QNAP TS-253D NAS review: 2.5GbE, PCIe expansion, and HDMI output make for a kickin’ home server

    QNAP’s $469 TS-253D is the second NAS field sporting twin 2.5GbE ports we’ve examined, butting heads with Asustor’s quick, simple, and surprisingly highly effective $300 AS5202T. Having 2.5GbE makes an enormous distinction in efficiency, dramatically rising the variety of units you’ll be able to concurrently stream to or again up.

    You’ll instantly discover that the TS-253D is significantly pricier than its rival, however QNAP’s field encompasses a PCIe slot for including options reminiscent of 10GbE and NVMe SSDs, and it makes much better use of an exterior show connected to its HDMI port.

    How so? the QNAP can play motion pictures, run slideshows, allow you to browse the web—heck, it might probably even operate as a light-weight workstation. The Asustor merely exhibits an administrative command line.

    This evaluate is a part of TechHive’s protection of the best NAS boxes for media streaming and consumer backup, the place you’ll discover critiques of competing merchandise, plus a purchaser’s information to the options it is best to take into account when procuring.

    Design and specs

    The QNAP TS-253D-4G that I examined is roughly 6.6 inches deep, 4.1 inches vast, and 8.9 inches tall. It’s a two-bay, tower-orientation NAS field boasting a really enticing industrial design. There’s a latching, slide-away cowl over the drive bays which function quick-change, pressure-fit trays. The trays have tool-less snap-in rails for mounting onerous drives, however you’re again to screws for putting in SSDs like those I used for benchmarking.

    There are energy and quick-copy buttons on the entrance of the field, together with a USB port and standing lights for energy in addition to LAN and drive exercise. Dual 2.5GbE ports ports are round again, together with 4 extra USB ports and HDMI for direct output to as much as a 4K show (that’s true 4K, by the way in which: 4096 x 2160 pixels). You’ll additionally discover a recessed reset button and a Kensington lock port right here.


    The QNAP TS-253D is outfitted with three USB 2.0 ports and two USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports.It will assist USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10Gbps) with an non-compulsory growth card.

    There’s a quad-core Intel J4125 Celeron processor contained in the TS-253D-4G, together with with 4GB (the 4G within the identify) of DDR4 reminiscence in one among its two SODIMM slots. There’s additionally the aforementioned x4 PCIe slot for growth playing cards that mean you can add 10GbE, or M.2 SSDs (SATA or NVMe). QNAP sells numerous add-in playing cards for this slot, which you’ll be able to peruse at QNAP’s Amazon storefront. Fair warning: None of those parts are what most individuals would name cheap.

    OS and apps

    QNAP’s {hardware} is usually top-notch, and the corporate pairs it with its glorious QTS working system—one of many first with what’s now a de rigueur windowed-OS-in-a browser HTML interface. It’s spectacular, if not as well-organized as some. You can experience it at this link

    qnap qts2 IDG

    QNAP’s QTS configuration interface, accessed from a browser, is elegant and usually simple to make use of. It’s not the most effective organized we’ve seen, nevertheless it’s enjoyable to make use of.

    The app choice is voluminous. For starters, there’s a really competent DLNA server for streaming content material off of the field. Plex, with its broader and fancier media streaming assist, can be accessible. Even TVs with poor or no in-house media gamers function Plex. Roon server is accessible for people who who CD-quality music streamed from the field. QNAP additionally provides numerous its personal proprietary multimedia apps for not solely its NAS bins, but additionally for macOS and Windows computer systems in addition to iOS and Android cellular units.

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