A sleek and quiet NAS, but expensive and slow
2 disk bays, N/A storage supplied, 1x 10/100/1000Mbit/s Ethernet ports
The Qnap HS-210 looks unlike any other NAS we’ve seen. It has the shape, size and appearance of a DVD player and is designed to sit alongside your other home entertainment equipment. It’s completely quiet, which is impressive, although a few other NAS devices have achieved the same feat, such as the D-Link ShareCenter DNS-327L. The Qnap HS-210 is passively cooled, so it’s best to ensure it’s well ventilated.
The HS-210 comes with no disks installed, but it’s easy to install your own. The front fascia is attached magnetically and pulls off easily to reveal the pull-out disk caddies. The HS-210 also has four USB ports, two of which are USB3, plus an SD card reader so it can automatically back up the contents of USB drives and SD cards. Annoyingly, these are located on the back of the NAS, where they’re harder to reach.
Setting up the HS-210 is straightforward, but it could be easier. The web management interface looks like a Linux desktop and is reasonably easy to use, but there are a bewildering array of options, many of them esoteric and unlikely to be used often. It’s more fiddly and fussy to use than Synology’s web management interface.
There are plenty of extra features, though. We had no problem sharing the contents of a USB disk across our network, but a shared USB printer took as long as five minutes to spool a simple single page document. Streaming stored media files to a UPnP network media player worked fine, but the iTunes server could only stream music and not videos. If that’s not enough, there’s also a download manager, an IP camera manager, a web server and even a VPN server. Even more features can be downloaded from the app store built into the web interface.
The HS-210’s two disks can be configured as a pair of single disks, as RAID 0 or as RAID 1. We tested the HS-210 using a pair of 3TB WD Red disks. When configured as RAID 0, 6TB of storage is available, but if a disk fails you’ll lose all your data. When configured as RAID 1, only 3TB of storage is available but if a disk fails then your data is still safe on the other disk.
Performance when copying files was odd. When configured as RAID 0, large files were written at 29MB/s and read at 54.2MB/s. Small files were written at 4.4MB/s and read at 9.6MB/s. This pattern repeated itself in RAID 1, but in this mode large files performance was faster than it was with RAID 0 which is the opposite of what we’d expect. Large files were written at 30.1MB/s and read at 65.7MB/s, while small files were written at 3.9MB/s and read at 8.4MB/s. Even so, while the large file speeds are acceptable, the small file performance is very slow.
The QNap HS-210 isn’t a bad NAS enclosure. It’s quiet, attractive and it’s easy to install disks in it. However, it’s not an exemplary NAS due to its relatively slow performance and fussy configuration interface, which are disappointing flaws at this price. If you simply want a silent NAS, the D-Link ShareCenter DNS-327L is far better value. Although this is still a good buy if the design fits neatly with your existing kit and performance isn’t a big concern.
|Default file system||EXT4|
|Price per gigabyte||N/A|
|3.5in drive bays||2|
|Free 3.5in drive bays||2|
|RAID modes||JBOD, RAID 0, RAID 1|
|USB direct access ports (front/rear)||0/0|
|Other USB ports (front/rear)||0/4|
|eSATA ports (front/rear)||0/0|
|Other ports||SD card slot|
|Ethernet connection speed||10/100/1000Mbit/s|
|Universal Plug and Play support||yes|
|UPnP media server||yes|
|USB disk server||yes|
|Protocols supported||TCP/IP, SMB/CIFS, AFP, FTP, HTTP, HTTPS, NFS, SSH, Telnet, iSCSI|
|Ethernet cable included||yes|
|Additional features||download manager, IP camera server, photo server, LDAP server, VPN server, mySQL server, RADIUS server|
|Power consumption active||25W|
|Warranty||one year RTB|