NAS recommendations


  • Contributor I
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I’m researching which NAS to buy and am finding the amount of options quite hard to navigate. What I’d like is:

  • A NAS that works seamlessly with Sonos
  • Cost to – ideally be below £250/$320
  • Good speed performance (obv.)
  • A NAS that allows for me to use as my actual iTunes music folder for my MacBook and potential to back up things like photos also (I don’t need it for movie files)
  • Nothing that requires ‘hardcore’ technical knowledge (I’m quite technically competent – with a bit of hand-holding – but I’d like the UX to be simple rather than be too involving)
  • For it to include 1/2TB storage min (as in fine for it to be 2x1TB with dual back up)
Thanks,
David

13 replies

Userlevel 4
Badge +7
I would have a look at QNAP TS series. (I had a TS-451+ with the upgraded 8gb Ram and 4 HDD slots) TS series can do everything you want and more, only thing is the price, all NAS' are fairly expensive +/ overpriced..

Most NAS are sold diskless meaning you will need to buy drives sepratley.

The two main NAS providers are QNAP and Synology. Both will have options to be accessed via Sonos, and can also be accessed by a file explorer over IP/windows sharing/Mac sharing aswell as through a web browser. (I can't recommend Synology as I have no experience).
Thank you 🙂
My first NAS for Sonos was as simple as it could be - a USB HDD wired into the USB port of my router.
I now have a WD My Cloud 2TB, that has worked flawlessly for many years now. It does not have any back up capability, but since all my music is on another HDD as well, I don't need that.
Userlevel 5
Badge +13
I have 2 NAS devices, one of which hosts my Sonos library. My Netgear ReadyNAS has been pretty solid in the 4 years I've owned it. Only issue is that whenever it updates it switches from SMBv1 to SMBv2, and I have to reset it using a plugin app - the main interface doesn't have that option, but there's an app in their store that lets you configure SMB more precisely. Still debating a switch to a Raspberry Pi NAS with a firewall blocking access from anything except one desktop and my Sonos devices.
My old NAS drive died so I just got done updating my system to serve up my sonos music library from a NAS drive. I don't like to leave my computer on so I wanted a setup that runs when the PC is shut down. I found an inexpensive (~$30) piece of hardware that serves up flash drives/sticks as SMB NAS drives. I purchased a RAVPower Filehub (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07PBG99P1/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1). This is a cheap travel router that can be set up in wired or wireless mode. I'm running it as a wired Samba server hanging off of my main router with a 128 GB flashdrive attached ($12 at Micro Center.). I had the RavPower up and running in minutes with their web-based admin interface. Then just pointed the music library settings in the Sonos controller to the Samba music share folder and re-indexed the music library.

This not a commercial for RavPower, Micro-Center or Amazon, just specifics on what I got working with a total cost less than $50!
Userlevel 7
Badge +21
That sounds like a nice alternative for folks that don't want to dink with a Raspberry Pi or spend a lot more for another solution.

Sonos support should add a page to their FAQ for known working NAS drives and any tweaks needed to get SMB v1 working on them.
I found an inexpensive (~$30) piece of hardware that serves up flash drives/sticks as SMB NAS drives. I purchased a RAVPower Filehub
Very neat and looks like a good solution for those that want a NAS for just Sonos music play, with the requisite flash sticks getting cheaper all the time.
Does this also work just as well as a full blown NAS for playing different music at the same time from the attached stick to different Sonos zones?
Userlevel 7
Badge +21
I don't know how well it works on the FileHub but I can tell you that using my Raspberry Pi B v3 playing four different streams to different zones (FLAC audio) the CPU load was under 10% while viewing the GUI over VNC which use about 2%.
I am sure that the Raspberry has enough grunt to do this; my question was in the context for someone that can be daunted by the Raspberry, if the FileHub can also do this multi serve with no trouble. I know my 2011 vintage Time Capsule from Apple struggled to do this with a USB port connected HDD; there was some latency which is why I went for a WD My Cloud that has worked flawlessly, but is now too expensive for someone that just needs a server for Sonos music play.
Userlevel 7
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Couldn't find any details on the innards of the FileHub so I wasn't able to compare it to the Pi above which was my original intent with the post above.

If anyone knows the FileHub CPU type, number of cores, RAM that would help.

My old NAS drive died so I just got done updating my system to serve up my sonos music library from a NAS drive. I don't like to leave my computer on so I wanted a setup that runs when the PC is shut down. I found an inexpensive (~$30) piece of hardware that serves up flash drives/sticks as SMB NAS drives. I purchased a RAVPower Filehub (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07PBG99P1/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1). This is a cheap travel router that can be set up in wired or wireless mode. I'm running it as a wired Samba server hanging off of my main router with a 128 GB flashdrive attached ($12 at Micro Center.). I had the RavPower up and running in minutes with their web-based admin interface. Then just pointed the music library settings in the Sonos controller to the Samba music share folder and re-indexed the music library.

This not a commercial for RavPower, Micro-Center or Amazon, just specifics on what I got working with a total cost less than $50!

This was super helpful!  I ordered a Ravpower and will connect a 400Gb sdxc card I already have and hope to use it as a wire Sonos library source with my Sonos connect- fingers crossed!

Looking into other options incase the RAV Power doesnt work out -  I stumbled across this:
https://thepi.io/how-to-use-your-raspberry-pi-as-a-nas-box/
If I read this correctly, I should be able download an image onto an SDXC card, stick it in my Raspberry Pi 3B, and then with a couple of config settings in the UI, enable a it as a wired nas that will connect directly into my Sonos connect! 

Good science project over the Holiday break!

Userlevel 7
Badge +21

This may save you some digging for the PI settings: https://stan-miller.livejournal.com

I’m using a Pi 3B with a piggy-back M.2 card as it created a smaller setup and less clutter than an external drive. The 3B has plenty of power for this and a few other light duty tasks at the same time.

The Raspberrian Buster Desktop or Lite will work well, no need for the full Pi system and that makes for a lot more updates. I used Desktop release as I like to use VNC to manage the PI from other computers so I don’t have to use SSH or keep a keyboard, mouse and monitor attached.

https://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/raspbian/

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