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Mark Burkett
NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 22, 2018 at 12:59:04 am

Greeting All,

Were a small video production company based in Brisbane Australia and looking at installing a NAS for video production and motion graphics. We have 2x 5k 2016 iMac's and often have additional editors on an adhoc basis. Were looking for centralised storage with fast speeds for 4k editing. I've done some research and 10gbe seems to the way to go. Below is the system we have spec'd up and my main question is if this NAS will offer fast enough speeds.

NAS - QNAP TS-831x-8G
 
Switch - Netgear ProSAFE XS708T
 
Drives - 8x Ironwolf 8tb - ST8000VN022
 
Thunderbolt to 10GBE convertors - Sonnet Twin 10G (Dual-Port 10 Gigabit Ethernet Thunderbolt 2 Adapter)

This NAS seems very cheap and I am concerned that because its not an AMD or intel processor it might not cut the mustard. Any advice would greatly received!

Also silly question, if the NAS hardware fails, does that mean all the data is lost? I know back-up to completely separate unit would be ideal however thats currently out of budget.

Thanks in advance!

Mark


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Bob Zelin
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 22, 2018 at 3:13:46 pm

Hi Mark -
the TVS-831e is a very nice little system. Unlike it's more expensive similar systems, like the TS-1685 12 bay or TVS-1282T 8 bay, the TVS-831e does not come with 2 things
1) there is no 10G network card in this unit. It's an option
2) there is no 12G miniSAS expander card in this unit. It's an option.

You MUST purchase a 10G card for this system, or it will be useless for you. Currently the correct card is the
QNAP LAN-10G2T-X550. It's $359 US. ($399 retail). HOWEVER - QNAP has announced, and allegedly released a new cheap single port 10G card for this unit that is only $139. It's the QNAP QXG-10G1T. (this is NOT the QNAP
LAN-10G1TA - I know, it's all very confusing). I have not seen the QNAP QXG-10G1T at any US dealer so far, but it allegedly is out and available. This is a single port 10G card that is half the price of the QNAP LAN-10G2T-X550 that uses the same 10G Aquantia 107 chip that is in the new iMac Pro.

With that said, yes, the TVS-831e will work wonderfully for you if it is setup correctly.
When you built a multi drive system with 8 drives, you can configure this for RAID 5 (to allow for one disk failure before losing all your data) or RAID 6 (to allow for two disk failures before losing all your data). Of course, when you do this, you lose the equivalent of one or two drives worth of usable storage for your system.

For thunderbolt 2 computers, the Sonnet Twin 10G will work very well for you.

It becomes very confusing to choose a QNAP, because there are so many models that physically look similar. It's only because I tested a TVS-831e that I can tell you that it is a good fast system. A similar cheap model - the TS-831x is a terrible slow system, that is sold at an almost identical price point. Most of the systems I put in are about double the price of the TVS-831e - specifically the TS-1685, or the TVS-1282T.


Let me know if you need any further information. I will answer whatever you need to know.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Mike Juhl
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 22, 2018 at 6:29:14 pm

Bob and Mark,

This is a timely discussion however, I am already down the road a bit as I have already purchased the TS-813x. Here are the details:

TS-831x 4GB ($799)
QNLAN10G1TA 10GBe network card ($139)
8 x 4TB HGST 7200 drives in Raid 6
iMac Pro w/ 10GBe

The iMac Pro is directly attached the the network card in the QNAP via Cat6. I am getting pretty slow speeds, or so it seems to me, <300 write / 480 read. Seems that with 8 drives (N-2), 6 drives after the Raid 6 that I should be getting 600-700 read/write? Bob, is this because as you said the 831x is extremely slow?

If I return the 831x and upgrade to the TVS-831e (couldn't find this on QNAP's site so maybe you meany the 871e?) and the different QNAP QXG-10G1T network card, will I see better speeds via direct connection to the iMac Pro's 10GBe?

I am looking to use this as a NAS located in a different room about 60 feet away via Cat 6 and want to use it to both store and edit video from.

Thanks,

Mike


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Bob Zelin
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 22, 2018 at 9:11:50 pm

Hi -
I apologize for what will be a smart a** answer, but sorry - it's the truth -

1) you purchased a TVS-873 with 4 gigs of RAM, because it was cheap - you should have purchased the 8 gig model

2) I just explained - you purchased the wrong 10G card.
The QNAP LAN-10G1TA uses the horrible Tehuti 10G chip that is the same chip that Akitio uses (which is why Akitio thunderbolt adaptors are so slow). The NEW QNAP QXG-10G1T (this is a DIFFERENT MODEL from the LAN-10G1TA)
uses the NEW Aquantia 107 chip - the SAME 10G chip that is in the iMac Pro.
I see that this card is now available on Amazon -
https://www.amazon.com/QXG-10G1T-Single-port-Low-profile-pre-loaded-Full-he...

3) you have 8 4TB drives - are they in a static volume RAID 5 or RAID 6, or did you create the default Thick Volume ?

4) you say that you have the iMac Pro. Did you DISABLE SMB SIGNING - because if you don't, you get CRAPPY speeds.

you don't need to return anything. You need someone who knows how to set all this stuff up.
here is the QNAP TVS-873e
https://www.qnap.com/en-us/product/tvs-873e

If I referred to this as the TS-831X ( I don't believe I did) then I am an idiot.
the TS-831X is a totally useless product that is insanely slow. Many of these products "look" identical, and people buy them, because they seem cheaper. It's only from experience that you find out which models work well, and which models do not work well. The TS-831X - this model - -
https://www.qnap.com/en-us/product/ts-831x
will NEVER work well ( I know - I own one) - it's SLOW, and the WRITE speeds are always horrible. While it may be fine for accounting data, it is USELESS for a video editing application.

There is no miracle fix for the TS-831X. It's the wrong unit. The TVS-873e is a totally different unit.

Just like the TS-1685 and the TS-1635. The 35 is $1500 cheaper, and it is a useless piece of junk (except for a slow backup unit). The TS-1685 is a world class shared storage system that is SUPER FAST and can do 8K editing.
The extra $1500 makes a world of difference. But they both physically look the same. SO - how do I know all of this - EXPERIENCE. I ordered a TS-1635 for a client, and they were ready to kill me. Thank God the dealer took back the TS-1635.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Bob Zelin
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 22, 2018 at 9:17:06 pm

Hi Mike -
I am typing too fast. I thought foolishly that you had a TVS-873. You have a TS-831X. The TVS-873e is wonderful. The TS-831X is useless. If you can return it, you should do so, along with the 10G card that you purchased.
Get the TVS-873e with the NEW QNAP QXG-10G1T, and you will be fine.

I fully understand that these boxes "look the same". They are not the same, neither are the 10G cards.
The difference between Tehuti and Aquantia is night and day.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Mark Burkett
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 23, 2018 at 6:09:51 am

A big thank you Bob for your advice this forum. Greatly appreciated, as you say, no substitute for experience.

Mike, good luck with your set-up I hope your able get it working to the speeds your after!

Bob, I just want to ask a question regards link aggregation, is there any advantage to using a dual 10gbe card with a managed switch to create a 20gbe connection? Or will we be limited by the speed of 8x drives in RAID6?

Many Thanks

Mark


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Bob Zelin
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 23, 2018 at 12:12:27 pm

Hi Mark -
before I answer, let me re stress to you. The TS-831X is not the box you want to own for editing. For a cheap QNAP, the TVS-873e is a much better purchase, with the new 10G QXG-10G1T card ( which is a single port card).
But since you are bringing up link aggregation - the dual port card is $359 US - the QNAP LAN-10G2T-X550.

A dual port card can be setup for LACP (as long as your switch supports LACP IEEE 802.3x, which is link aggregation control protocol, not static trunking). And yes, the Netgear XS708T does support this. So your overall bandwidth will be 20 Gb/sec, not 10Gb/sec from QNAP to the switch. But yes - no matter what, you are at the mercy of 8 drives, which will max out at about 1100 MB/sec. For a small workgroup, I never bother with LACP (and LACP only works from server to server, and server to switch, and switch to switch, NOT client to switch). I only use LACP for large installations with 16 and 24 bay shared storage systems. For a small workgroup, the single 10G connection will be plenty of bandwidth for you.

Remember, I can help you with all of this !

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Mike Juhl
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 23, 2018 at 2:56:09 pm

Yes, thank you Bob for your expertise!

I have struggled for a couple weeks trying to figure out why I am not getting decent speeds and now I know that it has to do with the limitations of the 831x and network card. I am returning the old hardware and per Bob's recommendation, have already ordered the TVS-873e and 10G QXG-10G1T network card. I will be configuring this week and will report back.

Mark, as Bob has said in his previous posts, stay away from the 831x and save yourself some trouble.

Thanks again Bob!

Mike


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Mark Burkett
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 24, 2018 at 11:31:43 pm

Thanks Gents,

We will indeed be going for the TVS-873e with the QNAP QXG-10G1T card and QNAP switch. I will no longer worry about link aggregation, this will allow us some savings. Which we will be able to put into increasing the storage capacity.

I look forward to hearing how you go Mike.

Thanks again!

Mark


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Mike Juhl
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 26, 2018 at 4:05:21 pm

Guys,

I have received and configured my new QNAP TVS-873e with the QNAP QXG-10G1T card. I have it set up in Raid 6 as a Static Volume and have allowed it to synchronize overnight. I have the iMac Pro connected directly to QNAP via the 10 GBe ports.

My speed testing is returning similar results to the previous QNAP 831x. The IOPS results for each of the isntalled 8 drives is 175 so, the max available bandwidth from the drives should be 6x175 =1050 MB/s in Raid 6 (I realize this is a theoretical max that I will likely never see) however, I am only seeing 370 MB/s Write and 430 MB/s read speeds. I was getting <300 MB/s Write and 480 MB/s Read with the previous QNAP system.

Comparison
QNAP TS 831x <300 MB/s Write 480 MB/s Read
QNAP TVS-873e 370 MB/s Write 430 MB/s Read

I am guessing there is a bottle next somewhere else in the system? Any other ideas on what I can try?

Thanks for you continued assistance!!

Mike


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Bob Zelin
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice
on May 27, 2018 at 4:17:47 pm

I guess you need to contact me.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Bob Zelin
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice - all fixed
on May 29, 2018 at 11:56:22 pm

Michael Juhl's system is now working properly with writes over 600 MB/sec and READs at 800 MB/sec.

It's amazing how things work correctly, when they are setup properly.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Mark Burkett
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice - all fixed
on May 30, 2018 at 4:12:38 am

Great news!

I will go ahead and purchase the components. Thanks again and I will be in touch Bob if your expertise are required.

Thanks


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Mike Juhl
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice - all fixed
on May 31, 2018 at 2:52:44 pm

Yes, thanks for your help Bob!!
It's working great now and the 60% boost is speeds is excellent!


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Alex Pickup
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice - all fixed
on Jun 19, 2018 at 3:36:03 pm

Hi Bob

You seem to be the man in the know! I was wondering what you thought about the new Thunderbolt 3 Qnaps? My instinct is that I won't saturate that connection with 8 drives so they seem expensive to me maybe. However I wouldn't need any adapters so would save there.

All I want to do is have a NAS running dropbox as we use that for everything (we're based in many locations). In addition I would like to attach my PC and Mac Laptop to the NAS directly so they can share files and I can edit video straight off the box.

I am thinking that a 10gbe direct connection to both systems would be plenty of speed?

My PC has thunderbolt 3 and 10gbe connections already on board

My laptop has thunderbolt 3 only. So I guess I'd need the expensive converter box for that which might use up some of the price difference between the non-thunderbolt and thunderbolt qnaps.

The two I'm considering are: Qnap TVS-873e-8G or Qnap TVS-882BRT3-i5-16G and the price difference in the Uk is around £500.

I'd love any advice and also once I've got the basic system going would you be up for remote access setup?
Alex


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Bob Zelin
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice - all fixed
on Jun 19, 2018 at 8:25:18 pm

replies below -

I was wondering what you thought about the new Thunderbolt 3 Qnaps? My instinct is that I won't saturate that connection with 8 drives so they seem expensive to me maybe. However I wouldn't need any adapters so would save there.

REPLY - well, you need 8 drives. Period. The drives cost more than the QNAP. You will be using a 10G connection, not a thunderbolt 3 connection, to connect to your Mac or PC workstations.


All I want to do is have a NAS running dropbox as we use that for everything (we're based in many locations).


REPLY - the QNAP can do an automatic backup to Dropbox. It's a feature that's built in for free. Of course, you can't edit over the internet. It's not fast enough. But you can move files around. You are at the mercy of your internet connection speed.


In addition I would like to attach my PC and Mac Laptop to the NAS directly so they can share files and I can edit video straight off the box.

REPLY - you will connect via the 10G ports. Your Mac Laptop needs a Sonnet Solo 10G for thunderbolt 3 or Sonnet Twin 10G (or Promise SanLink2) for Thunderbolt 2. Your PC can use the ASUS or QNAP 10G NIC card, which is about $100 US. Yes, you can edit right off the QNAP.



I am thinking that a 10gbe direct connection to both systems would be plenty of speed?

REPLY - you will get about 900 - 1000 MB/sec from the PC if you use the ASUS or QNAP 10G PCIe card (or the Sonnet Presto 10G, which is about $280 US). With the Solo 10G Thunderbolt 3 adaptor, you will get 900 - 1000 MB/sec and with the thunderbolt 2 adaptors, you will get about 800 MB/sec. If you get the cheaper Akitio, you will only get about 300 MB/sec.



My PC has thunderbolt 3 and 10gbe connections already on board
REPLY - if its not the horrible Startech 10G that uses the Tehuti 10G chip, then you are ok. We can try it, and then add the ASUS 10G card for $99 if there are issues. The ASUS, and QNAP both use the Aquantia ACQ-107 10G chip which is the same chip that's in the iMac Pro.


My laptop has thunderbolt 3 only. So I guess I'd need the expensive converter box for that which might use up some of the price difference between the non-thunderbolt and thunderbolt qnaps.
REPLY - the Sonnet Solo 10G is $177 at B&H Photo in the US. I am sure that http://www.span.com in London sells it as well. If you consider this to be expensive, then we are both wasting our time right now.


The two I'm considering are: Qnap TVS-873e-8G or Qnap TVS-882BRT3-i5-16G and the price difference in the Uk is around £500.

The TVS-873e is a bare bones 8 bay box, with no 10G card in it. You MUST order either a QNAP LAN-10G2T-X550 card for this ($359 US) for dual port connection, or if you are getting a 10G switch (like the QNAP QSW-1208-8C which is $589 US) then you order the QNAP QXG-10G1T card for $139 and put this into the QNAP TVS-873e. This is a single port card, that connects to a switch.
The TVS-882BRT3 is a backup unit. Why would you consider this model ?

Ask any other questions that you may have. I do this all the time, all day long.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Alex Pickup
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice - all fixed
on Jun 19, 2018 at 9:46:01 pm

Hi Bob

Thanks for the replies! I've answered again on each piece below trying to clarify bits:

replies below:

I was wondering what you thought about the new Thunderbolt 3 Qnaps? My instinct is that I won't saturate that connection with 8 drives so they seem expensive to me maybe. However I wouldn't need any adapters so would save there.

REPLY - well, you need 8 drives. Period. The drives cost more than the QNAP. You will be using a 10G connection, not a thunderbolt 3 connection, to connect to your Mac or PC workstations.

Alex Reply: Ah sorry what I meant was just 'will my 8 drives actually saturate a 10gbe connection? Or would the extra bandwidth of 40gb/s thunderbolt 3 give me something extra? From what I gather you aren't a fan of Thunderbolt 3 qnaps though having just found some other threads.


All I want to do is have a NAS running dropbox as we use that for everything (we're based in many locations).


REPLY - the QNAP can do an automatic backup to Dropbox. It's a feature that's built in for free. Of course, you can't edit over the internet. It's not fast enough. But you can move files around. You are at the mercy of your internet connection speed.

Alex Reply: Yep understood on that. Currently we tend to run a big dropbox volume on an external hard drive or external raid (around 6TB of synced data at any time) and I work 'live' on that volume via thunderbolt on my computer. Dropbox is constantly syncing everything as fast as it can as things change. Now I want to have that volume syncing on the NAS and be working directly on that volume via 10gpe or thunderbolt 3 using my mac or my PC. I assume that's doable as a friend of mine does in on a synology nas but just wanted to clarify the aim.


In addition I would like to attach my PC and Mac Laptop to the NAS directly so they can share files and I can edit video straight off the box.

REPLY - you will connect via the 10G ports. Your Mac Laptop needs a Sonnet Solo 10G for thunderbolt 3 or Sonnet Twin 10G (or Promise SanLink2) for Thunderbolt 2. Your PC can use the ASUS or QNAP 10G NIC card, which is about $100 US. Yes, you can edit right off the QNAP.

Alex Reply: Sweet


I am thinking that a 10gbe direct connection to both systems would be plenty of speed?

REPLY - you will get about 900 - 1000 MB/sec from the PC if you use the ASUS or QNAP 10G PCIe card (or the Sonnet Presto 10G, which is about $280 US). With the Solo 10G Thunderbolt 3 adaptor, you will get 900 - 1000 MB/sec and with the thunderbolt 2 adaptors, you will get about 800 MB/sec. If you get the cheaper Akitio, you will only get about 300 MB/sec.

Alex Reply: gotcha


My PC has thunderbolt 3 and 10gbe connections already on board
REPLY - if its not the horrible Startech 10G that uses the Tehuti 10G chip, then you are ok. We can try it, and then add the ASUS 10G card for $99 if there are issues. The ASUS, and QNAP both use the Aquantia ACQ-107 10G chip which is the same chip that's in the iMac Pro.

Alex Reply: This is the motherboard I have so it looks like I have the Aquantia AQC-107 10G like you said. You know everything!
https://www.asus.com/uk/Motherboards/ROG-RAMPAGE-VI-EXTREME/specifications/

My laptop has thunderbolt 3 only. So I guess I'd need the expensive converter box for that which might use up some of the price difference between the non-thunderbolt and thunderbolt qnaps.
REPLY - the Sonnet Solo 10G is $177 at B&H Photo in the US. I am sure that http://www.span.com in London sells it as well. If you consider this to be expensive, then we are both wasting our time right now.

Alex Reply: No it's fine, I was just factoring in that £200 in case it made one qnap vs another become closer in price.

The two I'm considering are: Qnap TVS-873e-8G or Qnap TVS-882BRT3-i5-16G and the price difference in the Uk is around £500.

The TVS-873e is a bare bones 8 bay box, with no 10G card in it. You MUST order either a QNAP LAN-10G2T-X550 card for this ($359 US) for dual port connection, or if you are getting a 10G switch (like the QNAP QSW-1208-8C which is $589 US) then you order the QNAP QXG-10G1T card for $139 and put this into the QNAP TVS-873e. This is a single port card, that connects to a switch.

Alex Reply: Ahh yes I get you, I missed that. Okay well before I decide on getting that one plus the 10gb card is there a different 8-bay qnap with 10gb already built in that you'd recommend? My UK options are here: https://www.span.com/category/Qnap-NAS-8-Bay~3005

The TVS-882BRT3 is a backup unit. Why would you consider this model ?

Alex Reply: Ah that's interesting. I'd had this model recommended to me specifically for using as attached video editing via 10gbe and thunderbolt 3. Nobody said it was a backup unit. It looks like a fully fledged unit on the website. Would it be much worse than the TVS-873e then? Here's the specific listing I was considering:
https://www.span.com/product/Qnap-Desktop-NAS-10GbE+TB3-TVS-882BRT3-i5-16G-...

Ask any other questions that you may have. I do this all the time, all day long.

Alex Reply: Thanks man. I guess my big question still is why the thunderbolt 3 units should be avoided? Some of the posts about this have gone over my head tbh. This is my first NAS and I'm not up on all the ins and out. I am definitely getting the vibe that there's no point in that platform but I'd love to be fully illuminated on the issues with those. Are they just a distraction in this market?

Thanks again and I'll happily get what you recommend and then be in touch to have you help me set it up remotely.
Appreciate the help
AL


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Bob Zelin
Re: NAS set-up for video production advice - all fixed
on Jun 19, 2018 at 11:10:42 pm

Alex Reply: Ah sorry what I meant was just 'will my 8 drives actually saturate a 10gbe connection? Or would the extra bandwidth of 40gb/s thunderbolt 3 give me something extra? From what I gather you aren't a fan of Thunderbolt 3 qnaps though having just found some other threads.

REPLY - this is correct. While the TVS-1282T3 and TVS-882ST3 are fantastic units, they are fantastic when they are used with 10G connections. With the advent of the Sonnet Solo 10G for $177 street price, what's the problem ?
It's CHEAP !



Alex Reply: This is the motherboard I have so it looks like I have the Aquantia AQC-107 10G like you said. You know everything!
https://www.asus.com/uk/Motherboards/ROG-RAMPAGE-VI-EXTREME/specifications/

REPLY - OH I LOVE ASUS motherboards. This is the motherboard that Blackmagic recommends for Davinci Resolve when you are going to build your own Win PC. It's great. Aquantia is great !



Alex Reply: Thanks man. I guess my big question still is why the thunderbolt 3 units should be avoided? Some of the posts about this have gone over my head tbh. This is my first NAS and I'm not up on all the ins and out. I am definitely getting the vibe that there's no point in that platform but I'd love to be fully illuminated on the issues with those. Are they just a distraction in this market?

REPLY - people think that "oh, I have this FREE built in thunderbolt 3 port, I can have this connection FOR FREE !".
You are limited to a 2 meter connection with thunderbolt 3. If you extend, you drop down to thunderbolt 2 speeds. With the Sonnet Solo 10G for $177, you can run 55 meters at FULL SPEED, and if the cable breaks, you spend 10 quid to replace it. And you will have a super reliable connection. There is this fascination with thunderbolt 3 connection, as if it's some miracle. It's not. What I can say, is that if you don't care about a shared storage system, and just want a big drive array, you can purchase a wonderful thunderbolt 3 RAID array from G-Tech, Promise, or Areca, and just plug it in, and it will work, without any configuration from me. Now, THATS easy. The QNAP is not that easy. No network attached shared storage system is.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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