NAS systems are becoming ever more popular, with many households in 2011 adding one to their network. QNAP need no introduction, being one of the most established players in the networking industry. It has been some time since I have looked at one of their boxes and today we have the TS-219P II Turbo NAS up for review.
The TS-219P II Turbo NAS is a dual bay model and is supplied with a 2GHZ Marvel Kirkwood processor. QNAP have included 512MB of DDR3 memory, an upgrade over the DDR2 memory in the previous version. It has full support for Windows, Macintosh and Linux platforms.
At only £286 inc vat, is this the ideal NAS system for your home network?
- Cross-platform Data Sharing Center
- Complete Backup Solutions
- Revolutionary Home Video, Music & Photo Center
- Personal/Private Cloud Storage
- QMobile App for On-the-go Contents Access
- Superior Performance with 2.0 GHz CPU
- Energy-efficient & Eco-friendly
The QNAP: TS-219P II Turbo NAS arrives in a stylish, clean box with the product highlighted on the right, and a list of specifications on the left.
The bundle contains a CAT Cable, power adapter, software disc, literature on the product and several packs of mounting screws for the hard drives.
The QNAP TS 219P II is a stylish looking unit, and follows a traditional vertical appearance, with two drive bays. The front of the NAS system has a power and back up button, as well as a USB port. There are several LED readout lights above these to indicate drive and networking activity.
The one touch backup button deserves mention because it can be used to copy data from flash cards quickly onto the hard drives without any PC access.
There are two more USB ports on the rear, all of which are USB 2 standard. They all support USB mass storage devices, wifi adapters and memory card readers. There is a 70mm fan at the right hand side and a gigabit lan connector close by, underneath two eSATA ports.
To get access to the internals, we need to remove the two bays, then two screws. The chassis slides apart as can be seen above.
The drive bay can be removed by removing four more screws and carefully separating the daughter card from the main motherboard underneath.
The blue motherboard is attached to a metal plate which rests vertically. On board is the 2GHZ Marvel Kirkwood processor and 512MB of DDR3 memory. The 70mm fan supplies enough airflow to help cool all the components. The CPU is passively cooled.
The two drive bays are made from tough plastic, with a moveable front locking mechanism.
The drives are secured from underneath with four screws for each drive. The bays can also hold 2.5 inch drives natively. The holes are marked clearly as shown above.
When both drives are fitted, they slide and lock into place, as can be seen above.
On this page we present some super high resolution images of the product taken with the 24.5MP Nikon D3X camera and 24-70mm ED lens. These will take much longer to open due to the dimensions, especially on slower connections. If you use these pictures on another site or publication, please credit Kitguru.net as the owner/source. You can right click and ‘save as’ to your computer to view later.
QNAP supply a finder program to locate the NAS system on a network. This allows for easy configuration and firmware updating.
The firmware on the optical disc may be the first place to look, but we recommend checking the QNAP site as they update their devices regularly. We found a firmware update several revisions ahead of the one supplied with the disc.
QNAP have a fantastic installation system, which guides the user through all the basic configuration requirements. These can be changed later via individual panels in the main interface system, but for an inexperienced user, this is priceless.
QNAP use a very high tech style interface, and one I always liked. Nice to see it hasn’t changed that much.
QNAP have clearly spent a long time working out the user interface and it shows. All of the main panels on the right are accessed via cleanly organised sub menus on the far left. A little like Windows Explorer.
The network panel is well laid out, and IP settings can be changed here, as well as adjustments to the jumbo frame sizes.
The volume management panel is comprehensive and allows for RAID adjustments and status alerts.
Configuring a shared folder is painfree and very quick, taking only a few seconds. The system is very responsive and moving between panels doesn’t cause any delays.
The folders all appear in the NAS window as shown above. Passwords and user login information will need to be entered, depending on your settings via the panel beforehand.
There are many networking options available, including full support for Windows and Macintosh systems.
QNAP offer a dedicated panel for media support, including Apple iTunes Server.
Keeping up with modern trends, there is full Cloud support.
External drives can be attached and data passed over quickly to the internal drives for access later.
QNAP build in full diagnostic support to check on CPU, networking and memory use. There is also SMART monitoring, services status and storage monitoring.
The interface is excellent, responsive and fully featured. It needs to be to compete against the excellent Synology Diskmanager platform.
We are testing the hardware within our gigabit network which is pretty much as good as you will get for a home or small office environment. It is a mixed network with several 1GBit switches for ultimate performance.
We switch the Raid configuration to ’0′ across multiple drives to keep the testing across platforms as closely matched as possible.
Performance is very strong indeed, averaging 106 MB/s across our network. Write speed drops to around 71 MB/s which is still very impressive.
Next we created a folder of files, 500mb/s in size with a variety of data , from small database documents to larger jpgs and bmps.
When dealing with varied file sizes, performance drops to 73 MB/s read and 48 MB/s write, which is still very strong.
Above: We set the drives up in Raid 1 and copied a 12GB video file back and forward from our Intel Core i7 980x test machine. The local desktop had a 256GB C300 Crucial SSD drive installed.
We take the issue of noise very seriously at KitGuru and this is why we have built a special home brew system as a reference point when we test noise levels of various components.
Why do this? Well this means we can eliminate secondary noise pollution in the test room and concentrate on components we are testing. It also brings us slightly closer to industry standards, such as DIN 45635.
As this can be a little confusing for people, here are various dBa ratings in with real world situations to help describe the various levels.
KitGuru noise guide
10dBA - Normal Breathing/Rustling Leaves
20-25dBA – Whisper
30dBA - High Quality Computer fan
40dBA - A Bubbling Brook, or a Refridgerator
50dBA - Normal Conversation
60dBA - Laughter
70dBA - Vacuum Cleaner or Hairdryer
80dBA - City Traffic or a Garbage Disposal
90dBA - Motorcycle or Lawnmower
100dBA - MP3 player at maximum output
110dBA - Orchestra
120dBA - Front row rock concert/Jet Engine
130dBA - Threshold of Pain
140dBA - Military Jet takeoff/Gunshot (close range)
160dBA - Instant Perforation of eardrum
Noise was measured from half a meter away.
We registered the maximum noise levels ar 30.3 dBa meaning the NAS system is quiet, although audible under load. The fan speed can be adjusted via the interface to suit your needs.
We measured power from the socket with 2 1TB hard drives installed.
Very low power consumption at the socket, draining only 9 watts when idle and 18.5 watts under load.
QNAP have many years experience in the NAS industry and the TS 219P II Turbo NAS is certainly a fine showcase product. Their user interface software is refined, sophisticated and intuitive. There is never a time when I was thinking that something was missing, or placed within the wrong menu.
Their software development is mirrored by frequent firmware updates. This is a company who have a similar operating regime in place when compared directly against Synology – they update, and update often. Fixing bug issues, enhancing performance and user interface responsiveness are their primary goals.
We feel that Synology have a slight edge in regards to their latest multitasking software implementation, but we have no concerns with QNAP in this area either.
While the software aspect of this product is superb, we were also impressed with the performance of the TS 219P II. 106 MB/s in our sequential read test is a very impressive result, especially when factoring in the very modest asking price of £286.58 inc vat. The 2GHZ Marvel KirkWood processor is extremely capable and QNAP include a generous 512MB of DDR3 memory, ensuring that the system is responsive at all times.
Build quality is excellent, and while many parts are not metal, this is to be expected within the sub £300 sector. The small 70mm fan may raise a few eyebrows, but in reality it is actually quiet and can be fine tuned via the user interface.
The QNAP TS 219P II faces some stiff competition from Synology in this sector, especially from the DS211+. That said, we feel both products are very closely matched and I would find it difficult to pick a winner. Both make a fantastic choice for the home, or even a small office environment.
- very strong large file performance
- fantastic user interface
- A larger fan might be a better choice for QNAP in the future.
- USB 3.0 port would be nice.
Kitguru says: One of the best NAS systems under £300.