Pulling ahead of the RAID 5 Pack: QNAP TS-509 Pro Reviewed
22 June 2009
Conclusion: Five-drive server-like BYOD NAS with support for single drives, JBOD and RAID 0, 1, 5, 5+ hot spare and 6.
Pros: Hot-swappable drives, Online volume expansion and RAID migration, Automatic rebuild to hot spare, Built-in LAMP server, DLNA multimedia server, FTP, iTunes, USB support for external storage, UPS or up to 3 printers
Cons: Expensive, Logging and status reports could be better, No US-based phone support, Limited availability
Conclusion: Six-drive server-like Intel Atom-based BYOD NAS with support for single drives, JBOD and RAID 0, 1, 5, 5+ hot spare and 6.
Pros: Online volume expansion and RAID migration, iSCSI target, Local console and remote SSH root access, Built-in LAMP server, DLNA multimedia server, FTP, iTunes, Fast attached backup to USB and eSATA drives
Summary: The QNAP NAS devices use mostly the same firmware, if you like one you'll like the others. Features that actually separate the models come in the hardware and the (storage) expansion options. We already knew the firmware is easy to use and full of features, there wasn't a doubt there. So what kind of actual improvements does the TS-509 offer?
The TS-509 uses far more powerful hardware which improves performance over the previous generation a lot.
Pros: High performance, Feature rich, Easy to use, Built-in power supply, Plenty of external connection options, Highly moddable, Configurable without PC
Conclusion: Benchmark Reviews believes that manufacturers should be educating consumers with their product packaging, so they can make the most informed decision possible. This is why we ratie the retail package presentation. in terms of the TS-509 Pro NAS this rating is somewhat high because QNAP has done an excellent job of informing buyers with plenty of on-the-box specifications and feature information.
Pros: Extremely powerful NAS product, 64.0/68.3 MiB/s Gigabit Ethernet read/write performance, RAID-0, 1, 5, 6, 5+Spare, Single, and JBOD disk configurations, Dual Gigabit Ethernet NICs with teaming and failover safety, High-quality durable metal enclosure, Elegant appearance without functional compromise, No wiring need; SATA and power on backplane, Five total High-Speed USB 2.0 ports, Simple HTML administration interface, Frequent firmware development and free software su...
Cons: Does not offer Jumbo Frame functionality, Basic web interface compared to competing options, QNAP does not offer a local US support telephone line, Integrated PSU could cause trouble if replacement is needed out of warranty, Package includes obsolete CAT-5e Ethernet patch cable
Excerpt: It's rare to come across a product that exceeds my expectations as much as this NAS did. Even excellent products usually have some minor issue that I come across during a review, but it was difficult to find anything negative at all to say about the TS-509. Everything about the setup was easy, from installing drives to configuring RAID to setting up the many additional features it offers.
Summary: The QNAP 509 Pro is a very sophisicated and complete NAS system which will find its worth in many a home or business network system. Thankfully when compared to the 409 U they have lowered the noise levels, upgraded the memory to 1GB and slotted in a 1.6ghz Celeron CPU. There is also support now for a total of 5 hard drives.
Summary: The QNAP TS-509 Pro comes highly recommended — it's a highly flexible NAS with an interface that's gaining usability as time goes on. Its weak point is in its add-ons — the Multimedia and Download Stations could do with a complete rework.
Pros: Slick NAS admin UI, Highly featured, SMS alert support, High transfer speeds
Cons: Cheap display on the NAS, "Stations" need to be overhauled
Excerpt: There are two main types of RAID device available. The simpler models, which are mostly aimed at small business users, are supplied with hard disks already built-in so they can be plugged in and set up right away. The more complex models are aimed at larger corporate users, who have specialist IT staff who can configure and maintain the storage system.