Review: QNAP TS-453 Pro (TurboNAS) – First Time Setup
I have been wanting to upgrade my existing 2 x D-Link Network Attached Storage (NAS), DNS-320 & DNS-323, into a 4-Bay NAS for quite some time. This would allow me to move from RAID1 into RAID5 for better data protection assurance and performance. I did some market research and shortlisted 2 models, 1) QNAP TS-453 Pro and 2) Synology DS415+. Both NAS have been released for quite a while and are the popular models for home office usage. It was pretty hard for me to decide which to go for either. QNAP concentrates more on hardware performances while Synology provides better software user-friendliness.
In the end, I decided hardware over software in hope that QNAP would invest more effort to improve its software delivery. Who knows I may switch to Synology in future?
But for now, I will concentrate my review on the QNAP TS-453 Pro. The NAS is available in 2 configurations for the memory, 2GB and 8GB, with the rest of the hardware specifications remaining the same. I chose the former as I would be upgrading the memory on my own to 16GB instead. I would be equipping it with 4 x 4TB Seagate NAS HDD (ST4000VN000) and 2 x 8GB Crucial DDR3L-1600 SODIMM Memory.
The simple package of QNAP TS-453 Pro offers more than the usual storage function. There is a wide range of services that can be delivered by the NAS such as IP-Camera Surveillance, OS Virtualisation, Offline downloading (supporting HTTP, Torrent, 迅雷and more), Auto-backup and etc. It can also connect directly to the TV and work like a media player! The hardware should be one of the highest rated thus far in the current market for a 4-Bay NAS. These are some of the key specifications:
CPU: Intel® Celeron® 2.0GHz quad-core processor (burst up to 2.42GHz)
Memory: 2GB DDR3L-1600 SODIMM (2 memory slots)
Storage: Supports up to 4 x 3.5″ OR 4 x 2.5″ HDD/SSD
LAN Port: 4 x Gigabit RJ-45 Ethernet port (Supports LAN Aggregation)
USB Port: 5 (1 x USB 3.0 Front, 2 x USB 3.0 Rear, 2 x USB 2.0 Rear)
HDMI Port: 1 (Rear)
Power Supply: ATX 250W, 100-240V
Next, let’s unbox the set and start with the HDD installation. You will first be greeted with a “Thank You” and be shown what are the items that should be in the box. It is also very thoughtful of QNAP to include the sequence of the HDD in case one might not fill up all the bays at a go or have difficulty in pin-pointing any failing drives.
Installing the drives is pretty straightforward but I would have preferred it to be tool-less instead. To secure the drives to the cage enclosure provided by QNAP, you have to use the screws included. The key-and-lock feature is pretty good and can prevent theft or accidental removal of the drives. Do remember to unlock the cage enclosure before you lift up the lever to remove the cage enclosure or risk breaking it! After aligning the cage to your HDD/SSD, you will be able to secure the HDD/SSD and fit in the screws nicely.
Once you are done with installing the 4 HDD/SDD, simply connect your LAN cable to port 1 and the power cable. You are done with the installation and good to power up the QNAP TS-453 Pro!