QNAP System has rolled out their TS-328, the first quad core 3 bay NAS that lets you build a RAID 5 collection with only three devices. QNAP’s latest NAS is made specifically for small and home businesses that aim for crucial RAID 5 protection at a very affordable price.

Compared to the 2 Bay NAS devices that only allow you to build RAID 1 sets, the TS-328 from QNAP gives you the choice to build a RAID 5 setup while optimizing accessible space and offering increased data protection. The TS-328 also gives you feature-rich video transcoding capabilities and feature-rich multimedia applications, making it the best solution for you to centrally backup, manage, and store data or files.

They say that about 30% of NAS users prefer utilizing the RAID 5 arrays since they can benefit from improved storage capacity, data protection, and better performance. If you’re one of these people, then QNAP’s very first 3 Bay NAS will let you build your preferred RAID 5 array on a private and more cost-efficient storage solution.

Their TS-328 also backs snapshots, allowing you to quickly and easily recover information in an event of accidental modification or deletion of data, or due to ransomware attacks. This NAS device is quite promising since it makes use of a quad core 1.4 GHz Realtek RTD-1296 64-bit CPU; this is a highly improved version of the RTD-1295 version that can be found in the 2 Bay TS-228A from QNAP.

If the TS-328 from QNAP has piqued your interest, we’re going to give you more details about the device on how it performs, what beneficial features it has, and if it’s something that you’d need. But before anything else, let’s go ahead and check out what’s in the box.

QNAP TS-328 Review – What’s in the Box?

The QNAP TS-328 is set in an eco-friendly box that doesn’t really have much fanfare. We’re actually used to QNAP delighting us with a minimalistic and very clean design that serves its purpose: to deliver the TS-328 NAS device in perfect condition and right at your doorstep.

On the box, you will only find the company’s logo along with a couple of barcodes and a sticker that provides you with the device’s key features. On the upper portion of the box, you’ll find the references on the serial number, MAC, and the type of NAS device that you have.

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Other than that, there’s nothing more on the box so you can go on and check out what’s inside.

Once you open the box, you’ll find a couple of items which include the QNAP TS-328 itself, a fast-instructional guide, a source & power cable, a network patch cord, and two stops to setup the three hard drives.

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The Product

QNAP TS-328 Review – When 2 Bays Aren’t Enough

The TS-328 from QNAP is an external storage device that features three internal bays. It is built with a matte white plastic external structure that is quite classy and eye-catching. Inside, it has a body made of steel but don’t worry about it heating up since QNAP ensured to give it proper cooling to prevent the device from heating up.

On the front portion of the TS-328, you’ll find a couple of status LED lights that indicate the status of the system. This works together with a backup button, a start button, and a USB 3.0 connection. Before we start with the technical part of the NAS device, we need to share that the TS-328 is a very compact device.

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It has very small dimensions (142 x 150 x 260 millimeters) and is lightweight at just 1.64 kilograms when you don’t have any of the hard drives installed. The upper area of the device features a small label that classifies the NAS model that you have, as well as the product’s characteristics.

For the TS-328’s rear connections, you’ll see that it includes two additional USB connections – one is a 2.0 connection and the other is a 3.0; it also features an audio input & output button, a dual Gigabit 10/ 100/ 1000 network connection that allows link aggregation, as well as a button and a power outlet.

The QNAP TS-328 NAS device is a 3 Bay tower model that makes use of a quad core 1.4 GHz Realtek RTD-1296 64-bit CPU; it also has 2GB of DDR4 memory that is quite enough to run most of the usual storage-related tasks. It’s a good amount of memory to have so you won’t really have an issue with this.

There are also two Gigabit ports that can be found at the rear together with the USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports; the second USB 3.0 port can be located at the front, inside the single-touch copy button.

The USB ports let you easily transfer large media files using a USB connection; it also provides you with two 1GbE ports, as well as SATA 6 GB/s drives that deliver read & write speed of up to 225 MB/s. Another great thing about the TS-328 is that it also includes an integrated speaker.

Along with data backup functions and file sharing, the QNAP is designed for multimedia services along with the Realtek System on Chip or SoC, supporting 4K H.264 / H.265 hardware decoding plus real-time transcoding.

The NAS device is fairly sized at 142 x 150 x 260.1 millimeters and weighs just 2.69 kilograms with the drives installed.

Product Features

Central Control for Multimedia Data

If you’re someone who has a ton of videos and photos spread across devices, you know that managing and backing up these things can be a bit troublesome. This is where the TS-328 comes in since it can centrally manage and backup your data; if you want, it can also work to easily share these with family or friends.

A new version of the File Station is present and this is in QTS 4.3.4. It will allow you to instantly access all your videos and photos from your mobile device by linking this to the TS-328 through USB. You’ll also be able to utilize the Q-photo mobile application to record videos or take photos that you can readily upload to the NAS device.

SSD Cache Boost

The QNAP TS-328 backs SSD caching to better improve the storage volume’s IOPS performance while also increasing the operational efficiency. This is a perfect feature to better improve the workflow of every IOPS-demanding apps since it also brings the best by combining HDDs with SSDs.

Data Protection with Snapshots

Snapshots are essential to help protect your information by completely recording the NAS system’s state and metadata. If any type of error occurs, you can easily utilize the snapshots to restore the system to its original state. The snapshots of QNAP are all block-based and only record altered data. It doesn’t only save your storage but it also decreases the time you need to restore and backup your data.

With this, you can easily share your videos saved on your TS-328 NAS to family or friends through shared links so they can enjoy seamless viewing anytime and anywhere.

Automate Daily Tasks with the IFTTT Agent

QNAP’s IFTTT Agent uses the famous web-automation service IFTTT feature which lets you create almost an unlimited number of automated workflow. You just need to connect your link your IFTTT account with the NAS device to set triggers and actions.

ifttt QNAP TS-328 Review

Supports 360° Panorama Videos and Images

The NAS supports the popular 360° panorama recording and you just need to click the 360° button so photos and videos can be displayed as 360° panorama media files. The QNAP mobile applications such as Q-video, Q-photo, and Q-file also support this type of format viewing.

Increase your Productivity

The application-driven QTS OS offers you a variety of solutions for simplifying management, file backup, search, and a lot more. With the File Station, you can easily view all your files and access these from your USB storage devices; plus, Q-filing also helps with file organization while Q-sirch helps you find your files.

Multipoint Access and Backup

Hybrid Backup Sync features restore, data backup, and synchronization abilities to help you sync or easily backup your data on the TS-328 to other USB storage devices, cloud storage, or other QNAP NAS devices. With Q-Sync, you’ll also be able to access your NAS files from laptops, smartphones, or PCs that are connected to the TS-328.

Host-Container Applications

Container Station incorporates LXC and Docker lightweight, virtualization technologies so you can readily download applications from the available Docker Hub. This will let you easily import or export container apps, as well as manage access controls to have you fully enjoy the benefits of quick and seamless installation.

Specifications

CPU

  • Realtek Quad-core ARM CortexA53 (64-bit), RTD 1296, 1.4GHz

Encryption Acceleration

System Memory

  • 2GB DDR4 RAM (not expandable)

Flash Memory

  • 4GB eMMC

Drive Bay

  • Hot-swappable 3 x 3.5″/2.5″ SATA 6Gb/s HDD/SSDs (bundled one 2.5″ tray base for installing 2.5″ HDD/SSD; additional purchase can be made from QNAP shop)

Gigabit Ethernet Port

  • 2 x RJ45 Gigabit LAN port

USB Port

  • 2 x USB 3.0 (1 x Front); 1 x USB 2.0 (Rear)

Audio

  • speaker, 3.5mm line out jack

LED Indicators

  • Status/Power, LAN, USB, HDD

Buttons

  • Power, USB copy, Reset

Security Slot

  • Kensington security slot

System Warning

  • Buzzer

Dimensions (H x W x D)

  • 142 x 150 x 260.1 mm
  • 59 x 5.9 x 10.24 inch

Weight

  • Net weight: 1.64 kg (3.62 lbs)
  • Gross Weight: 2.69 kg (5.93 lbs)

Operating Temperature & Relative Humidity

  • 0 ~ 40˚C (32˚F ~ 104˚F)
  • 5~95% RH non-condensing, wet bulb: 27˚C (80.6˚F)

Power Consumption (W)

  • HDD standby: 7.24W
  • In operation: 18.35W

Power Supply Unit

  • External Adapter 65W, 100 – 240 V

Fan

  • 1 x 9 cm smart Fan (12V DC)

Sound Level

  • 5 dBA

Package Contents

  • NAS, QIG, 1 x RJ45 ethernet cables, AC adapter

The QTS 4.3.4 Software

QNAP features their latest QTS 4.3.4 operating system where you can easily backup and view the content of your smart devices to the TS-328 NAS. You’ll just need to plug this into a USB port and you’re all set. The integrated App Center also offers a wide selection of applications such as the Q-Filing and IFTTT Agent to automate user workflow for better productivity and efficiency.

For Q-sirch, this offers you full-text search to easily find your files. Hybrid Backup Sync and Q-sync work by simplifying the process of file sharing and syncing across smart devices. You can also download the Q-photo to your smartphone and take photos or record videos that you can save directly to the TS-328. We’ve made a list of the QTS 4.3.4 software’s key features.

Storage & Snapshots Manager

QNAP made a thorough study of the whole array of storage management and utilized their acquired information to develop an extensive and user-friendly feature which is the Storage & Snapshots Manager. Its remade interface simplifies storage management while also better emphasizing visualized snapshot control with helpful details. With the Storage & Snapshots Manager, controlling and organizing your snapshots and storage system will be much easier.

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Block-Based Snapshots for Mitigating Ransomware Threats

Snapshots are vital when it comes to protecting NAS data since it gives you numerous effective methods for saving your data from all the possible threats of ransomware.  The snapshot support from QNAP is also block-based and it features the copy on write technology to display backup file revisions; after, it will separately save the revisions in the file system.

This is very beneficial for lessening your storage space usage while improving the creation and restoration of snapshots; it provides you with an excellent tool for meeting your business requirements when it comes to achieving RTO or Recovery Time Objectives and RPO or Recovery Point Objectives.

Achieve Improved Cost-Efficiency

Selected ARM-based units from QNAP also support snapshots to provide you with a key data backup, as well as a recovery option. It’ll be easier for you to safeguard your data.

View all Snapshot Content in File Station

Aside from using Storage & Snapshots Manager, File Station can also be utilized to see all your snapshot versions and determine the differences of your content with the File Station Snapshot Directory. QNAP also features the Snapshot Shared Folder that only has a single shared folder on a shared volume.

Personalize the Functions of your Remote Control

To provide convenience, Q-button lets you change the actions of the QNAP remote control’s actions. You can set buttons to play a specific playlist, check a surveillance channel, and restart or turn the power of the NAS off.

IoT on a Private Cloud

QNAP gives you all the benefits of the private cloud and storage for you to explore; it’s also for you to take advantage of the possibilities of different kinds of IoT innovations. These include numerous applications that integrate intelligent and efficient network automation services to help you have a smarter lifestyle.

Better Multimedia Enjoyment

With Cinema 28, your QNAP NAS turns into a multimedia hub that lets you have a single-interface management of your media files. Your photos, videos, and music files can be streamed to all the linked devices via different protocols including HDMI, DLNA, Chromecast, and Apple TV.

Other protocols that are only available for audio are Analog sound, Bluetooth devices, and USB speakers connected to the NAS device. With this, everyone at any corner of your home can enjoy all their multimedia with ease.

Augmented Reality

QNAP presents the 360° panorama application and enters the world of AR or Augmented Reality to make you feel like you’re in the scene. QNAP’s mobile applications including the Q Photo, Q Video, and Q File support the Augmented Reality viewing.

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Using the Product

During our performance tests, we can say that the QNAP TS-328 left us appreciating it even more and we think that it’s also one of the best options that you have for more affordable NAS devices. The read / write rates were excellent and the NAS device could readily handle all the heavy workloads; as for encryption, its performance was also highly notable.

Its new Storage & Snapshots application makes the task of storage management easier and it also supports point in time backup of volume that can be run as frequently as five minutes. The NAS share data recover is also really very easy when you select a snapshot, check its contents, and copy selected files and folders to their original location on the device.

The Hyper Backup Sync app’s performance is just as great since it takes data protection to a whole new level when it comes to facilities for copying folders to local backup archives, remote QNAP device, or a cloud storage. We also tried making private clouds using the Qsync Central application and we think it was really easy since we could start real-time file syncing tasks between the pairs of folders that we selected.

Multimedia features were also abundant while the Music, Video, and Photo Stations made it easier for us to access our media files stored in the NAS device. We particularly appreciated the Q-photo mobile app since it automatically linked to the NAS and that the photos we took were immediately uploaded to the Multimedia folder; this helped us save a lot of space in our phone memory while making things more convenient since we didn’t need to transfer files manually.

quad-core QNAP TS-328 Review

Conclusion

The QNAP TS-328 NAS is a great device for home and small office use if you want the features of RAID 5 protection without having to pay for the amount of a 4 bay NAS. Aside from having excellent performance, the TS-328 also features data backup, cloud services, file sharing, as well as great multimedia features.

Its software also has a user-friendly interface and is packed with a lot of useful features. We really appreciate its high read and write rates, as well as its capabilities when it comes to handling workload.

If you are on a budget and need a NAS device for smaller tasks and still works perfectly, we highly recommend that you give the QNAP TS-328 a try.

Where to Buy

You can pickup the QNAP TS-328 for around $459AUD from your local retailer. For more information head on over to the official product page.

QNAP TS-328 Review
Design
Features
Performance
Usability
Value
5.0Overall Score

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The Streaming Blog brings you the latest in consumer tech news and reviews. From streaming services and media players to gaming and computer hardware, we give you product reviews on the latest tech available.

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