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Performance - more

To see how the F2-NAS 2 NAS fared against other dual drive NASes, I filtered the results for two bay devices using a single core SoC and then generated charts for File Copy Read and File Copy Write performance. If you use the default sorting, i.e., by throughput, the TerraMaster F2-NAS 2 doesn't do very well. It ranks 11/25 for File Copy Write Performance and 19/25 for File Copy Read Performance. For Read, the F2-NAS 2's 66.1 MB/s is only about 66% of the $139 Thecus N2310, which turned in 100.1 MB/s. For Write, the F2-NAS 2 measured 52.4 MB/s (61%) vs. the top performing Thecus N2310's 85.7 MB/s.

TerraMaster F2-NAS2 File Copy Read and File Copy Write Performance

TerraMaster F2-NAS2 File Copy Read and File Copy Write Performance

For either File Copy Read or File Copy Write results, if you find the F2-NAS2 (with the "New" bug) and move up the chart looking at price, you'll find a number of better performing devices at lower prices. Another metric is to compare the price/performance of the F2-NAS 2 with the ZyXEL NSA325 v2. As noted in the component comparison above, both devices use the same processor and the same amount of RAM and similar prices, but the NSA325 v2 outperforms the F2-NAS 2 on both tests. And, of course, the Thecus N2310 outperforms both by a significant margin.

The table below compares the F2-NAS 2's backup performance with two sub-$100 NASes (TRENDnet TN-200 and ZyXEL NSA320) and a similarly-priced ZyXEL NSA325 v2. The F2-NAS 2 clearly lost all of the tests where there were results. Both ZyXEL products excelled at the USB 2.0 tests, and the NSA325 v2 showed the real advantage of USB 3 ports for direct attached backup.

Benchmark TerraMaster F2-NAS 2 TRENDnet TN200 ZyXEL NSA325 ZyXEL NSA320
USB 2.0 FAT 12 19.0 26.1 25.4
USB 2.0 NTFS 4.9 6.8 23.9 24.1
USB 2.0 EXT3 NA NA 26.3 24.9
USB 3FAT NA NA 62.0 NA
USB 3 NTFS NA NA 67.6 NA
USB 3 EXT3 NA NA 56.5 NA
Network Backup 11.1 18.5 16.3 NA
Throughput (MB/s)

Closing Thoughts

Ranking should be an important consideration when deciding where to spend your hard earned dollars. For Total NAS rank, which includes all products tested, the F2-NAS 2 ranked #58 out of a total of 70 products tested. Though its overall ranking was fairly low, for some of the individual benchmarks, all RAID 1 File Copy benchmarks, the F2-NAS 2 ranked well above its overall ranking of #58.

If you filter for SOC-1 processors and 2 disk devices, the F2-NAS 2 ranks #16 of 19 filtered results. If you sort the same filtered set by price, the F2-NAS 2 ranks #11 of 19 filtered results. Of the 10 less expensive NASs, nine of them have better Total NAS rankings that are better than the F2-NAS 2.

TerraMaster F2-NAS 2 Ranker Performance Summary

TerraMaster F2-NAS 2 Ranker Performance Summary

The F2-NAS 2 has a lot of features, but I found the lack of good documentation, very limited online help (FAQs) and non-based US support somewhat problematic. I ran into a problem and emailed their tech support. I have yet to hear back from them as I finish the review. They do offer Skype support, and, admittedly, I didn't try that.

There were some quirky things along the way such as discovery software that didn't discover the NAS after I did a factory reset; difficulties with setting up remote access, disk initialization issues, etc., that just didn't give me the warm fuzzies about the product. The industry is heading towards cloud-enabled NASes and the F2-NAS 2 just doesn't measure up. With so many better performing, less expensive choices with better cloud features from Synology, QNAP Western Digital and others, the F2-NAS 2 should not be on your shopping list.

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