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QNAP TS-563 AMD Based 10GbE Capable NAS Reviewed

QNAP TS-563 10GbE Capable NAS

QNAP TS-563 10GbE Capable NAS

You typically associate Intel based CPUs with QNAP NAS units but the TS-563 splits from the pack with the use of a low powered but high performance AMD SoC. The QNAP TS-563 also offers the ability to install a 10GbE card allowing for the futureproofing of your IT infrastructure. Aimed at the small to medium enterprise we are going to look into it in a little more detail to see whether it shapes up to be one of the fastest NAS’s we have reviewed.

Some of key features the QNAP TS-563 offers include:

  • 10GbE ready – easy to install upgrade module
  • Supports up to a total of 16GB of memory
  • Hardware accelerate encryption engine
  • Multiple Windows/Linux/Android virtual machine support
  • Multiple backup options including Real-time Remote Replication
  • NAS and iSCSI-SAN unified storage for server virtualisation
  • Scalable to 21 drives with the use of supported external enclosures
QNAP TS-563 Specifications:
CPUAMD® x86 G-Series Quad-core 2.0 GHz processor
MemorySystem memory:
TS-563-2G: 2GB DDR3L RAM (2GB x1)
TS-563-8G: 8GB DDR3L RAM (8GB x1)
Total memory slots: 2 SODIMM
Memory expandable up to: 16 GB (8GB x 2)
Flash Memory512MB
Drive5 x 3.5"or 2.5"SATA 6Gb/s, SATA 3Gb/s hard drive or SSD
Network Expansion Slot1 (PCIe Gen2 x 4)
External Ports2 x 2 x Gigabit RJ-45 Ethernet port (Expandable up to 4 x GbE or 2 x 10GbE + 2 x GbE via PCIe NIC)
5 x USB 3.0 (Front: 1, Rear: 4)
1 x Kensington Security Slot
LED IndicatorsPower/Status, LAN, USB, HDD 1-5
ButtonsPower, Reset, USB Auto Copy
Alarm BuzzerSystem warning
System Fan1 x 12cm, 12V DC
Power SupplyATX 250W, 110-240V AC, 50-60Hz, 5A
Power ConsumptionS3 sleep: 2.26W
HDD standby: 30.17W
In operation: 47.68W (with 5 x 2TB HDDs installed)
Temperature0 - 40 °C
Weight (Net / Gross)Net: 4.4 kg (9.7 lbs)
Gross: 5.8 kg (12.79 lbs)
Dimensions (H x W x D)177 x 180 x 235 mm

A quick CPU check via SSH confirms the inclusion of the AMD processor as described in the specs:

[~] # head -5 /proc/cpuinfo ; echo ; uname -a ; echo
processor : 0
vendor_id : AuthenticAMD
cpu family : 22
model : 48
model name : AMD GX-420MC SOC

Linux QNAP563 3.12.6 #1 SMP Fri Mar 11 02:25:09 CST 2016 x86_64 unknown

The GX-420MC is part of AMD’s embedded G-series SOC platform which promises high performance and improved power requirements. But the best feature is support for 16GB (2 x 8GB) of memory making this a more enterprise friendly unit then some of the Intel based units we’ve reviewed in the past. Quad-core and 16GB RAM will perfect for businesses that also want to run additional QTS apps such as Virtualisation Station.


Installation and QTS Software

We typically go through the installation process with the NAS devices we review but as the steps and screens were no different to the QNAP TS-451+ we won’t go through them here again. Instead I’ll highlight a few noteworthy items.

The unit ships in a 2GB or 8GB version, we were sent the 2GB version for this review with the optional 10GbE SFP+ network card installed. The only other changes we made to the unit was to replace the supplied 2GB with 2 x 8GB (Kingston KVR16LS11/8) low voltage SO-DIMMs giving us a total of 16GB RAM.

[~] # head -5 /proc/meminfo
MemTotal: 16379472 kB
MemFree: 15384708 kB
Buffers: 19776 kB
Cached: 622280 kB
SwapCached: 0 kB

10GbE with MikroTik Cloud Router

At time of writing there were 2 compatible 10GbE network cards available through QNAP for the TS-563:

We were sent the later so a quick search for a suitable SFP+ compatible switch led us to the Cloud Router Switch (CRS226) from MikroTik.

MikroTik Cloud Router Switch to provide 10GbE network connectivity

MikroTik Cloud Router Switch to provide 10GbE network connectivity

Useful management LCD on the switch

Useful management LCD on the switch

The following transfer tasks were setup to test network throughput:

  • NAS #1 – copying 1TB data to TS-563 via FTP (1Gbps link)
  • NAS #2 – copying 1TB data to TS-563 via rsync (1Gbps link)
  • iMac – copying 1TB data to TS-563 via finder and CIFS share (1Gbps link)

As expected, the TS-563 didn’t skip a beat and there was still plenty of bandwidth available for more network connections. We’ll include additional performance testing with another 10GbE device soon.

The 10GbE connection didn't skip a beat

The 10GbE connection didn’t skip a beat

Final Thoughts

We’ve reviewed a number of NAS devices here at GeekLingo that fall in the 4 – 5 HDD range that are targeted for the small to medium enterprise and the QNAP TS-563 has clearly been the best that we have reviewed so far. The benefits and convenience of Virtual Station alone is enough to separate the QNAP range from their competitors but the added advantage of the AMD SoC used, 10GbE upgradability and support for a total of 16GB memory sets the TS-563 miles ahead.

Not only is the TS-563 feature packed but it also offers great value for money and priced similar to other products that offer much less in performance, features or both. If you are looking for a business grade NAS without consumer driven multimedia features that will serve your environment well from now and into the future, the QNAP TS-563 is definitely one to consider buying.



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