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NAS Reviews

ReadyNAS 716
At a glance
ProductNETGEAR RN716X ReadyNAS 716   [Website]
SummarySix bay Intel Quad Core Xeon Ivy Bridge NAS with revamped OS based on BTRFS with built-in antivirus
Pros• Built-in antivirus
• Built-in dual copper 10GbE
• Unlimited volume snapshots
• Expandable
• Cloud based replication, access, drop folder
Cons• Some features not carried into new OS or require Genie Marketplace signup
• Big performance hit for Directory copy tests

Typical Price: $3026  Shop Amazon

Introduction

There has been a, uh, slight gap in our coverage of NETGEAR's now not-so-new revamped ReadyNAS line. The last review was the RN516 back in Sept '13. In that review's closing thoughts, I declared the RN516 a top-performing NAS, but bemoaned its lack of 10GbE port(s) to make full use of its power. But the SNB NAS Testbed wasn't up to the task of properly testing 10GbE class NASes anyway. So NETGEAR decided to hold back the RN716 until we upgraded the testbed.

Fast forward to our recent review of Thecus' 10GbE-equipped N7710-G using our brandy-new, Revision 5 NAS testbed. NETGEAR apparently took note, because an RN716 showed up on my doorstep a few days later.

If you can think of the RN516 as a more powerful (and expensive) version of the Intel Atom powered RN316, then the RN716 is an RN516 with a more powerful Intel 2.5 GHz Quad-Core Xeon Ivy Bridge CPU and four times the 516's 4 GB of ECC RAM. The spec comparison chart below taken from the ReadyNAS 300 / 500 / 700 datasheet has the rest of the comparative details.

ReadyNAS 716 & 516 spec comparison

ReadyNAS 716 & 516 spec comparison

Since we're looking at the same chassis for both the RN516 and RN716, I'll skip further commentary and direct you to the RN516 review if you want it.

NETGEAR RN716 Front and rear panel callouts

NETGEAR RN716 Front and rear panel callouts

Inside

The ReadyNAS 716 uses the same chassis as the RN516, so I am reusing the internal shot from the 516's review below, showing the rear panel removed after unplugging the fan and AC power cables.

NETGEAR ReadyNAS RN516 inside rear view

NETGEAR ReadyNAS RN516 inside rear view

If the 716's board isn't the same as the 516's (except for the different processor and possibly, companion device), it's pretty close to it. The dual 10GbE ports are supplied by an Intel X520-T2 adapter, the same we use in the Revision 5 NAS Testbed. As I noted in the 516 review, the Intel board plugs into an adapter plugged into the PCIe x4 slot on the main board. Both DIMM slots are filled with innoDisk 8 GB DDR3 ECC DIMMs for a total of 16 GB.

NETGEAR ReadyNAS 716 board

NETGEAR ReadyNAS 716 board

The key components are summarized in Table 1 with the RN516's for comparison.

Component RN716 RN516
CPU Intel Quad Core Xeon Ivy Bridge E3-1265Lv2 @ 2.5GHz Intel 3.3GHz Core i3-3220
RAM 16 GB ECC DIMM 4 GB ECC DIMM
Flash 128 MB + 128 KB 128 MB + 128 KB
Ethernet Intel WG82574L (x2) Intel WG82574L (x2)
SATA Silicon Image Sil3132 2 port 3.0 Gb/s SATA host controller (x2) Silicon Image Sil3132 2 port 3.0 Gb/s SATA host controller (x2)
USB 3.0 NEC D720202 USB 3.0 controller NEC D720202 USB 3.0 controller
HDMI Parade PS8171 HDMI/DVI Level Shifter Parade PS8171 HDMI/DVI Level Shifter
Table 1: Key component summary and comparison

The RN716 comes only in a diskless configuration, but NETGEAR supplied the RN716 with six SanDisk X210 128 GB SSD's (SD6SB2M128G1022I). As is our test standard for high-performance NASes, however, I removed those and ran tests with four WD Re 3 TB (WD3000FYYZ) drives. Power consumption with those drives measured 62 W. I couldn't measure power consumption with the drives spun down because idle drive spindown is not supported. Power consumption with the six SanDisk SSD's was only 27 W!

Fan and drive noise were classified as medium since the NAS was clearly audible in my quiet home office with the WD Re drives in use. I noticed that fan speed occasionally increased under load during testing. Fans also come on with a roar during initial boot.

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