Top 3 NAS for 4K and 1080p Media of the Year
One of the most popular uses for a NAS drive in 2018 continues to be for multimedia. Whether it is 4K and 1080p movies, smooth playback of albums and playlists, or easy cataloguing and viewing of last photo albums, a NAS drive is a great way of centralising your media collection in a single location that can be accessed anywhere by the network or the internet. Additionally, thanks to technology such as RAID and multiple backup technology (versioning, snapshots, etc) data held on a network attached storage device is safe in a number of ways. The decision to move your media to a more centralised platform in a NAS, so you can access it wirelessly on all the devices in your home or via mobile anywhere in the world is not one to be taken easy and for many will be a large investment. Finding the right bargain during 2018 for a NAS drive is only have the job and you need to make sure you buy a device that will do the job you need.
Key factors to bear in mind should be:
Capacity – how much storage are you going to need now and in the future. Choosing the right NAS should also factor in how much storage space in terabytes(1000 Gigabytes) you are going to need now and in the future. When you buy a new box set or movie, the last thing you want is to have no space to store it.
Access – having your media on a NAS is only the first step and of course, the way in which you wish to access your media is important. Some NAS will only let you access your media Via the network or the internet. Others provide features and functionality, such as HDMI and audio output, which mean you can access your media in a far more local and direct fashion. Be sure to choose the NAS that suits your ideal setup.
Playback – The device and software that you want to use to watch your media is important too and different NAS devices will provide a varying level of support in terms of playback. Some NAS brands like Synology have produced considerably more first party multimedia applications for you to enjoy your media on a multitude of devices in and out of the home. Whereas other NAS brands such as QNAP choose to offer fewer first-party apps, but better support of third-party applications such as ‘Plex media server’ and ‘My media’ for Amazon Echo. Be sure to choose the right NAS for your prefered playback method.
QNAP TVS-1282 NAS Drive for 4K and 1080p Media – £££
0-128TB, 12-Bays of HDD, 4 Bays of 2.5″ SSD, 2-Bays of M.2 SSD, Intel i3/i5/i7 CPU, 16-64GB DDR4 Memory, 4K HDMI, 2x PCIe, Audio In/Out, Blu-Ray and Thunderbolt 3 Versions Available £1500-2300+ ex.VAT
If it wasn’t for the fact that it has largely been declared ‘End of Life’, the QNAP TVS-882BR-ODD would easily be my favourite NAS for multimedia (I recommended it two years in a row in my best of series). However, in its absence, I have no hesitation in recommending the very next best thing in the QNAP TVS-1282 Powerhouse NAS. QNAP has made real strides in recent years to cater too as many multimedia users as possible, from direct-attached users to network and internet media streamers.
Although it has been released for over a year, the QNAP TVS-1282 is still one of the most powerful and impressive NAS server devices in a very, very long time. It has appeared in several ‘Top NAS of the year lists in 2017 and 2018’ for everything that is enterprise and modern in NAS. The device even branched out into numerous versions that further improved the hardware abilities of this NAS, such as:
- Thunderbolt 2 NAS
- Thunderbolt 3 NAS
- 10Gbe NAS
- Blu-ray read and write Optical Media NAS
- Compact SSD NAS
- Tape loader based NAS
In short TVS-1282 is a NAS that is constantly surprising. In fact, there is even an Easter Egg like quality to this NAS in that more recent units with recent serial numbers have had an improved CPU installed of a 7th Gen i5 or i7 CPU (due to shortages of that desirable CPU) that QNAP did not even advertise to consumers. So this means that buying now, even a year+ after official release can be an advantage! For those more interested in the storage capabilities of this NAS than anything else, then you will be pleased to know the system features three kinds of storage media in hard drives, 2.5” SSD and M2 SSD. With this varied media populating the device and tiered storage enabled, the system is intelligent enough to identify which media needs to be moved or copied to the right layer of storage. This combined with the link aggregation across for LAN ports or Utilising 10Gbe or thunderbolt options, means that any bottleneck, both internally and externally being removed. This combined with an exceptional CPU and memory options, as well as an insanely well-ventilated desktop chassis keeping things cool, means you are looking at some truly insane throughout for handling all kinds of environments.
Oh, and did I mention you can install a graphics card?!? Perfect for Deep Learning and AI applications.
QNAP TVS-872XT NAS Drive for 4K and 1080p Media- £££
0-128TB, 8-Bays, 2x NVMe SSD Bays, 8th Gen 6-Core i5 CPU, 16-32GB DDR4 Memory, HDMI 2.0, 2x PCIe (inc TB3), USB 3.1 Gen 2, USB-C, 2x 1Gbe, 1x 10Gbe, 2x Thunderbolt 3 £1600+ ex.VAT
The QNAP TVS-872XT newest generation Thunderbolt 3 NAS has finally arrived here at NASCompares and although we have seen alot of inventive network attached storage from these guys, pretty much as soon as we heard about the TVS-x72T series, we knew it was something special. Thunderbolt-enabled NAS drives are not new and in fact, QNAP themselves first released the original Thunderbolt NAS (the TVS-871T) back in 2014/15 and at the time it was seen as a huge gamble. NAS drives are typically designed to be accessed via the network or the internet, with occasional compensations being made for HDMI and Audio ports for media. The idea of the popular photography and video editing connection, Thunderbolt, being used as a means of connecting to your NAS storage was a popular idea but technically thought impossible. Luckily QNAP pushed through this and here we are at the closing stages of 2018 to look at the latest and possibly greatest Thunderbolt NAS yet. The QNAP TVS-872XT includes practically every new and top-tier innovation of hardware and software that they have developed in the last 5 years, coupled with a few new ones.
The QNAP TVS-872XT is a NAS drive that has taken the elite and overpowered attitudes that were previously the hallmarks of the Thunderbolt 3 NAS range and turn it into something a great deal more mature and accessible to mid-range users. Till now, if you wanted access to the full features and functionality of a fully equipped thunderbolt and 10Gbe enabled 4K NAS, you were forced to either compromise too much with the TS-453BT3 or break the bank with the TVS-1282T3. Thanks to this new QNAP TVS-872XT NAS however, you no longer need to compromise and have access to a much more balanced and well equipped NAS platform for photo and video editing post-production in 2019.
This new 8 bay thunderbolt equipped NAS is about quality, not quantity and although may lack the wider coverage of users that the TVS-1283T3 has, it makes up for it with a much, much better and higher dedicated performance to those fewer connected users. What the XT series brings to the NAS industry is to fill a much-needed gap in the thunderbolt NAS portfolio and gives users an important choice between the existing product family. It is worth mentioning that you lose out on the 3rd tier of storage offered by the 82T series, as well as the long-term future proofing it offers for PCIe upgrades to the GPU and adding high-speed users later – but unless you think this is a necessary possibility in the next 3-4 years, you should save your money and go for the QNAP TVS-872XT. Easily in my top 3 NAS of 2018 and going forward into 2019.
Synology DS3617xs NAS for 1080p and 4K Multimedia – £££
0-192 TB, 12-Bays that are expandable to 36 Bays NAS, Xeon 4-Core CPU, 16-64GB DDR4 ECC Memory, 4x LAN, PCIe Upgrade £2000+ ex.VAT
I know, I know – this NAS is now almost 3 years old and has been in the top 3 Plex NAS drives from Synology for the last few years over and over, BUT HEAR ME OUT. No strangers to network Attached Storage, one of the most popular NAS brands in the world, Synology unveiled their most ambitious enterprise desktop NAS ever back at the start of 2017- The 12-Bay DS3617xs DiskStation NAS. It was a real change of scene for their range and a follow up to the business niche DS3615xs NAS of 2015. Unlike the older unit though, this was no small step in terms of hardware, but a GIANT LEAP for NAS kind. With so many NAS devices being released from Synology in their Diskstation series, we thought it was shining a light on what is still the most POWERFUL desktop NAS they have ever released. It’s breathtakingly powerful hardware, coupled with the latest release of Synology DSM 6.2 software (DSM 7.0 in beta next year) for business applications will really make this the standalone enterprise and business choice for NAS applications even this late in 2019.
For those looking a NAS that will have enough storage to last upwards of 10 years, as well as specifications that will still be tip-top in 5 years time – the Synology DS3617xs is the perfect storage NAS for you. This is especially true for those who wish to buy a NAS primarily for multimedia, such as a 4K Plex media server, 1080p and 4K video editing, cataloguing hundreds of thousands of raw photos taken for business and all the while maintaining high IOPs and access speeds. The DS3617xs from Synology is still one of the most powerful desktop capacity-focused network-attached storage devices I have ever seen and arrives with 12 available hard drive bays of storage. The internal hardware is the very best that Synology has ever included in the desktop NAS in the form of an Intel Xeon quad-core processor and up to 64 Gigabytes of memory (DDR4 ECC too!).
It includes such features as an available PCI-e slot for adding 10Gbe and even features the btrfs platform for its excellent file handling that includes data-health checks and integrity checks on all read-write operations. Finally, the device arrives with 5 years of warranty, by far the longest of any desktop NAS solution in this list. this is even more impressive when you find out that this warranty includes the Synology replacement service, whereby if you have a hardware fault Synology will arrange a swift turnaround of replacement hardware in 24 hours ( depending on your region). All in all, an excellent NAS drive and narrowly misses the top spot, just because of the lack of 10Gbe and a lack of hardware flexibility. I KNOW that the DS3617xs is getting a little old and that may put a few people off, but with this NAS fast becoming a bargain in price, as well as still being easily in the top 5 NAS that Synology has ever produced, you really do still need to keep this 2017 model NAS in your basket.
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