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03/13/2012- One of the main purposes of a NAS is sharing media on every connected appliance. Before the Thecus Vision series, the only solution was using the DLNA server to broadcast streams over the network. Now it's possible to plug the NAS directly to any monitor using a HDMI output.  Both solutions got pros and cons, let's see when and how use each of them.

DLNA: flexible and universal media serving

This norm has been started by Sony a couple of years ago and now regroups 225 members so far[1]. In a nutshell, all DLNA devices are able to communicate and share media files (music, video, and picture) without any issue. All Thecus NAS are DLNA compatible. The major advantage is the vast interoperability this standard creates: mobile phones, gaming consoles, computers, etc. everything can connect to the NAS and dig into its libraries. There are however a couple of disadvantages. This generates high bandwidth consumption and thus is very network dependent: if there is a bottleneck somewhere, you won't be able to stream your files. In addition, TVs (except the most recent ones) can't connect directly to the network and you'll have to buy an additional adapter. And finally, the NAS is just streaming files; the receiving appliance will still need the proper codecs to read it.

HDMI: focused all-in-one solution

The HDMI is the exact opposite: after plugging the NAS to the TV, everything is handled directly by the NAS itself. No need for extra codecs, players or adapters. This solution is obviously easier to set up and does not require any network bandwidth. It's even possible to use the NAS as a web browser and play HD content directly from the Internet. However there is a main drawback: there is only one HDMI output and HDMI cable length is limited. That means the NAS has to be physically next to the TV and only one can be connected. But no worries, Vision Series is designed with a passive CPU cooling[2], so it's going to be extra silent in the living room!

Both solutions got advantages: if you are more technophile with a lot of connected media appliances it's better to go for DLNA streaming, otherwise just relax and plug the NAS to the TV! Since Thecus NAS can handle multi-tasking, it's also possible to use simultaneously the HDMI output and DLNA streaming for an unmatched flexibility.

  1. More details on the DLNA official page:
  2. That's feasible thanks to new Intel® Atom™ D2700

About Thecus®
Established in 2004, Thecus Technology Corp provides market leading network attached storage and network video recorder solutions, committed to revolutionize how everyone from home user to enterprise level business centrally stores, manages and accesses their digital data both onsite and cloud-based. Thecus strives to deliver continuous innovation through cutting edge technology and design to provide data storage with the most customer-friendly platform, rapid performance and robust security. In May 2016, Thecus was formally acquired by Ennoconn Corporation and thus became part of the Foxconn IPC Technology group. Partnered together this diverse group of companies work in tandem to provide a total IoT (Internet of Things) solution. Now with an unparalleled portfolio to work with, Thecus is collaborating to bring unprecedented change to the network storage industry.