NAS

QNAP TVS-882ST3 Review

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The all new TVS-882ST3 by QNAP is a step up in the NAS arena. The QNAP Ethos clearly was not only to create a new model but to conceptually change the singularity of what NAS units can achieve, this becomes even more glaringly obvious once we touch upon performance and salient features. This is the only NAS that features the Thunderbolt 3 specifications and is utilized without any compromise on the features set.

The nuts and bolts

The packaging is double layered and can be classified as a retail box substantial enough to use as a shipping carton. However, it there also needs to be a secondary box for an outer carton used for shipping. The box descriptive nature of what the product is and features is well done.

The TVS-882ST3 has been given a slight uplift, black matte all around with a glossy touch to the top side front facia. I suppose it gives the unit a more clinical aspect. Overall it’s a sturdy and nice design. Fortunately, it also does not have that plastic feeling one gets with other NAS manufacturers which is great.

The familiarity with other NASes ends here. The front bottom on the right is a not-so familiar USB 3.1 gen 2 connection allowing easy connection for both downloads and uploads. The NAS only supports 2.5” drives and while hard disk drives are readily available, we are guessing QNAP’s preference would be Solid State Drives (SSD). There is a hefty supported list for SSD’s which is great since SSD’s should start becoming the normality. The QNAP TVS-882ST3 should not disappoint on performance if this becomes a totally Flash-based NAS.

TVS-882ST3 Thunderbolt 3_Back

The rear of the unit offers a generous selection of connectivity protocols:

  • 1GbE x 2 ports
  • HDMI x 1 port
  • USB 3.1 x 1 port
  • Audio Ports x 2
  • 10GbE x 2 ports also initiates Apple based units to use the ports
  • Thunderbolt 3 x 2 ports

We shall discuss the inclusion of 10GbE and Thunderbolt 3 further down.

 

The Central Core with Memory

It’s great to have a NAS with enhanced connectivity, but these can be redundant if the hardware does not align with optimizing the performance and quality expectations.

Supplied in three models, the QNAP TVS-882ST3-i7-16G and the TVS-882ST3-i7-8G models both sport the Intel® Core™ i7-6700HQ quad-core 2.6 GHz, up to 3.5 GHz, whilst the TVS-882ST3-i5-8G is integrated with Intel® Core™ i5-6442EQ quadcore 1.9 GHz, up to 2.7 GHz, these are high-end Skylake mobile CPU’s.  All the models are designed with 2 x DDR4 SODIMM slots allowing for a current maximum to 32GB (2x16GB) (For dual-DIMM configuration, you must use a pair of identical DDR4 modules.). 32GB memory size is not small and should be sufficient for anything thrown at it. Our test unit only had 16GB and we just could not overload it or slow it down, no matter what we tried, just would not complain.

TVS-882ST3 Thunderbolt 3_Right-angle-of-elevation 

Features setting apart the TVS-882ST3

QNAP’s providence in providing USB Type-C for usage with Thunderbolt 3 allows for universal connectivity from the QNAP NAS to Thunderbolt devices. Also, a countless USB Type-C through a single cable allowing file sharing and centralized data storage without the hassle of stringing multiple cables.

The other feature that QNAP has developed and enhanced over the years is the Thunderbolt to Ethernet (T2E) Convertor. We first saw this at QNAP’s labs early 2015 in its infancy and being developed. As Apple computers, don’t natively support 10GbE Ethernet, Mac users required other bits and pieces hoping it would work. However, it was finicky and time wasting. The innovative T2E converter bridges Thunderbolt and Ethernet networks, allowing Thunderbolt computers access to these networks via its Thunderbolt connection and ultimately to the QNAP Thunderbolt NAS.  QNAP has excelled in bridging this gap, whilst this is great don’t expect optimum performance from day one, this may be good to go, despite that improvements will happen.

 

Benchmark Testing Setup

  • Server Xeon based with Windows server 2016 – 64G
  • SSD installed in the TVS-882ST3 – were Samsung 850 PRO – 1TB – 2.5-Inch SATA III Internal SSD (MZ-7KE1T0BW) with a street price of around $492.00

 

The Good Bad and Downright Fast

The benchmarks for the TVS-882ST3 is the fastest unit we have tested thus far. We ran multiple test on 1Gb and 10Gbe networks and selected the average from all tests.

 

1Gbe Network Testing

 

 

TVS-882ST3_Test_1

As clearly illustrated from the graph the fluctuations are somewhat sporadic, based on the 1Gbe the best result was around 1000MB/s, and as an amalgamation of different data sets we would be able to see a steady 700-800MB/s which is good for SSD based NAS servers.

10Gbe Network Testing

TVS-882ST3_Test_2

In the 10Gbe network we begin to see a regular and consistent measurement and clearly suited for 10Gbe platform, with a score of 1.2GB/s it is clearly one of the fastest units we have tested to date. The data used is a combination of real time apps and so the result if even more pertinent as its real time.

Final Thoughts

Innovations added to the TVS-882ST3 NAS have been a breadth of fresh air for years but restrictions for compatibility had been nothing short of an irritation. The Thunderbolt 3 connectivity is superb, along with USB 3.1 and the Thunderbolt to Ethernet (T2E) Convertor is just awesome. Don’t expect the optimum throughput on T3 as it may take a while to get there – the feature alone is worth its weight in gold! Performance was excellent and the feature set is impressive. This will allow users who otherwise may have not been able to get a centralized storage server at a reasonable price with features that makes sharing of data a breeze. Whether it’s transferring files, streaming videos, testing network speeds, accessing data, it remains clear that the TVS-882ST3 is truly in a league of its own.

Review Score
9.3 Total Score
All New TVS-882ST3

Innovations added to the TVS-882ST3 NAS have been a breadth of fresh air for years but restrictions for compatibility had been nothing short of an irritation. The Thunderbolt 3 connectivity is superb, along with USB 3.1 and the Thunderbolt to Ethernet (T2E) Convertor is just awesome. Don’t expect the optimum throughput on T3 as it may take a while to get there – the feature alone is worth its weight in gold! Performance was excellent and the feature set is impressive. This will allow users who otherwise may have not been able to get a centralized storage server at a reasonable price with features that makes sharing of data a breeze. Whether it’s transferring files, streaming videos, testing network speeds, accessing data, it remains clear that the TVS-882ST3 is truly in a league of its own.

Performance
10
Features
9.5
Build Quality
9
Usability
9
Value
9
PROS
  • Blisteringly Fast
  • Unique options and nothing like it on the market
  • Thunderbolt 3
  • T2E bridge
CONS
  • Nothing substantial to warrant a comment
User Rating: 4.81 (5 votes)
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  1. Reply
    Dominique May 17, 2017 at 1:48 pm
    Comment awaiting for approval

    how you write this in the future!

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