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Hard Drive vs NAS for one box systems

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big_matt's picture
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Please excuse me if this is an obvious question - I'm a newb to all this.

I'm looking to buy a one-box streaming system and will be testing a few shortly. I'm interested in a few of them, but mostly the ONKYO CR-N755 and the Naim Unitiqute 2. Price of the Naim isn't an issue as long as I can tell a clear difference in sound from the cheaper options like the Onkyo.

I've just been through the painful exercise of putting 2000 or so CD's onto a hard drive as FLAC files. My house has really poor wireless and therefore I've never really wanted to go down the NAS route.

I've heard anecdotally that either of the above two mentioned units can struggle with a large hard drive attached to the rear USB port and would be much better with a NAS.

1) Is this true?

2) Should I maybe go for a NAS and just sit it next to the one box system (perhaps wired)?

3) Any other advice would be great.

I looked for other threads on this topic and there were a few but they descended into the effectiveness of NAS backups etc. I'm not interested in that, just in whether a hard drive could be made to work effectively or whather a NAS is really required.

Cheers in advance.

rs6mra's picture
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RE: Hard Drive vs NAS for one box systems

My advice would be to go wired whenever or whereever you can. 

A NAS is going to read/write a lot quicker than a hard drive using a USB connection. You would be able to have your NAS anywhere connected anywhere in your house and not necessarily next to the one box system

A NAS has far more advantages than a hard drive which might benefit you sometime in the future. eg expansion as you can have up to 4 drives in a NAS

Having a back up is well worth considering especially having gone through the painful exercise of loading 2k CDs

Juzzie Wuzzie's picture
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RE: Hard Drive vs NAS for one box systems

I've recently set up a QNAP 2-bay NAS drive to feed my Naim Unity Lite and it is fantastic in all respects.  Convenience, sound, control (iPhone / iPad), etc.  Only iTunes proved problematic on the whole "where is my library" thing, but I eventually started from scratch and just re-ripped my (somewhat small) CD library. 

I run it all wirelessly, and no real issues - an occasional drop-out (not as much as when I used Airplay) - and generally only when there is heavy internet traffic - i.e. TimeMachine backups + partner using remote access for work + me surfing the net + music playback.

Just my two cents.

J

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Living Room: Samsung 40C7000; Oppo BDP-103EU; Onkyo SR308; Apple TV3; Airport Express; Sky HD+; Jamo A102 HSC5; Naim Nait 5i-2; Neat Iotas; Chord / Wireworld / QED / TCI interconnects and speaker wire; Harmony 550 universal remote; Tacima mains conditioner Portable: Shuffle (1G); iPad (1G); iPad Minil FiiO E1; AKG450; Grado SR60i; Sennheiser CX300II; custom Ultimate Ears Car: iPod Classic 120GB

Overdose's picture
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RE: Hard Drive vs NAS for one box systems

If you really don't want to use a NAS, why not have a close look at the Cocktail Audio 10 or a Mac mini?

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Mac mini > AVI ADM9Ts

Juzzie Wuzzie's picture
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RE: Hard Drive vs NAS for one box systems

or Home Plugs?

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Living Room: Samsung 40C7000; Oppo BDP-103EU; Onkyo SR308; Apple TV3; Airport Express; Sky HD+; Jamo A102 HSC5; Naim Nait 5i-2; Neat Iotas; Chord / Wireworld / QED / TCI interconnects and speaker wire; Harmony 550 universal remote; Tacima mains conditioner Portable: Shuffle (1G); iPad (1G); iPad Minil FiiO E1; AKG450; Grado SR60i; Sennheiser CX300II; custom Ultimate Ears Car: iPod Classic 120GB

big_matt's picture
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RE: Hard Drive vs NAS for one box systems

Thanks for the responses everyone