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NASes based on the x86 platform take top places in performance charts. They are already fast enough to make full use of a Gigabit Ethernet connection, yet the firmware aspect remains important as well. The QNAP TS-469 Pro delivers the same performance irrespective of its RAID configuration, which indicates well-optimized firmware. The efficient iSCSI implementation must be noted, too.

Besides new CPU models and larger amounts of system memory, NAS configurations develop in terms of I/O interfaces, particularly USB 3.0 and eSATA. The TS-469 Pro uses the chipset’s controller for eSATA while the internal HDDs are connected to additional Marvell controllers. As our tests showed, external disks connected via these interfaces are comparable to the internal HDDs in performance.

The TS-469 Pro doesn’t differ much from its predecessors in design. It is suitable for both office and home environments and we are very happy with its overall build quality. The only comments we have are the limited number of display controls and the design of the Copy button on the front panel.

QNAP’s integrated software doesn’t seem to be evolving much. Sticking to the classic web-interface design, the manufacturer has integrated new features and capabilities in an inconspicuous manner. Among the new additions we can note such modules as antivirus, Music Station, Surveillance Station Pro, VPN-server. The handy MyCloudNAS controls for remote access to the NAS’s servers should also be mentioned. The support for QPKG packages allows to easily install any of a few dozen extra applications on the NAS.

Price is the traditional downside of high-performance NASes and the TS-469 Pro is quite expensive. It costs about twice as much as the most affordable 4-disk QNAP product for Home and is 50%+ more expensive than x86-based NASes from other brands. But the pricing seems quite justified considering the broad capabilities provided by the TS-469 Pro.

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