The 7 Best Network-Attached Storage Systems

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This wiki has been updated 26 times since it was first published in February of 2018. Whether you're moving stacks of photos off your phone or backing up half the internet, having a few terabytes of extra space will help. Any network storage device can hold a handful of personal files, but with one of these NAS systems attached to your setup, you can do a whole lot more — from direct-streaming movies in 4K to safeguarding even the largest video and music collections. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Qnap TS-251D

2. Qnap TS-451D2

3. Synology DiskStation DS220+

Editor's Notes

January 08, 2021:

A good NAS system can be a blessing for a home entertainment system or even a a necessity for a business. The Synology DiskStation DS220+ and QNAP TS-251D are both compact and reasonably priced, and the DiskStation DS220j just a little more costly. Any of these would be good choices if all you need is common backup functions and video streaming; in fact, they can all transcode 4K difficulty relatively easily. The TerraMaster F2-422, on the other hand, packs enough power to decode two 4K videos at once, so its 4- or 5-bay would be suitable for a multi-room media setup.

Also keep in mind that all of these are limited to wired connectivity. If you want to add wireless access to any of these models that have PCIe expansion slots, we recommend this QNAP PCIe Wi-Fi expansion card.

October 27, 2019:

There are quite a few reasons why you might need self-contained network storage, for either business or personal use. You can find some configured specifically for installation in a professional server room and others that are proven to work well for common home theater streaming endeavors. There are a few brands that are commonly found near the top of all these categories; for example, the Synology DS1019+ and Synology 2-Bay DS281+ are excellent mid-range options, while the Synology FlashStation is worth considering if you need a seriously high-performing unit in your startup company. The Netgear ReadyNAS and QNAP TS-251B are two more that come up quite frequently -- in fact, almost anything by QNAP is worth looking at, and they offer a wide range of varying NAS systems.

There are also some slightly more specialty-oriented options like the Asustor NAS, which is aimed specifically at multimedia such as movies and music, and the Asustor AS5202T, which claims to be one of the best around for centralized video game streaming. And if reliability is what you're after, check out the Drobo 5N2, which incorporates a number of failsafes to ensure that your data is protected and the unit itself stays on, or turns back on right away, in the event of a brown- or blackout.

4. TerraMaster F2-422

5. Asustor AS5202T

6. Qnap TS-451+

7. Qnap TS-932PX

Christopher Thomas
Last updated by Christopher Thomas

Building PCs, remodeling, and cooking since he was young, quasi-renowned trumpeter Christopher Thomas traveled the USA performing at and organizing shows from an early age. His work experiences led him to open a catering company, eventually becoming a sous chef in several fine LA restaurants. He enjoys all sorts of barely necessary gadgets, specialty computing, cutting-edge video games, and modern social policy. He has given talks on debunking pseudoscience, the Dunning-Kruger effect, culinary technique, and traveling. After two decades of product and market research, Chris has a keen sense of what people want to know and how to explain it clearly. He delights in parsing complex subjects for anyone who will listen -- because teaching is the best way to ensure that you understand things yourself.

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