QNAP unveils the TS-509 Pro Turbo NAS 5-bay hot-swappable, dual Giga LAN, 5TB NAS with Superior Performance for SMB and Enterprises
This week QNAP launched the new 5 bay TS-509 PRO NAS flaunted as the new-generation all-in-one NAS server for SMB and E nterprise. eAegis received their quota of the stock, and decided to give this popular 5 bay NAS a quick once over. This first look will give you a glimpse of what the QNAP TS-509 PRO has to offer.
Few of us at eAegis already had the privilege of seeing a work in progress version of the TS-509 model whilst visiting Taipei for the Computex 2008 show. QNAP folks were kind enough to accommodate our in depth evaluation of the product patiently, and provide us with their insight towards their vision for manufacturing state of art new generation NAS devices that embrace convergence as a focal point of their R&D efforts. QNAP is a credible manufacturer with an excellent R&D pision that leverages a competent and knowledgeable technical team. We are sure for those of you out there who have been “QNAP(PED)” this comes as no surprise as many die hard QNAP users just love the support they get from QNAP. As far as the company is concerned one can safely assume excellent support, response and customer service.
The packaging is carefully designed and crafted to limit shipping damage during transit en route to final destination. This was refreshing to observe as manufacturers sometimes find it necessary to cut corners and save costs during this stage of the product lifecycle. Opening the top flap reveals a sturdy and strong styrofoam protecting the top of the unit and a similar affair for the bottom of the unit as well. On the side of unit rests a snugly fit accessories box providing all the necessary peripherals for connectivity. Once out of the box it quickly becomes evident that the impressive QNAP TS-509 PRO build quality is excellent, with the overall chassis feeling rigid and sturdy.
Out of the Box
The connectivity set of the unit is apparent instantly, once the unit is visible. The LED indicators below the carefully placed power button are just enough to be useful and not used as disco lights to blur one’s vision. They are soothing and provide the necessary Status, HDD 1, HDD 2, HDD 3, HDD 4, HDD 5, LAN, USB activity functionality needed. The 5 Bay hot swap trays are sturdy and have the customary locking mechanism for added security, which is of good quality and not flimsy to touch. (We are keen to see a major shift in the design and feature aspects from a convergence level t o provide a greater control for redundancy purposes). The LCD Panel, which at first impression is a “ME TOO” add on, reveals on closer examination a totally different dimension. The display quality clearly depicts the various options available. The one that stands out of the crowd is a term used by QNAP “Touch-N-Go PC-less Installation”, which describes a methodology of building a RAID SET in three steps, once the hard disk drives have been installed. No need to install software on a PC, looking for the NAS on the network, then via the installed software going in to build the RAID and so on. All achieved in this clever 1-2-3-RAID and GO steps. This is a unique feature that removes the hassle factor from setting up. QNAP is obviously listening to its customers and reacting positively to feedback. Top Notch QNAP.
A further quick glimpse around the case reveals a rich specification with 2 x Gigabit RJ-45 Ethernet ports, 1 x eSATA port (Back), 5 x USB 2.0 (Front: 1; Back: 4) providing support for USB printer, disk, pen drive, USB hub, and USB UPS amongst others. An impressive line up indeed, if it was this good outside we were keen to discover how it may stack up inside.
Inside of the Box
Access to the innards is by removal of 5 small screws at the back of the unit, a gentle lift of top lid reveals all. The motherboard (mainboard) is positioned vertically and not horizontally as you may expect from a tower based system. This it seems, is mainly for quick access and to allow for easier maintenance. It is carefully protected by a thin anti-static plastic cover. This is a first for any manufacturer. This protects the back of the board from any undue damage as a result of movement.
Further poking around inside continued to amaze us. QNAP appears to have manufactured a unit that combines all the finest attributes of all their NAS appliances and culminated these into the QNAP TS-509 PRO.
At the heart of the unit beats an Intel Celeron 1.6GHz processor, aided and abated by a generous helping of 1GB DDRII memory as a standard. Rounding this off is a 128MB flash (DOM) which has the entire OS and application embedded within. Why then you may ask is this unique or important?. Simply as this allows the TS-509 Pro to boot without the need to access the physical disk sectors thus preventing boot failure in cases of bad block sectors or file errors that sometimes occur with hard disk drives installed within.
Further protection comes in the form of two operating systems contained within the DOM for system booting at every system startup. In case the primary OS fails, the secondary OS can be used for a successful boot up, and the failed OS recovery can commence from the alternative good one.
The memory size of 1GB DDRII SODIMM is impressive as many applications will utilize the extra memory size updated from normal 256MB. Albeit, the impressive line up continues, as our images reveals, the SATA controller on board is an eight port variety allowing for future expansion and continuity for the same motherboard in family of future QNAP NAS appliances.
The quality of the components used for integration is admirable even down to the power supply used, manufactured by Seasonic. These have been used by many a reputable manufacturer who wish to articulate a quality and style statement to their product portfolio. Seasonic, has an enviable reputation for producing quality Power Supplies. This particular model is from a Seasonic category called 80 PLUS that makes better use of energy, so they run cooler and more reliably. 80 PLUS power supplies are 20% more efficient than standard supplies – they are 80% efficient at 20%, 50% and 100% utilization. Reliability of Power supply units cannot be underestimated in a mission critical data deployment. The noise level from the fan was difficult to measure as it was close to near silence.
This is an area of particular interest for many users. Our performance measurement is normally application based and requires a strategic planned approach within a given timeline. We shall publish our long term performance testing in due course. As a first look we were able to measure the QNAP TS-509 PRO with a few of its competitors. Suffice to note, initial results have not been disappointing, and baud well for QNAP.
UPDATE: 08/24/2008 - The performance on files larger than 512MB is the fastest we have seen to date. We are still undergoing long term testing hence, we will continue to update as frequently as we can.
QNAP appears to be striving for total product development and manufacturing excellence and is quickly gathering momentum towards service excellence. The QNAP TS-509 PRO embodies that passion for excellence and has culminated in a NAS, par excellence.
First Looks is a quick overview and does not provide an in-depth product features list. These can be found on our site or the relevant manufacturer’s site.
Warning: QNAP TS-509 PRO contains features that may leave you breathless!
This review is courtesy of : eAegis.com Product Testing and Evaluation pision
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for any comments you may wish to share with us. We welcome customer feedback. August 15, 2008
QNAP TS-509 PRO Product Introduction Video
VIEW the complete QNAP TS-509 PRO Product Portfolio