Most Helpful Review
Researched Cisco Catalyst Switches but chose NETGEAR Switches: When passing multicast video across the network, technicians don't have make changes
Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Catalyst Switches vs. NETGEAR Switches and other solutions. Updated: March 2020.
406,312 professionals have used our research since 2012.
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:
They don't ever fail and they have a long service life.
The most valuable feature of this solution is managed switching.
The new series has lots of great features, it's really lovely. From a management perspective, or a policy creation perspective, which we are seeing in the Catalyst 9000 series it is great.
We heavily use the SmartPort features. It has really helped us. The U.S. policies are handled by the auto SmartPort feature
It has become easier for us to troubleshoot and find issues faster in the management software for the switches. It saves us troubleshooting time because if the network is down it has a big impact on production.
Their technical support is very good. They know what to do and if they don't know what to do, they give me the person who does know.
The stability and Cisco's support are the most valuable features.
Their technical support is good, one of the best in the industry.
The ease of use of these switches is very good because of the Cisco CLI. If you are familiar with CLI, then you can configure the switch that way. It also has a relatively straightforward web interface. Using the web interface is good for beginners or people who aren't familiar with Cisco CLI. However, having a common command line interface method is great for some of our more advanced guys who are familiar with it.
The High Bandwidth AV-over-IP functionality of these switches has been fantastic, especially in leaf-and-spine. We've been able to build redundancy and they seem to outperform even the Cisco Catalyst, which is about twice as expensive as the M-series switches are.
Out-of-the-box, it works for our main use case. When passing multicast video across the network, our technicians don't have make any changes. Then, if we do need to make configuration changes for a custom scenario, the web interface is user intuitive so it's easy to use and change.
The big winner for NETGEAR is their modular switch: the 96X version. That is something that you don't see in the market anywhere else, except for Cisco who has it at a high level for a high expense. The ability to customize your own switch with their modules is a big plus for what we do in the market right now. Instead of having to piece together standardized switches, trying to make something work, or fitting the design into the mold, the modular switches are aware that you can make a mark in the industry because you purchased one switch and design with different modules added and removed later on for functionality.
The most valuable feature is definitely the fully functional IGMP snooping and querier, out-of-the-box, that the switch provides. With most if not all switches that we've worked with previously, at a minimum you have to enable a couple of different options... It's really a good feature to have that stuff enabled and fully functional out-of-the-box so that [AV techs] don't have to worry about configuring any of that stuff.
Since it has a web interface, it is easy to set up. You don't have to take three years of training somewhere for a lot of money.
The ability to mix and match is invaluable. So, we didn't have to run massive super extensive switches in the data closets where it wasn't necessary. Being able to manage it all from one place, as all your network configuration settings went live across your entire building from one management console was really handy.
You are not limited in terms of stacking ports, and especially, if you're using the 96X as a core switch, the scalability, I could see this being very large. If you're using a type of a hybrid topology with a core switch going out to multiple switch stacks, or something like that, I could see the scalability of this being very good, especially considering the kind of backplane switching capacity on the 96X.
The price is high and it should be improved.
Cisco should provide customers with a more advantageous licensing model included with the purchase of the equipment.
The current catalyst is probably outdated so we will most likely move to the newer version of the solution soon.
They should make so that they let users know five to ten minutes before productivity is restored in the case of power loss.
The newer models are not so stable. Other products like 6800, 3750, were stable but starting from 3850 it got worse. We have a lot of issues and a lot of bugs. It's a new product so it's understandable but it should be improved.
It should have better security and the prices can always be lower. The cheaper the price, the better but if the quality is good, it's worth it. They also have to improve the firewalling.
The prices are high. It's more expensive than other similar options.
To make it a ten they should simplify the licensing, add the cloud-managed feature, and it should be more cost-effective.
Being able to pass AVB traffic over these switches, that would be a huge add. There are not many switches out that support that. The GS728TP NETGEAR switches used to or still do support AVB, but it would be ideal if the 4300 Series could support it as well.
If they could come up with ways to look at metrics on it while the video is capping through the system, that would be nice. There could be some interesting uses for that, but it's a long way off.
An area for improvement would be creating a wizard that can do a lot of common stuff. Instead of having some manual configuration for common features, they may want to have a single wizard that could be put in place which would let you walk through creating multiple VLANs and different routes between VLANs in a wizard. Then, you wouldn't have to dig in so deep.
They need to continue moving forward with their consulting in the AV realm to find out what is needed. They are some differences in the M4300 line and the larger M4500 line right now. They could produce a 1 Gigabit variety that could be a bit cheaper that might fit into that, since the majority of the projects that we see are still in that 1 Gigabit bandwidth threshold. Along with that, a great option would be if it would provide the same modular ability on a lower level.
One thing I have asked for, something that NETGEAR lacks that I would love to see — and from what I understand it's in the works — is a REST API to programmatically interface with multiple switches. That would be a great feature.
The ‘how-to’ guides could do with some improvements. We got in trouble following the stacking and Dante set-up guides. If these would have been accurate, we would not have lost three days.
I would like an email notification in case of errors or failures. If it was possible for the switch to email out an error log or notification note, especially in cases where we have the switches offsite (on the other side of town), then if something was to go wrong, it would be great to know about it before our client goes to use it for a big event, and it doesn't work. While I know that it does do SNMP, which is sort of standard, in the AV world, that is not always an option for us. We are usually running our own little network box and don't always have access to an SNMP server. We may just have simple Internet access or something similar.
The IGMP specifics of the web management console could use a bit of clarification.
Pricing and Cost Advice
Try to buy everything you need in bulk purchases and ask Cisco for volume discounts.
It's very pricey. Compared to competitors, it's a lot more expensive.
The price is on the higher side.
Pricing of Cisco equipment is high, but I think these switches are worth the price.
I would rate the features-to-pricing ratio at six out of 10. My advice about licensing is that you should have a perpetual license, not one that is subscription-based.
Catalyst is very expensive.
Pricing is an issue I have been facing, in comparison with HPE or Juniper. The Nexus series is out of the question right now. Scalability is more an issue on the pricing side and less on the technology side.
Generally, Cisco Catalyst would be relatively expensive compared to the competition, it would be on the expensive side.
The price to performance of the switches is excellent. The price point of these switches is great compared to big brands, like Cisco or Extreme Networks, with approximately the same functionality.
Licensing is always a hassle and a pain point.
We find the cost of NETGEAR hardware and additional services to be below average compared to the top tier. There are still cheaper products out there, but they lack in functionality.
The pricing is great. The cost of the hardware is low... There are a few solutions that have a lower cost, but NETGEAR is very value-oriented.
They are on par with other AV switch manufacturers, e.g., Pakedge, Cisco Small Business Series, and Extreme Networks. Though, they are closer in cost to Extreme Networks. They are more in the mid-range from an AV product price, maybe a bit higher. You can't beat their features compared to other vendors in that product range and capacity. AV specific only, they are mid-range price-wise.
From a price perspective, the solution comes in higher than a small business product from their competitors. The solution is a bit higher, but it's a fraction of the cost compared to an enterprise switch. For example, a Cisco Catalyst can run approximately $13,000, where their Small Business Series may run $800 on the Cisco side. With NETGEAR, it falls in around the $1,000 to $2,000 range for most of what we use it for. Essentially, at this price point, you're getting a lot of enterprise grade features (e.g., that you would on a Catalyst) on an M4300.
Compared to other large names in the marketplace, the price of NETGEAR's product is extremely cost-effective compared to what Cisco or Extreme offer.
At its price point, nobody else can compare to what NETGEAR is doing at that 10 Gigabit bandwidth level. We are not seeing a lot of 10 Gigabit need right now in the marketplace. Though, we have done a few projects which have required it. We are still sort of at the 1 Gigabit requirement for the majority of our projects. Honestly, NETGEAR's 10 Gigabit offering has a better value than some of the other vendors' 1 Gigabit offering.
out of 18 in LAN Switching
Average Words per Review
out of 18 in LAN Switching
Average Words per Review
Compared 24% of the time.
Compared 24% of the time.
Compared 19% of the time.
Compared 39% of the time.
Compared 21% of the time.
Compared 10% of the time.
Also Known As
|Cisco Catalyst, Catalyst||NETGEAR Insight Managed Switches, NETGEAR GC Series, NETGEAR M Series|
|Web-based CRM that manages events, sales, marketing campaigns & contacts, offers customer history, case management, email integration.|
NETGEAR Ethernet Switches, branded as NETGEAR ProSafe Switches, comes in all shapes and sizes, so you are sure to find the right solution to fit your business requirements.
If you're a small to medium sized company, you'll have three switching options NETGEAR Unmanaged, Plus, and Smart Switch solutions. If you're managing a large enterprise network or a campus network, then NETGEAR Fully Managed Infrastructures is the solution for you. All the NETGEAR Ethernet Switches and solutions are innovative, easy to install and use, reliable, and very cost-effective.
Learn more about Cisco Catalyst Switches
Learn more about NETGEAR Switches
|Afni, Anilana Hotels and Resorts, Baylor Scott & White Health, Beachbody, Bellevue, Del Papa Distributing, Explorer Pipeline, Mindtree, Omaha World Herald, Radio 538, Sony Corporation, Telecom Italia, Telenor Arena||Blaze Networks|
Financial Services Firm14%
Comms Service Provider14%
Comms Service Provider30%
Software R&D Company20%
Financial Services Firm9%
Software R&D Company18%
Comms Service Provider13%