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NAS Reviews

SOHO / Home NAS Server
At a glance
ProductThecus SOHO / Home NAS Server (N2350)   [Website]
SummaryTwo-bay dual-core Marvell-based NAS
Pros• Inexpensive
• Large library of downloadable apps
• Supports Plex
• Supports iSCSI initiator and target
Cons• No front panel USB port

Introduction

The N2350 is a two-bay NAS powered by a Marvell Armada 385 dual-core processor running at 1 GHz. It's most likely a replacement for the N2310, [reviewed], but Thecus rarely discontinues products. The chart below, from Thecus' comparison generator, shows the N2350 has a more beefy processor, two USB 3.0 ports and double the memory of the N2310. In addition, the N2350 has support for iSCSI target and initiator - a feature that you rarely see in entry-level NASes, while the N2310 doesn't support iSCSI at all. The N2350 is currently priced around $120 - quite a bargain compared to the N2310 that still appears on Amazon for over $200.

Thecus N2350 and N2310 Prouct Comparison

Thecus N2350 and N2310 Product Comparison

I'll be comparing the Thecus N2350 with the QNAP T2-228 and ZyXEL NAS326. Thecus's $120 price for the N2350 puts it squarely in beween the $80 ZyXEL NAS326 and the $140 QNAP TS-228.

The chart below, generated from our NAS Charts, compares the major features of the TS-228 and the DS216j. You can see the full feature comparison here. The major differences, other than the processors, are the amount of memory and the number and type of USB ports. The N2350 is also the only one of the three compared NASes that supports hot-swappable drives.

Thecus N2350, QNAP TS-228 and ZyXEL NAS326 Product Comparison

Thecus N2350, QNAP TS-228 and ZyXEL NAS326 Product Comparison

The callouts below shows the front and rear panels of the N2350. The front panel features lockable disk tray - a feature rarely found on entry-level Home/SOHO NASes. There is a USB copy button located near the power switch, but there isn't a convenient USB 3.0 port located on the front panel. The front panel callouts also show how individual LEDs indicate status. The rear panel has a single Gigabit Ethernet port, two USB 3.0 ports, power connector, cooling fan vent and a reset button. Not labeled is a security cable slot.

Thecus N2350 callouts and LED table

Thecus N2350 callouts and LED table

Inside

The photo below shows the component side of the N2350's main board. It's interesting to note that there is a third USB port, located on the right-hand side of the board, which is not brought out to the front panel.

Thecus N2350 board

Thecus N2350 board

The Table below shows the key component summary for the three NASes compared in this review.

  Thecus N2350 QNAP TS-228 ZyXEL NAS326
CPU Marvell Armada 385 Dual Core SoC @ 1GHz Realtek RTD1195PN Dual Cortex-A7 SoC @ 1.1 GHz Marvell Single Core Armada 38X 88F6810-A0 1.33 GHz
RAM 1 GB H5AN4G8NAFR (x2) DDR4 (not upgradeable) 1 GB DDR3 Micron MT41K256M16HA-125 (x2) 512 MB DDR3 Samsung K4B2G1646Q (x2)
Flash 512 MB Hynix H27U4G8F2DTR; 4 MB Macronix MX25L3206E 4 GB (can't identify device manufacturer) 4 GB MTFC4GMCDM-1M WT
Ethernet Marvell 88E1512 Gigabit Ethernet PHY In RTD1195 Marvell 88E1512-NNP2 Gigabit Transceiver
Table 1: Key component summary

The N2350 drew 10 W with two of our stock WD Red 1 TB (WD10EFRX) spun up. Drives did not spin down after the selected time, even when logged out of the browser-based administration interface and network connection was removed. Fan and drive noise was rated low - mostly drive noise.

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