Overall and FV
I’m impressed with what Thecus put together with the N5550. Just the hardware alone is well layed out and packed full of features like multiple USB ports and audio/video connections. This is also the first NAS we have had in that has had a USB 3.0 port. I would have liked to of seen two, but even just the one will make a word of difference when backing up to/from a USB 3.0 device in the future. The dual core Atom Processor ended up being more than enough processing power while still being very energy efficient. And the 2 gigs of RAM were helpful as well, not to mention you can upgrade the ram in the future if you need to. I did find the front control panel on the N5550 a little hard to navigate, I ended up only ever using it to verify that the device was booted up, and to check quickly that no drives have failed.
The N5550’s software was also impressive. Thecus packed in nearly every feature you could ever ask for. The features that weren’t packed in are most likely available as modules as well. The module selection was most impressive between what Thecus had to offer and the third party offerings. You could literally use this NAS for any type of server functionality that you might need. Not to mention the module that allows you to use your N5550 as a basic HTPC when it is hooked to your TV. My only complaint was that the modules could be a little hard to install when you have to log in and out over and over again to access them. With built in integration with Amazon S3, and a wizard or two that allows you to back up to s3, another local NAS, a remote Thecus NAS, or DVD’s. You have a wide selection of ways to make sure that you won’t lose data in the end. On top of that they even include a copy of Acronis True Image, giving you options on how to backup to your N5550 as well.
When you put it all together, you have a nice package from Thecus. It’s not any one feature that makes the N5550 great. It’s the 5 disc capacity, the software, and the hardware to support it all put together. If you are on the market for a NAS that has room for expansion or if you need a whopping 18BTB’s in capacity, the N5550 is up your ally. With a MSRP of $499.99, it’s not a cheap purchase, especially when considering you still need to fill it with hard drives. But even at that price you would be hard pressed to be able to build a server that will have the same functionality, especially considering there module selection. On top of that, you can find it for considerably (over $120) less if you look around a little online. At that price it’s no question at all.