Drobo 5D and Drobo 5N are storage array products, cool devices that can contain and combine a number of data storage drives. They are both compatible to 3.5” HDDs or SSDs. They are great solutions for people needing a huge data storage space that is safe, easy to maintain, and simple to use. However, Drobo 5D is quite considerably more pricey than Drobo 5N. Which one will suit your needs best?
We will start with the basic functions these products are designed for. Drobo 5D aims to be a Direct Attached Storage (DAS), while Drobo 5N is made to be a Network Attached Storage (NAS). Though it is possible to use a DAS as a NAS and a NAS as a DAS, you don’t need to bother yourself with the headaches. Drobo 5D, as a DAS, is meant to be connected directly to a computer device. Drobo 5D will only receive and transfer data to a single unit, and is not connected directly to a network. On the other hand, Drobo 5N, as a NAS, is intended to connect directly to a network and not to a single unit. Think of a network switch or a shared printer, for example. Thus, Drobo 5N will be able to be accessed by any computer device connected to the network.
Each of these models has five bays, which means that each can contain up to five 3.5” HDDs or SSDs. In addition, there is one accelerator bay that can hold an mSATA SSD to improve the performance. Both models are compatible with SATA I, II, and III interfaces.
Because they are designed for different purposes, they are armed with different ports. Drobo 5D comes with 2 Thunderbolt and 1 USB 3.0 ports, while Drobo 5N comes with a Gigabit Ethernet port along with the cable.
If you are going to use your data storage to be directly attached to a network, then having the one with a Gigabit Ethernet port is certainly the simplest and the most straightforward solution. You simply connect the device to your router. However, if you plan to use your data storage for a single unit only, or as a portable data storage, then both Drobo 5D and Drobo 5N can still be viable choices. Drobo 5D is versatile in a way that it can connect with either Thunderbolt or USB 3.0. For huge data transfers and editing media files, those ports can be quite faster. On the other hand, Drobo 5N is versatile in a way that it can work as a DAS or NAS without much effort, with a speed that is still comparable to those ports.
Drobo 5D Vs 5N
|Drobo 5D||Drobo 5N|
|Key Features||- 2 x Thunderbolt & 1 x USB 3.0 - Includes 3 x 2TB 3.5-Inch SATA HDDs - Optional mSATA SSD improves performance up to 10X - On-the-fly and instant capacity expansion - Battery-backed memory to protect against power interruptions - Ideal for large media collections and performance demanding applications - Includes USB 3.0 Cable (Thunderbolt Cable Not Included)||- Includes 3x 2TB 3.5in SATA HDDs - Optional mSATA SSD improves performance up to 10X - Award-winning Beyond RAID automated data protection - On-the-fly and instant capacity expansion up to 20TB - Battery-backed memory to protect against power interruptions - Optional Drobo Apps include Plex media server, CrashPlan cloud backup, and Transmission BitTorrent client - 1x Gigabit Ethernet|
|Customer Rating||3.7 out of 5.0 stars||3.6 out of 5.0 stars|
|Best Offer||Save Money Please click here||Save Money Please click here|
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For a NAS, choose Drobo 5N. For a DAS, choose Drobo 5N for the fullest value for your money, as it is cheaper than Drobo 5D. Except if you specifically require a Thunderbolt or USB 3.0 port.