Best NAS 2020: Buying Guide
This buyer’s guide to the best NAS servers can discover all the information to choose the ideal model. Read on to find out what a nas server and how it works, comparative tables to choose from the best models and much more.
Do you want to equip your company, your professional or your home with a NAS server? Within this page you will be aware of all the information needed to choose one of the best NAS servers this year.
The range of NAS servers available today includes many models that fit the environment and the type of use. The main feature of a NAS is represented by the number of bay, ie of disks that can be installed.
Choosing such a device could prove to be quite complicated, given the wide assortment on the market. In this regard we have realized this buying guide to help you easily find the right product to you.
What is it and what is it
NAS stands for “Network Attached Storage” which literally translated means “network-attached storage.” This is a device that allows you to store data in a secure manner and share them via a network, wired or Wi-Fi, with other devices such as PCs and smartphones.
The NAS server contains within it at least two hard drives and acts like a private cloud that you can easily install in your company, office or home.
How does it work
A NAS server acts like a computer, it comes with an operating system that allows you to perform various functions, including the optimized storage and sharing of your files.
Equipped with a power cord, cpu, network modules for the connection, the best NAS servers are equipped with at least two slots to insert the internal hard drives. The reason is easy to understand.
The internal hard disk, in fact, lend themselves to be configured with the RAID technique, or you can combine them as if they were a single logical disk. This means that in the presence of a NAS 2-bay, ie with two bays for hard drives and enabling the RAID level 1, the data stored in the first disk will be copied automatically in the second.
All this guarantees maximum safety because in case one of the two disks is damaged the other does not lose the stored data. The only thing to do will be to replace the hard disk failure, confirm the RAID 1 and restore the well functioning of your NAS server.
You can access the data you store in NAS servers not only via the local network, SMB or AFP, but also remotely, wherever and whenever you want. In the latter case just opt the settings via web server share, FTP, or the cloud capabilities. You will also allow access to the data to more people, for example to your colleagues or family members simultaneously.
Comparative table of the best NAS servers
Marvell ARMADA 385 dual core, 1.3 GHz
Marvell ARMADA 385 dual core
Marvell Armada 385, 1.3 GHz
Marvell Armada 3700 88F3720
Intel Celeron J3355 Dual Core
Marvell ARMADA 385 dual core, 1.3 GHz
Marvell ARMADA 385 dual core
Marvell Armada 385, 1.3 GHz
Marvell Armada 3700 88F3720
Intel Celeron J3355 Dual Core
How to choose the best NAS servers
Number of discs and housing capacity
A NAS server can have a variable number of slots for the hard disk that are denominated bay. Today you can buy from 2 NAS server and up to 12 bay, those with a single housing are now disappearing. Owning a bay NAS server model with more means more storage space at your disposal.
A 2-bay model could be a good choice in the home, small office, and when your storage needs are limited. A NAS with multiple chambers, however, is recommended for medium to large companies.
When choosing a NAS does not have a hard disk you should consider buying them separately and adapted to your needs. A fixed disk model model does not apply and the other is optimized to the specific use basis. In fact trade hard-disk there are specially designed to operate continuously 24 hours a day, 7 days 7, by the high energy efficiency, suitable for working with video surveillance systems, video surveillance, etc..
The available hard-disk are usually from 6 to 8 TB or TB. By purchasing a NAS 2-bay will be able to have 12 TB of storage (2 x 6-bay TB in fact correspond to 12 TB), by choosing a 4-bay model space increases to 24 TB and so on.
One of the main advantages of the NAS server compared to traditional storage methods such as HDD or pen drive, is the security in data storage.
NAS devices which abuse the RAID configuration that in English means “redundant array of independent disks,” or “redundant array of independent disks”.
This is a technique that allows you to divide the data between the discs inside the NAS, in order to obtain better performance, greater tolerance against malfunctions and the guarantee not to lose the stored data.
There are several types of basic RAID, here are the most common:
Processor and RAM
A NAS is in effect a computer and as such is equipped with processor and RAM memory that will be used for caching in order to provide better performance.
Today you can find on the market NAS for home and professional use with Intel or AMD processors that start at 1.2 and arrive at 4 GHz, as well as with RAM 256 and up to 2 GB.
In addition to strictly hardware equipment, NAS often have different functionality and also support a variety of applications to be managed via the GUI.
When buying you will need to ensure that the chosen NAS model has a customizable operating system via plug-ins and Plex, ie applications for sharing audio files, videos, photos, useful in the video surveillance industry and beyond.
This will expand the NAS server functionality and make it better suits your personal and business needs. In fact not all NAS devices allow you to download from Torrent or FTP and are sometimes incompatible with certain protocols.
It is also important to consider the number and type of ports available. Better to choose NAS with USB 3.0 ports, faster than USB 2.0, and equipped at least with one or more ports of Fast Ethernet / Gigabit Ethernet in order to make the connection between the local network to other NAS servers or simply to have spare ports in a case in which ceases to operate.
The HDMI ports, however, allow you to physically connect the NAS to the TV or external monitor display, and so media content. Also watch out for year product warranty and the possibility of extension.
Dimensions, weight and design
Dimensions and weight of the NAS servers are directly related to the number of hard-disk that it is possible to stay inside.
In any case, a NAS for domestic use will not be particularly cumbersome, having a plastic shell and time-resistant aluminum.
As for the design you can wander among the tower models that develop in height, or bet on the rack-mount which two power supplies, but also special racks and installation by specialized technicians.
Ranking of the top selling NAS server
Reviews of the best NAS servers
These are the best of 2020 NAS server:
WD My Cloud Home, Personal Cloud, 1 Bay, 4 TB
The NAS server Home My Cloud is a model from one bay, greatly appreciated for the good value for money. The device, with a capacity of 4 TB, connects to the Wi-Fi network, you can automatically back up digital content on the phone, in addition to synchronization in wireless mode of the PC and the cloud account.
Equipped with a USB 3.0 port for fast transfer of photos, videos or documents from other devices, this NAS server allows you to share files stored and transmitted in streaming video without interruption, wherever and whenever you want, using the mobile app, My Cloud Mobile , My Cloud Desktop or WD Discovery.
The product, which for operation requires a router and an internet connection, is compatible with Windows 7 (64-bit), Mac OS X v10.10 and their later versions. As for mobile devices it can be used with 9+ iOS and Android 4.4+.
Also a wide range of customization, as My Cloud Home has extra features for download as Plex Media, Google Drive, Dropbox etc. Also you can work with intelligent speaker as Sonos.
My Cloud Home Measuring 14 x 5.3 x 17.6 cm and vata 1 GB of RAM, comes with an Ethernet cable, AC adapter, quick installation guide and is accompanied by 2-year warranty.
WD My Cloud Home, Personal Cloud, 1 Bay, USB 3.0, 4 TB
Synology DiskStation DS119j
Synology DiskStation DS119j is a NAS server that can accommodate a single storage unit. It has a 800 MHz dual core processor 64-bit and 256 MB of RAM memory. This is a model that will appeal to those who purchase a NAS for the first time, given the simple installation, as well as the interface and very intuitive software functionality.
This multimedia device for home use allowing you to share photos with friends to stream music and video content to smartphone or media player. The DiskStation Manager operating system, which has several pre-installed applications, makes it easy to use.
Synology DiskStation DS119j measuring 22 x 7 x 16 cm, it works with hard disks up to 14 TB and was equipped with a 1 Gb Ethernet port and two USB 2.0 outputs.
Synology DS218J Diskstation
Synology DiskStation DS218J is a 2-bay NAS server, HDD or SSD, more suitable for home and personal use. The product, as well as the good energy efficiency, is characterized by rapid data transmission. In fact, the reading and writing skills reach respectively 113 MB / s and 112 MB / s.
This is a digital media server that lets you play movies, music, videos, images from any device connected to the local network. In this regard, the NAS has a dual core CPU with a frequency of 1.3 GHz and a RAM of 512 MB.
Synology DiskStation DS218J can create shared folders, choose who can access it and to protect the contents by encryption. Also it can be easily used by apps such as Video, Audio and Photo Station. Particularly interesting are the cloud station, to manage the transfer of files, and downloading station, also compatible with Torrent.
The model, equipped with two USB 3.0 ports and measuring 22.2 x 9.8 x 16.3 cm, is sold with the cable and the power adapter, as well as with the installation guide. The latter also proves very easy and quick for newbies.
Synology DS218J Diskstation HardDisk
Buffalo LinkStation 220DE Network Attached Storage
Buffalo LinkStation Network Attached Storage 220DE is a 2-bay NAS server, more suitable for home environments. Compatible only with SATA disks to be purchased separately and with a maximum capacity of 8 TB, can be configured with the technique RAID 0 and level 1.
The model is equipped with 800 MHz processor, 256 MB RAM memory, Ethernet output and a USB 2.0 port. It also supports DLNA, BitTorrent, Apple Time Machine, iTunes library, WebAccess, SMB, FTP, and AFP.
Through the app Buffalo, free and accessible upon registration on the official website of the producer, the device can be easily managed via your smartphone, thanks to the basic but very intuitive.
The servers Buffalo LinkStation Network Attached Storage 220DE measures 8.7 x 20.5 x 12.6 and in addition to good overall performance is very simple it proves to be installed by following the steps on the supplied manual written in Italian.
TERRAMASTER F2-210 2-bay Nas Quad Core
TERRAMASTER F2-210 is a 2-bay NAS server designed for domestic use which, although a solution that falls into the entry-level, offers good overall performance and high reliability.
Equipped with V8 ARM processor (Cortex A53) quad core that works at 1.4GHz frequency, this NAS server boasts 1 GB of RAM, two USB 3.0 ports and RJ-45 LAN port 1Gb. The product, with operating system TOS 4.0.x, is compatible with SATA hard disks up to 16 TB, revealing very simple to configure in RAID 0, RAID 1, and JBOD single disk.
This server allows not only data storage, but also backup, cloud sync, remote access and streaming of video content. Also compatible with Emby, Plex, TERRAMASTER F2-210 measuring 22.8 x 13.4 x 11.9 cm.
TerraMaster F2-210 2-bay NAS Quad Core Raid Storage Media Server Personal Cloud Storage (senza…
TERRAMASTER F4-210 4-bay Nas Quad Core 2GB RAM
TERRAMASTER F4-210 is a 4-bay NAS server, equipped with 2 GB of RAM and an ARM 64-bit V8 quad-core processor, which reaches a maximum frequency of 1.4 GHz.
Equipped with two USB ports (one 2.0 and 3.0) and an Ethernet connector, this model allows to accommodate SATA HDD drives 3.5 “and 2.5”, for a maximum capacity of 16 TB and that can be configured according to different combinations, such as RAID 0, RAID 1, and JBOD single disk.
Simple also installing this NAS that uses an efficient backup system and supports numerous free apps, as well as the Docker system. It is also compatible with Emby and Plex, so always keep organized music and video content and ready to be sent in streaming on the PC, mobile device, game console, or smart TV.
TERRAMASTER F4-210, within the family but also suitable for small offices and workgroups, measuring 22 x 22 x 13 cm and despite the lack of a support for the mobile app, offers a good overall performance in the face of a non-price excessive.
TERRAMASTER F4-210 4-bay Nas Quad Core 2GB RAM Raid Storage Media Server Personal Cloud Storage…
WD My Cloud EX2 Ultra Network
WD My Cloud EX2 Ultra Network is a 2-bay NAS server with a 1.3 GHz dual core processor and 1 GB of DDR3 memory. The model is compatible popular operating systems such as Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista than with that with the Mac including Mojave, High Sierra, Sierra, El Capitan, etc.
This device has two USB 3.0 ports, an Ethernet input but is sold devoid of disks that must be purchased separately, with a maximum capacity of 8 TB and can be configured in RAID according to different combinations.
The model, suitable for home use and for small business environments, allows not only to create a small local network, but a secure and personal cloud, that you can access when and where you prefer.
In addition to the dedicated app My Cloud, which allows uploading, downloading and managing users, this NAS can be used with Quick View, Access and easily sync to all devices with Sync.
With Plex media server content stored are arranged to be sent streaming on PCs, mobile devices, smart TV or other media players or game consoles. WD My Cloud EX2 Ultra Network measuring 9.9 x 15.7 x 16.5 and is sold together with the power cord, the power supply, to the LAN cable, to accessories for fixing the disks and to the manual for the user.
WD My Cloud EX2 Ultra Network Attached Storage, 8 TB
DiskStation DS218 + is a 2-bay NAS server, suitable for small office and home environments, easy to install and compatible with the Quick Connect system, which allows easy access from both outside and within their own network.
Equipped with dual-core CPU up to 2.5 GHz and 2048 MB RAM memory, this model provides a read and write speeds encrypted appreciable, which respectively reaches 113 MB / s and 112 MB / s.
The DS218 + NAS server has three USB 3.0, as well as an eSATA port and LAN RJ-45 1GbE. Also it offers support for streaming of 4K video content in real time, accessible wherever and whenever you want. The online transcoding converts and plays back 4K video immediately on other computers, smart phones and media players.
Another strength of the DiskStation DS218 + is its operating system, called DSM (DiskStation Manager) with very similar interface to the operating environment of a personal computer, allowing you to create a personal cloud and to make available data and hosted services the NAS anywhere, either from computers to smartphones, and even share them with people and groups of people.
DiskStation DS218 +, which measures 23 x 10.5 x 16 cm, also works with numerous app for smartphones, android and iphone, developed directly by Synology and completely free.
Conclusions and final considerations
The NAS server is a device specially designed to guarantee reliability and safety, therefore at time of purchase will want to focus your only choice of server products from leading brands in the industry, who have already won the trust of consumers thanks to a production that responds to high standards of quality.
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