Having a storage device that integrates with your system without standing in the way of your productivity is essential. NAS drives are built to make access to your files more convenient by having them transported over a network.
These devices provide a central location for your files, facilitate easy file storage, and come with multiple applications for different services like automatic backups and file syncing.
Users looking for the best NAS for Apple have a lot of devices to choose from. These range from single-bay NAS to fully-fledged systems with multiple drive bays and powerful features.
List of Best NAS For Apple in 2021
The following are highly recommended Apple NAS as recommended by users and ease of integration.
- Synology DiskStation DS218 – Recommended NAS for Apple
- Drobo 5N2 – Uses mSATA for Speed Boost
- Western Digital My Cloud Home – Affordable personal storage
- iOSafe 218 – Fire and waterproof
- QNAP TS-251A – High-performance dual-core processor
1. Synology DiskStation DS218 – Ideal for work and play
It comes in a compact form that comfortably sits on your desk and once connected to the internet; let’s you access your files from anywhere.
The DiskStation DS218 runs on the latest version of Synology DiskStation Manager which offers lots of applications for backing up and keeping your system in sync with other devices.
There is a USB 2.0 port at the front as well as two faster ones at the back that let you connect to peripheral devices. Furthermore, you also get an Ethernet port tat the back as well as a Kensington lock for device security.
For even more security, the unit has hardware encryption which will secure your files from unauthorized access. With two drive bays, you can configure your device for RAID which will safeguard you from data loss.
2. Drobo 5N2 – Uses mSATA for Speed Boost
Along with that, to get the much-needed performance boost, there’s a slot for an optional mSATA SSD that will provide caching facilities for faster disk read speeds.
The unit also supports high-speed networking, thanks to the dual Gigabit Ethernet ports at the back. These can be connected via Link Aggregation to provide higher bandwidths.
The system uses a quad-core CPU from Marvel Armada that’s clocked at 1.6GHz. You also get 2 GB of RAM.
It ships diskless; hence you get to choose the kinds of drives you want, and if you need high performance, you can install SSD drives on it as well.
For security, you get basic password protection as well as a Kensington lock to tether it somewhere like your desk.
3. Western Digital My Cloud Home – Affordable personal storage
Furthermore, the unit offers cross-platform support for Mac computers as well as mobile devices via accompanying iOS apps.
This lets you browse the contents of your NAS via your phone from anywhere, and you will even be able to stream HD content directly to your phone.
This offers a central storage solution with the ability to copy and store files from other cloud providers like Dropbox. This makes migrating your files very easy and makes them all accessible from a central location.
This unit also supports Apple Time Machine, a backup utility for Apple devices that will keep the files between your NAS and your computers in sync.
The setup is very straightforward and involves plugging it into your router for the network connection. This can be done with the available Ethernet port. You also get a USB port that can be used with external drives.
4. iOSafe 218 – Fire and waterproof
For those who need extra protection, the iOSafe 218 is a safe bet. It comes with both fire and waterproofing. Both features mean it’s very keen on protecting your drives and data. However, that makes it heavier than most NAS systems its size.
Users get two options at the checkout. You can get it with preinstalled hard drives, or you may choose to get it diskless and handle the installation yourself.
That said, the unit comes with two drive bays on which you can install drives and implement RAID to keep your files safe. With support for up to 24TB of data, you will have adequate storage for documents and media files.
The unit falls in the moderately expensive category owing to its sturdy build quality as well as insulation for fireproofing, but you get good features in the process.
It features a 1.4GHz Realtek CPU coupled with 2GB of DDR4 memory. That makes it efficient for moderate workloads. Furthermore, among other devices, you get support for macOS 10.13 and newer, making it the best NAS for Apple.
5. QNAP TS-451 – High-performance dual-core processor
Furthermore, it comes with integration for other cloud storage providers like Google Drive, Dropbox, and OneDrive among others. These make aggregating all your cloud files into one central location much easier.
You get an Intel Celeron dual-core processor which enables it to run both its OS as well as some of the installed programs more efficiently. Additionally, it ships with 2 GB of RAM, but down the road, this may be upgraded to a maximum of 8GB when the need arises.
Furthermore, users get an easy installation and setup process, making it easy to get started with.
While its high-performance processor makes it the best NAS for Apple, users also get high transfer speeds. The two GbE (Gigabit Ethernet) ports can deliver about 194 and 212 MB/s of reads and writes respectively.
The unit supports multiple device connections making it a great work tool as well as a media server. You can even perform virtualization tasks with this like running other Operating Systems.
How to Choose the Right NAS for Apple?
Apple devices range from computers and laptops to phones and tablets. Predominantly Apple users, particularly those on Mac computers will need a NAS that will be supported by their OS.
It will also be ideal to have the necessary software to help conveniently move files and perform other operations on the NAS.
Having the ability to share the contents of your NAS both easily and securely over the internet ideal for users.
For Apple users, a NAS that also has companion apps for iPhones will greatly benefit the users. This enables users to view the files on their systems without having to use a computer, and it also allows for media consumption via the phones.
File sharing will also play a huge role when you need to share documents or even collaborate on files with other users. And, for media consumption on Apple devices, having a NAS that supports 4K media transcoding will be beneficial.
Support for Time Machine
Many Apple users rely on Time Machine to make automatic backups of the files on their computers. This can even backup the entire system.
Having a NAS that supports this means you will be able to make and save backups of your system onto a networked device.
Therefore, whenever you need to, you can download an exact copy of your system on another device from anywhere in the world and set it up.
This is not specific to Apple users. Nevertheless, having adequate storage capacities will ensure you have enough space for new media files. Because some NAS can handle very large maximum capacities, this shouldn’t be a problem.
Some systems ship with multiple drive bays which means you can have more than one storage drive installed.
This can result in high capacities but will vary depending on whether or not you have RAID configured.
Most NAS come with hard drives depending on the model as well as a user’s needs. A diskless NAS comes sans the drives. The user needs to take care of that part on their own.
This can offer a great opportunity for a user to invest in the drives they need, and it is available to consider getting NAS-grade drives.
These offer better performance, are more reliable, and less prone to crashing even on long operation cycles. They may be slightly more expensive than regular drives though.
If you have stuff to store, files to share and video to watch over network with Apple computers, then you need a NAS that is reliable and compatible with the MacOS.
In this article, we looked at some of the best NAS for Apple. We chose them based on user reviews and performance factor.
We also talked about what makes a certain drive great for MAC, particularly, its integration with Apple Time Machine for backing up data.