With the release of both the 802.11AC and the 802.11AX, we can sure say that consumer routers are ready and well-equipped for a future with 2.5Gbe. At this point, almost every vendor today that urges for the 801.11AX or the Wi-Fi 6 router can provide a quick fix with at least a 2.5Gbe LAN connection.
And since ASUSTOR made the shift to 2.5Gbe via a mainstream platform, the company produced an entirely brand new segment focused on gamers, creators and enthusiasts that would take advantage of the ability to save live streams to their NAS devices together with standard media. These typical files include music, videos, and photos.
Today, we’re going to focus on the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS from ASUSTOR. It’s a model that comes with 4-bays and is technically the second-gen of ASUSTOR-enthusiast products. But is it as good as they claim it to be, and are the functions as efficient as well?
In this review, we’ll check out more about the product, its features, specifications, and how well it performs to see if it’s something worth purchasing. But first, what’s inside the box?
Asustor Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS Review – What’s in the Box?
When we first got the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS, it came in a sturdy-looking cardboard box and the typical theme that the company goes for. Just like their other retail packaging, ASUSTOR aimed for the usual graphic packaging where the essential details are displayed. These include information on what the unit can do, its hardware & software specifications, and everything else that creates an engaging, as well as an appealing retail design.
Inside, the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS is nicely-packed, keeping it from acquiring any damages while in transit. Cushioned between two huge Styrofoam blocks then covered in a durable plastic bag, you’re sure to have a well-protected NAS. There’s a separate carton in the box that keeps the power brick and other items included.
Aside from the unit, other items inside the box are the 90-Watt external power supply (100 Volts to 140 VAC), a mains power cable, two RJ-45 LAN cables (Cat 5e), a pack of flat head screws for the 2.5-inch HDD, an instructional manual, and quick start guide.
Asustor Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS Review
Based on what we’ve seen, the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS is one of the best-looking 4-Bay NAS in the market. As a current trend, this unit doesn’t sport a fixed or hinged front panel, so it’s easily removable. It only means that when the NAS isn’t working on its daily tasks and not used physically, the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS will be a contained unit that blends nicely and neatly in most office environments.
What’s more, the removable panel is slightly elevated, allowing more air to enter on all sides. This design is a way to guarantee non-interrupted active airflow from the fan.
Like the contemporary edged design of its front panel, the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS’ sides feature an angular edge to the surface. For its chassis, it only comes in a black shade and comes with a plastic outer body that surrounds an inner metal frame. Also, when you look at the screw layout, it is a fixed frame that doesn’t sport a design that opens for maintenance or upgrades. So, if you’re looking for ways to update your memory higher than its default, you will find RAM slots within the unit by removing its internal bays, then accessing the two SO-DIMM memory module areas.
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS’ base comes with rubber feet plus an enormous ventilation slot that spans the bottom of the unit. It is to better assist passive airflow via the Hard Drive or SSD installed within the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS.
When removing the front panel of the NAS, you will find its SSD or HDD media bays. The four bays of the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS support the latest SATA-based Solid State Drives (SSDs) and Hard Drives.
Also, you can install a mix of SSDs & Hard Drives in individual bays, which can be utilized to produce separate RAID-enabled storage pools for regular or quick access to data volumes. Generally, it’s becoming more frequent for businesses and small offices to use 4-Bays with SSD and HDDs installed for more significant amounts of storage space that’s backed by a part of SSD caching. It then results in a boosted internal performance when working from slower mechanical hard drives.
Since its trays sport a plastic body, we didn’t need a screwdriver for it, and instead, utilized its click-and-lock brackets. We attempted to install a new drive to see if there were any problems with their larger enterprise. To our surprise, everything went smoothly. We didn’t encounter any issues in the process, which was great.
If not, you can always utilize one or more SSDs for raw caching or storage; but remember, you’ll need to use a screwdriver and the included screws for this. Also, to take advantage of the read & write caching, you’re required to have two drives installed, though a single SSD will let you use and enable the read-only cache.
All in all, this 4-Bay provides you an adequate amount of storage potential, and the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS can efficiently do this with just minimal space used.
To see the media bays of the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS, it’s necessary to remove the front panel of the NAS device. Other than the bays, you will also find the USB copy button and the LED indicators as well. Although these are pretty standard in all 2019 NAS drives, it’s worth noting that a lot of famous NAS brands have simplified or removed most of these, which has somehow displeased several users.
The front displays the LED lights that indicate the following: power/standby, system activity (read & write actions in progress), network access or activity (one for every port), as well as drive activity (one for each drive regardless of the available RAID). The quickest and most straightforward way to backup files on a NAS device via portable offsite-manner is by linking a USB 3.0 device then utilizing the ASUSTOR backup tools to establish a backup.
A single-touch USB copy button only means that you’re not even required to connect with the NAS software after the very first time, as well as after it’s configured to backup important files. Just link the USB device every time before pressing the button to action a backup immediately.
1.5Ghz Quad-Core Boosts to 2.5Ghze
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS makes us of he Intel Gemini Lake Celeron J4105 quad-core processor. With that, it works faster than Apollo Lake by 30%. This CPU doubles the on-chip cache to 4 MB, which makes the NAS one of the fastest NAS in the market today.
Upgradeable 4 GB DDR4-2400 RAM
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS has a 4-Gigabyte DDR4 RAM that is upgradeable to 8GB. Compared to DDR3, DDR4 RAM offers better performance by up to 30%, and it also reduces energy requirements by 40%.
Livestream with Your NAS
Like other ASUSTOR, the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS allows for the direct saving of 4K HDR live stream records without affecting game performances. If you don’t have large drive capacities and LAN parties, ADM provides iSCSI for storing titles that are less demanding to simultaneously play across multiple devices.
2.5-Gigabit Ethernet for Faster Performance
The AS5304T offers two 2.5-Gigabit Ethernet ports. With that, you can enable 150% faster performance compared to Gigabit Ethernet with compatible hardware. When utilizing Link Aggregation, it can also have a speed of up to 5 Gbps.
The ASUSTOR Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS supports up to 64 TB of storage for live streams and videos. If that’s not enough, you can use up to three AS6004U expansion units to get a total storage capacity of 192 Terabytes.
4K HDR Experience
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS comes with VP9 10-but Profile coding HDMI 2.0a with 10-bit 4K hardware decoding. With Plex Pass or a different third-party player, you can play 4K HDR videos.
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS has a diamond-cut exterior with gaming-inspired features. With this design, you can install hard drives with ease since it comes with toolless caddies, and it also supports hot-swapping.
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS produces only 19 dB of noise when the system is on standby. This noise level is equivalent to the sound of a pin drop, which is almost inaudible. During operation, it produces only 32 dB, like the hushed sounds of a quiet library.
24-hour Reliability and Durability
Like all ASUSTOR NAS, the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS is suitable for 24-hour use. It has undergone severe burn and drop tests to check its durability in extreme conditions. Heatsinks are present to dissipate heat and help maintain the lifespan of the NAS.
Save Power, Save Money
Based on ecologically friendly concepts, the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS’ design consumes less power than standard computers and servers. The advanced control features allow for more efficient management of the NAS and hard drives.
With that, your electric bill gets lower, and your hard drives’ lifespan becomes longer. During disk hibernation, the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS consumes only 12.6 Watts of power. Under regular operation, it consumes a total of 27 Watts.
Complete Backup Solutions
ASUSTOR’s comprehensive backup solutions offer more than 12 choices, such as Amazon S3, Onedrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, and more. ASUSTOR Backup Plan for Windows and Time Machine for macOS offers simple backups for laptops and desktops. For MyArchive removable hard drives, these provide long term storage. The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS now supports Btrfs, and with Snapshot Center, you can take snapshots of your information in case of accidental modification.
Easy Connections to Your NAS
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS supports automatic port forwarding, allowing remote connections to the device. Automatic port forwarding eliminates the need for manual router configuration. ASUSTOR EZ Connect lets you link the NAS with a customized Cloud ID with ease and access information remotely. EZ Connect also supports Windows with a desktop client while other devices support it through ASUSTOR’s series of Ai apps.
Designed for Digital Home
With ASUSTOR, you can enjoy digital entertainment anytime. The integrated HDMI port and multimedia apps allow you to connect the NAS directly to high-resolution players and TVs.
In and Out Protection
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS keeps your data protected from damage, loss, and attacks. It runs the Linux-based ADM that employs ClamAV Antivirus, MyArchive, various backup tools, and an integrated firewall for better protection against ransomware.
Comprehensive Mobile Apps
ASUSTOR comes with mobile apps that grant access to NAS data via smartphones and tablets. With that, you can use your Cloud ID to connect to your NAS remotely on both Android and iOS.
First-Class Product Warranty
All NAS devices from ASUSTOR come with a three-year warranty. The company also makes providing top-notch after-sales service and technical support a top priority.
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS uses the Intel Celeron J4105 quad-core 1.5 GHz processor (burst up 2.5 GHz), plus an integrated AES-NI hardware encryption engine. It has a 4GB SO-DIMM DDR-4 memory and a pre-installed 4GB (1 x 4 GB) memory module. There are two memory slots, and its memory is expandable up to 8 GB in total; plus, it’s also a device that supports mixed capacities.
Its flash memory is 4 GB eMMC, has 4 x SATA 3 6 GB/s, 3.5 / 2.5-inch HDD/SSD and allows for a USB 3.2 1st generation x3 expansion. The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS has a maximum internal raw capacity of 64 Terabytes with a total of 16 maximum drive bays with expansion units. Additionally, its maximum raw capacity, including expansion units, is at 256 Terabytes and has two 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet networks available.
This NAS device makes use of a 90 Watt power supply unit or adapter, and its total input power voltage is 100 Volts to 240 Volts AC.
Using the Product
The Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS has unlimited potential. Like any other ASUSTOR NAS device, it comes with pre-installed apps that you can download via the App Central. Whether you need something for business, digital home entertainment, or website construction, you will find something here. It offers over 200 applications of different categories to satisfy your needs.
In the App Central, you can type in keywords to search for applications, or browse by category, recommendation, popularity, and more. App Central also features multilingual support, so any user around the world can browse in the language of their choice.
Snapshot Center is a new feature for ASUSTOR’s NAS products. It allows you to use Btrfs and iSCSI volumes to capture snapshots of the information in a NAS. Snapshot Center supports a maximum of 256 snapshots of a volume. It can take this amount of shots every five minutes, and also create backups for quick restoration of files in case of data loss or damage.
With Snapshot Manager, it’s easy to schedule, manage, create, and restore your snapshots. You can set schedules to create snapshots or manually create these anytime. Restoration of previous versions of your files is also simple, and you can easily integrate these with existing iSCSI LUNs in Snapshot Center with all volume snapshots.
Of course, we won’t pass up on checking the performance of this NAS device. For starters, let’s check out its energy efficiency.
In a single HDD/SSD setup, this NAS device approximately consumes 7 Watts, which is pretty notable for a NAS device that has this stamina. Its Celeron J4105 quad-core CPU is extremely energy efficient, and the maximum TDP for the quad-core portion is only 10 Watts even under full loads. If your HDD is on idle for about 30 minutes, it will automatically switch to sleep mode to avoid using extra power.
Another aspect that we liked about the unit is that it also offers the hibernation mode. Here, the NAS device will “sleep” then consume less power when sleeping; however, waking it involves pressing a button or either utilizing the smartphone application to activate it via WOL.
Wakeup Over LAN is a brand new feature that the company has implemented, allowing you to remotely wake the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NASunit even when you’re outside your network. It’s a handy feature, especially when you’re out or don’t want your NAS device to be active at all times.
The ASUSTOR Portal app activated the HDMI output, and once it loaded, the application view appeared on our HD television. It gave us direct access to a multiple set of apps, including the ADM console, YouTube, Chrome browser, NetFlix, the VirtualBox, Surveillance Station, as well as Amazon Prime videos.
Playing videos and music from the ADM web console is managed by the SoundsGood and LooksGood applications. Each of these loads a new web page that has direct access to libraries together with search facilities and playlists.
For the VirtualBox application, it is accessible via the ASUSTOR Portal, and even if the application was a squeeze with just 4 GB of memory, we didn’t have any issues establishing a Windows Server 2019 VM from the ISO kept on the appliance.
When it comes to the Surveillance Station 2.8 of ASUSTOR, it provides every user with an excellent range of IP-camera monitoring features that includes separate Windows-viewer client. The application is accessible via the ASUSTOR portal that will allow viewing of multiple camera feeds on local HD monitors.
With the Intel Celeron J4105 Quad-Core CPU, DDR4 memory, 2.5-Gigabit Ethernet, and HDMI 2.0a ports, the 4-bay Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS becomes a unit that a lot of people look forward to. It comes with well-rounded features that some competitors are unable to match.
The key selling point of the Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS is that it comes with dual 2.5-Gigabit Ethernet ports, which significantly improves the device’s performance. Aside from that, its software also offers a lot of features and services that make the NAS even better. Most importantly, it performed excellently, and it’s fast as the company claims.
If you’re looking for a NAS device that comes with the best features and delivers the best performance, we highly recommend the Asustor Nimbustor 4 AS5304T NAS.
Where to Buy
If you want to have the ASUSTOR Nimbustor 4 AS5034T NAS, see the store locator on the company’s official website. Choose your location from the given choices on the page, and see all of ASUSTOR’s authorized resellers and retailers.