Asustor Drivestor 4 Pro AS3304T 4-Bay NAS Review 5

Asustor Drivestor 4 Pro AS3304T 4-Bay NAS Review

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Introduction

Asustor Logo

I would like to thank Asustor for supplying the review sample.


The Drivestor 4 Pro uses a Realtek Quad-Core CPU clocked at 1.4 GHz and supported by 2 GB of DDR4 RAM. 2 GB of RAM is low, and the RTD1296 CPU is not that strong, but given NAS servers operate around the clock, offering acceptable performance while consuming as little power as possible is what matters the most. Moreover, this being a home-oriented NAS, it is not meant for business environments. Support for PLEX and the 4K transcoding capability are good news for users wanting a NAS to handle their multimedia content. In this review, I will also check on whether it can actually do so, though.

The Asustor Data Master operating system has reached its fourth edition, which brings with it several new features. The user interface is more appealing and now includes a dark mode, which more and more users prefer. Asustor promises increased performance and enhanced security. At the face of the NAS, the new Asustor rose-gold color logo caught my eye even though I don't pay much attention to aesthetic details when it comes to IT products, but such is the nature of a NAS in a living room that looks matter as well.

With 2 GB of memory, media transcoding can be a challenge, and this is where media mode steps in to improve performance. Through this feature, 512 MB of RAM are reserved for multimedia tasks, so even with other stressful tasks conducted simultaneously, video playback remains smooth. The 2.5 GbE port is another significant plus since several mainboards have compatible ports and compatible switches are affordable. Finally, supporting exFAT out of the box is an excellent move since it removes the need for an extra plug-in to do so.

Specifications

Asustor Drivestor 4 Pro AS3304T Specifications
ProcessorRealtek RTD1296 (quad-core, 1.4 GHz)
Operating SystemEmbedded Linux
Memory2 GB SO-DIMM DDR4 (non-expandable)
Storage4x 3.5"/2.5" SATA II/III
RAID Levels:Single Disk, JBOD, RAID 0, 1, 5, 6, 10
Drive Bays4x
CapacityUp to 72 TB (disks not included)
Drive Bays with Expansion Units16x
Capacity with Expansion UnitUp to 288 TB (disks not included)
File System (Internal Drives)EXT4
File System (External Drives)
  • EXT4
  • EXT3
  • FAT32
  • NTFS
  • HFS+
  • exFAT
iSCSITarget & Initiator
Hot-Swap4x
Networking1x 100/1000/2500 Mbit Ethernet
I/O PortsUSB 3.2 Gen1 x 3
IP CamerasUp to 25x (4x included)
4K Video Transcoding SupportYes
Dimensions170 (H) x 174 (W) x 230 (D) mm
Weight2.2 kg
Power ConsumptionOperation: 23.1 W
HDD Hibernation: 10.1 W
(with 4x WD RED 3 TB installed)
Power SupplyExternal, 90 W, 100–240 V, Delta Electronics, DPS-90AB-3
Fan1x 120 mm (Apistek, 120mm, 12V, 0.58A, SAB4B2U-PFGE)
Warranty3-years
Price Excluding VAT
(at time of review)

$329.99


This is a budget-centric NAS. It mainly addresses users wanting a NAS with decent performance for increased storage space. The three-year warranty is a bonus as most brands offer two years.

Contents and Bundle


A photo of the product has been put on the face of the box, and several icons show its significant features. Packaging protection is adequate.


The bundle includes an Ethernet cable, set of screws, quick installation guide, and power adapter.

A cover hides the trays. It can easily be removed since it is magnetically attached.


There are several LED indicators at the face of the NAS, along with a USB 3.0 port and the power and copy buttons.


The fan grille takes up most of the real estate at the back.


Two USB 3.0 ports and the 2.5 GbE port and DC input socket are at the back.


A look at the NAS with its trays removed. The trays are toolless for 3.5" HDDs.


This is how the tray will look with an SSD installed.


The power adapter's model number is DPS-90AB-3. It can deliver up to 90 W with 12 V output. It is made by Delta Electronics, one of the best PSU manufacturers.

A Look Inside

Taking this NAS apart is easy. Remove the screws from the backside and slide off the side cover to unlock and detach it from the other half.


The two plastic parts of the cover and metallic chassis of the NAS holding the SATA expansion card and drive trays.


The mainboard is small, and a heatsink covers the CPU. There is no active cooling for the latter. Finally, the solder side of the mainboard looks empty.


The RAM modules are soldered on the mainboard, and there is no slot available, so you cannot upgrade the server's RAM.


Two PKC46DY FETs by Nico Semiconductor. These are used by an equal number of phases.


Polymer caps are used for increased reliability.


All main ports of the mainboard are depicted in the photos above.


The battery keeping the mainboard's BIOS settings intact.


The 2.5 Gbit Ethernet controller is a Realtek RTL8125B. I also found an RTS5412e USB hub.


The mainboard uses a pair of flash memory ICs, both pf which are provided by Macronix, the MX25L12872F and MX25L4006E.


An ASMedia ASM1464 is the USB signal repeater.


An 24C08 Serial CMOS EEPROM.


This is an 8-bit microcontroller—the PIC16F1829 by Microchip.


The SATA expansion card for the four drives this NAS supports.


There is an ASMedia ASM1061 controller on the SATA expansion card. Since this card only takes power from the PCIe slot, some polymer caps are used to deal with transient loads.


The cooling fan is by Apistek (12 V, 0.58 A). It measures 120 mm across, and its model number is SAB4B2U-PFGE. It uses a double ball-bearing, meaning it will enjoy a long lifetime under even harsh conditions. It won't be quiet, though, especially at high RPM.
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