The Synology DS210+ is by far and away the most expensive NAS box we’ve tested, and at just under £300, we were surprised that it didn’t include any hard disks. However, as it turns out, the DS210+ is able to justify its incredibly high price. Its extremely quiet 70mm fan did a great job of keeping our hard disk cool and it was fairly easy to set up. What really impressed us were the instructions – they’re very easy to follow, with all the stages impeccably documented.
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Installing hard disks is accomplished by removing half of the fascia, which is easy enough, but the fascia flexes a lot more than we’d expect for a NAS box costing just under £300. There are three USB 2 ports, an eSATA port and even support for WiFi dongles. The web interface is a dream to use, with six common tasks listed as favourites on the home page. The list of features the DS210+ supports is almost endless, including an iTunes server. The backup feature even has the option of using Amazon’s S3 backup service. In addition to iTunes, it supports Logitech’s Squeezebox, as well as DLNA/UPnP compatible media streamers.
User Interface - Click to enlarge
With iSCSI support, you’re able to configure all or portions of volumes as iSCSI drives, which appear on your PC as local disks, after you’ve initialised and formatted them in Windows. The DS210+ has one of the more advanced Bit-Torrent clients we’ve seen too. You can even save data from video surveillance cameras and access the live video feeds via an iPhone app.
DSM 3.0 User Interface - Click to enlarge
As with the DS210J, Synology is now offering a massively overhauled management interface for the DS210+. DSM 3.0 (seen above in beta form) offers multitasking, an OS-styled interface and more features. It's definitely worth downloading if you own a Synology NAS box.
With a 1.06GHz Marvell processor and 512MB of DDR2 RAM, it came as no surprise that the DS210+ was a particularly fast NAS box. In both write speed tests, it annihilated every other NAS box. It was consistently twice as fast as its nearest competitor, the QNAP TS-219P Turbo NAS, with a stonking write speed of 51.3MB/sec in the large file write test. With a single Samsung 1TB Spinpoint F3 installed, the DS210+ drew 22W.
It was also the only NAS box in our test to top 20MB/sec in the torturous small file write test, with a write speed of 27.1MB/sec. For more comparison on the speed test results, see the speed graphs. The DS210+ is ridiculously fast, but more importantly, it’s easy to use. However, given the DS210+ uses the same management interface as the much cheaper DS210J, it's worth waiting to see how it performs in our tests. Watch this space.