Need some help building a NAS

Thank you for pointing that out. I nearly missed that. Saved me a lot of issues. Thanks.

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No problem. I am also in the process of building my NAS, just waiting for the parts. :)
Here are the specs of my NAS:
I3 4170
16 GB crucial udimms unregistered
4x4TB wd red
Fractal 804
Evga 550gs

Hopefully you can get a better idea.

Oh shit, nice catch. I assumed that board would support both Registered and Unregistered since its server grade. Yeah so definitely go with your original Unregistered new dimms @subarashii

As @fredrich_nietze mentioned, the I3 + WS motherboard is not a bad alternative. I went through and did my own version of the I3 build:

My reasoning:

Mobo- I went with a full atx board since I the ITX option is very expensive in comparison.
Ram- FreeNas wants ECC, it doesn't need it, but it is preferable.
HDD's- Raid 6 and 4TB drives baby
Case- The R4 is a great case, the drive bays are awesome which is important for this, and the airflow is good.
PSU- A gold rated PSU is mandatory IMO for a machine that wants to have a 24/7 up-time without interruption.

Also, on the CPU, although the I3 is yes more powerful, I don't think the Avoton is a bad part either. The power draw is tiny, the multi-threaded performance is nothing to scoff at, and that board has a ton of connectivity in a very small package.

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How about this for a build?

I really don't want a mid tower case for a NAS and in a funny coincidence my main PC is in a define R4 so I actually know it extremely well.

See I saw that motherboard and was on the fence about it because it only has two ram slots. This is a build that I think you can set and forget for a very long time, but when the time to upgrade comes, you may be somewhat limited. You only have two ram slots, so if you wanted to upgrade to larger drives, you would also need to upgrade your ram, and the problem with that is that since the motherboard only has two dimm slots, you would have to replace the dimms you already have with two 16gb dimms. I mean technically it is recommended you have eight gigs plus a gig per terabyte of ram hdd space, so technically you actually should be looking at 24gbs for the build as it stands.

This is what I'm using for reference on hardware minimums:

I've came up with something interesting. I use the BackBlaze stats a lot, and their usage of the Seagate ST4000DM000 drive has been something they have talked about extensively. Their Q1 2016 Report listed them as having almost 35000 drives, with only a meager 2.54% failure rate. Their drive statistics are fascinating to me, and their usage and reasoning for employing this particular flavor of seagate drive is well documented:

I substituted in these drives and was able to also incorporate 32gb's of ecc ram. Although the necessity for this much ram can be argued for and against, it doesn't hurt, and if you want to run more plugins, jails, or other services off your FreeNas box, that much ram really can come in handy. Here is what I came up with:

I know their numbers say different but I would like to stick to drive-on hours designed for by the manufacturer and the desktop drives are designed for 8hrs/5days so while I do admit that they are a good option I'm hesitant to go with them.

Honestly, the secret most drive makers don't want consumers to know is that the only difference between that drive and seagate's enterprise drive is some firmware tweaks. The hardware is the same, the firmware just has some special sauce which a consumer nas wouldn't be able to notice the difference. I mean somewhere on youtube a guy tore apart a WD Black and a WD Blue of the same capacity and actually went part by part comparing, and there was not a single difference in hardware. Actually in his case the WD Blue ended up performing better. I get what your saying with the more enterprise targeted drives, but if the failure rate is that damn low, I wouldn't stress it.

Thank you very much for your help and I'll let you know my decision but as for now I need to go to sleep. Again Thanks for all the help.

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So I've settled on this build ( unless you can think of anything better or anything wrong with this build.

Looks good, I don't think you should have any problems with it :) Good luck, if anything comes up make sure to come back and ask questions / post finished pictures :D

Will do. Thanks