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QNAP TVS-863+ 8-Bay NAS Review

Technical Specifications

NAS products should be treated as complete system solutions rather than components. That said, the hardware allows users to run more software features at the same time and plays a role in the user experience.

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The TVS-x63 product series consists of four models that range from four to eight drive bays. The TVS-863+ leads the series in features, while the TVS-863 nonplus model is nearly identical but lacks 10GbE connectivity out of the box and ships with either 4GB or 8GB of low-power DDR3 DRAM. All TVS-x63 products include a user-accessible PCIe 2.0 x4 expansion slot for 10GbE add-in-cards and two DDR3 memory slots that accept up to 8GB memory sticks each.

Today, we're testing the TVS-863+ -16GB, the flagship of the series with every hardware option included right out of the box. This series is considered an affordable way to give users access to 10GbE network capabilities and up to eight drives in a storage pool. The next tier up in the QNAP product line is the TVS-871, which costs $2,199 (Newegg) and is configured with a Core i7 processor, 16GB of DRAM and 4x gigabit Ethernet ports (optional 10GbE, but not included). The affordable AMD-powered TVS-863+ allows the system to be used for more virtual machine storage, thanks to the 10GbE network.

QNAP is an innovation leader in hardware features. The TVS-x63 product series can use any two drive bays for SSD cache. When enabled, SSD cache increases read and write performance and can be tuned to accelerate small random files or all file types.

The heart of the system is an AMD 64-bit APU that features Radeon HD graphics technology for hardware-accelerated transcoding. The processor also provides a hardware-accelerated encryption engine with AES-NI that is full AES 256-bit.

I've always felt the increased video capabilities are out of place on many of the SMB NAS products but this market is all about filling in boxes with check marks. The system can be used for digital signage, playing videos like presentations in conference rooms and so on. The transcoding features paired with the always connected software does give the video features some legs. Businesses can keep sensitive presentations in house on the NAS but allow company representatives to play them in remote locations without the digital data actually moving to insecure offsite computer systems.

Chris Ramseyer
Chris Ramseyer is a Contributing Editor for Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews consumer storage.