24 bay 2.5" vs 12 bay 3.5"

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May 12, 2014
I have been researching building my own NAS for a while, and I think the most bang for your buck is the used servers on ebay.
One gotcha is a lot of them are old SAS1 backplanes that wont support 8TB drives, it seems many more of the 24 bay 2.5" servers have SAS2 hardware and better specs for a lower price.

That said, I am looking for guidance if I should proceed in getting one of those 2U 24 bay servers and filling it with these: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ZTRXFBA/?tag=ozlp-20

Or go with 3.5" and use 8TB WD RED or equivalent with a 12 bay 3.5" build.

I know the prior is not NAS grade stuff, but I am going to run mirror on everything and it will be not super heavily used.
I feel the 2.5" drives will use less power and create less heat as well as allow me to expand cheaper and more gradually (buy 2x $109 4TB drives as needed instead of 2x $250+ 8TB drives)

Am I crazy for thinking 2.5" is OK? or is this a valid idea?

Also if I want NAS only no jails, no transcoding etc, would this system be a good buy?

I think it has platinum power supplies, it has the low voltage CPU's, but its old tech DDR2 stuff and just wont cut it if say I want to run Plex.
But for how cheap it is, id be willing to use my desktop as the Plex server.

I'll have to spend almost 2x to 3x for a decent 3.5" rig as far as I can tell but I will go and spring for the 6 core Xeons so I can run Plex on it should I dive in that deep.

Last question if I get a SM 3.5" chassis that only has the old SAS1 backplane (BPN-SAS-846EL1), can I use the 8TB drives as long as I get a controller card that supports 8TB on all bays? M1015 or LSI 9211-8i ??
I am not familiar with if the computer itself is limited or its the backplane causing the limitation.

Thanks for the help/guidance.
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