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Buffalo Terastation review

Monster memory plus a slick and idiot-proof interface makes for a seriously useful home network gadget

Yep, we know: storage isn’t sexy. That’s why we don’t waste your time trying to turn you onto ‘cool cupboards’ or ‘wicked wardrobes’. The fact is, a thing that’s just a space to put other things is a little, er, boring. 

Except for this. The Buffalo Terastation is all about storage. But it’s also one of the coolest gizmos around: a simple little box that you hook into your home network so you can store oodles of music and video on its one-terabyte hard disk. 

Yes, that’s 1000 gigabytes. In other words, a very big boat-load of memory. 

Thanks for the memory

So what’s the point of such a device? Well, many people are discovering that the kind of 80-100GB hard drive we got with our computers is a bit titchy. Especially once you play around with iTunes for long enough to notice that an AAC file recorded at 128kbps actually sounds, when piped through a hi-fi, a bit rubbish. 

But a whopping terabyte of memory allows you to store all your music in Apple Lossless format (it’s a simple equation: bigger file, better sound, more disk space taken up). If you end up filling this baby with music, then we can only say we hope you’re making a living as a DJ because if not, you’ve a serious obsession that’s going to waste.

The network factor

But this isn’t just a hard disk. If it was, £430 would be a rather steep price tag. The magic of the Terastation is the slickness with which it will fit into your home network. 

It talks to both PCs and Macs, and once you hook it up using an Ethernet cable you can access its potentially vast store of music, video and photos, then stream it to a device such as the Apple TV without even turning your main computer on. 

It supports iTunes, of course, and is also compliant with DLNA (Digital Living network Alliance), allowing the stuff you’ve stored on it to be played through any DLNA-compatible device. 

Access all over the world

If that wasn’t enough, you can even access all your material through a dedicated website (www.buffaloNAS.com), so you can get at all your pix, tunes and videos from anywhere in the world. 

Tinkering with a home network can be a pain, but this device just slips in as easily as another computer. If you want a flexible, intuitive device that will vastly increase your ability to store memory-hungry stuff like a music and video, the Buffalo Terastation is a real treat.


Stuff Says…

Score: 5/5