Best Hard Drives for your NAS or DAS and Video Editing

HDD NAS

Yes the world is moving to SSD but when it comes digital content creation and video editing you're going to need network attached storage or direct attached storage in the form of servers and RAID arrays to store and edit terabytes and terabytes of projects. So the hard drive is as important as ever and still the most cost efficient way to online digital media.

So it's gotten simpler with only a few major players to consider. Hard drives are manufactured by Seagate, Western Digital/Hitachi and Toshiba. Each manufacturer has a variety of hard drive offerings for desktop and enterprise use. For your NAS or DAS setup we suggest using one of the enterprise offerings or a drive specifically designed for a multidrive enclosure.

QNAP, Synology, Areca, Drobo, Promise, Netgear are some of the leading suppliers of NAS and DAS products. We've done extensive tests with Synology NAS products and Areca DAS products. We also used multiple drives populating Supermicro workstations.

Over the years we've had excellent luck with Hitachi Ultrastar drives which are now sold under the Western Digital brand as Ultrastar. The Ultrastar was previosly sold as the Western Digtal Gold drive as well. Another drive to consider is the Western Digital Red Pro series. These drives are exactly like the original line of Hitachi Ultrastar drives as well such as the 7k3000, 7k4000 and 7k6000 drives which you can still find on Ebay at amazing prices.

We recommend buying new hard drives directly from Amazon or BH Photo. There are lots of third parties that sell drives however if you get something that is packaged funny or looks wonky Amazong and BH will handle it more rapidly.

We also are testing the Toshiba N300 series helium drives. They are fast and quiet and offer good performance. All manufacturers have gone to helium in higher capacities. Western Digital, Seagate and Toshiba have all been working on helium drives for several years. In general, helium allows more platters to be used for higher capacities. 16TB drives are rolling out. Helium drives also consume less power and make less noise and experience less internal turbulence. All of these factors make helium based drives ideal for multidrive systems.

In terms of speed and performance.  All of these drives are really close.  Once you put them in a RAID array there's not much difference.  

So for NAS and DAS systems in video editing environments and multiuser high traffic scenarious we advise going with enterprise level drives such as the Western Digital Ultrastar, Seagate Exos or Toshiba MG series.

For less intensive, non-critical use we'd go with the Western Digital Red Pro, Seagate Ironwolf Pro or Toshiba N300 series. We advise going with larger capacity helium based drives for long term performance, less noise and power savings. If you opt for lower capacity we'd advise sticking with 6TB and higher capacities. If you opt for higher capacity target 12TB and higher.

So let's say you're an editor that works out of your home studio and you have an 8 bay RAID array.  Any of these drives should provide the performance and reliability you need.  We'd be comfortable with any of these drives in a RAID 10 working on 4K material running large renders.  In a corporate setting with shared resources and 24/7 workload, multiple editors on same project...etc, we'd opt for the first tier line of drives. 


FIRST TIER
More on the Western Digital Ultrastar (previosly Gold) preferred
More on Seagate Exos
More on Toshiba MG series

SECOND TIER
More on Western Digital Red Pro preferred
More on Seagate Ironwolf Pro 
More on Toshiba N300 

Genelec 8030C 5” active monitor Review

genelec8030c

The Genelec 8030C 5” active monitors are a very good choice for transparent and accurate monitors for post production. Our mixes are translating to all playback devices as intended and these Genelecs have become trusted, honest friends during mixdown.

The 8030C 5” active monitor is an extremely well built unit that features 5” inch woofer and 3/4” tweeter both powered by 50-watt amplifiers. These are compact and very powerful monitors that can produce high output levels in control rooms of nearly any size. We tested them in a 10x10 edit suite adjacent to a 30” screen using IsoAcoustics ISO-L8R130 isolators. They are pretty much ideal in this setting. Just give them a clean signal from the board and the Genelec's have plenty of power to fill the space as needed.  
iso acoustics

We adjusted the dip switches on the back to account for the speakers being near a wall and slightly elevated. This was critical to achieving the accurate sound we were after. Prior to adjusting the dip switches the sound was really heavy and muddy in the lower frequencies.

These 8030c monitors are just really clean monitors that allow you to mix dialogue and music in a very confident way. These are great monitors for critical listening and doing audio forensics and cleaning up interviews. We'd like to see more input options in addition to the balanced XLR but imagine many are installed in permanent professional situations where the added cost isn't necessary.

For many years we've been happily chugging along with our passive JBLs and trusted Hafler amps and we still prefer the heft and heat for music mixes. The Genelecs did take a little getting used to, like adjusting to any new monitor setup.  After extended use we can highly recommend them.  They just stay out of the way so you can dial in your mix with confidence.  When it comes to post production they've become a standard in many editing suites with good reason.  The Genelec 8030c monitors are a really good choice and translate well to any kind of playback system. They make a good partner for extended edit sessions and will keep you honest with your final mix.  

Nvidia Quadro P4000 Review

p4000 ff


We like the single slot GPU because it allows us to use all the available PCIe slots in our system, it's not as power hungry as larger two slot designs and we think these cards really hit the price/performance sweet spot. We tested the P4000 in a Supermicro workstation sporting newer components, SSDs and plenty of memory. 


The line between professional and consumer use of advanced GPUs is blurring as players become creators. Once upon a time it was enough to just be a gamer with your specialized rig dominating Fortnite at high frame rates. But these days players like to capture gameplay in OBS and stream on YouTube. When they're not streaming live they might be making tutorials or music mixes featuring game play highlights. Of course, you have to build cool intros and outtros in Afer Effects, Cinema 4D and Blender. And to do that you'll need lots of plug-ins to make your stuff standout.

In this new emerging world of creator/players sharing game experiences and derivative creativity, a GPU that can handle professional apps and gameplay is very attractive. That's where the P4000 shines. You can be an After Effects artist or Cad god by day and still blow off some steam with game play at night, all with a high level of peroformance. That's pretty much what we did with the Quadro P4000.

We ran After Effects, Cinema 4D, Blender, OBS, Fortnite, Roblox, Vegas Creative and myriad orther creative and gaming experiences. What we found was the Quadro P4000 was a reliable workhourse that performed well and performed just fine when running these apps simultaneously. We'd have a render cooking in After Effects while live streaming and recording Fortnite using OBS. No glitches, no delays and smooth as butter at high frame rates.

p4000

Our supermicro workstation has robust mid case cooling and exhaust fans running at quiet levels and did not have to ramp up for extra cooling nor did we hear the quadro fan ramp up during our testing running renders in the background during gameplay. Having a quality power supply, case and good airflow makes for a happy GPU too. So keep that in mind. Small cases with poor cooling and marginal power supplies are not a GPUs best friend.


The Quadro P4000 is a really good choice for a single slot solution that can run professional creative apps and provide a smooth gaming experience as well. For many users there is little need to go beyond this level of peformance unless you've got the budget to spend or truly have the need for extreme GPU performance. Plus we love having all slots available in our system for high end audio cards and DSP processing. Long live the single slot GPU!

Check out the full NVIDIA Quadro lineup here.

More Articles ...

  1. Moog Subsequent 37
  2. Lynx E22 Versus RME Audio HDSPe AIO - Battle for the Best PCIe Audio Card
  3. Edius 8.22 Review - Powerful Updates for Post
  4. NVIDIA Quadro K4200 Review
  5. JBL EON206P Portable PA Review
  6. Panasonic AJ-PX270 Professional HD Camcorder Review
  7. Boris FX BCC 9 Review 2014
  8. Sony Vegas Pro 13 Review
  9. Convergent Design Odyssey7Q Review
  10. Pixelan DissolveMaster Review
  11. iZotope RX3 Advanced Review
  12. Grass Valley Edius Pro 7 Review
  13. The Akai MPX8 Portable Sample Player Review
  14. Atomos Samurai Blade Review
  15. Sorenson Squeeze 9 Review with 360
  16. Sound Devices 664 Mixer Recorder Review
  17. Autodesk Smoke 2013 Review Part 1: The Migration
  18. NVIDIA Quadro K4000 Review
  19. HitFilm 2 Ultimate Review
  20. Glyph Technologies GT 062E External RAID Review
  21. Lowepro Pro Roller x300 Case Review
  22. NewBlue ColorFast Review
  23. Sony Vegas Pro 12 Review
  24. Canon EOS 5D Mark III Review: Shooting Video
  25. Leica D-Lux 6 Camera First Impression Review
  26. TechSmith Camtasia Studio 8 Review
  27. Adobe Premiere Pro CS6 Review
  28. Panasonic HPX250 Camcorder Review
  29. Boris Continuum Complete 8 Review
  30. Best PCI sound card: Lynx versus RME versus Digital Audio Labs
  31. Editors Keys Edius Dedicated Keyboard Review
  32. Zacuto Scorpion Rig Review
  33. Adobe vs. Avid vs. Grass Valley vs. Sony vs. Apple
  34. Sorenson Squeeze 8 Review
  35. IK Multimedia DJ Rig Review
  36. Grass Valley Edius 6 Review
  37. Dell Precision M6600 Mobile Workstation Review
  38. Glyph Technologies 12TB ForteRAID Review
  39. Sony Vegas Pro 11 Review
  40. GoPro Camera Review
  41. Sorenson Squeeze 7 Review
  42. Maschine Groovebox and Controller Update 1.6
  43. NewBlue Video Essentials IV Review
  44. NVIDIA Quadro 2000 Review
  45. LaCie d2 Quadra Hard Drive Review
  46. Sony Vegas Pro 10 Review
  47. SampleTank Free Available Now
  48. Neil Peart Drums Vol. 1 The Kit
  49. Sony HDR-CX150 with Underwater Sport Pack SPK-CXA Review
  50. IK Multimedia AmpliTube 3 Review
  51. Primera Bravo Xi2 Review
  52. Yamaha MSP3 Monitor Review
  53. JBL Control 2P Compact Powered Reference Monitor Review
  54. Cycling 74 Hipno Review
  55. Panasonic 64GB P2 Card Review
  56. Sony ACID Pro 7 Review
  57. Adobe Lightroom 2 Review
  58. Frontier Design Group AlphaTrack Review
  59. Hard Drives for Video Editing
  60. Ulead DVD MovieFactory 6 Plus Review
  61. On2 Technologies Flix Pro 8.5 Review
  62. Adobe Audition 3 Review
  63. EASTWEST Fab Four Review
  64. Ulead Photo Impact 12 Review
  65. Adobe Creative Suite 3 (CS3) Review
  66. Kinoma Producer 4 Review
  67. AmpliTube Jimi Hendrix Review
  68. SmartSound Sonicfire Pro 4 preview
  69. Sonicfire versus Cinescore
  70. Sony ACID Loops and Artist Integration Review
  71. Sony Media Software ACID Pro 6 Review
  72. NAMM 2006 Highlights
  73. Ulead DVD Workshop 2 Review
  74. The Best DVD Media and CD Media

Reviews

Fun

Happy Dancer

May 14, 2019 Worth a Listen
Default Image
The 24 Hours of happy was groundbreaking when released over 5 years ago. The dancer at…