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Industrial & Medical Technology

Buffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System Teardown

27 January 2012
The following is an overview of a teardown analysis conducted by IHS Technology Teardown Services.

Overview / Main Features

The Buffalo CS-WX2.0/1D is a desktop, 2-bay, network attached server (NAS). As is the case with all NAS - the NAS is an evolution of the simpler external hard drive for backing up data. NAS are more and more common nowadays for home use and small office environments. This Buffalo NAS provides file sharing, remote access, and the ability, via the web to access content from anywhere. This device even offers video transcoding, making video content "playable across the web and mobile applications.

The main features (per Buffalo reseller sites) include:

Gigabit Ethernet

600MHz CPU

Available 3.5' Drive Bay

JBOD

RAID 1 with Installation of 2nd Drive

USB Expansion Port

Remote Data Access

Social Network Integration

Mac & Windows Compatibility

The NAS has come a long way from just being a backup drive - as a 'server' these devices definitely fulfill this role, but also can become a central repository for media in the home and can become a central part of a home entertainment network.

From a hardware perspective, this is no longer a simple enclosure with a single very small interface PCB (to bridge SATA to USB) as used to be the case with external hard drive enclosures (in which the hard drive cost contribution far outweighed that of the enclosure and simple supporting circuitry costs. With network attached servers the HDD's still represent a major portion of total cost for a functioning device - but now the enclosure elements and electronics take on larger roles in terms of the cost of ownership.

The Buffalo CS-WX2.0/1D is, on the inside, a fairly well integrated design, relying heavily on the Marvell 88F6281 core (Embedded Processor - SoC, Marvell Sheeva A?RMv5TE-Compliant CPU Core, Up to 1.2GHz). The device also features a total of 1Gbit of DDR2 SDRAM, and a Marvell Ethernet Transceiver (88E1118-NNC1). Beyond that listed core IC content - this design then becomes a series of smaller power management functions. When compared with the QNAP TS-219P II (analyzed in parallel) - this Buffalo design is much simpler - a function of feature set, functionality, and ultimately the market price point (This Buffalo unit retails for less as well).

Also, from an enclosure point of view, these systems feature individual hard drive enclosures that allow the user to swap out drives as needed - but all of the mechanical components needed to do this while maintaining aesthetics add to the mechanical complexity of such NAS devices when compared with simpler 'external drive' enclosures for single drives.


Target Marke

Consumers, small offices, and small businesses.

Released

Based on Buffalo press release this product line was refreshed October 2011.

Buffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System - Main PCB TopBuffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System - Main PCB Top

Pricing and Availability

Pricing - Per press release, this particular model has a suggested retail price of $179.99 per the Buffalo October 2011 press release. Based on a cursory perusal of the web it appears that prices are within $10 of the suggested retail price from multiple e-tailers at the time of writing (December 2011).

Availability - Worldwide assumed

Volume Estimations

For the purposes of this teardown analysis, we have assumed a lifetime production volume of 150K units with a product lifetime of 2 years (75K per year cadence).

As a reminder, teardown volume production assumptions are primarily used for our cost analysis in terms of amortized NRE and tooling costs, especially for custom components specific to the model being analyzed (mechanical components especially). Unless assumed volumes are different by an order of magnitude, minor changes in volume (say 1 million vs. 2) rarely have a large net effect on our final analysis because of this.

Buffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System Cost AnalysisBuffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System Cost Analysis

Cost Notes

NOTE: This unit ships with a single 2TB drive making the unit look (oddly) more expensive than the QNAP NAS (analyzed in parallel). The main BOM cost difference between these two NAS devices is the inclusion of this hard drive.

Main Cost Drivers Representing ~ 89 % of total materials cost

Seagate - ST32000542AS - Hard Drive - 2TB, 3.5', SATA, 3Gb/s, 5900RPM, 32MB Buffer - (Qty:1)

Marvell - 88F6281-A1-BIA2C060 - Embedded Processor - SoC, Marvell Sheeva A?RMv5TE-Compliant CPU Core, Up to 1.2GHz, 256KB L2 Cache - (Qty:1)

Asian Power Devices - DA-48Q12 - AC Adapter - 12V, 4A, 48W, w/ 4ft Cord - (Qty:1)

Apcb - Main PCB - 6-Layer - FR4, Lead-Free - (Qty:1)

Hynix - H5PS5162FFR-S5C - SDRAM - DDR2-800, 512Mb, 1.8V - (Qty:2)

Hard Drive Bay Housing - 2-Piece Stamped / Formed Electro-Galvanized Steel, w/ 4 Integral Joints - (Qty:1)

Monolithic Power Systems (Mps) - MP2214DL - Regulator - DC-DC Converter, Synchronous, Step-Down, Adjustable, 4A, 600KHz - (Qty:1)

Marvell - 88E1118-NNC1 - Ethernet Transceiver - 10/100/1000 Base-T - (Qty:1)

Enclosure, Main, Left - Injection Molded ABS, Painted, w/ 3 Brass Threaded Inserts - (Qty:1)

Enclosure, Main, Right - Injection Molded ABS, Painted - (Qty:1)

Total BOM & Manufacturing Costs (Direct Materials + Conversion Costs) $149.47

What Is Not Included in our Cost Analysis

The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in this analysis reflect ONLY the direct materials cost (from component vendors and assorted EMS providers), AND manufacturing with basic test. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacture of the core device itself - cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees (those not already included into the per component price), software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing and other channel costs including not only EMS provider and the OEM's margin, but that of other resellers. Our cost analysis is meant to focus on those costs incurred in the manufacture of the core device and exceptionally in some circumstances the packaging and literature as well.

Buffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System - Main PCB BottomBuffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System - Main PCB Bottom

Manufacturing Notes

EMS Partners

Unknown

Country of Origin / Volume Assumptions

Based on markings, the unit was assembled in the USA. We assume this ONLY applies to final assembly level integration and that sub-assemblies are being produced off shore for cost optimization.

Country of origin assumptions relate directly to the associated cost of manufacturing, where calculated by iSuppli. In the cases of 'finished' sub-assemblies (such as a wall adaptor charger), we do not calculate internal manufacturing costs, but rather assess the market price of the finished product in which case country of origin assumptions may or may not have a direct effect on pricing.

Remember also that labor rates are applied directly only to hand inserted components and systems in our bill of materials, and although regional assumptions do, these new rates do not have a direct effect on our modeled calculations of placement costs for automated SMD assembly lines. ""Auto" inserted components (such as SMT components) placement costs are calculated by an iSuppli algorithm which allocates a cost per component based on the size and pincount of the device. This calculation is affected by country or region of origin as well.

Design for Manufacturing / Device Complexity

The total component count of the Buffalo CS-WX2.0/1D is545 components (excluding box contents). As a point of reference, the QNAP TS-219P II, analyzed in parallel with this device, comes in at 740 components (excluding box contents). Again - these deltas seem to correspond to the feature sets offered by both devices.

Component counts have a direct bearing on the overall manufacturing cycle times and costs, and also can increase or decrease overall yields and re-work. Our calculations of manufacturing costs factor counts and more qualitative complexities in the design.

Note that manual labor has a much smaller effect on auto-insertion assembly lines (for the Main PCB, for example), where manufacturing costs are much more capital equipment intensive and driven by these investment costs.

Design Notes

The Buffalo CS-WX2.0/1D is, on the inside, a fairly well integrated design, relying heavily on the Marvell 88F6281 core (Embedded Processor - SoC, Marvell Sheeva ARMv5TE-Compliant CPU Core, Up to 1.2GHz). The device also features a total of 1Gbit of DDR2 SDRAM, and a Marvell Ethernet Transceiver (88E1118-NNC1). Beyond that listed core IC content - this design then becomes a series of smaller power management functions. When compared with the QNAP TS-219P II (analyzed in parallel) - this Buffalo design is much simpler - a function of feature set, functionality, and ultimately the market price point (This Buffalo unit retails for less as well).

Here is a summary of the major (non mechanical and electro-mechanical) components used in the Buffalo CS-WX2.0/1D Network Attached Server:

Main PCB

Processing

Marvell - 88F6281-A1-BIA2C060 - Embedded Processor - SoC, Marvell Sheeva A?RMv5TE-Compliant CPU Core, Up to 1.2GHz, 256KB L2 Cache

Memory

(x2) Hynix - H5PS5162FFR-S5C - SDRAM - DDR2-800, 512Mb, 1.8V

I/O & Interface

  • Marvell - 88E1118-NNC1 - Ethernet Transceiver - 10/100/1000 Base-T

Buffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System - Box ContentsBuffalo Technology CloudStor CS-WX2.0/1D NAS System - Box Contents



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