TerraMaster F2-212 NAS Review – A Compact Powerhouse for Home and Small Office Use

TerraMaster F2-212 NAS

8.5

8.5/10

The TerraMaster F2-212 NAS (Network Attached Storage) device is a dual-bay unit designed for home and small office settings. It promises to make data storage easy, accessible, and secure with its robust feature set and user-friendly interface. In this comprehensive review, we put the F2-212 through its paces to see if it delivers on these promises and how it stands out in the crowded NAS market.

Design and Build Quality: Sleek and Functional

The TerraMaster F2-212 impresses right out of the box with its clean, minimalistic design. The silver metal chassis not only gives it a modern look but also contributes to its durability. The compact size allows it to fit unobtrusively on any desk or shelf, making it ideal for environments where space is at a premium.

The front panel of the F2-212 is home to the power button, LED indicators for power and network activity, and drive status lights that provide at-a-glance information on the health of installed drives. The rear panel includes two USB 3.0 ports, dual LAN ports for failover support and Link Aggregation, and a cooling fan that runs surprisingly quiet even during intensive operations.

Setup and Software: Smooth Sailing

Setting up the F2-212 was a breeze. After installing two 4TB NAS drives (not included), the total physical setup time was under ten minutes. The initial software setup was equally straightforward thanks to the TNAS desktop application. The interface is intuitive, guiding users through the configuration process with ease.

TerraMaster’s TOS operating system, now in its fourth iteration, provides a clean and functional user interface. Features such as file sharing, data backup, and media streaming are accessible even to NAS newcomers. Advanced users will appreciate the support for Docker, multiple RAID configurations, and remote access capabilities.

TerraMaster F2-212 NAS Review - A Compact Powerhouse for Home and Small Office Use

Performance Testing: Exceeding Expectations

To rigorously test the F2-212, we conducted a series of performance tests under different scenarios:

File Transfer Speeds

We started with file transfer tests to gauge the performance of the F2-212 in real-world usage. Transferring a 100GB folder containing a mix of large and small files yielded impressive results. Over a Gigabit Ethernet connection, we recorded average write speeds of 112 MB/s and read speeds of 118 MB/s. The F2-212 handles large files exceptionally well, making it an excellent choice for multimedia enthusiasts and professionals working with large datasets.

Media Streaming and Transcoding

Next, we evaluated the NAS’s ability to serve as a media server. Using Plex, we streamed multiple 1080p videos simultaneously to different devices. The F2-212 handled up to four streams without any buffering issues, a testament to its processing power. The real-time transcoding of 4K content was also tested, and while it managed one stream smoothly, performance understandably dipped with multiple 4K streams, which is expected given its hardware limitations.

RAID Reliability and Data Redundancy

To test RAID functionality, we configured the drives in a RAID 1 setup. After simulating a drive failure by manually disconnecting one drive, the NAS promptly alerted us to the issue while maintaining data access through the remaining drive. Rebuilding the RAID array with a new drive was straightforward and completed within a few hours without any data loss, showcasing the reliability and redundancy features of the F2-212.

Energy Efficiency and Noise Levels

Throughout our testing, the F2-212 proved to be energy efficient, consuming between 15-20 watts during typical operations and even less when idle. This energy efficiency, combined with its quiet cooling fan, makes the F2-212 an ideal NAS for a home environment where noise and energy consumption are significant considerations.

Final Thoughts: A Versatile and Reliable NAS Solution

The TerraMaster F2-212 NAS is a robust storage solution that balances performance, ease of use, and affordability. It is well-suited for home users and small offices that require reliable data storage without the complexity often associated with advanced NAS systems.

Score: 8.5/10

The TerraMaster F2-212 is awarded an 8.5 out of 10 for its impressive performance, ease of setup, and excellent feature set tailored for its target audience.

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