Recommended 4-Bay NAS to Buy in 2022

A Guide to the Best 4-Bay NAS Drives to Buy Right Now

Most users who have been considering purchasing a brand new NAS Drive will often find a 4 drive (also known as a 4-Bay) desktop system to be the easiest and most capable entry point into this kind of technology. If you are trying to storage a decent sized amount of data over 10-12TB, you will all too often find that a 4-Bay NAS gives you the best middle ground between the price of your storage, the scalability in the lifespan of the system and the general hardware level of the NAS solution itself. It provides a great deal of storage/drive-failure-safety in its RAID 5/6 vs that of a 2-Bay and its RAID 0/1, whilst also allowing you to multiple the performance and throughout of the NAS thanks to the larger number of HDD/SSDs on offer. Most modern 4-Bay NAS released in the last few years have typically been the most creative areas for brands to start equipping their solutions with the most innovative features, such as m.2 SSD caching bays, PCIe upgrade slots, improved default network ports (such as 2.5GbE) and HDMI. Below is my before you buy guide on whether you should consider buying a 4-Bay NAS, the Pros, the Cons and the things that some people forget. I recommend watching this before you go further with my top 3 4-Bay NAS to buy in 2022, as it will help you understand if you even need a 4 HDD NAS at all:

Likewise, you will all too often find that most NAS brands (such as Synology, QNAP and Asustor) will have more 4-Bay solutions than any other tier – it is THAT much of a popular hardware choice. So, with a new year beginning, I wanted to make it easier for you and highlight the best three 4-Bay NAS systems to consider, right now in 2022. These three NAS

What Have All the Best 4-Bay NAS Drives Have in Common?

It is worth remembering that although there are ALOT of different 4-Bay NAS drives available to buy, they are by no means created equal! With numerous super budget brands popping up online, it can be tempting to consider these alongside the premium NAS brands. However, all too often they offer solutions righty seem ‘too good to be true’ and then are gone from the web before your warranty even gets cold! So, whether you are looking at the three best 4-Bay solutions that I am recommending below OR are looking at another 4-Bay NAS you saw on offer/recommended elsewhere – the best NAS system ALWAYS include the following software and services:

  • Combined Hardware & Software Solution – That means that you are buying the hardware, but it ALSO includes a web browser GUI, mobile apps and desktop client apps (including backup, media, streaming, surveillance and file management software)
  • All NAS systems in this guide are compatible with (and can be accessed by) Windows, Mac, Android and Linux operating systems
  • All NAS Solutions arrive with between 2-3 years Warranty (with the option to extend to 5 years)
  • All NAS drives can be accessed locally over the network, as well as secure remote access is possible with brand supported services (at no additional cost)
  • The most modern and regularly updated NAS systems will support the very latest 20TB NAS hard drives (such as the Seagate Ironwofl 20TB and WD Red 20TB)
  • All the recommended solutions support multiple drive configurations (RAID) for drive failure protection and performance enhancements
  • All solutions receive regular updates to their security, features and services
  • All recommended NAS drives can connect and synchronize with cloud services (Google Drive, DropBox, OneDrive, etc), as well as Business/Enterprise services such as AWS, Azure, Backblaze and more
  • All NAS solutions (regardless of brand) feature the ability to host a shared drive on your PC/Mobile/Laptop systems that are synchronized with the NAS via the network/internet, but is shown in your native operating system file manager (i.e Mac Finder or Windows Explorer)
  • All the NAS solutions listed can be accessed DIRECTLY via an ethernet/network cable being connected from your PC/Mac system, to the NAS RJ45 port for 100MB/s and higher connectivity
  • All the best NAS solutions (regardless of brand) feature backup and sync tools that can be installed on your local client computer and allow regular backups of your files and system data

So, make sure that if you are looking at a NAS solution that is NOT recommended below, that it includes all of the above. As these are some of the clearest areas that brands all too often cut orders to produce cheaper by ultimately inferior NAS servers for home and business. So, let’s discuss the very best 4-Bay NAS to buy now in 2022.

Best Priced 4-Bay NAS Drive – QNAP TS-451D2 NAS

0-80TB, 4-Bays, Intel J4025 2.9Ghz 2-Core CPU, 2/4/8GB Memory, 2x 1Gbe Port, 1x HDMI 2.0 4K 60FPS, 2-5yr Warranty

Current Price/Availability on Amazon – $450

Hardware Review – LINK

YouTube Video Review – Watch

What we said in our Review – The QNAP TS-451D2 is an interesting solution to add to the range at the tail end of 2020 for the company, sandwiched in between the launch of newer business devices and likely one of the last units in the QNAP D series. The brand has long since shaken off the reputation of being a hardware provider and light software provider, becoming something much, much even. With a huge number of first-party applications in the QNAP QuTS library (many of which are genuinely unique) as well as releasing an affordable 4-Bay NAS solution that has aimed itself at the new NAS buyer, or the NAS user who wants to spend a little now but can expand greatly later.

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It isn’t perfect – a dual-core, not a quad-core. 1Gbe and not 2.5Gbe – but that is not the point in the TS-451D2. This is aimed at the 4-Bay NAS buyer that want a good level of software and hardware performance, without breaking the bank. I will be doing further testing of this device on surveillance and Plex media handling, but even early tests have been remarkably positive. How it performs with key applications in the QNAP app library is already pretty easy to predict (quick well indeed), but overall the TS-451D2 is a great little NAS with a huge amount of potential for those that want their abilities to grow with their data. Just maybe the lack of PCIe will be a dealbreaker for some at this price point.

SOFTWARE - 8/10
HARDWARE - 7/10
PERFORMANCE - 7/10
PRICE - 8/10
VALUE - 8/10


7.6
PROS
👍🏻HDMI 2.0 at an affordable level – always good
👍🏻
👍🏻Supports pretty much the entire QNAP app catalogue
👍🏻
👍🏻Very Compact and low noise
👍🏻
👍🏻Arriving at a good price point for a standard Intel 4-Bay
👍🏻
👍🏻Good as a first NAS if you want all the features
👍🏻
👍🏻EXCELLENT home multimedia NAS at this price point
👍🏻
👍🏻VERY Good Surveillance NAS for Home or Small Business
👍🏻
👍🏻Expandable with TR-002 and TR-004 QNAP expansion devices to many, many more drives
CONS
👎🏻CPU is a little weak for solid Virtual Machine Use
👎🏻
👎🏻Only 1Gbe ports, not 2.5Gbe or LAG support
👎🏻
👎🏻Lacks the PCIe Upgrade slot of the TS-251D

 


Best Value 4-Bay NAS Drive – Synology DS920+ NAS

0-80TB, 4-Bays, Intel J4125 4x 2.0-2.7Ghz CPU, 4/8GB 2666Mhz Memory, 2x 1Gbe Port, 2x NVMe SSD Cache Bays, 3-5yr Warranty

Current Price/Availability on Amazon $550+

Hardware Review – HERE

YouTube Video Review – Watch

The DS920+ NAS is something that Synology should be proud of. It is a great entry into their already impressive range of Diskstation NAS devices. If you are looking for a brand new NAS to consolidate your home media, to support your relative as the ‘IT whizz’ of the family, or move your business away from Google Drives and DropBox’ onto something safer, more scalable and dependable – then the DS920+ has alot to offer you. It gives you a great base to start using the DSM platform, as well as a good means to upgrade your storage internally at a later date (expansions in memory, expansions in storage, expansion in NVMe). If you are an existing DS918+ or DS916+ owner, this might not seem like the jump you were waiting for.

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There are always areas of improvement, the USB ports, the 1Gbe, that 1 memory slot – but these are things that Synology no doubt feel should be pushed into a higher price/hardware bracket – Allowing the DS920+ Price to be as close to its predecessors it can be. Whether you agree or disagree, I think that we can agree that this NAS is still giving you alot of bang for your buck in 2020. Thank you once again to ‘Takeo from Tokyo‘ for all his assistance on this hardware review

SOFTWARE - 9/10
HARDWARE - 8/10
PERFORMANCE - 10/10
PRICE - 9/10
VALUE - 10/10


9.2
PROS
👍🏻Dual NVMe M.2 cache
👍🏻Great RAID Options
👍🏻Excellent choice of Apps
👍🏻Snapshot Replication
👍🏻BTRFS and SHR
👍🏻Support Plex
👍🏻Virtualization
👍🏻4K Video transcoding
👍🏻Full Plex Transcoding
👍🏻Hot-Swap trays
👍🏻DLNA Compliant
👍🏻Expandable
CONS
👎🏻No Copy button
👎🏻Only 1Gbe Ethernet ports
👎🏻No PCIe slots
👎🏻Only a single accessible Memory Bay

 


Most Powerful 4-Bay NAS Drive – QNAP TVS-472XT

0-80TB, 4-Bays, Intel PT/i3/i5 8th Gen 2/4/6-Core CPU, 8-64GB DDR4 Memory, 1x 10Gbe Port, 2x 1GbE, USB 3.2 Gen 2, PCIe 3×16 + 3×4, 2x M.2 NVMe, HDMI 2.0 4K 60FPS, 2x Thunderbolt 3, 2-5yr Warranty

Current Price/Availability on Amazon – $1300+

Hardware Review – HERE

YouTube Video Review – Watch

The QNAP TVS-472XT 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-682T. Thanks to this new QNAP TVS-472XT 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 2021.

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This 4 bay thunderbolt equipped NAS is about quality, not quantity and although may lack the wider coverage of users that the TVS-682T 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-472XT. Easily in my top 3 NAS of 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 and now, 2021.

SOFTWARE - 8/10
HARDWARE - 10/10
PERFORMANCE - 9/10
PRICE - 7/10
VALUE - 8/10


8.4
PROS
👍🏻High Virtualisation Use
👍🏻Two USB-C Thunderbolt 3 Ports which can allow 2 devices access at once
👍🏻SSD Optimized with NVMe Support
👍🏻Business Use
👍🏻SMB Storage
👍🏻Optimized for Post Production and Broadcasting
👍🏻Embedded 10GBe Port
👍🏻Thunderbolt-to-10Gbe Adapter possible
👍🏻DLNA Support
👍🏻Apple Time Machine Support
👍🏻Surveillance including multiple camera licences – 8 Licences FREE
👍🏻iTunes Server
👍🏻email server
👍🏻Download server (FTP, HTTP, BT,NZB)
👍🏻CMS and CRM systems
👍🏻Office applications
👍🏻Media Center support
CONS
👎🏻Only 2 TB3 Ports – so only 2 Editors at once
👎🏻No Remote Control
👎🏻no Intel i7 8th Gen option
👎🏻Only 1 10Gbe Port
👎🏻PCIe Slot that is available not compatible with 40Gbe cards

 


 

And there you have it. Those are the three best 4-Bay NAS drives available right now at the end of 2021 and going into 2022. thought it is always worth remembering that these systems typically have a refresh (i.e manufacturers release a new version/follow-up) every 2-3 years on average. Therefore although these systems are all still great 4-Bay NAS drives, they might have been upgraded in a newer released version, or recently released alternative 4-Bay’s may have arrived on the scene that provides better pricing, value or features. If you are in doubt about whether to buy a 4-Bay solution from my recommendations, want to check if a newer system has been released recently OR are simply looking for some free expert advice, then use the free advice section below over. Just enter in a few details of your setup, storage requirements and (in the case of buying a new solution) your budget – then me and Eddie the Web guy can help you with your question. This is a completely free service, is NOT provided with profit in mind and is manned by two humans (no bots, no automated replies, etc). Assistance might take an extra day or two (the service gets a lot of visitors) but we do try to answer every message. If you want to support this service, you can find out how to donate HERE. Otherwise, you can still jsut message us for free advice anyway!

 

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    73 thoughts on “Recommended 4-Bay NAS to Buy in 2022

    1. A 4 Bay NAS doesn’t need a 10Gb NIC. Having two 1-2.5Gb LAG is better then having one 10Gb NIC if you have multiple users accessing the data… Also if you need 10Gb the CPU in a 4 Bay wont be that optimal to handle it where you have your next bottleneck..
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    2. Excellent Video. I upgraded from a DS220J based on your reviews of the DS920+ … I LOVE this 920. the 220j just fell on it’s face when asked to do anything beyond the basics.
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    3. After years and years, I’d suggest going with as large as you can go for the number of drive bays. If you were considering a 2 bay, go for the 4 bay.. If you were considering the 4 bay- consider heavily going to a 6 or 8 bay – if you can afford it and if the system is upgradable in a manner that makes sense to you.
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    4. If security is a decision point, how do you get around QNAP’s lack of it or commitment to it? They are a major vendor but they have glaring issues that should pretty much keep them off the list or at the VERY LEAST be mentioned.
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    5. What do you recommend 1 x 872XT or 2 x 472XT ? Are they the same but with less bays?
      What about 1 x DS1821+ vs 2 x DS920+ ?

      Purpose is NAS for home. Using for backups and plex.

      Thanks for your videos!
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    6. Do you think there will be a new Rackstation in the $1.000 +/- range?
      Im not sure if I should buy the RS820+ now or if I should wait if there will be ne new RS in 2022 ????????????
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    7. Have watched lots of your videos these days. Want to buy a new 4 bay NAS to play all my media files on my home network and still cannot decide wether to get the Synology 920+ or to get the Asustor Lockerstore 4.
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    8. When the day comes that all 4 bays are filled with drives and all drives are full is it possible to upgrade to a larger diskstation and move all the old drives over to it with their data intact ? (of course one or more new drives would be added to the mix) (Using SHR1)
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    9. £500 is a “monkey” not “half a bag of sand” lol
      £5=Lady Godiva or a deep sea diver
      £10 = Cock & Hen or a “cockle”
      £20=Bobby Moore or a score
      £25 = Bullseye
      £50 = a “Nifty” (Nifty fifty)
      £100= Ton
      £500=Monkey
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    10. I’m a Plex user but I am curious about Synology software being able to send video to a client outside of network. Is Plex just better for this or can Synology apps to the same? Thanks!
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    11. Another great video..still holding out for 2.5GBe Synology. I may give up waiting eventually! I do wish Youtubes automatic closed captioning did better with English Accents though – it does not do well translating ‘best NASes’:)
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    12. I’ve got on Black Friday the 920+. So far so good. I just wished it had a faster than 1gb Ethernet.
      I’ve been getting 100-115mbps read speeds.
      I’m hoping the next version will have a Thunderbolt port. That would be awesome.
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    13. What purpose does a graphic card have on a NAS? I’ve been thinking of a 6 bay to add additional HDDs in the future when my storage fills up. I bought four 8TB drives. Rather than replacing them, I figured it be cheaper to buy two more bigger drives to add. Which 6 bay would you recommend?
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    14. Note! I *JUST* noticed the typo in DS920+ (i.e. that I label it DS290+). Apologies for the error and yes, I am absolutely FUMING ABOUT IT!!!! Hope you guys can forgive me and enjoy the video. Also, if you were about to write about this in the comments, scroll down, saw this comment and chose not to type the same thing – thank you, you are a good person!
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    15. I am going through all the videos learning about NAS, particularly from Synology before I dip my toes to get one (preferably the DS920+) to replace an ageing Drobo 4 bay. I am getting more confident by the day and by the videos. watched. Thank you for the great videos.
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    16. Recently bought this as my first NAS.. Attached a Seagate Exos 16TB, configured as SHR.. Later will expand with other bays. The only negative I can call out is that it came with a 16 amp plug which is very difficult to attach to a socket used for low power devices.. only refrigerators, water heaters etc need that. So I replaced the cable with a 10 amp one and its working fine
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    17. HI, I just bought DS920+ learning from your channel. Thankyou very much for Providing Inside out understanding. I just have one question can i setup my NAS with one Drive and then Later i can populate other slots.
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    18. this Chinese processor seems very promising with 8-cores, but then you look at the low benchmarks, only 3066. The TS-453D with Intel Celeron has a very similar benchmark at 3033 and it only has 4-cores with low tdp 10W.
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    19. Adopting Chinese X86 CPU is a clever move for QNAP, a Taiwanese company.
      This NAS will be sold well in the mainland China regardless of the high price tag compared to its capability.
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    20. would be nice with a nas that would function as a full future proof windows desktop with affinity and 3d software in a VM, so i just need cheap mini computers (chromebooks etc) to drag around. would this or even better any synology device handle that? Yes I know, desktop with freenas, but I prefer the software of synology / qnap
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    21. Been back and forth re a potential NAS upgrade, running a 453A atm and still running, and steering towards a TS-673A or TS-873A. I’ll pass on the above unit. Intention is to get some Seagate 6TB Exao drives (3 of) into the new unit and then use it for CIFS, ISCSI storage. I was going to sell the 453A, but will prob keep as an RSYNC backup.
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    22. I want to play 4K onto my TV using Plex, I don’t really care about streaming 4K to different formats on other devices – its really only about playing 4K MKV movies using Plex. Currently I have to plug a hard drive directly to the TV and I want to use a NAS for this instead, will this NAS be good for that?
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    23. I can’t believe I watched 50 minutes of this. Very very informative. I’m a new nas user and this 920+ is my first nas so thank you for the overview!! I didn’t know it could do much more than I already thought it could!
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    24. bought this exact NAS on prime day sale today. $473 USD, 16GB crucial 2666 memory upgrade $82 (20GB ram total), 2x noctua nf-a9 fans to get rid of the stock synology loud fans $34, 2x250GB western digital blue nvme for caching. Reusing 4x8TB ironwolf drives. it’s main purpose for me is going to be 4k uncompressed plex server
      REPLY ON YOUTUBE

    25. I know it’s an old post, but all that pretty packaging you’re so impressed by you’re paying for. Protective packaging is a must, but why does is have to be so impressive? A measly dollar/quid increases drastically by the time it gets to the consumer. Simply put, in business, if you spend money you have to make money .
      Other than that a fair video.
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