Hardware Specifications and Pricing
Modern NAS servers have moved beyond data storage through a wire network. In order to get the most out of a NAS, you need to look at the extra I/O hardware and the mountain of potential software features.
The LaCie 5big NAS Pro ships from LaCie in three configurations. The first is diskless, you purchase and add your own drives. The second and third SKUs ship with hard drives from the factory, either five 2TB (10TB total) HDDs or five 4TB (20TB total) HDDs. We found some enterprising e-tail shops with advertised 15TB models, but I suspect they purchase diskless 5big NAS Pros and furnish the HDDs.
At the heart of the 5big Pro NAS is an Intel Atom processor with two cores running at 2.13GHz. The NAS ships with 4GB of DDR3. This is a nice touch since many of the mid-range SOHO products we've seen over the past year ship with just 2GB of RAM, some even just 1GB.
The main use for a NAS is network connectivity to store files. The 5big NAS Pro has dual gigabit Ethernet connections that can operate on different subnets or with link aggregation, to increase bandwidth to the NAS. The unit also has dual USB 3.0 ports, as well as dual USB 2.0 ports, all located on the backside of the NAS.
The supported RAID modes supported are 0, 1, 5, 5+ Hot Spare and 6. Note that RAID 10 is not an option with four drives, a feature removed in January 2013 from LaCie products. LaCie also has a feature called SimplyRAID for automatic building of redundant arrays. This comes in very handy when using mixed capacity drives. You can instruct the automatic building software to build your array with single or dual redundancy.
Newegg lists the model we're looking at today, 9000363U, 10TB at $999.99. Looking around the web, we managed to find the diskless model for just under $500 and the 10TB model for $949. The best bang for your buck deal was at B&H and on the flagship model with 20TB of included storage, $1,348, assuming you don't already have drives to load into the diskless model.
Out of the factory LaCie offers a three year limited warranty. Unique to the brand in this price range, extended warranty upgrade options are available. Purchased directly on the LaCie website, options start as low at $14.99 and go to $54.99. This is a feature we rarely see outside of high-end enterprise components.