QNAP has announced that it is shipping its new high-performance NAS product, the TS-1685, which it is dubbing as a “Super NAS.” A replacement for the TS-1080 in QNAP’s lineup, the TS-1685 is a tower form factor model aimed squarely at companies who have the storage needs of mid-sized enterprises.
“When QNAP started in 2004, its main focus was enterprise, although we have slowly been evolving more to SMB,” said Erick Oliveros, QNAP Inc.’s Marketing Manager. “In the last couple of years, we have put a big push on the consumer side. Today, the enterprise business is more project based, but it’s still a good 30 per cent of our business.”
The TS-1685 is designed for fairly specific use cases.
“It’s for users who don’t have a rack, but want enterprise performance,” Oliveros said. “There are customers who are limited in the amount of space they have, but where they need massive amounts of storage.” He said that these are typically “Big Data” customers, like studios who do video or music editing.
“These are people who have large amounts of digital files,” Oliveros said.
The TS-1685 is designed with the horsepower, storage, and connectivity to be its own desktop data center. It features twelve 3.5″/2.5″ hard drives, four 2.5″ SSDs, six M.2 SSD slots, an Intel Xeon D processor, 10GbE networking, PCIe expansion, and up to 128GB of RAM. It also has QNAP’s new QTS 4.3 operating system. The OS features an intelligent desktop that finds desired functions quickly, monitors important system information on a real-time basis, opens multiple application windows to run multiple tasks concurrently with greater working efficiency, and provides a built-in App Center with install-on-demand apps to extend NAS functionality.
“Compared to its predecessor, the TS-1685 is a little beefier, and a little stronger,” Oliveros stated. “It has a faster processor, and now has SSD drives so you can do tiering and caching.”
Oliveros said that even with the fall in flash prices, he thinks this kind of product will still find a place in the market.
“We still see a big demand for SSDs, even with flash prices coming way down,” he said. “People still need large volume storage, and I don’t think flash is there yet. While we do offer flash on our NAS, our bread and butter is still providing that kind of storage. Spinning disks are likely in danger going forward, but we think that people will still want SSDs.”
QNAP sells its commercial products through channel partners, who now number between 1500 and 2000 in North America. In Canada, they have a sales office in Toronto, and use ASI, SYNNEX and Tech Data for their Canadian distribution.