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  • NAS set-up for video production advice

     Bob Zelin updated 1 year, 3 months ago 6 Members · 22 Posts
  • Mark Burkett

    May 22, 2018 at 12:59 am

    Greeting All,

    Were a small video production company based in Brisbane Australia and looking at installing a NAS for video production and motion graphics. We have 2x 5k 2016 iMac’s and often have additional editors on an adhoc basis. Were looking for centralised storage with fast speeds for 4k editing. I’ve done some research and 10gbe seems to the way to go. Below is the system we have spec’d up and my main question is if this NAS will offer fast enough speeds.

    NAS – QNAP TS-831x-8G
    Switch – Netgear ProSAFE XS708T
    Drives – 8x Ironwolf 8tb – ST8000VN022
    Thunderbolt to 10GBE convertors – Sonnet Twin 10G (Dual-Port 10 Gigabit Ethernet Thunderbolt 2 Adapter)

    This NAS seems very cheap and I am concerned that because its not an AMD or intel processor it might not cut the mustard. Any advice would greatly received!

    Also silly question, if the NAS hardware fails, does that mean all the data is lost? I know back-up to completely separate unit would be ideal however thats currently out of budget.

    Thanks in advance!


  • Bob Zelin

    May 22, 2018 at 3:13 pm

    Hi Mark –
    the TVS-831e is a very nice little system. Unlike it’s more expensive similar systems, like the TS-1685 12 bay or TVS-1282T 8 bay, the TVS-831e does not come with 2 things
    1) there is no 10G network card in this unit. It’s an option
    2) there is no 12G miniSAS expander card in this unit. It’s an option.

    You MUST purchase a 10G card for this system, or it will be useless for you. Currently the correct card is the
    QNAP LAN-10G2T-X550. It’s $359 US. ($399 retail). HOWEVER – QNAP has announced, and allegedly released a new cheap single port 10G card for this unit that is only $139. It’s the QNAP QXG-10G1T. (this is NOT the QNAP
    LAN-10G1TA – I know, it’s all very confusing). I have not seen the QNAP QXG-10G1T at any US dealer so far, but it allegedly is out and available. This is a single port 10G card that is half the price of the QNAP LAN-10G2T-X550 that uses the same 10G Aquantia 107 chip that is in the new iMac Pro.

    With that said, yes, the TVS-831e will work wonderfully for you if it is setup correctly.
    When you built a multi drive system with 8 drives, you can configure this for RAID 5 (to allow for one disk failure before losing all your data) or RAID 6 (to allow for two disk failures before losing all your data). Of course, when you do this, you lose the equivalent of one or two drives worth of usable storage for your system.

    For thunderbolt 2 computers, the Sonnet Twin 10G will work very well for you.

    It becomes very confusing to choose a QNAP, because there are so many models that physically look similar. It’s only because I tested a TVS-831e that I can tell you that it is a good fast system. A similar cheap model – the TS-831x is a terrible slow system, that is sold at an almost identical price point. Most of the systems I put in are about double the price of the TVS-831e – specifically the TS-1685, or the TVS-1282T.

    Let me know if you need any further information. I will answer whatever you need to know.

    Bob Zelin

    Bob Zelin
    Rescue 1, Inc.
    [email protected]

  • Mike Juhl

    May 22, 2018 at 6:29 pm

    Bob and Mark,

    This is a timely discussion however, I am already down the road a bit as I have already purchased the TS-813x. Here are the details:

    TS-831x 4GB ($799)
    QNLAN10G1TA 10GBe network card ($139)
    8 x 4TB HGST 7200 drives in Raid 6
    iMac Pro w/ 10GBe

    The iMac Pro is directly attached the the network card in the QNAP via Cat6. I am getting pretty slow speeds, or so it seems to me, <300 write / 480 read. Seems that with 8 drives (N-2), 6 drives after the Raid 6 that I should be getting 600-700 read/write? Bob, is this because as you said the 831x is extremely slow?

    If I return the 831x and upgrade to the TVS-831e (couldn’t find this on QNAP’s site so maybe you meany the 871e?) and the different QNAP QXG-10G1T network card, will I see better speeds via direct connection to the iMac Pro’s 10GBe?

    I am looking to use this as a NAS located in a different room about 60 feet away via Cat 6 and want to use it to both store and edit video from.



  • Bob Zelin

    May 22, 2018 at 9:11 pm

    Hi –
    I apologize for what will be a smart a** answer, but sorry – it’s the truth –

    1) you purchased a TVS-873 with 4 gigs of RAM, because it was cheap – you should have purchased the 8 gig model

    2) I just explained – you purchased the wrong 10G card.
    The QNAP LAN-10G1TA uses the horrible Tehuti 10G chip that is the same chip that Akitio uses (which is why Akitio thunderbolt adaptors are so slow). The NEW QNAP QXG-10G1T (this is a DIFFERENT MODEL from the LAN-10G1TA)
    uses the NEW Aquantia 107 chip – the SAME 10G chip that is in the iMac Pro.
    I see that this card is now available on Amazon –

    3) you have 8 4TB drives – are they in a static volume RAID 5 or RAID 6, or did you create the default Thick Volume ?

    4) you say that you have the iMac Pro. Did you DISABLE SMB SIGNING – because if you don’t, you get CRAPPY speeds.

    you don’t need to return anything. You need someone who knows how to set all this stuff up.
    here is the QNAP TVS-873e

    If I referred to this as the TS-831X ( I don’t believe I did) then I am an idiot.
    the TS-831X is a totally useless product that is insanely slow. Many of these products “look” identical, and people buy them, because they seem cheaper. It’s only from experience that you find out which models work well, and which models do not work well. The TS-831X – this model – –
    will NEVER work well ( I know – I own one) – it’s SLOW, and the WRITE speeds are always horrible. While it may be fine for accounting data, it is USELESS for a video editing application.

    There is no miracle fix for the TS-831X. It’s the wrong unit. The TVS-873e is a totally different unit.

    Just like the TS-1685 and the TS-1635. The 35 is $1500 cheaper, and it is a useless piece of junk (except for a slow backup unit). The TS-1685 is a world class shared storage system that is SUPER FAST and can do 8K editing.
    The extra $1500 makes a world of difference. But they both physically look the same. SO – how do I know all of this – EXPERIENCE. I ordered a TS-1635 for a client, and they were ready to kill me. Thank God the dealer took back the TS-1635.

    Bob Zelin

    Bob Zelin
    Rescue 1, Inc.
    [email protected]

  • Bob Zelin

    May 22, 2018 at 9:17 pm

    Hi Mike –
    I am typing too fast. I thought foolishly that you had a TVS-873. You have a TS-831X. The TVS-873e is wonderful. The TS-831X is useless. If you can return it, you should do so, along with the 10G card that you purchased.
    Get the TVS-873e with the NEW QNAP QXG-10G1T, and you will be fine.

    I fully understand that these boxes “look the same”. They are not the same, neither are the 10G cards.
    The difference between Tehuti and Aquantia is night and day.

    Bob Zelin

    Bob Zelin
    Rescue 1, Inc.
    [email protected]

  • Mark Burkett

    May 23, 2018 at 6:09 am

    A big thank you Bob for your advice this forum. Greatly appreciated, as you say, no substitute for experience.

    Mike, good luck with your set-up I hope your able get it working to the speeds your after!

    Bob, I just want to ask a question regards link aggregation, is there any advantage to using a dual 10gbe card with a managed switch to create a 20gbe connection? Or will we be limited by the speed of 8x drives in RAID6?

    Many Thanks


  • Bob Zelin

    May 23, 2018 at 12:12 pm

    Hi Mark –
    before I answer, let me re stress to you. The TS-831X is not the box you want to own for editing. For a cheap QNAP, the TVS-873e is a much better purchase, with the new 10G QXG-10G1T card ( which is a single port card).
    But since you are bringing up link aggregation – the dual port card is $359 US – the QNAP LAN-10G2T-X550.

    A dual port card can be setup for LACP (as long as your switch supports LACP IEEE 802.3x, which is link aggregation control protocol, not static trunking). And yes, the Netgear XS708T does support this. So your overall bandwidth will be 20 Gb/sec, not 10Gb/sec from QNAP to the switch. But yes – no matter what, you are at the mercy of 8 drives, which will max out at about 1100 MB/sec. For a small workgroup, I never bother with LACP (and LACP only works from server to server, and server to switch, and switch to switch, NOT client to switch). I only use LACP for large installations with 16 and 24 bay shared storage systems. For a small workgroup, the single 10G connection will be plenty of bandwidth for you.

    Remember, I can help you with all of this !

    Bob Zelin

    Bob Zelin
    Rescue 1, Inc.
    [email protected]

  • Mike Juhl

    May 23, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    Yes, thank you Bob for your expertise!

    I have struggled for a couple weeks trying to figure out why I am not getting decent speeds and now I know that it has to do with the limitations of the 831x and network card. I am returning the old hardware and per Bob’s recommendation, have already ordered the TVS-873e and 10G QXG-10G1T network card. I will be configuring this week and will report back.

    Mark, as Bob has said in his previous posts, stay away from the 831x and save yourself some trouble.

    Thanks again Bob!


  • Mark Burkett

    May 24, 2018 at 11:31 pm

    Thanks Gents,

    We will indeed be going for the TVS-873e with the QNAP QXG-10G1T card and QNAP switch. I will no longer worry about link aggregation, this will allow us some savings. Which we will be able to put into increasing the storage capacity.

    I look forward to hearing how you go Mike.

    Thanks again!


  • Mike Juhl

    May 26, 2018 at 4:05 pm


    I have received and configured my new QNAP TVS-873e with the QNAP QXG-10G1T card. I have it set up in Raid 6 as a Static Volume and have allowed it to synchronize overnight. I have the iMac Pro connected directly to QNAP via the 10 GBe ports.

    My speed testing is returning similar results to the previous QNAP 831x. The IOPS results for each of the isntalled 8 drives is 175 so, the max available bandwidth from the drives should be 6×175 =1050 MB/s in Raid 6 (I realize this is a theoretical max that I will likely never see) however, I am only seeing 370 MB/s Write and 430 MB/s read speeds. I was getting <300 MB/s Write and 480 MB/s Read with the previous QNAP system.

    QNAP TS 831x <300 MB/s Write 480 MB/s Read
    QNAP TVS-873e 370 MB/s Write 430 MB/s Read

    I am guessing there is a bottle next somewhere else in the system? Any other ideas on what I can try?

    Thanks for you continued assistance!!


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