Hardware.Info frequently test NAS devices, everything from smaller affordable ones such as the Iomega StorCenter ix2 with social media features, to the big boys such as the Synology DS2411+ with room for 12 disks. Another brand that has a proven track record in the world of NAS devices is Thecus. Their products are known for their good performance, the state-of-the-art hardware, the many features and the competitive prices. At least Thecus is more affordable than the big NAS brands such as Synology and QNAP.
This holds true for the Thecus N5550 we are reviewing here. It's a NAS built around the Intel Atom D2550 with room for five hard drives. You could fill it with 4 TB drives and then you have a little case with 20 TB of storage capacity. You don't have to go that that extreme, but you can start small and expand over time when you need more volume.
When you look at comparable NAS devices from Synology you will easily pay around £550, while the Thecus N5550 only costs around £408. It's significantly more affordable, and you still get a lot of quality for that price. Because it runs on an Intel Atom D2550 processor, it's very powerful compared to many other network drives. It not only guarantees a very high transfer rate when you are sharing files, but it can also handle other tasks you give it with flying colours.
Calling the Thecus N5550 a NAS is almost selling it short, because it's much more than that. It's a network server for at home or in the office, and you can use it to download files, as a digital photo album, and for connecting IP cameras. You can connect it to a computer obviously, but also tablets and smartphones let you access it via apps. For iOS Thecus has three apps. Thecus Dashboard lets you monitor the NAS, ThecusShare grants you access to the files on the NAS, and there there is the even more comprehensive Thecus-Disk. For Android there is Thecus Dashboard and ThecusShare.