This is how to choose the perfect QNAP NAS.

QNAP is a well-established brand in the network-attached storage (NAS) space. The company has a catalog of NAS models available, but it’s easy to make an informed decision without messing up your NAS deployment. This guide will walk you through how to choose based on model numbers, and we’ll even recommend a few to shortlist.

Breaking down the numbers

Like other NAS manufacturers, QNAP utilizes model numbers to differentiate its catalog. The company uses several prefixes with TS and TVS being the most common. The number immediately after the prefix denotes how many drive bays are present while the numbers and letters thereafter are specific for that NAS model.

Usually, it’s the higher, the better. For instance, the TS-230 has two bays and is less capable than the TS-251+.

Comparing models

Here’s a comparison table with a few of the latest models from QNAP.

Category TS-231K TS-453D TS-653D TVS-882
CPU AnnapurnaLabs Alpine AL-214
Quad-core 1.7GHz
Intel Celeron J4125
Quad-core 2.0GHz
Intel Celeron J4125
Quad-core 2.0GHz
Intel Core i3-7100
Dual-core 3.9GHz
RAM 1GB (1GB max) 2GB (6GB max) 8GB (8GB max) 8GB (64GB max)
Drive bays 2 4 6 8
Capacity 32TB
2 x 16TB
64TB
4 x 16TB
76TB
6 x 16TB
128TB
8 x 16TB
Transcoding H.264 (AVC)
H.265 (HEVC)
MPEG-2
VC-1
4K 30 FPS
H.264 (AVC)
H.265 (HEVC)
MPEG-2
VC-1
4K 30 FPS
H.264 (AVC)
H.265 (HEVC)
MPEG-2
VC-1
4K 30 FPS
Ports 2x 1Gb LAN
3x USB 3.2 Gen 1
2x 2.5Gb LAN
3x USB 2.0
2x USB 3.2 Gen 1
2x 2.5Gb LAN
3x USB 2.0
2x USB 3.2 Gen 1
4x 1Gb LAN
5x USB 3.2 Gen 1
3x HDMI
Warranty Two years Two years Two years Two years
Price $229 $631 $773 $1,895

The thing with QNAP NAS models is they’re usually more pricey than other offerings, but you get far better-equipped servers. The more affordable range that includes the TS-231K is better suited for a small home with a few users. Then you have the TS-453D and TS-653D that can run Plex Media Server with Intel Celeron processors.

QNAP NAS like the TVS-882 is where things get real interesting (and expensive). With the baseline model housing a 7th Gen Intel Core i3 processor, it has ample performance to handle some 4K transcoding, and so much more. You can pay even more for Intel Core i5 and even an i7 with a further six bays.

The best way to buy a NAS is to decide on how many drive bays you require. Don’t need to store too much? You could get away with just two bays. If you’re planning to go all out with media and more, four or more bays may be a better suit.

Built for Plex

QNAP TVS-882

$1,895 at Amazon

QNAP’s workhorse NAS

QNAP is well-established in the NAS market, and the TVS-882 is a prime example.