NAS Buying Advice

178 followers and 61 questions

Not sure which NAS is best for you? Let me know your setup, available budget and necessary storage space. You can then either save money and avoid buying unnecessary expensive NAS or quite opposite, realise that what you intend to buy would only bring you disappointment and extra spending. Make it right the first time!

New to NAS - looking for Rack Mounted solution - large storage space?

Hi! I just upgraded our home theater systems (2 4K 7.1 systems, theater and by the pool). I hate having discs laying around and have ripped all my DVDs/BluRays to a hard drive and play through there. I currently have a Mac mini as a Plex media server connected to 4 18Tb Western Digital Drives. These connect to two different audio/video receivers and stream via two separate Apple TVs. (This is the setup that the local A/V company I used recommended, but they were not super helpful at coming up with a NAS system). I now have a rack that has 2U space still available and would love to use a dedicated server so I can access things away from home as well as stream to multiple locations in the house at the same time. I have never used a true NAS and would love some recommendations. I'm looking mainly for something with a good processing speed that can handle multiple streams concurrently, large storage space (100TB or higher), hot swappable drives would be ideal. I would also love to be able to access PDFs, Word documents, and powerpoint, and all other documents/photos from off-site. I don't know how to make that happen. Cost is not the biggest factor when deciding on a set-up, more about if it will work appropriately. The computer systems we use are Mac based, and we are iPhone users, in case that makes a difference. Thanks in advance for any help that can be given. I have been looking for weeks now and just keep getting more and more confused. I also would need some guidance in setting things up to work on our home network, as servers are still exceptionally foreign to me. I've attached a pic of the rack. Not sure if that's needed or not. (With me pointing to the 4 WD hard drive bays that are connected to the Mac mini).
New to NAS - looking for Rack Mounted solution - large storage space? New to NAS - looking for Rack Mounted solution - large storage space?
DR Drchrisdvm2009 asked on 21 June 2021, 04:07
0 answers / 0 votes / 92 views

2-Bay NAS for Video Streaming?

Hello Everyone, I'm looking for a 2-bay budget NAS for home use. The NAS will store mostly videos and photos and mostly accessed by me only. I've been using Google Drive and the amount of videos and photos that I use is nearing 2 TB. I see it growing for this year hence looking at 6-8TB of data and that will do good for at least 2026. I also need the capability to play videos from it. I'm doing 1080p videos for now but I'm not discounting the need to play 4k videos at 30 fps. I won't do 60 fps as it's not my video editing style. I'm looking into Synology since it was said that their software is top notch. I know my way around PCs. I can build and fix PCs but as much as possible, I don't want it to be a chore in terms of storing data (coming from an easy cloud based storage).
CH Cholocarlos asked on 10 June 2021, 08:50
0 answers / 0 votes / 84 views

Which NAS?

Hi all, I have been researching which NAS to buy, I know I wasn’t a four bay. My use cases would be for my business but the NAS will be at my home. We have a very mixed use, normal files and documents like spreadsheets etc but also video and audio content that we edit. Two people work from my location and I would want to give access or share files with other team members outside the office. I’m tempted to go with a synology four bay but just not sure. Would need about 40-100tb. I have gigabit internet and ASUS AX8 router. I have looked at ASUSTOR and Synology. Added: budget would be around 500-1000 , but happy to invest in more for quality or reliability Sorry in advance for how boring this question might be for you all.
TH Theo_s asked on 23 May 2021, 15:35
0 answers / 0 votes / 117 views

5/6 Bay, Capable of Transcoding 4K Files via Plex, M.2 Slots to Use as Storage Volumes?

Looking for a NAS to use at home to stream content to 1-2 MacBook Pros, 1-2 iPhones, and/or a 4K TV (LG). Would likely only have 1-2 streams at a time. Content ranges from 720 to 4K. Will also use the NAS as wireless backup via Time Machine for the two MacBook Pros. Knowing that I'll be using hardware transcoding (plan to subscribe to Plex Pass), I want to find a NAS that allows me to use an M.2 NVME SSD as a storage volume with PCIe Gen 3 capability (either with an expansion card or natively with slots), with the idea that I'd run Plex on that NVME volume and use it as a transcoding directory as well. QNAP allows M.2 volumes to be used as storage, so this should work on a QNAP device that has the right hardware. A few questions: 1. Is this overkill for my use case? 2. If it is overkill, which NAS from either QNAP or Synology would be best for the transcoding use case without the M.2 NVMEs as storage volumes? 3. If it is not overkill, which QNAP devices with PCI Gen 3 M.2 slots would work for the transcoding use case? 4. Can an iPhone or MacBook Pro direct-stream 4K content from a NAS? Thanks!
NA Namiry asked on 14 April 2021, 23:29
0 answers / 0 votes / 203 views

DS220j enough?

I have been looking into buying a Synology NAS for one main purpose. Since Google decided to start charging for Photos I decided to make a local vault. My question is easy, is a DS220j enough for this? I only request that Moments/Synology Photos (later on) runs good, other apps are only bonus. Its for me and my wife and mainly our phone photos/videos. Once in a while also our DSLR camera. We have about 600 GB of photos/videos on a WD MyCloud today (and also on Google Photos). I absolutly want face recognition and would also prefer subject recognition to work. Will a DS220j do the job? Thanks, Roger
RO Rogera asked on 14 April 2021, 08:44
0 answers / 0 votes / 159 views

Synology Desktop NAS for Plex 4k movie streaming?

I have a Synology DS414+ and the CPU is showing its age. I currently have 5 cameras running with Surveillance Station and use my Synology for backups and it also houses my video library. I am looking to upgrade to a new NAS and was originally looking at the DS920+, then started looking at some of the 2021 models. I saw the NASCompares review on the new DS1621 with AMD processor. I'm glad that I saw it before pulling the trigger, as it was mentioned that the AMD processor wouldn't be able to do the decoding for Plex, which I would like my NAS to be able to handle, although realistically I will probably end up using Apple TV or a Nvidia Shield instead. The DS1621xs is price prohibitive but has a Xeon processor, which would be great vs the Celeron in every other new model. I will need the new NAS to continue running the same number of cameras through Surveillance Station. I also want to seamlessly stream 4k video through Plex, but it's seeming less realistic the more I look into this. I do not want a rack mount unit and would like to stick with Synology. I wouldn't mind having the flexibility of running a VM or 2 also.
ZM Zmaninny asked on 14 April 2021, 00:21
0 answers / 0 votes / 153 views

Ts251 8gB in UK?

I’m having problems sourcing this in UK and wondering if anyone else has had the same? QNAP have one UK supplier shown for the model but that supplier (serversdirect) have taken the order but now cite an “ongoing problem” and cannot fulfil. QNAP in the UK are telling me that they don’t offer that model in the UK any more...yet still link to serversdirect as the UK supplier for the NAS, effectively endorsing them as being able to supply it to me in the UK....at least, that’s how it feels to me. It feels a bit shabby tbh.
BR Bruceb_uk asked on 12 April 2021, 12:25
0 answers / 0 votes / 90 views

Virtual Machines + Data Server | QNAP TS-h973AX or TS-673A or TS-873A ?

[QUESTIONS] || - which NAS among these 3 NAS would you recommend for my below usage? || Happy to consider other NAS too (not rackmount, however) || - how should I set up the discs so as to achieve maximum performance from Virtual Machine? (e.g. creating a separate volume with M.2 SSD / U.2 NVMe / SSD to where Virtual Machines will be saved and run?) Plan to install 64Gb RAM and willing to upgrade PCIe peripherals such as M.2 SSD / U.2 NVMe / Display Card / 10Gb LAN if necessary. || - which display card under QNAP's Comparability List would you recommend for my usage? || [USAGE] || 1. Virtual Machines for Windows (which will be my main, daily OS) and Linux, occasional photo and video editing, gaming (e.g. GTA, FIFA) || 2. data storage & private cloud storage, with remote accessibility (~10TB and growing. RAID 5 or higher, two disc redundancy) || 3. will re-purpose my current Synology DS412+ as an offsite backup server to this new NAS || 4. hoping to create a future-proof set up || [NETWORK SETUP] || - will upgrade to Wifi 6(E) soon. 1Gb broadband for internet access || - utilizing Virtual Machine with laptop over Wifi. Occasionally docking the laptop so as to use a desktop monitor, mouse and keyboard, also over Wifi. Can consider a wired network connection if necessary. || Please excuse my newbie questions. Thank you very much for your time answering my questions.
QS Qsorrbkqqzs@maxresistance.com asked on 29 March 2021, 10:47
0 answers / 0 votes / 178 views

QNAP ts230 vs Synology 218 vs Synology 220+?

I am a first time NAS buyer for my home use. I am looking mainly for storage for my music collection & photos. Also to access my storage remotely. I also want to remove some of the strain from my laptop. I have ordered the qnap ts-230 & am waiting delivery. I am now rethinking that maybe I should have purchased the synology 218 or doubled up the price & purchased the synology 220+ ? I realize the 220+ has a faster intel processor & can expand the ram. What benefits will the 220+ provide to me? I will not need anything more than 2 bay. What would you recommend that I look at purchasing?
CH Chimper asked on 18 March 2021, 19:28
0 answers / 0 votes / 145 views

Which provider has the best phone sync app?

I'm ready to move from Enthusiast to Customer. No more juggling Docker containers and gluing with scripts. For me the killer feature is automatic backup of photos from 5 Android phones. I've tried Owncloud, Nextcloud and Syncthing but never really felt relaxed. For a while the Plex phone app looked promising until is was revealed that the app had to be active for the sync to run. Here's my workflow: When a phone takes a picture or shoots a video, it should automatically be sent to the NAS. Shortly after, the other phones connected to the same NAS, can see the new photo/video - either in their own app or in a web gui. I don't need my NAS for surveillance, transcoding, torrenting. Which provider has the best phone app (Exclusively Android). Very much appreciated!
MA Mappo asked on 10 March 2021, 09:07
1 answers / 0 votes / 208 views

4k Plex server PC or NAS?

I am getting ready to build a 4k Plex server. I want a mostly prebuilt solution that I can add drives to and be off an running. I do like the idea of SHR or Drobo's beyond raid to add storage down the road. What are your suggestions for building a long term 4k Plex server?
PL Plex4kuser asked on 10 March 2021, 06:35
1 answers / 0 votes / 290 views

Recommendation for Upgrading from DS1513+?

Hi, love the videos, thank you for what you do! I need help in a bit more direction of what to purchase. Currently, I have a DS1513+ (purchased when it first came out) I put 5 x 3TB WD Green Drives (5400rpm). I was complete newbie to the NAS world. My Drobo had died so I just purchased the first thing that was recommended to me by friends. It’s setup in SHR-2 configuration. After 7 years, it is 95% filled, the RAM was upgraded at time of purchase. Everything is sluggish. I am beginning to receive emails of bad sectors. I figured it was time to upgrade. I was initially leaning towards the RS1221+ (I have a rack in the closet) but the video you posted gave me lots to think about spending the money elsewhere. I started looking at the DS1821+, I was debating of starting fresh with either 6TB or 8TB drives (in an SHR-2) configuration. Now after watching lots of videos, I am not sure what to buy (or maybe the DS1621+)? Current uses for our NAS: it is the master archive of our home/home office/family/friends for the last decade. I have a backup to the cloud for the important things and a passport drive for the utmost emergency items (in case of death, etc). Lots of multimedia creation happens in the house, audio recordings, editing, photography sessions, we haven’t really focused on video at all. Mainly lots of audio and photos. Plex as well from time to time, not huge. The DS1513+ will be repurposed for either backup or anything else that I can mess around with. Lastly, I have Unifi Router, Access Points, and PoE switch in the house. Main computer is the M1 Mac Mini. 2 Macbook Pros, and a handful of iPads, iPhones. All of which ultimately connect to the NAS and backup to it as well. Recommendation for which Synology NAS? How much would I benefit from a RAM or NVME upgrade? Would you go with 6TB drives or 8TB drives? (I have a bad habit of buying all drives in one shot versus adding as I need) Thank you for your help!
MF Mfanous asked on 31 January 2021, 06:27
0 answers / 0 votes / 158 views

Qnap ts-453d questions?

Ok. I asked this question earlier and got a reply. "The website for Qnap shows that I can use the ts-453d with 8 cameras on a home surveillance system. Qnap says it needs 8gb ram to do so. But the 4gb specs say it will transfer 160 GB per sec, and the nas surveillance calculator shows I will need something like 48gb per sec. Can I do 8 cameras with 4gb model (I plan on upgrading to more than 8 at a later date)?" The reply I got is "IP cameras themselves do not require extra RAM. You can have 8 cameras recording with 4GB RAM with no problems. You need RAM for playback. It also depends on which software you will use to operate your cameras. If you use Surveillance Station, this app do not need much resources to run and operate. If you are looking at QVR Pro then this app will require some more resources then the other app mentioned. QVR Client is a desktop app for your computer. The requirement for 8GB RAM is mentioned for your computer if you refer to this : https://www.qnap.com/en-uk/software/qvr-pro Either way, whichever software you choose to use, you can upgrade RAM capacity at any time in the future." I have another question. So the 8gb ram requirement is for my home computer? I have never used a nas, but think the features of one (qumagie, qvr pro) are phenomenal apps. So just to be clear, using the qvr pro software, if I get the 4gb ts-453d, and have a home computer with more than 8gb of ram, I shouldn't have any problem? Does this apply to the hdmi output of the device as well? What i want to do is have the 453d in my garage inside a large safe. run a cat6 cable to my router, to be able to access it from one of 3 computers. all will have more than the 8gb of ram. when i get all of the cameras i want for a surveillance system, is all i will need then a switch? sorry for so many questions, just havent done much with networking before, but I think a nas is the best solution for the cost in my case. Thanks in advance. Also, does NasCompares have affiliate links for purchases or a patreon?
BP Bphillips35131 asked on 28 January 2021, 20:32
0 answers / 0 votes / 149 views

Can I mix these drives in my Synology 920+?

Will 5900RPM drives play nicely with 7200RPM drives, or will something go boom? I've got a 920+ with 4x 4TB 5900 drives running SHR1. I'm going to need to expand my storage soon, and I already know I don't want a DX drive (I'm not comfortable with losing another whole drive for parity if I create another volume, nor am I comfortable with a single volume reliant on a single sata cable, though feel free to try and change my mind on that point). My options are a) buy larger drives and swap them in for 2 or more of my existing drives, or b) buy a second box and more drives and manage them in a network. Right now, option b is a bit more costly than I want to go, and I was hoping to swap in 2x 8TB drives now followed by 2 more later in the year, or maybe buying a 2-bay box for the spare 4TB drives. After having read up on this, it looks like 8TB drives only come in 7200RPM flavour, and it's not advisable to mix RPMs. I have two questions on this. 1) Is it possible to mix the two RPMs, and if so, is it viable for medium term (i.e. could any potential faults/damage accumulate over the next 6-12 months or so?). 2) With SHR, will either of the 2x 8TB drives actually offer their full 8TB of space if mixed with 2x 4TB drives? Thanks to all for any help you can give. Cheers!
AN Anothernasuser asked on 23 January 2021, 16:17
1 answers / 0 votes / 378 views

NAS options for streaming with SONOS PORT?

I've found the information you provide on your site and on videos posted on Youtube very helpful. Thanks for your work. I'm new to music streaming. I have a SONOS PORT device that I'm using to stream from Spotify. Next step is to rip the ample (600-700) family CD collection and move the data to a NAS for streaming purposes. Based on the information I've seen you present and what I've seen on the Synology site, I've been focusing on the Synology DS220+. 3.5 years ago in a video you posted on the subject of choosing a NAS for purposes of streaming with SONOS devices, you suggested the DS216+ as a viable option. In the intervening years, is there any new information to indicate that the DS220+ isn't a reasonably equivalent choice? Is there something else you might suggest I consider? I also plan to use this device for basic backup of family computers (including a fair number of photos that I'd like to organize), of which there are four. Besides the additional capacity, does the DS720+ give me anything, feature-wise that might be useful enough for me to consider? I reside in the U.S. Thanks in advance.
BS Bsaffery asked on 16 January 2021, 01:37
1 answers / 0 votes / 265 views

Best NAS for iPhone camera backup?

I am about to by my first NAS. But I can not find good information about some details that are on high priority to me. I want: * Instant upload of iPhone photos and the possability to have them deleted automaticly from iphone after uploaded. * iPhone Live Photos support (on auto uploaded photos and browsing photos) * to be able to use my iPhone to browse my photo collection stored in my NAS. I plan to have nothing locally stored in my phone so there will be plenty of space for a big cache files for thumbnails. I am comfortable with configuring systems but can not really say what NAS brand that I want. But if one of them are better on my wishes above - that will be what I go for.
DA Davidfharm asked on 13 January 2021, 18:34
3 answers / 0 votes / 403 views

NAS Advice Please ?

Hi, I'm a professional photographer and movie junkie using all Mac/Apple ecosystem. Just moved to a new home with 10GB Ethernet and want to buy a NAS to keep in a storage closet. Need to keep the NAS running quiet and cool. Also trying to modernize and move away from spinning hard drives. Of my 8-10TB needs, about 4TB are image files ranging from 50MB to 2GB which I'd like fast access to. The rest are media files for deeper storage. Wondering if it makes sense to go with an all SSD solution? Or a system with SSD for main storage and HDD for Backups and Slower needs? I was also considering a NAS with Thunderbolt interface for times I wanted to connect directly, but I think with 10GBE I'm going to have plenty of speed. (I'm NOT trying to edit video!) Would like your current 2021 opinion about QNAP vs Synology. My experience in the past with Synology tech support has been horrible, but with QNAP my experience was excellent. Thank you very much for your time.
ML Mlondon asked on 10 January 2021, 23:32
0 answers / 0 votes / 150 views

I am interested in purchasing a NAS Server For Multimedia ?

Hi , I am interested in Purchasing a N.A.S Server and I have already Decided on SYNOLOGY ( Mostly Because of user friendly ) . My uses for this is mainly Media ... I mean that I have a lot of Movies And Tv Shows on PLEX which are very hard to Find again if lost , I usually buy a New HDD every 3 - 4 years For this purpose , My Home setup is all Wired by Ethernet cables 1 GIGABIT connections ( Cat 6 ) and I use Plex on a main Pc For streaming through my smart TVs , I usually stream 4K movies through Plex on a new Sony smart Tv and never gets stuck ( Never Freezes ) , I don`t use transcoding and usually stream 1 or 2 TVs at a time My main question is can a NAS Server like a DS 920 + also Preform the same way ? and do I need NVME Drives for this purpose ? So do you think that a DS-920 + will be a enough for a Home entertainment System also for 4K and More ( Like Edited Videos) ?? Thank you .
DA Daves45 asked on 29 December 2020, 21:46
0 answers / 0 votes / 188 views

TSH686 or something else?

Ive been strongly considering the QNAP TS-H686 with XeonD1602 but I did notice the tvs-672n(currently out of stock). which one should I consider? My requirements are as follows: 1. Powerful unit with future upgrade options (adding a GPU, RAM, HDD/SSD/NvME later would be a plus) 2. I plan to start off with 3-4 4TB drives as I feel the need to start small (wallet friendly), obviously with options to upgrade to higher TB drives like a 16 or 18tb 3. Should have less power usage 4. Ability to setup a private cloud out of the box. I feel the need to completely do-away with Google Drive for long term costs and privacy concerns 5. Primary files types will be photos, videos and documents. Eventually should be in a position to integrate CCTV and some home automation. 6. Most important aspect, I would prefer something that has the least to no maintenance for the next 8-10 years. Synology does not have the upgradable options and the flexibility offered by QNAP. Recommendation??
NA Nas rookie asked on 22 December 2020, 09:36
0 answers / 0 votes / 185 views

First NAS and I need to run CrashPlanPro -- QNAP or Synology?

I will soon be purchasing my first NAS and NASCompares & the YouTube videos have been invaluable. I'm not TOO technically minded, but I do use an Ubuntu Desktop as my primary computer and am an Android phone user. Though I was originally considering Synology, I now (thanks in large part to NASCompares) feel that QNAP is a better fit for me. I will have 4x12TB Seagate NAS drives and was planning on either the TS-453D (with 8GB) or the DS920+. I will primarily be using it for Plex and also storing massive amounts of photos & archive videos. I would very much like to use CrashPlan for small Business which seems to generally work on both. The comments under this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dZaTRKfETg seem to indicate that it may no longer be a working solution for CrashPlan on QNAP, but this video indicates that CrashPlan will work on Synology using Docker: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8OMN08VQ6A -- will that same Docker solution also work on QNAP via Container Station?
DI Digitzingman asked on 11 December 2020, 05:36
1 answers / 0 votes / 343 views