Plex Media Server and NAS – Frequently Asked Questions about Data Storage

Helping you solve your Problems with a NAS Plex Media Server

NAS for PlexHere at NASCompares, we get all manner of questions from users trying to make the most of their data storage environment. We truly believe there is no such thing as a small or silly question and encourage users to get in touch with their questions about NAS, DAS, Thunderbolt, SSD, Hard Drives and more. 

Following up our previous FAQs on Thunderbolt, HDD and NAS, today we want to look again at the most popular subject of 2017 so far – a PLEX NAS Media Server. From the home user who wants a NAS to centralize their media collection to the much larger scale user who wants to share their 1080p media collection to friends and families devices worldwide! Whatever your Plex needs, it can be a very intimidating subject and you want to know what you are buying can do the job you need before buying your first NAS. Don’t worry, NASCompares to the rescue. Below are a number of the most common questions about the right Plex Media Server NAS. There will be more added over time so without further ado, let’s solve your Plex problems!

What is the Newest NAS for a Plex Media Server?

the-qnap-ts-451a-versus-the-qnap-ts-451-old-vs-new-in-this-qnap-nas-comparison-1 I am considering buying a NAS to run a small basic Plex server, I am considering buying the
QNAP TS-451+.

Before investing in the NAS I just wanted to ask if you are aware of any new and upcoming NAS”s which are due to be release early this year in a similar price/performance bracket and whether i would be better of waiting or buying now.

Many Thanks,

Thank you for your enquiry Adam,

In terms of cost v power, this is definitely the best current NAS available in it’s range and we have no knowledge of a comparable NAS being released in the near future. You can find the unit here –  product/Qnap-Desktop-NAS-TS-451+-2G-4-Bay-RAID-0-1-5-6-2GB-RAM-~51039

Kind regards,

Best Low Price NAS for a Plex Media Server and Downloads?


qnap-ts-453a-perfect-plex-surveillance-and-vm-nas-featuring-4k-transcodingI am replacing a Synology DS214SE as it is too slow to run Plex properly in particular, but very, very slow in general. When playing movies and tv shows on the Samsung Smart TV it works most of the time, but on my Samsung Tab S2 and on other devices it does not, “The server is not powerful enough to convert the video” (if you could advice why it works on the TV but not anything else that would also be great) .
I have looked at the QNAP TS-x53A and haven”t really found anything better at the price range. I haven”t quite decided if I want a 2 or a 4 disk yet, however. From Synology I couldn”t see something rivalling it, but I am likely wrong.
Used mainly for plex, automatic downloads (I use an RSS feed and download manager to accomplish this on my Synology), but I would also like to set up automatic sync of certain folders between my PC and the NAS (e.g. the Music folder). What would be your recommendation?

And if I do end up with a QNAP, how much of a pain would it be to move my data from one to the other? I assume it is not as easy as changing the disk across.

I am looking forward to hearing from you. Happy new year.

Kind regards,
QNAP TS253AThank you for your enquiry Daniel

You would be correct, price vs power and ability, you would be hard pushed to better the TS-23A and TS-453A. Both units are near enough identical (with the only difference being a front mounted LCD panel and 4x LAN on the 4-Bay.

Regarding transferring data, you are right once again, it is not as simple as a straight forward drie swap, but whether you buy new drives and carry it over as one network drive to another via your PC/Mac, or house the existing data on a 3rd party drive and recall after housing the old drives in the new NAS, you will be able to contact our post sales support team after purchase and they can talk you through a number of options at no additional cost. 

Kind regards,

Best 4 Bay QNAP NAS for Plex and Backing up my Go Pro and DSLR?

go pro which nas is best plex Hello, found your site on youtube and love the videos.

Been looking at the Qnap 4 drive bay range 451a and 453a. Just I am struggling to choose, I am mainly going to backup my GoPro and DSLR footage and photos.
Maybe using Plex to showcase

In your opinion what would be the best solution

TS-451A-2G FOR PLEXThank you for your enquiry James,

Of those two I would certainly recommend the TS-451+A, as not only does it have an excellently suitable x86 CPU and expandable RAM options, but alsois a good platform for Plex, NAS Surveillance and as a HDMI Media Centre to share/distrubute your media locally or over your network

Additionally those unit currently includes a promotional item in the QNAP QGenie (11/12/16), a mobile NAS unit that includes an SSD, Internal battery, SD Card slot (same as the TS-451+A itself), PowerBank for USB devices, NAS syncing with other QNAP devices and more. This device is included with the QNAP TS-451+A absolutely FREE, however I should add that this has sold rather well over the holiday break and as soon as we giveaway all the QGenies, we will not be getting more, so I would recommend early ordering.

Here is the NAS –  product/Qnap-Desktop-NAS-TS-451+A-2G-4-Bay-RAID-0-1-5-6-2GB-RAM-~58871

He are the details of the QGenie –  product/Qnap-Qgenie-Mobile-NAS-QG-103N-NAS+USB3+WiFi-with-built-in-flash-32GB~45960

And here is the NAS pre-populated with 4TB NAS Enabled HDDs (includes a full build and test service at no additional cost) –  product/Qnap-Desktop-NAS-TS-451+A-2G-4-Bay-RAID-0-1-5-6-2GB-RAM-~58871/spanstor=41629

Best NAS for Plex, Streaming to mu Sonos System, DLNA and MacBook Pro?

Sonos system NAS which is best plexHi
I am new to NAS so finding your site was a real help.
I want to be able to stream music to a Sonos system, stream movies to a up to 3 TVs and store and access photos.
I would like to be able to access the material from Macbook Pro, iPad Pro and iPhone.
I would also like to be able to access the material remotely i.e when I am away from home.

Storage needs are Music – 200Gb, Movies – 1Tb, Photos – 500Gb.

I have heard of Plex as being a relevant piece of software to achieve some of the above.
It appears from Rob”s videos as if Sinology might suit.
Could you advise? Many thanks

The Synology DS916+ Unboxing, Walkthrough and Talkthrough 1Joe,
Thank you for your enquiry Joe

For your requirements I would recommend the If the DS916+ as the best choice. Also the the DS916+ can also transcode 4k (though not in PLEX, but natively). Regarding drives, I would recommend 4TB WD Red Hard Drives, and also seeing them up in a RAID 5 or SHR environment. Then you can distribute the data/files/directories easily and have a redundant solution in case if hard drive failure.

Lastly, I have included a link below to the 916+ and drives (with 4x drives but you can remove one at checkout. But keep the free build and test service) but also selected the 8GB RAM model, as if you plan to run will the tasks you mentioned at the same time, it will vastly improve performance.

Kind regards,

Upgrading to a new NAS from my old HP Server for Plex?

hp n40l alternative for plex qnap server help
Hi all, I have had a hp n40l for quite some time now and it”s getting a bit old. 

I am after a new server that can transcode 1080p plex to another client in a different Hosue and also watch 1080p from my living room at the same time with out any trouble. My connection is
42mbps down 
10mbps up 
The other Hosue is 
20 Mbps down 
6Mbps up
If this makes a difference.

I have been looking at 2 bay qnap”s for about a year now and it”s time to get one I only have about £350 Not including HDD I have some old 2tb that will do at the moment

the-qnap-tvs-473-tvs-673-and-tvs-873-gold-series-nas-update-release-and-price-2Thank you for your enquiry David

If you wish to have full HD Media access for your colleague over plex, whilst still having full HDMI connectivity of your media locally, at the same time. You will need a mid to high end powered NAS. There are a few available, but I would recommend at this time the newly released QNAP TVS-473 as it will perform these tasks comfortably as well as provide a huge assortment of other NAS options, all of which can be used at the same time. The TVS-473 can be found below (along with Hard Drive buy options, all of which are installed, tested, firmware installed, RAID built and bad sector cheking is done at no extra cost).

TVS-473 –  product/Qnap-Desktop-NAS-TVS-473-8G-4-Bay-RAID-0-1-5-6-8GB-RAM-AMD-RX-421BD-~59548

Additionally here is some more information on this from our blog –  product/Qnap-Desktop-NAS-TVS-473-8G-4-Bay-RAID-0-1-5-6-8GB-RAM-AMD-RX-421BD-~59548

Finally, here is a voucher for £20 0ff this unit – NEWQNAP (valid untill the end of 2016 and  on the TVS-473)

Kind regards,

Best Plex Media Server NAS for my iPads, Roku, Chromecast and Apple TV?

ds716ii-for-plexHi i am mew in the subject NAS y wanted to get info on which would be a excellent option NAS for plex server. 
I use windows and ipads and have roku chromecast and appletv 4. 

Thank you for your enquiry Mariano,

The two most popular choices for PLEX at this time for a simple yet powerful 2-Bay NAS soluiton for Plex are:

The QNAP TS-253A and 2x 6TB –  product/Qnap-Desktop-NAS-TS-253A-8G-2-Bay-RAID-0-1-8GB-RAM-~52840/spanstor=45997

The Synology DS716+II with 2x 6TB –

Additionally, here is a voucher code to use at checkout to get £10 off your order – 2016NAS

Kind regards,


Best NAS for Plex and CCTV Network Surveillance?

Which NAS to buy for Plex The Full Compatibility List for Synology, QNAP, Asustor, Netgear, WD PMS QNAP PLHi,

I am looking for a 4 drive NAS to use at home as a plex media center and a CCTV storage device. Which NAS would you suggest ?

Also which hard disks should be used in this type of an application. 



The Synology DS916+ Unboxing, Walkthrough and Talkthrough 5Thank you for your enquiry Swapnil,

Based on your NAS needs, I have no hesititation in recommending the Synology DS916+ (8GB) as it has an exceptional Intel x86 CPU inside which is great for Plex as well as arriving with completely free and user friendly Surveillance software included. You can find the unit here with WD Red NAS Hard Drives. These drives are designed for 24/7 use and are very well suited to sporadic read/write and long term power usage –

Kind regards,

Can you recommend a Plex Media Server NAS that can also support 5 IP Cameras?

YI Dome Camera Pan Tilt Zoom Wireless IP Security Surveillance System 720p HD Night VisionHi, 

I am looking for a NAS that is powerfull enough to support an IP camera setup of 5 cameras and at the same time can function as a plex server. (so I assume a mininmal of I3 processor?)

Can you guys advice me on what to get and what the prices are? (Lets say approx. 4 drives in a raid 1 or 10 setup?)

Thanks in advance.

ds916for-plexThank you for your enquiry Richard,

You have two options in terms of a mid-range 4-Bay NAS. Yes, a i3 would certainly perform these tasks exceptionally well, and I have no hesitiation in recommending the QNAP TVS-471 with 4x 4TB WD Red here –

However if you wish this pushes your budget a little too far, I would recommend the Synology DS916+ and the same drives as an alternative –

The Synology is noticably lower in price, but you will have more future proofing in the QNAP NAS. If you would like improved prices, please supply me with your name, company name (if applicable), address and a contact number. Then I can get the quote and delivery arranged for you. Alternatively you can place this order online but when you reach the payment screen, select ‘Quote Request’ (no payment or payment details will be taken) and a member of our sales team with arrange this for you.

Kind regards,

Best NAS for a Plex Media Server, 4K Media and Virtual Machines?

Dear SpanDotCom, 

Which qnap would you reccommend which can be used as a home server. Though it should be able to work as following: 
1: Multimidea through plex, twonky and xbmc. and be able to run 4K resolutions 
2: Virualization station (be able to run vmdk”s)
3: 4 or 2 bays. 

I was thinking of ts453A . But just wanted to confirm if that is the right choice. Do you think it would be a good idea to wait for the new qnap procucts launching in 2017? I just want to be sure that my investment is done in a proper way 🙂 

Thanks in advance and looking forward to hear from you.

Kind Regards

The QNAP TVS-473 Gold NAS 4-Bay Unboxing, featuring AMD R7 virtualisation vmware

Thank you for your enquiry Mudassar,

That is the popular choice for VMs, Plex, 4K and Kodi/XMBC. However as good as the QNAP TS-253A and TS-453A are, if you want 3-5 years of future proofing, I would recommend the The TVS-463. With either device, fo VMs, I would highly recommend at least 8GB of RAM. See links below:

TVS-463-8G –  product/Qnap-Desktop-NAS-TVS-463-8G-4-Bay-RAID-0-1-5-6-8GB-RAM-~47977

TS-453A-8G –

Lastly, regarding capacity, I would recommend no less than 12TB (giving you 9TB of storage in a RAID 5 environment). 

Kind regards,


Choosing the Right QNAP 4-Bay for a Plex Media Server?


Enjoying your video”s and have come to a point of pretty much wanting a Qnap NAS for my Plex media server. I”ve largely settled on the TS-451+ but not sure which variation is best for me (price/performance consideration)

I”m looking at the TS-451+ and the TS-451+A

your review of the 451+ holds it in very high regard, but is it slightly older now and the 451A is the better NAS?

I will go 4Gb on either one I choose.

The QNAP TS-451A USB 3.0 DAS and NAS Walkthrough and Talkthrough with SPAN 2Thank you for your enquiry Gareth

The 453A is older, yes. But this unit is the superior of the to units and you certainly get more for your money. These two units have been released approx 10 mnths apart so that isn’t a huge amount of time. Lastly, you get more software options in terms of sirveillance camera licences, dual OS Linux options and dual HDMI on the TS-453A. If I was in your shoes, that is where I would want my data! Both units are on sale at the moment and that ends Monday.

Here is the unit –

Remember that if you buy this unit with drives (by selecting the capacity in TB on the page) we will include our build and test service that ensures you have all firmware, installation, RAID configuration and integrity checks down at no additional cost.

Kind regards,


Best Netgear NAS for a Plex Media Server?

Readynas 312Good morning, I”m looking at upgrading my NAS to a more modern version. I currently have a Readynas 312 and mainly use it for Plex Media Server.
Reason for change is that we are having problems with remote playing (buffering etc.).
I have looked at a few of your videos and I feel that the Readynas may be under powered in comparison to some other makes and models.
Can you advise what 2 bay NAS would be adequately powered to transcode 1080p etc. and not struggle.
I”m not looking for cheap and nasty but not wanting to spend stupid.
Can you help???


TS-253A-8G FOR PLEXThank you for your enquiry Mark

You are right not to compromise. If you are looking for a 2-Bay for transcoding 1080p in Plex or Natively, I would recommend the Synology DS716+II or the QNAP TS-253A-4G (links below and include 2x 4TB drives, which can be removed if you already have drives). If you budget is stretched, then I would recommend the QNAP TS-251+, but this unit will not run 4K well and has half the RAM of the TS-253A. T


Kind regards,


On a Plex Media Server is RAID better of individual HDD for Music, Movies and Pictures?

The Asustor AS3204T Multimedia NAS 4-Bay Unboxing and Walkthrough 13 Hi,

I am looking at buying one of these, a DS416Play, DS916+ or the DS1515. Would be mainly used as a Plex server that would need to transcode mainly 1080p videos and file backup storage, in the future maybe using the 2 surveillance cameras licences. 

I was thinking of 1 x HHD for my movies, then 1 x HHD for my TV shows and 1 x HHD for my file backups which would leave me 1 spare for future camera or more storage. I do keep offsite backups of my TV, movie and file HHD”s.

Can you please recommend what would suit these needs?


The Synology DS916+ Unboxing, Walkthrough and Talkthrough 2If the three NAS devices you mention. The DS1515+ and DS916+ are the best choice, as both will provide transcoding for HD video in PLEX. However the DS916+ can also transcode 4k (though not in PLEX, but natively). Regarding drives, I would recommend 4TB WD Red Hard Drives, and also seeing them up in a RAID 5 or SHR environment. Then you can distribute the data/files/directories easily and have a redundant solution in case if hard drive failure.

Lastly, I have included a link below to the 916+ and drives (with 4x drives but you can remove one at checkout. But keep the free build and test service) but also selected the 8GB RAM model, as if you plan to run will the tasks you mentioned at the same time, it will vastly improve performance.

Kind regards,

Which is better for my NAS – Plex or Kodi?

Plex vs KODI for your media on a NAS or Media ServerHi
I watched your Kodi vs Plex video with interest.
I have sld my mac min with Plex server installed and bought an Nvidia Shield. I have an icy dock with a 3tb drive and also a basic external drive of 4th. Both are USB and not NAS.

When you mentioned having a NAS with a decent chip I began to realise I was not as informed as i”d like. My theory was that the Shield did the transcoding therefore wasn”t really concerned about the NAS device.

If i am going to stream 4k video, should I be concerned?? Only reason I am going NAS is that accessing external drives attached to the Shield on a network is tricky (I am told). Some advice on what to buy would be very useful, thank you. Sam

cea-4k-ultra-hd-logosGood afternoon Sam,
Thank you for your enquiry. Glad you enjoyed the videos. If you are looking at transcoding 4k via Plex, you will have to look into NAS devices that feature quite impressive CPUs. The majority of the quad core Intel chips being used in the likes of the popular QNAP TS-453A, TS 251+ and Synology DS916+ can transcode HD media upto 1080p, but will struggle with 4K via Plex. However they DO transcode natively ) using the proprietary app for example). There are a number of NAS options open to you but the costs are quite diverse, as does the tasks they are geared towards outside of Plex.

I would recommend that you respond with a rough idea of your budget (with or without drives?) Along with your details. Then I can pass it to a colleague in the sales team who will supply you with the best NAS for your needs, as well as the best possible prices available. Thank you for 

Kind regards,

Best Plex Media Server NAS for £250?

NAS to buy for Plex 2017 Compatibility List for Synology, QNAP, Asustor, Netgear, WD and moreHi there,

I would like to start using a NAS as a home Plex media server – I have a budget of approx £250 (for the NAS itself).

which NAS unit would you recommend?



Good afternoon Gordon,
Thank you for your enquiry. For the very best possible Plex Media Server in this price range, I would recommend the QNAP TS-251+as it will perform transcoding in a PMS (Plex Media Server) with HD media very well indeed. Also it is one of our top 10 NAS devices of the year (see here –

If you would like this item and to ensure you have it by Thursday at the latest, I would recommend purchasing the unit today. If you purchase drives with the unit, we will of course include out free build and testing service. 

Kind regards,

The Synology DS216J versus The DS216se Budget NAS Comparison - Low in power but which deserves your dataDoes the Synology DS216J or DS216se Support a Plex Media Server?

Hi, I am on a budget and was hoping that you can confirm if the ds216se and ds216j support plex?

I understand that they cannot transcode but i wish to direct play only from the NAS to my samsung tv which has a plex app installed on it.


Good morning Justin,
Thank you for your enquiry. I can confirm that the DS216J does feature the Plex Application in it’s App Centre. However as you rightly point out it does not feature transcoding and would not be advised as a Plex Media Server, as I would recommend a minimum a Dual core 1.4GHz CPU and 1GB of RAM. I would recommend the Single Bay Synology DS116, as you will have a much more stable platform. You can purchase the unit empty or pre-populated here –  

Kind regards,


Best 2-Bay or 4-Bay NAS for Plex?

Qnap TS-251+ FOR PLEXHi, 

I am looking for a NAS with 2/4 Bays based on X86 and at least 2Gigs internal. I would like to run PLEX on it. 

Can you advice me on what to go for?

There are so many NAS-videos out there, that I cant honestly see through all of them.

Thank you in advance



The Synology DS716+ Unboxing is it the best NAS 2Good morning Richard,
Thank you for your enquiry and for being so precise in your requirements. This is Rob from the YouTube channel (helping out the sales and technical team) and thought I would answer your enquiry myself. For the perfect 2-Bay Plex Media Server NAS you really have two options. Have a look at the links below. Both have the hardware you need to run HD media on your PMS. The Synology is the more user-friendly of the two but is the more expensive. Whereas the QNAP require the tiniest pinch of IT knowledge, has superior Hardware and is the cheaper of the two (plus has HDMI and a remote). Of the two I would recommend the QNAP but thought I would mention both.


Kind regards,


Is the QNAP TS-253A Suitable for a Plex Media Server?


I”m looking to buy my first NAS and need a little advice on which type to buy if possible. I want to use it for backing up videos/photos, as a Plex media server (I want to access the content on multiple devices around the house and remotely) and potentially for security surveillance (I have a 4 channel DVR and don”t see the point in buying another to expand the number of camera, when the NAS could do it).

After watching your videos (which are excellent BTW) and taking in to account all the pros and conns, I decided on the QNAP-TS253. However, after reading some reviews, it seems like it may not be the best NAS for me, as the CPU appears to struggle supporting Plex (which is one of the main purposes I want it for). Could you advise if this is a genuine concern please, and if so, could you recommend an alternative NAS? Many thanks.

 Good morning Matthew,

195_1446781346_TS-2512B_Hot-swappableThank you for your enquiry. Based on your needs, I would recommend the QNAP TS-251+, upgraded to 8GB. The TS-253A is indeed an excellent NAS, but if you are less concerned with 4K Media, as well as in need of a sold HD Plex Media Server solution, then the QNAP TS-251+-8G is the right NAS for you. Strorage wise I would recommend installing 2x 4TB NAS HDDs from WD. As these are the best NAS drives (cost vs capacity) available in the market currently and you will have 8TB of media storage (or 4TB in RAID 1).


Can you recommend a Plex or Emby NAS for h.265 and 1080p?

The Synology DS916+ Unboxing, Walkthrough and Talkthrough 1I was wondering what would you recommend for us.. I want something powerful enough to stream to devices over wifi and outside the house i would like to stream h265 because of the file size. my upload is like 8mb but would like to stream at 720/1080p. . something powerful enough that its a be all end all. Download a lot but thats mainly during the night. Plex and emby…. and book servers etc. Also store my files and be able to login via uni when I”m there for files.. etc. possibly run a wordpress blog from it… Any recommendations.. 




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