Can you put SSDs in a NAS?

Most NAS drives will accept SSDs as well as mechanical hard drives - we look at whether it's a good idea

It is entirely possible to populate NAS drives with SSDs, as they accept 2.5in drives, but the question is, should you?

Even though solid-state storage offers excellent performance, this isn’t necessarily in the context of adding them to NAS drives. SSD drives don’t generally offer much of an advantage, especially when you take into account the gigabit Ethernet connections that are only capable of transfer speeds of up to 110MB/sec, whereas faster options like 10GbE hardware require serious investment.

This doesn’t mean, however, that adding SSDs will be completely useless. IT Pro tested the Qnap TS-453B which has four 2.5in SATA SSDs and we recorded a small boost in 4K read speeds. This was a jump from 10.4MB/sec to 11.4MB/sec.

Anyone who has been near a four-bay NAS appliance will know that the noise collectively produced by four mechanical hard disks can be deafening. Alternatively, SSDs don’t have any moving parts, and so run silently, with the only sound from your NAS being its internal fan.

An additional benefit of SSDs is that they usually use less power than mechanical disks. The four-bay Qnap TS-453B we tested was full of four 1TB Seagate Barracuda 3.4in hard disks which used up 32w from the mains while not in use. When streaming videos, it took 38w from the mains. When we changed this to four SSDs, this number fell to 14w when idle and 16w while streaming.

In the past there was a major drawback to SSDs which was their comparable price to HDDs. A 1TB mechanical disk can be purchased for £40, which means you can set up a 3TB RAID 5 array for a total of £160. However, SSDs have now started to close the gap. Up until a few years ago, a 1TB SSD would have set you back around £250, whereas now prices have begun to drop, so you can buy one for approximately £100.

Featured Resources

The definitive guide to warehouse efficiency

Get your free guide to creating efficiencies in the warehouse

Free download

The total economic impact™ of Datto

Cost savings and business benefits of using Datto Integrated Solutions

Download now

Three-step guide to modern customer experience

Support the critical role CX plays in your business

Free download

Ransomware report

The global state of the channel

Download now

Recommended

Nutanix Cloud Platform gains new data storage capabilities
hybrid cloud

Nutanix Cloud Platform gains new data storage capabilities

23 Sep 2021
Best NAS drives 2021
network attached storage (NAS)

Best NAS drives 2021

12 Aug 2021
AWS makes Amazon EBS io2 Block Express volumes generally available
Server & storage

AWS makes Amazon EBS io2 Block Express volumes generally available

20 Jul 2021
IBM FlashSystem 5000 and 5200 for mid-market enterprises
Whitepaper

IBM FlashSystem 5000 and 5200 for mid-market enterprises

9 Jul 2021

Most Popular

How to find RAM speed, size and type
Laptops

How to find RAM speed, size and type

17 Sep 2021
Best MDM solutions 2020
mobile device management (MDM)

Best MDM solutions 2020

17 Sep 2021
What are the pros and cons of AI?
machine learning

What are the pros and cons of AI?

8 Sep 2021