I'd like a high capacity wireless media and data solution.

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by impresently, May 8, 2013.

  1. impresently macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2013
    I own a 17" MacBook Pro. I do not own a desktop computer.
    I am looking to figure out how to store and easily access all of my media and Photoshop files externally, and leave my laptop drive (320 GB 7200RPM) fairly open for optimal read and write. I also have that drive partitioned to run Boot Camp on half of that. I would also like it to back up automatically.

    My iTunes library with all media (which is in iTunes Match as well) is about 200GB
    My photo library is around 100GB.
    My Photoshop files are around 100GB.
    All of this media I want to be able to store externally and view, listen to, work on wirelessly.

    My current setup is an Airport Extreme with a 2TB USB drive attached. This set up as a media center is fraught with issues. It runs not all that well as sometimes the video is jerky when viewing movies on my laptop. When I run a movie or something and I am downloading something at the same time, the hard drive will often disconnect itself. When I remove the laptop from the apartment, I get a message saying I did not properly eject the drive, even though it was only wirelessly connected.

    I thought about Time Capsule, but I don't know if I can use it in the way I want to.
  2. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Aug 9, 2009
    Portland, OR
    Time Capsules are great for backup, but they are very slow as a NAS. I only use TCs for backup purposes since they are the only NAS devices officially supported by Apple. For a general purpose NAS, Synology seems to be the favorite by the MR crowd and has a great reputation.

    iTunes media is not at all performance sensitive since it is all streaming. However, when it comes to photography, I have never been satisfied keeping photo libraries on a NAS. I strongly prefer either a DAS array... or a direct attached SSD.

  3. Giuly, May 8, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2014

    Giuly macrumors 68040


    If you only work on one machine and don't need the optical drive, you could replace it with a 480GB SSD and store the files on that.

    As far as the rest (and the backup of the SSD goes), if you're OK with 6TB of space (or 3TB with redundancy), the Synology DS213 plus two 3TB WD Red NAS hard drives would be a candidate.
  4. williamrodz macrumors newbie

    Sep 14, 2011
    Recommend Synology NAS Setup

    I have this exact setup ( except my NAS is the 212+), and it works awesomely. Is your network wired or wireless?
  5. ColdCase, May 12, 2013
    Last edited: May 12, 2013

    ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Feb 10, 2008
    I too found the AEBS quirky handling attached drives. Works well as a print share.

    The TC works well as a disk server. I have a 3TB internal and a 2TB external USB drive attached with zero issues. The TC is quirky as a wireless router, however.

    Since the TC doesn't support RAID redundancy and I have a number of lion and previous OS machines about the family, I picked up a synology SYDS212JK2 (two bay) and a couple 3TB drives and configured the drives for the default fault tolerance. I added a 2TB USB later. I use CCC for backups to the synology as there are many reports of TM failures on the synology (along with many successes). TMs are still backing up to the TC. And the AEBS is still handling the wireless and router duties..

    The TC works much better for time machine backups. File transfers are much faster to/from the synology drives. The 2TB drive that now sits in the synology NAS used to be directly connected to my rMBP and I don't notice much if any difference in responsiveness now that its on the NAS (for typical <6GB photo files and videos). Transfers to the synology internal drives are faster than the one hanging off the USB.

    As an alternative, you can think about picking up an older mac mini refurb and add some external drives. The mini server version came with two internal drives but typically run into some serious cash, but single internal drive models are relatively cheap and I think OSX server is like $20-$30. There are quite a few here that prefer that approach if you want server grade NAS performance and seamless TM backups. The base two bay synology option is probably less money but, if I had to do it over again, I think I'd jump to the mini as a server instead. So many more "mac" things are supported.

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