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The title really says it all. What I want is a maximally simple NAS that can take up to 4 3.5" drives. Literally all it will need to do is serve files over a 1Gbit SMB share. I don't need any other capabilities.

Since it will be close to my bed, I also want it to be SILENT. That means absolutely no fans whatsoever. The drives will be standard HDDs (not SSDs), so they should spin down when not in use. In addition, they should be fastened with soft materials so that the NAS case doesn't resonate and amplify their noise. In my desktop PC I've used the old trick of suspending the 3.5" HDDs with some sewing rubber bands in a 5" bay. That makes them practically inaudiable. I don't expect such amateur nonsense to be available in a commercial product, but you can at least put little rubber spacers between the drive and the case.

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finding something manufactured with no fans I don't think you will find because I doubt any manufacturer would be cavalier enough to do so... risking overheat, failure, warranty, and so on.

A synology NAS can come with any number of bays up to 12 or 16, look at one of their 5 bay models if they specifically do not offer a 4 bay model. Their DSM software has a power control panel letting you choose silent mode (vs normal vs performance) which will make for a quiet unit. I have them on my desk at work, and I cannot hear it on silent mode.

The other way that comes to mind is build your own pc, choosing a case to your liking, allowing for N 3.5 hard drives, and not installing case fans. And then you would need to look into a cpu cooler that is quiet. Home Theatre type pc's (HTPC) come to mind, where their basic purpose is just to be quiet and which basically functions like a NAS. And if building your own PC or HTPC choose a fanless Power Supply Unit (PSU)

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