Serial # For Setup

Setting up the NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 is fairly easy with Comcast’s Online Activation Tool. Once you have your new cable modem connected, wait for at least 10 minutes and proceed. The easiest way to activate your new modem is with the XFINITY App. Otherwise, open a web browser and you should automatically be taken to the XFINITY Self-Activation page. Read more on How to Activate a New XFINITY Modem.

NETGEAR CM1200 Support & Manuals

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is the NETGEAR CM1200 a Modem & Router?

No. The Ethernet ports on the back of the CM1200 are for Link Aggregation / Port Forwarding support. Link Aggregation is a new technology that readies today’s devices for future network speed upgrades. This is accomplished by combining two separate IP addresses and two separate Ethernet ports.

2. What should I do if a red light keeps flashing on the modem?

If a red light keeps flashing it means there’s a problem with the power source or broadband service. Switch off and unplug the power source for 30 seconds and try again. If the issue persists please contact Comcast or Cox.

3. How do I protect my network?

You can use our Wireless Security Setup page or configure a WPA2 passphrase on your WiFi router. In addition, you will need to install a program that monitors networks into your PC as if someone else has access to your wireless network they can intercept data from it, which could consist of passwords, online banking accounts, etc. In order to protect yourself from these intruders we recommend you install Windows 7/8/8.1 or higher Bitdefender Antivirus 2017, also make sure to enable a firewall in windows settings as well as on the Router itself! Further info here:

4. How do I update the firmware?

You can easily check for updates by logging into your router, which you’ll need to do using an Ethernet cable. Once there go to Administration > Firmware upgrade, and choose the current version from the drop-down menu. Click on the upload button and wait until it finishes updating. If the light is red please turn off the modem(unplug power source) for 30 seconds and plug it back in! If green refresh page!


Many people have been asking me what the difference is between the NETGEAR Nighthawk CM1200 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem and other popular models on the market. In this article, I hope to show you how this modem works, why it’s special, and why I’ll be using it in my home too!

We all know that we need a cable internet connection to use our internet service providers (ISP), but many do not realize that we also need a separate device at home to actually get online: a broadband modem/gateway.

The main job of this device is to take your coaxial (Cable TV) or optical fiber (FIOS) signal from outside your home and translate it into a signal that your router can use. The latest standard for this is DOCSIS 3.0, and the CM1200 is one of the first models to support it.

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