Good performance at a reasonable price
- Innovative functions, easy to use software and Web interface, well priced.
- A few set-up problems
The N3200 is slower than some other drives on offer, but its performance was about same as a four-drive Iomega StorCenter 150D. It offers innovative functions and is easy to use. So considering the fair price, the Thecus N3200 is a clear winner that offers good value for money.
Price$ 599.00 (AUD)
The Thecus N3200 is a RAID drive that offers good performance at a reasonable price.
Pitched at both home users and small businesses, the Thecus N3200 offers a good combination of price and performance. Its three-drive set-up may look odd (most RAID systems are based around even numbers of drives), but for a RAID 5 or RAID 0 array any number of drives over two will work fine.
For RAID 1 the Thecus N3200 is not great, though, because you either have to mirror all of the drives, or have one non-mirrored separate drive, which isn't ideal. The use of three drives keeps the overall cost of the unit down compared to four-drive models, although the overall maximum capacity is, of course, reduced.
RAID 0 is a technology that groups together multiple hard drives to create a single drive that's the size of all the drives combined. The advantage is that it's faster than a single drive because it can read and write to three drives at once. The disadvantage is that if a single drive fails, you lose the data on all drives. RAID 1 counteracts this by mirroring the drives and is used for reliable backup. The disadvantage of this is that you lose half the total disc space.
The rest of the raid types, up to RAID 6 offer more complex and intelligent arrays, balancing speed and performance. RAID 5, using the Thecus N3200, enables all drives but 1 to be functioning. So if a single drive fails you can replace it without losing any data.
In that way, the three drives offered by the Thecus N3200 makes a lot of sense. You get the combined speed and storage of two drives, with a third acting as a spare to improve reliability. It's extremely unlikely that you'll lose two drives at once, so this system should provide foolproof backup.
Setting up the Thecus N3200 was hampered by poor naming of its two network ports. The rest of the set-up process using the Thecus Setup Wizard was painless, and the N3200's web interface is notable for being easy — no mean feat considering how many functions it has. Some of the functions are Windows only, but in general there's a lot on offer. Other innovations include the ability to attach a webcam for a simple in-studio security system, and an eSATA port on the back for adding additional storage.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- 2 Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- 3 Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- 4 LG G6 phone: full, in-depth review
- 5 Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 phone: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Prices of SSDs and DRAM will crash in 2019, Gartner predicts
- Pure adds more NVMe with an eye to the next storage speed bump
- What one company learned from testing Intel's superfast Optane SSDs
- New, colourful LaCie Rugged Thunderbolt USB-C was designed by Neil Poulton
- Western Digital begins production of the world's tallest 3D NAND 'skyscraper'
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTService ManagerNSW
- CCSenior System AdministratorQLD
- FTFull Stack .NET DeveloperWA
- TPTesting SpecialistQLD
- FTSystems Development Assistant Team LeadNSW
- FTSAP Fiori Technical SpecialistsACT
- TPWeb DeveloperNSW
- FTTechnical Expert | 3mth+contractVIC
- CCBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTSoftware Engineer - Build/Image MaintenanceACT
- FTSolution ArchitectACT
- FTTechnical Lead - FrontendNSW
- FTNetwork Consulting ArchitectVIC
- CCSolution ArchitectNSW
- FTPHP Full Stack DeveloperQLD
- CCSenior Business AnalystSA
- TPEOI - Developer/Tester/Software EngineerACT
- FTTechnical WriterACT
- TPEnterprise ArchitectQLD
- FTProject ManagerQLD
- TPProject ServicesACT
- TPLevel 2-3 Helpdesk OfficerQLD
- FTSenior Desktop Engineer - SCCM / AD / 2012 ServerNSW
- FTSenior Business Analyst, FinanceNSW