Thecus N2310 Budget 2-bay NAS Reviewby Ganesh T S on July 6, 2014 2:30 PM EST
Miscellaneous Aspects and Concluding Remarks
Before proceeding to the business end of the review, we take a small detour to analyze the miscellaneous aspects of the Thecus N2310. The unit comes along with a backup software on the CD that simplifies setting up periodical backup tasks to the NAS for Windows users. The NAS has Apple Time Machine support for users with Mac systems. The other praiseworthy aspect is the T-OnTheGo mobile app (for both iOS and Android). With WebDAV enabled in the NAS, it makes it easy to have access to the NAS files through either the local network or the Internet. We already gave it lot of praise in our review of the N2560, and the behaviour with the N2310 is no different. As already mentioned, the Plex app also enables media server features. Adding to the positive aspects is the excellent performance in terms of data transfer rates (given the price and the platform).
The power consumption of the unit under various scenarios and the RAID rebuild time (for the one applicable case - RAID 1 reconstruction) are provided in the table below. These numbers were obtained while using the 4 TB WD Re disks.
|Thecus N2310 RAID Rebuild / Power Consumption|
|Activity||Duration||Avg. Power Consumption|
|Idle (Disks Spun Down)||5.02 W|
|4TB JBOD Initialization (Single Disk)||14.14 W|
|4TB RAID-1 Rebuild (Replace 1 of 2 Disks)||12h 41m 25s||25.80 W|
The unit has a MSRP of $150. At that price point, the main competitor is the Synology DS214se. The latter has only 256 MB of RAM (compared to the 512 MB in the N2310). So, on the whole, Thecus is really targeting this unit at the entry level folks by pushing down the price quite a bit while providing better specifications on paper. Though we haven't reviewed the DS214se, we have enough faith in Synology's OS and efforts to believe that the unit would have completed our benchmarking suite without any problems. Our issue with the N2310 lies in that aspect.
We found the street price to be much lower ($134 on Amazon and $126 on Newegg as of review date). At that price point, readers may also begin to consider the sub-$100 2-bay offerings (such as those from ZyXEL) that appear regularly on the deal sites.
The consumer NAS segment is growing at a fast clip, and vendors such as Synology and QNAP have a very attractive and stable user interface / user experience. If Thecus wants to stay relevant in this market segment, they should concentrate more on just price alone. The entire firmware (starting with the kernel version - even Western Digital, a relative newcomer to this market segment, uses a more recent version) needs overhauling to improve stability and performance. The lesser said about the UI, the better. The Thecus N2310 will probably work well as a basic entry-level or backup NAS. However, given our benchmarking travails, we will let our readers be the judge on applicability under other scenarios.