QNAP SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS device
QNAP's first 2.5in NAS device has plenty of features but consumes a lot of power
- Small, lightning-fast transfer speeds, extensive feature set
- Expensive, some design issues, not as power-efficient as alternatives
QNAP's first 2.5in NAS device isn't as power efficient or compact as the Synology Disk Station DS409slim, but it offers great performance and features. Its storage capacity is limited compared to NAS devices that use 3.5in hard drives, but the SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS device is very fast.
Price$ 999.00 (AUD)
QNAP's SS-439 Pro Turbo is the company's first network-attached storage (NAS) device to use 2.5in hard drives. Powered by an Intel Atom processor, this four-bay NAS device is extremely fast, but doesn't offer the power efficiency or quiet operation of other 2.5in NAS devices.
The QNAP SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS is much smaller than NAS devices that use 3.5in hard drives but it still has an impressive array of connections: you get three USB ports, two eSATA ports and two Gigabit Ethernet ports that support failover and load balancing. You even get a VGA output port, which can be used to connect an LCD monitor to keep track of the NAS device's status.
The QNAP SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS has a metal chassis. The four drive caddies — also made of metal — are roughly the size of two 2.5in hard drives side by side, but each caddy only fits one drive. This makes the NAS device significantly larger than the Synology Disk Station DS409slim, which also takes 2.5in drives. We had difficulty inserting some 2.5in SATA 2 hard drives, with screw holes often failing to align properly and metal guides on the caddies proving too narrow to fit drives with slightly thicker cases. The metal grooves which lock the caddies in the chassis are too small to slide without fingernails, making them to difficult to unlock. These problems make it difficult to quickly replace a drive.
Once inserted, the hard drives can be formatted into RAID levels 0, 1, 5 and 6, as well as single and JBOD linear drive configurations. The SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS also supports 256-bit AES volume-based drive encryption; it doesn't offer password recovery. The largest 2.5in hard drives available offer 500GB of storage, making the SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS device's total storage capacity 2TB.
Data can be replicated remotely to rsync-compliant devices, and you can also schedule individual drives to backup to external hard drives formatted to NTFS, FAT, ext3 or ext4 file systems. The one-touch copy button can be configured to backup to or from the attached external hard drive.
QNAP's recently released 3.0 firmware is downloadable from its Web site, though our review unit had an earlier version. The new firmware revamps the Web-based interface, making it easier to use. Though the Cover Flow-like home page is slow and unnecessary, the administration interface and individual file and media browsers are significantly improved. The new firmware also allows you to format internal and external hard drives using the ext4 file system, which offers performance improvements and greater file size limits over ext3.
Media functionality includes an iTunes server and a DLNA-compliant UPnP server powered by TwonkyMedia. These worked well, though the iTunes server sometimes failed to work when there was a non-media file located in the designated "Qmultimedia" share. You can schedule BitTorrent, FTP and HTTP downloads, and the NAS device can also serve as a recording device for QNAP's surveillance products.
Synology's Disk Station DS409slim makes do with a 1.2GHz processor and 128MB of memory, but QNAP's SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS device boasts a significantly more powerful 1.6GHz Intel Atom CPU and 1GB of DDR2 memory. This does increase power consumption, however; configured with a Intel X25-M 32GB drive and two Solidata 32GB drives, the SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS consumed 20 Watts when idle; the DS409slim only consumed 11.5W using the same drives. The SS-439 Pro Turbo offers a slight improvement over larger NAS devices in this respect, as the two-bay QNAP TS-219 Turbo consumes 23W when fitted with two 3.5in hard drives.
We tested the NAS device by transferring files from our test PC, which runs a 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor. In Intel's NAS Performance Toolkit, the NAS device streamed 720p high-definition footage at an average rate of 98.7 megabytes per second (MBps); this is one of the fastest speeds we have seen in a NAS device. It recorded the same footage at 90.7MBps, which means it has strong write performance.
We also conducted large and small file transfers to test the NAS device's capability in the real world. Using 20GB worth of 3-4GB files, the SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS device recorded a write speed of 67.1MBps, a read speed of 76.98MBps and a read/write speed of 38.3MBps. Using 3GB worth of 1MB files, it wrote at a rate of 33.7MBps, read at 48.4MBps, and performed a simultaneous read/write operation at a rate of 24MBps. These speeds are slightly slower than the eight-bay 3.5in TS-809 Pro Turbo, but are significantly faster than the Synology DS-409slim NAS device, which wrote same data at 23.3MBps and read it at 35.7MBps.
Thanks to a beefy processor and memory, QNAP's SS-439 Pro Turbo NAS device provides extremely fast file transfer speeds but consumes more electricity than some other 2.5in NAS devices. Provided you don't require more than 2TB of storage, this NAS device's extensive feature set and comprehensive connectivity make it a great alternative to larger 3.5in NAS devices for small businesses.
Follow PC World Australia on Twitter: @PCWorldAu
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Subaru XV 2017 review
- 2 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 3 Kogan Atlas UltraSlim Pro laptop: full, in-depth review
- 4 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 5 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
Latest News Articles
- Prices of SSDs and DRAM will crash in 2019, Gartner predicts
- Pure adds more NVMe with an eye to the next storage speed bump
- What one company learned from testing Intel's superfast Optane SSDs
- New, colourful LaCie Rugged Thunderbolt USB-C was designed by Neil Poulton
- Western Digital begins production of the world's tallest 3D NAND 'skyscraper'
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTCampaign ManagerNSW
- CCProject Manager - Security - TelcoVIC
- FTProject Manager - Data MigrationNSW
- CCProject CoordinatorACT
- FTSolution ConsultantVIC
- CCTechnical Consultant - ITSM/HP Service ManagerACT
- CCInfrastructure Project ManagerNSW
- FTUser Support AnalystNSW
- FTNetwork EngineerSA
- FTSAP SD/MM ConsultantNSW
- FTSystem Administrator App-VACT
- CCProcess Improvement SpecialistVIC
- FTSenior Solution ArchitectNSW
- FTInformation Security ManagerACT
- FTSecurity ConsultantACT
- FTIT ArchitectNSW
- FTSenior Sales Operations AnalystNSW
- TPSoftware Licensing SpecialistNSW
- TPService Desk OperatorQLD
- FTSenior Business Analyst, Wealth InvestmentNSW
- TPProject ManagerQLD
- CCTechnical Business AnalystSA
- FTHTML DeveloperNSW
- CCTelecommunication Business SpecialistVIC
- CCNetwork Architect - SecurityVIC