Best NAS Drive for Work Files and Streaming

aftabn10

Active Member
Hi, I am looking to purchase a NAS Drive that will help me to access my web/design files as well as store media for streaming onto TV, ipad, phone for the kids.

I currently have my main laptop (8 years old) and a WD 8TB My Book that I use but this only works at home. I have purchased a new laptop that has an SSD of 1TB and would like to make the use of accessing files a lot more seamless than it is and also be able to access my files away from home on both laptops.

Currently I can only work on my old laptop and have to keep copying files onto the networked My Book drive to then use on the new laptop which is just duplicating everything, so would like a cleaner process to make sure all my files are organised.

At the same time, I want to able to store my movies and stream this on my TV through Plex(or another software) and also be able to access this on my phone and the iPads for the kids to watch so need to have something that will be able to handle streaming across multiple devices.

After reading a load of reviews and a lot of google searching, I have come across the following NAS Drives, but would be happy to take suggestions as I am completely new to this.

The 2 drives that I am considering are:

Synology DS718+ 2 Bay Desktop NAS Unit

Asustor AS5202T

I understand both are drive-less and would need to purchase separate drives, but as previously said I am happy to consider other drives as these 2 are also on the pricey side. Another one I considered is the Western Digital 6TB My Cloud EX2 Ultra NAS which is a cheaper option but the reviews didn't fill me with confidence.

Thanks in advance.
 

oneman

Well-known Member
I am a big fan of Asus but to be honest I would get the Synology if you have the budget for it or QNAP.

If you need to transcode in Plex (i.e. the client doesn't support the native file format) then I would probably go for the DS920 as its has hardware support for transcoding which I don't think the DS718 has.
 

rpr

Active Member
I have a Synology 418 which I use for storage and streaming of video and audio as well as backing up and sharing documents & photos. Got to say it works really well and no issues with streaming via Plex etc. I don't use it to transcode for Plex, you'd certainly need something more powerful with more RAM
 
D

Deleted member 24354

Guest
Personally I wouldnt use a NAS to transcode. I'd use an end-point device, such as an Apple TV or NVidia Shield. I have a pair of 214 Plays and let my Shield handle and transcoding and it works fine. Otherwise you are paying a hefty premium to jump to a NAS with sufficient processing and memory to transcode. I would stick with your idea of a 718+ and invest in a decent end-point device.
 

oneman

Well-known Member
Personally I wouldnt use a NAS to transcode. I'd use an end-point device, such as an Apple TV or NVidia Shield. I have a pair of 214 Plays and let my Shield handle and transcoding and it works fine. Otherwise you are paying a hefty premium to jump to a NAS with sufficient processing and memory to transcode. I would stick with your idea of a 718+ and invest in a decent end-point device.
I agree about the end point but if you streaming to phones are you going to change them ?

Personally I would install something like Kodi or VLC on the phone and a Firestick for the TV. They can handle most file formats and resolutions.

You also have the options of re-encoding your files to an appropriate format before you view them then no need to transcode.
 

next010

Distinguished Member
Thanks for your replies guys. Interesting point about the transcoding as mkv files could be an issue.
You can avoid transcoding on iOS devices by using InFuse or MrMC as your Plex clients, they will decode the video using the hardware of the device.

Even if video is not supported they can fall back to CPU decoding, the downside is this will drain battery of iOS device faster but still it frees the NAS from the need of transcoding.
 

oneman

Well-known Member
Thanks for your replies guys. Interesting point about the transcoding as mkv files could be an issue.
MKV is just a container, the video can be encoded in many different resolutions and codecs. For example you could have a H.264 in HD or H.265 in UHD, both supported by MKV container. To make matters worse there is different encoding within H.265 it self, for example VP9 or HEVC though you probably won't see too many VP9 files. This is were transcoding will come in if you iPad doesn't have hardware H.265 support for example (older ones don't) Plex I believe will re-encode it on the server where as InFuse will use local CPU to do it.
 

spile

Active Member
I use and am happy with my Qnap TS251+ for local multimedia access, backup, music streaming and security cameras.
For remote access I use a VPN server.
 

examiga1990

Standard Member
I agree about the end point but if you streaming to phones are you going to change them ?

Personally I would install something like Kodi or VLC on the phone and a Firestick for the TV. They can handle most file formats and resolutions.

You also have the options of re-encoding your files to an appropriate format before you view them then no need to transcode.

Yes Kodi or VLC is easier and work good. I use both on a 4K FireStick reading from my WDMCLOUD 4TB NAS. all TVs/laptops etc in house can watch anything. Kodi look nicer on the eye the way its set out but rewind/fast forward works better on VLC. Also VLC is easier to work of all machines Windows/Android etc. Either or both free and easy to set up. Reads all Film formats
 

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