Published on December 12th, 2015 | by Greg0
Synology DS416: Never Run Out Of Storage Again
If the holiday season leaves you with a new camera, tablet, phone, media streaming device, or computer, then you’ll probably quickly find a way to create a lot of new data, and need new and better ways to store and manage all of those files. Whether it’s video or pictures, apps or music, there are a million sources and we need them to be easily accessible, shareable, and searchable. Today’s piece of gear is ideal not simply for the serious dataphile, but also for the small business owner that might need to store terabytes of graphics.
The Synology DS416 is the latest quad-bay network-attached storage solution from the company that focuses almost entirely on them. They fill a basic need: to provide you with a safe and secure all-in-one, multi-function server that connects to your network and can be setup quickly even by the most novice user. Designed with energy efficiency in mind, Synology didn’t skimp on specs either, with a powerful dual-core 1.4GHz processor and 1GB of DDR3 RAM inside. You can put in up to four hard drives with 4TB each, making this Synology able to host up to 16 terabytes of your information, allowing you to avoid relying on slow cloud services. And with RAID0-RAID10 support, you can rest assured that even if a disk has an issue or fails, you can recover without a hitch. There’s hardware-level encryption support, too, that keep speeds up to 140 MB/s even while securing data.
As you might expect, there are the typical ports. The DS416 has ethernet jacks- just in case- and both front-panel USB 3.0 for quick access as well as dual USB 3.0 interfaces in the rear. Like most NAS devices, the design allows for hot-swappable disk changes, but this one combines active processor cooling combined with a good passive system to allow airflow and ensure safe, long-term operation without a lot of noise (only 20 db in fact). Behind the hardware is probably the most important piece of the puzzle- the Synology DiskStation Manager, the software and suite of applications that control everything. We’ve been testing the latest version, the newly-released beta (DSM 6.0), which makes a lot of positive changes. They are moving to a 64-bit architecture, but there are loads of small things like accessibility improvements, and more importantly some major upgrades to the interface and handling of media. We liked the new Video Station especially as an intuitive way to handle your movie collection, with an activity log that makes it simple to find what’s new.
Transcoding is one of the most important video features for home power-users- when you want to connect to a streaming device but need video in a specific format, this is the solution. From AVI to MP4 and more, the DS416 can handle it, on the fly and without much delay. There’s no built-in wireless though add-on options are available, but for speed and security, we suggest sticking with wired LAN anyway. Whether you need a mail or music server, iTunes or DLNA, a surveillance storage option or a VPN solution, the Synology DS416 can handle it. They make dual-bay models like the one we tested earlier this year, for those who don’t need as much disk space (or have less physical space). Synology hasn’t disappointed yet, with each generation just getting better, and there’s even a two-year warranty. There is really very little to kvetch about, from body to backend, and the Synology DS416 is available now for around $479.99.