Greatest NAS onerous drives in 2024

A robust NAS enclosure is nothing with out its bays being populated with Laborious Disk Drives (HDDs) or Strong State Drives (SSDs) to retailer all of your worthwhile information. Disk drives are the workhorses of network-attached storage and different servers. However you’ll be able to’t simply insert a daily onerous drive and see what occurs.



The most effective NAS onerous drives have been particularly developed to resist a NAS setting’s environmental circumstances and calls for. They’ll deal with minimal downtime and stay useful amidst excessive temperatures and continuous vibration. So, for those who’re searching for a drive with far more happening than simply storage, our roundup of the very best NAS onerous drives delivers disk drives that stability efficiency with worth for cash.



Function-packed NAS onerous drives to pair together with your NAS

Greatest total

Seagate IronWolf Professional

Sturdy 3.5-inch onerous drive with gold customary efficiency

$230 $235 Save $5

If you cannot afford any downtime, the Seagate IronWolf Professional is a hard-wearing 3.5-inch SATA drive engineered for twenty-four/7 operation. This 20 TB NAS can juggle as much as 550 TB of information per 12 months with glorious RAID efficiency and three years of complimentary information restoration from IronWolf.

Professionals

  • eSATA interface for straightforward set up
  • 7200 RPM spinning pace and Typical Magnetic Recording
  • 256MB cache hastens learn/write
Cons

  • Further companies add to the upfront value
  • Can run noisy

IronWolf has a superb repute for hardworking NAS onerous drives. This 3.4-inch IronWolf Professional, out there in sizes starting from 8 to 20TB, is particularly configured for multi-bay RAID efficiency with industry-standard options like dual-plane balancing, rotational vibration, and time-limited error restoration (TLER).

This disk drive will sustain with essentially the most difficult environments, delivering 24/7 service with resilience in opposition to temperature and vibration. As it will probably deal with 550TB annual workload with out breaking a sweat, it’s a worthwhile purchase for enterprise NAS homeowners.


As well as, Seagate has piled on the worth with a good five-year warrant and a powerful three-year free subscription to their information restoration service, providing complimentary information restoration from the drive if it turns into broken.

Western-Digital-WD-Gold

Premium choose

Western Digital WD Gold

Knowledge center-ready onerous drive on your workplace NAS

The WD Gold is an enterprise-grade NAS drive, finest suited to an information middle. The 7200 RPM and 256MB cache are perfect for delivering lightning-fast read-write speeds. 24/7 efficiency and a pair of.5 million hours of Imply Time Between Failure (MTBF) maximize the uptime that each rising enterprise depends on.

Professionals

  • Nice worth 8 TB enterprise-grade NAS
  • Beneficiant 5-year restricted guarantee
  • Sturdy {hardware} with in-built vibration safety.
Cons

  • No information restoration service supplied
  • Smallest NAS sizes are lower-spec

The Western Digital WD Gold Enterprise-Class NAS drive is a superb purchase for customers who wish to ramp up their storage to rackmount and even information middle customary storage. This 3.5-inch SATA drive is engineered for a server setting with proprietary sensors that monitor linear and rotational vibration in actual time to right and defend its energy-assisted magnetic recording (EAMR).


Learn-write speeds are lightning-fast because of the beneficiant 246 MB cached and 7200 RPM drive pace. As well as, Western Digital has ensured that your uptime is safeguarded with a assured 2.5 million hours of imply time between failures (MTBF). However be careful for the 1 and 2TB sizes as a result of they get you barely inferior options, like simply 128MB of cache, making the IronWolf Professional or WD Pink a greater purchase for that dimension.

WD Red Plus 8TB

Greatest worth

Western Digital WD Pink Plus

The ‘plus’ improve that’s gentle in your pocket

$170 $210 Save $40

Western Digital’s 3.5-inch WD Pink Plus NAS drive with e-SATA interface is an economical SATA drive that does not skimp on efficiency. Although it has a bit of extra oomph than many shopper NASs and might work in a 24/7 setting, it is solely designed to work in NAS sizes as much as 8-bay.

Professionals

  • A number of cache and storage choices to select from
  • RAID compatibility with main file administration programs
  • Quick file switch and backups
Cons

  • Smaller storage sizes include slower drive speeds
  • Can run noisy over time

This funds NAS drive is wonderful worth for cash and a worthwhile buy for content material creators and small companies able to improve their information storage. You possibly can confidently use this 3.5-inch NAS drive with NAS enclosures from main manufacturers like Synology and Drobo, with a 128 MB cache and 5,400 disk pace.


NASware and the e-SATA onerous disk interface make setup simple, and the WD Pink Plus delivers glorious RAID efficiency when used with main file administration programs like ZFS, XFS, or ext4. At this value, you might wish to use this reasonably priced NAS drive to populate a 24-bay rack. Nonetheless, this drive performs at its finest when utilized in NAS enclosures with eight bays or fewer.

Seagate-IronWolf

Made for residence places of work

Seagate IronWolf

The reliability of an IronWolf Professional however for smaller NAS enclosures

The Seagate IronWolf is a dependable 3.5-inch entry-level NAS drive good on your desktop NAS. IronWolf’s 8TB drive can deal with a 180TB annual workload, with agile-array-firmware, RAID efficiency, and a good 7200 RPM drive pace.

Professionals

  • Specs appropriate for shopper NAS customers or residence networking
  • Consists of IronWolf Well being drive monitoring
  • 7200 RPM delivers nice read-write speeds
Cons

  • Smaller drive capacities are decrease spec
  • Can run loud and sizzling

Let’s be trustworthy. If in case you have a desktop Synology or QNAP NAS enclosure, high-end or ‘professional’ onerous drives are more likely to be pointless. On this state of affairs, the usual, not ‘professional’, IronWolf is a superb purchase that features Seagate’s nice worth information restoration service, with complimentary information restoration from the drive if it unexpectedly fails.


The IronWolf packs in stunning specs for its value level with a 7200 drive pace at simply 8TB of storage, 256MB cache, and on-board vibration safety. Customers have reported that you’re going to know that this drive is working as onerous as Seagate says as a result of it will probably run noisily and sizzling, even when idling. Nonetheless, for those who go for drives under 6TB capability, the IronWolf is quieter, however anticipate decrease learn/write and spindle speeds.

WD Red Pro 16TB

Large on efficiency

Western Digital WD Pink Professional

Knowledgeable-grade NAS for business customers

The WD Pink Professional is Western Digital’s skilled NAS drive, providing competent efficiency that’s appropriate for companies. Headline specs of this 3.4-inch NAS drive embrace NASware 3.0 firmware, a 300TB/12 months workload, a 256MB cache, and a super-fast 7200 drive pace.

Professionals

  • NASware 3.0 optimizes RAID efficiency
  • Appropriate with 24-bay NAS storage programs
  • Multi-axis shock safety
Cons

  • 2TB choice is finest averted
  • Prices greater than the IronWolf Professional
  • Excessive-frequency noise, even when idle

Western Digital’s WD Pink Professional NAS drive is a barely costlier reply to the Seagate IronWolf Professional however provides glorious efficiency in essentially the most demanding server environments. Its proprietary 3D Lively Steadiness Plus multi-axis vibration safety offers resilience in bigger NAS setups, and with a workload of as much as 300TB per 12 months, this NAS could be relied on in an enterprise setting.

Like the opposite ‘professional’-grade drives, the Pink Professional options 7200 RPM drive pace and 256MB cache, however it’s WD’s NASware 3.0, with nice RAID compatibility, that offers this difficult drive an edge over rivals.


Seagate-Exos-X20

Enterprise favourite

Seagate Exos

Enterprise NAS drive that’s server-friendly

$160 $263 Save $103

Seagate’s Exos model is a premium line of enterprise-grade NAS drives which were particularly engineered for servers, dealing with 550TB/12 months of information with a 2 million hour imply time between failure (MTBF) score. The Exos has a SATA onerous disk interface with SAS know-how, recognized for its environment friendly read-write performance.

Professionals

  • SAS know-how optimized for a server setting
  • Superior safety prevents unauthorized entry
  • Proprietary caching and error correction
Cons

  • Could require skilled set up
  • Catastrophe restoration is not included

Exos is Seagate’s separate lineup of enterprise HDDs, appropriate for giant information facilities and server rooms. They’re largely comparable in operate to the WD Gold line. Be it for efficiency consistency or pace, the Exos drives are counted among the many finest within the enterprise. And to supply extra versatility to its technically inclined enterprise purchasers, Seagate provides these drives in SATA and SAS preparations with a number of variants, making deciding on the best drive a bit of complicated.


The newer X sequence Exos drives (X16, X18, and X20) have minor variations in most switch speeds and energy consumption, however they solely begin from 12TB. For something decrease than 12TB, you’ll have to go for Exos 7E8 or 7E10 drives. Every of those generations is obtainable in SATA and SAS configurations. SAS configuration allows this drive to learn and write concurrently, which is especially helpful for server-based functions. The SATA model is cheaper and greater than sufficient for small and even medium-sized companies, saving a considerable upfront value.

Toshiba-N300

Dependable model different

Toshiba N300

Good for all shopper NAS fashions with ample options

The Toshiba N300 will get quite a lot of issues proper and even its smallest storage choices assist good switch speeds, which isn’t often the case with a shopper NAS HDD. And Toshiba is as reliable a model as any, contemplating its lengthy historical past in making storage gadgets. For residence use, this can suit your invoice fairly nicely.

Professionals

  • Good match for residence and small companies
  • Excessive switch speeds throughout storage sizes
Cons

  • Barely costlier than comparable drives

For small NAS enclosures, Toshiba’s entry-level onerous drives do the job fairly nicely. Pop a pair of those in your house workplace NAS, and also you’ll by no means have to fret about sluggish file transfers ever once more. Not like different manufacturers that skimp on the lower-end variants, Toshiba provides a beneficiant quantity of cache reminiscence for these drives, serving to the N300 contact 230+MB/s of switch pace throughout storage sizes.


Toshiba is a reliable model within the storage modules market. In truth, it’s recognized for making white-label NAS HDDs for different standard manufacturers, so you can not go mistaken with Toshiba. The one factor that doesn’t work within the N300’s favor is that it awkwardly sits in the midst of the value segments. You will get the same drive from Seagate for much less or a greater one for barely extra.

Synology-HAT5300

Made for Synology NAS

Synology HAT5300

Enterprise NAS onerous drives for Synology from Synology

This high-end enterprise-class NAS onerous drive from Synology is custom-made for Synology NAS servers. It really works with them proper off the bat, and also you get sure further advantages like seamless firmware updates for the onerous drives straight via the NAS. In case your Synology NAS doesn’t assist third-party drives, the Synology HAT5300 ought to show to be an ideal contender.

Professionals

  • Good match for high-end Synology NAS
  • Enterprise-class efficiency

Synology is best recognized for its excellent NAS enclosures and their accompanying software program, however it additionally bought into onerous drives to supply a whole package deal in-house. The HAT5300 is designed to work in tandem with a Synology NAS and unlocks some further options, like direct firmware updates via DSM. Catering to enterprise clients, these Synology drives provide all of the bells and whistles we’ve seen on the WD Gold and Seagate Exos, together with spectacular workload capability and an MTBF score.


The HAT5300 is priced on the upper aspect when put up in opposition to different comparable onerous drives from Seagate and Western Digital. When you don’t essentially want to purchase it for most Synology enclosures, some higher-end DiskStation fashions just like the DS3622xs+ now require Synology HDDs and gained’t present drive stats for different manufacturers. That is undoubtedly unreasonable, however it’s your solely choice for those who’re eyeing the DiskStation mannequin talked about above.

Synology HAT3300 4TB Plus Series SATA HDD 3.5-inch mechanical hard disk

Greatest for Synology NAS programs

Synology HAT3300 4TB Plus Collection SATA HDD

Nice worth drive with competent efficiency in Synology programs

$99 $115 Save $16

The Synology HAT3300 4TB Plus Collection SATA HDD is a funds NAS developed to be used in Synology programs. It has a 5400 RPM disk pace, 256 MB cache, and makes use of typical magnetic recording (CMR) to ship competent efficiency in a private NAS gadget.

Professionals

  • Cheaper different to Synology’s enterprise NAS drives
  • Decrease energy consumption than enterprise-grade drives
  • Stress examined to make sure dependable efficiency
Cons

  • Slower drive pace
  • Not out there in sizes above 12TB

For those who’re balking at the price of enterprise-grade Synology drives on your Synology NAS system, choosing these smaller, lower-spec NAS drives has develop into a preferred answer. The HAT 3300 is a Synology NAS drive that’s out there in consumer-friendly sizes as much as 12TB.


It’s undoubtedly slower than its enterprise counterparts with a 5400 RPM drive pace, however the 256MB cache retains this drive nimble. Synology has put this drive via rigorous testing that features as much as 300,000 hours of run time, so it will probably ship competent 24/7 efficiency.

MDD SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5

Greatest naked drive

MDD 18TB Inner NAS Laborious Drive

Nice-value OEM drive with super-fast information switch

MDD’s 18TB NAS drive is extraordinarily low cost for its dimension and specs. It includes a 7200 RPM spindle pace and a 256MB cache for a powerful information switch pace of 200MB per second. However this drive is for knowledgeable customers solely as it’s bought as a naked drive and requires professional setup and configuration.

Professionals

  • Competitively priced for dimension and specs
  • 200MB/sec information switch pace
  • 5-year fuss-free guarantee
Cons

  • Naked drive – no screws, handbook and many others.
  • Requires configuration to point out up on NAS system

There are solely so many NAS drive producers, limiting alternatives for a competitively priced deal. However if you’re assured in organising and configuring your drive, it is nicely value wanting on the white-label model MDD (GOHARDDRIVE Inc.) which sells OEM NAS drives for a good value.

This 18TB drive ticks all of the packing containers with a 7200 RPM drive pace, 256MB cache, and 200MB/sec information switch pace. Its 1 million-hour MTBF and 5-year guarantee are additionally reassuring. However this naked NAS comes with out manuals or equipment and should require some configuration, so it’s undoubtedly not for a NAS proprietor who needs a plug-and-play drive.


What’s RAID?

Synology hero 1

The redundant array of unbiased disks — or RAID for brief — organizes a number of drives to work in unison. Relying on what sort of RAID pack the drives are utilized in, this may ship a single quantity with the mixed capacities, a striped set the place pace is the target. Or, as most NAS homeowners use it, it will probably construct redundancy right into a system the place information gained’t be instantly misplaced if a drive fails.

Some RAID varieties require extra drives than others, and in different layouts, all of the drives have to be the identical dimension.

There are a number of RAID ranges you can go for, relying on the storage pool and the variety of disks put in. These are the most well-liked selections that you’ll come throughout:


  • RAID 0: RAID 0 is used to hurry up the switch speeds as the info blocks are unfold throughout two or extra drives. Whereas RAID 0 permits you to absolutely make the most of all of the out there space for storing, it doesn’t present any sort of information safety and is not appropriate if you need redundancy.
  • RAID 1: With a minimum of two drives, RAID 1 makes use of mirroring to maintain your information secure by sustaining a precise copy of the info on each HDDs. In case a kind of drives dies, you’ll nonetheless have one other copy of the info secure with you. RAID 1 is superb on your vital information’s security, however its solely draw back is that it halves your out there space for storing.
  • RAID 5: RAID 5 programs require a minimum of three drives to operate, and it is some of the generally used RAID ranges for NAS programs. With RAID 5, your information is distributed in blocks throughout all of the drives together with their parity data. It will get you a fault tolerance of 1 drive, so your lacking information could be “recreated” in case of a single drive failure. Two of RAID 5’s largest advantages are much-improved switch speeds and the truth that it spares more room to retailer your information with just one drive’s value of storage used for redundancy.
  • RAID 10: Consider RAID 10 as a mixture of RAID 1 and RAID 0. You get the advantages of each information mirroring and parity. This twin safety ensures the utmost safety of your information in opposition to a number of drive failures so long as a minimum of one copy of the mirrored information is unbroken. However all this extra peace of thoughts comes at the price of half the storage pool.


As you’ll be able to see, all RAID programs require a minimum of two drives to operate. This implies your single-bay NAS could have no redundancy.

There are some extra RAID ranges, however they don’t seem to be as generally used as those talked about above. For those who’re selecting up one of many high NAS enclosures from Synology, you’ll be able to simply get away with considered one of these RAID choices.

What onerous drive dimension do I would like for my NAS?

Contemplating one buys a NAS for the long term, and it is not notably simple to improve the put in HDDs down the road, it’s essential to contemplate your present and future must resolve the storage pool dimension you wish to create.

As an example, for those who plan on watching a ton of 4K films in your new lounge TV with Plex or edit quite a lot of 4K footage, you need to go for the very best capability drives that suit your funds, as these high-res movies eat up storage fairly rapidly. With a set of 4 16TB drives, try to be good for years to return. But when your private home NAS is simply often used to again up your loved ones members’ photographs and gadgets, you’ll be able to even get away with a pair of 8TB drives. Or you might be somebody whose wants fall someplace in the midst of that spectrum.


In any case, be sure to account for redundancy, contemplating how important information safety is for each residence and workplace customers. For instance, on a two-bay NAS with RAID 1, you’ll basically lose half the space for storing. So, for those who want 8TB of space for storing, you’ll have to get two 8TB drives. RAID 5 is a bit more forgiving, taking on just one drive’s value of area in a four-bay system.

Earlier than shopping for the drives, rapidly test in case your NAS helps the drive’s variety and dimension. For instance, Synology’s high shopper NAS fashions do not assist drives over 16TB; this might differ by model and their respective fashions. And, new bigger sizes seem repeatedly.

What must you search for when shopping for a NAS onerous drive?

Synology-DS1522plus-hero


Laborious drives meant for NAS items differ out of your ordinary desktop pc drives as they should maintain much more load whereas spinning repeatedly for hours or days on finish. The choices we now have on this listing come from a few of the most dependable manufacturers within the area you can go for with out considering twice. However there are some features of a NAS onerous drive, apart from its storage dimension, that you need to contemplate earlier than making the decision.

Switch pace: Trendy onerous drives can speed up the switch pace fairly a bit. Drives with a 7200RPM spinning pace can learn and write information at speeds going over 200MB/s, whereas the out there quantity of cache additionally helps make issues sooner. Attempt to choose a drive variant that matches your funds whereas providing the very best doable quantity of cache.

These further options are sometimes reserved for higher-capacity drives, often 8TB and up. However irrespective of the storage capability, you need to keep away from these slow-spinning 5400RPM drives until they’re for a backup NAS that you simply will not be utilizing day-after-day or if you’re on a very tight funds. You possibly can contemplate a few of the finest SSDs at the moment out there for NAS to additional enhance the switch speeds.


Reliability: As beforehand famous, NAS drives are purported to run all day, usually with none breaks. However there are quite a lot of variables that outline their reliability, so one HDD mannequin appropriate for a selected use case may very well be overkill for the opposite.

A tough drive made for giant (as much as 24-bay) NAS programs or servers is designed to maintain heavy vibrations to attenuate the probabilities of drive failure. These drives are typically on the costly aspect however provide a greater sense of safety — you’ll be able to even use them with your private home NAS if in case you have some money to spare.

These drives are designed to assist a certain quantity (between 180 and 550TB) of annual workload — the quantity of information they’ll learn or write in a 12 months. Companies and enormous groups will profit from drives that may maintain the next workload. Along with that, you must also search for the imply time between failures (MTBF); merely put, the upper the quantity, the extra dependable the drive is.


Guarantee: The peace of thoughts you get with a model guarantee is unmatched, particularly for one thing as vital for your small business as a NAS. You can’t solely get your drive changed with a model new one in case of a failure, however Seagate additionally provides a restoration service as a part of its guarantee on sure fashions to assist get well your information professionally. Restoration service or not, longer guarantee assist is at all times welcome.

NAS drives for each utility

The NAS drives featured within the roundup are an important mixture of efficiency and worth for cash. However three particularly stood out from the remainder, making it simple to stroll away with the best drive on your system.

Our funds choose, the WD Pink, is good for desktop NAS customers searching for a dependable however reasonably priced drive to populate their bays.

NAS and server customers searching for an enterprise answer can even profit by selecting Western Digital. Their WD Gold Drive is information center-ready with strong engineering for resilience in opposition to temperature and vibration and constant top-line efficiency, with excessive drive speeds and ample caching for quick information switch.


Nevertheless it’s Seagate’s Iron Wolf Professional that impressed us most. This enterprise-grade drive is constructed for max uptime and quick, environment friendly, and constant information switch, whether or not you place it in a rack-mounted NAS or your desktop unit.

Seagate-IronWolf-Pro

Greatest total

Seagate IronWolf Professional

The gold customary for NAS onerous drives

Contemplating the IronWolf Professional is knowledgeable onerous drive made for giant NAS items with as much as 24 bays, you get further peace of thoughts for those who resolve to make use of it together with your 6-bay workplace NAS. It provides top-notch efficiency and reliability, and that 5-year guarantee is the icing on the cake.

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