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Author Topic: NAS storage for audio files?  (Read 6738 times)

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Offline Chuck

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NAS storage for audio files?
« on: December 07, 2015, 09:18:11 AM »
Can someone point me to an inexpensive NAS (2 - 3TB) that I can use to store my audio files on for playback? I figure this time of year there may be a good sale somewhere that would allow me to get a good price on one.

What I have now is an external drive connected to the desktop computer. So, whenever I want to play music I have to turn the computer on so that drive is up and accessible on the network. My understanding is that if I use a NAS I don't need the desktop to be up and running. Is that right? As long as the NAS is running I should be good to go. Please correct me if my understanding is wrong. Thanks in advance.
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

Microphones: (2) Microtech Gefell M300, (2) AKG C 480 B comb-ULS/ CK 61/ CK 63, (2) CAD GXL1200 (cardioid and sub-cardioid capsule & electronics mod), (2) Audix M1290-o, (2) Micro capsule active cables w/ Naiant PFA's, (2) Naiant MSH-1O, (2) Naiant AKG Active cables, (2) Church CA-11 (cardioid), (2) CAD C9, (1) Nady SCM-1000 (mod)
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Recordings on the LMA: http://www.archive.org/bookmarks/ChuckM
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Offline buckster

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2015, 12:14:54 PM »
I was looking into NAS about two years ago, but never delved deep enough to pull the trigger on anything.  You are correct, the NAS unit connects to the router so it is independent of any PC or laptop on your network.  I was looking at inexpensive units from ZyXEL.  They were "diskless" units that you would need to buy the (NAS) hard drives separately.  I'm sure anyone who has a NAS can no doubt offer more than my limited input here.   

Offline aaronji

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2015, 01:29:28 PM »
I have been using a Synology DiskStation for several years.  It seems to work quite well, serving audio files to my stereo, and also doing scheduled backups of my computer's hard drive.  At the time, many considered this to be the best option available, but that may no longer be the case (I haven't kept up since I bought the Synology)...

Offline rocksuitcase

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2015, 01:48:21 PM »
I have been using a Synology DiskStation for several years.  It seems to work quite well, serving audio files to my stereo, and also doing scheduled backups of my computer's hard drive.  At the time, many considered this to be the best option available, but that may no longer be the case (I haven't kept up since I bought the Synology)...
I second Synology as a brand. my buddy in Colorado uses a Diskstation DS1511Plus one for his storage, masters and processed. then he has invited me onboard and I can access it to D/L or upload anytime.
Oddly enough I was just assisting a co-worker with her choice for a Networked External drive (only for media sharing, not what we do) and I noticed the Buffalos and Synologies are still the most prevalent options.
She is headed toward a WD My Cloud because she doesn't what to spend what a Synology or Buffalo typically costs.
Synology my buddy has: http://www.amazon.com/Synology-Station-Diskless-Attached-DS1515/dp/B00PTGQJL4/ref=sr_1_1?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1449513949&sr=1-1&refinements=p_89%3ASynology
WD my coworker is buying: http://www.amazon.com/Mirror-Personal-Network-Attached-Storage/dp/B00ITI05CS/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1449512890&sr=8-8&keywords=wd+my+cloud+dual
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Offline Gordon

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2015, 10:23:33 PM »
look into qnap as well.
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Offline rigpimp

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2015, 10:43:38 PM »
I have a 5-bay QNAP.  There are TONS of features that I will never use but I have 11+TB of goodies on there.  Check out the QNAP TS-431. or 451.  Just keep in mind that when it says "diskless" it means that it comes WITHOUT any hard drives in it.
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Offline kuba e

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2015, 04:54:04 AM »
I have WD book live. I am using it together with Pinnacle Soundbrige. SoundBridge is connected to the radio and communicates directly with NAS via WiFi. So there is no need to turn on computer when playing music from the NAS. The NAS should have feature for media streaming, e.g.  iTunes or Twonky server (WD book has it).

Soundbridge is no longer produced. Perhaps it is possible to replace it with another product, maybe smart phone. Or maybe some new radios itself can connect to iTunes or Twonky server via WiFi.

Offline dnsacks

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2015, 09:16:54 AM »
I have a 5 bay synology ds1511+ too and am a VERY happy customer.  An important point with a NAS (if you're planning to use it for centralized storage) is its transfer speed/throughput.  My older netgear readynas was SLOW (maxed at around 10mB/second -- a lot slower than a usb2 interface external drive).  My Synology is around 10x as fast -- provides throughput that's similar to a connected usb3 drive.

While I suspect that a 5bay drive is overkill for the OP, synology's software seems to be consistent across its range.  I'd look at a 2 bay unit and pick up a pair of wd red drives to fill it (run these in Raid 1 mode for full redundancy).  Looks like they're up to 6tb drives now, so that would provide a LOT of storage.


Offline Fatah Ruark (aka MIKE B)

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2015, 09:47:14 AM »
Good thread Chuck! I've been thinking of doing this for a long time, but I'm not 100% sure what to get.

I want to:

1. Have all of my data (minus off site backups) in one box.
2. Have all of that data automatically duplicated (on site backup)
3. The ability to stream music from the NAS to my home stereo. Also video to my TV.
4. Run torrents off the device (at some point I'd like to have all of my recordings available all the time). I'd be fine running another computer with access to the NAS.

I see that the QNAP TS-431 already sends video and surround audio via the HDMI port. That will work great for movies and a few surround albums I have that I'd send to my home theater reciever.

One concern/question I have is:

Can you plug in a USB audio device to these? I'd like to use something like the AudioQuest Dragonfly to send the highest quality audio to my stereo.
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Offline dnsacks

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2015, 11:01:15 AM »
Good thread Chuck! I've been thinking of doing this for a long time, but I'm not 100% sure what to get.

I want to:

1. Have all of my data (minus off site backups) in one box.
2. Have all of that data automatically duplicated (on site backup)
3. The ability to stream music from the NAS to my home stereo. Also video to my TV.
4. Run torrents off the device (at some point I'd like to have all of my recordings available all the time). I'd be fine running another computer with access to the NAS.

I see that the QNAP TS-431 already sends video and surround audio via the HDMI port. That will work great for movies and a few surround albums I have that I'd send to my home theater reciever.

One concern/question I have is:

Can you plug in a USB audio device to these? I'd like to use something like the AudioQuest Dragonfly to send the highest quality audio to my stereo.

Not sure I'd want the noise/vibration inherent in a NAS (or a PC for that matter) in my listening area.  While my synology is rather quiet, it does (as do all other NAS' i've seen) utilize a cooling fan and the hdds make some noise/vibration too.  You might be better off looking at an appletv box, etc. as a conduit into your listening room/stereo.  As for a USB audio device, I doubt this would work -- while NAS' run various versions of linux, they're generally custom installs that have configurability locked down.  Another option, if you're looking more for a media server, would be to consider an intel NUC (VERY small footprint SSD-based pc with hdmi and usb3 interface that runs practically silently and with minimal power consumption) in conjunction with a NAS for file storage --

A favorite feature of my synology is the ease in which I can share any portion of its contents over the internet.  From giving specific people login/password access to portions of (or the entire) directory structure, to providing url access to individual files or directories, it makes sharing pretty painless.  I haven't tried its torrent functionality, but hear it's pretty robust in that area too.

Also, as for duplicate onsite backup, are you looking for raid redundancy (1-1 redundancy with raid 1, or 1 disk fault tolerance with raid 5), or something more?


Offline Fatah Ruark (aka MIKE B)

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2015, 11:12:58 AM »
^ Good point.

I guess I can just run the USB DAC out of something like a Raspberry Pi and let that live next to the stereo. That would solve  the problem of the NAS working with the DAC.

The noise from the NAS, while a concern, is something I'd likely have to deal with. I wonder how much heat the NAS generates. Could I put it inside a cabinet to help keep the noise down? I tried to run my PC inside a under desk cabinet...that did not work out so well, but only when really doing heavy work like editing/processing video.

I'd still have to have the NAS near the TV and all of that lives together in my house.
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||| MICS:  Beyer CK930 ~ Nevaton MCE400 ~ Countryman B3 |||
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||| PREAMPS: Naiant Tinybox | Naiant Littlebox | Naiant IPA | Church BB |||
||| DECKS: Sound Devices MixPre6 | Sony M10 |||
||| PLAYBACK: Outlaw Audio RR2150 > Epos ELS8 |||
||| PHOTO: Sony a6000 | Sony 16-50 | Sony 55-210 | Rokinon 14mm | Rokinon 8mm |||
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Offline aaronji

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #11 on: December 08, 2015, 11:35:43 AM »
^ I drilled a hole in the wall between the office (where the computer lives) and the living room (where the playback lives) and ran an ethernet cable through it.  I can't hear the Synology at all from the living room.  It's pretty quiet, generally, but does get kind of warm.  I would be hesitant to restrict air flow around it too much.

As dnsacks mentioned, a great feature of these things is the ease of sharing and external access.  I bought a URL for ten bucks a year and can access (or grant access to) all of my music from anywhere I can connect.  Not just music, of course...

Offline Chuck

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #12 on: December 08, 2015, 11:44:45 AM »
The whole thing started for me when I just wanted to stream any/all of my music & videos to all of the various devices I have at home... AppleTV2, Roku, iPod Touch, Android phone etc... without having to have a computer running somewhere. Now, I realize I can listen to all my music from anywhere even away from home I have a wi-fi connection. I ended up finding a Seagate 3TB Personal Cloud storage NAS for less than $100 new on eBay. I've been doing a bunch of reading. It will require some tweaking, but I think this will work for me.
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

Microphones: (2) Microtech Gefell M300, (2) AKG C 480 B comb-ULS/ CK 61/ CK 63, (2) CAD GXL1200 (cardioid and sub-cardioid capsule & electronics mod), (2) Audix M1290-o, (2) Micro capsule active cables w/ Naiant PFA's, (2) Naiant MSH-1O, (2) Naiant AKG Active cables, (2) Church CA-11 (cardioid), (2) CAD C9, (1) Nady SCM-1000 (mod)
Pre-amps: Naiant littlekit v2.0, BM2p+ Edirol UA-5, Church STC-9000
Recorders: Tascam DR-680, iRiver iHP-120 (Rockboxed & RTC mod), Denon DTR-80p

Recordings on the LMA: http://www.archive.org/bookmarks/ChuckM
Recording website & blog: http://www.timebetweenthenotes.com

Offline rigpimp

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #13 on: December 08, 2015, 04:39:56 PM »
With my NAS, as with any NETWORK attached storage device, you can not only access it from the internet, but from within your intranet.  If your stereo (or HDTV) is connected to your network then you can stream music and HD video wirelessly with a cariety of apps like Subsonic, Plex, etc.  I do both.  QNAP has two of their own phone apps that I primarily use, Qfile (remote audio and video playback, including transcoding on the fly) and Qmanager (system tools for restart, reboot, etc).  As long as I have a cell phone signal I can watch and listen to anything that is on my NAS at home.  My box contains 5 x 4TB HGST NAS drives in RAID 6.  [Theoretically] With double-parity I can lose two drives and still not lose any data although I have all of my masters backed up in three other places.

One thing to keep in mind about all-in-one boxes like Synology and QNAP is they each use a proprietary OS in their system so no pulling out drives and thinking your gonna read them elsewhere. 

You may also want to considering cooking your own with FreeNAS.  You can get parts pretty cheap and then upgrade as needed.
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Offline spyder9

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Re: NAS storage for audio files?
« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2015, 07:25:11 PM »
Another QNAP fan here.  I use a TS-231 and l love it.  The cadillac is the TS-X51 series.  Celeron processor onboard.  Footprint the size of a toaster.  Amazing tech growth over the years in these things.....

https://www.qnap.com/i/useng/product/items_by_series.php?CA=3

 

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