LaCie is bringing its distinctive aesthetic sense to small business networked storage with its new 5big Network device, which offerssurprisefive drive bays and up to a whopping 7.5 terabytes of capacity. If that's still not sufficient (or you want to back up what's on the 5big Network), the included USB port and three eSATA ports let you connect external storage drives.
Drives are hot swappable, and the unit supports pretty much every RAID mode under the sun, including RAID 5 and RAID 6, which can provide striped disks plus parity for three or more drives (RAID 5) or can protect data from the loss of two drives (RAID 6). It also comes with three licenses for backup solutions for either PC (Genie Backup Manager Pro) or Mac (Intego Backup Manager Pro). LaCie claims that 5big Network uses 25 percent less energy and is 37 percent quieter than four-drive RAID towers on the marketplace.
The device was designed by Neil Poulton to look like a plain white box from the front, save for the big blue light in the front that, as Gizmodo points out, brings to mind a certain demented computer to anyone who's ever seen 2001: A Space Odyssey. While the 5big is priced for business customers, I wouldn't be surprised if some hardcore personal users with tons of media files spring for the $899.99 2.5TB config. After that you're looking at a significant price bump, as the 5TB version is priced at $1,399 and the 7.5TB model costs $1,899.