Synology DS414 4-bay NAS Review

/ 5 years ago

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Following on from my recent review of Synology’s DS213j 2-bay system, I’ve been invited to have a look at a system that is more geared for the SOHO market. This is the DS414 and for those who understand the rather simple and easy to understand naming system that Synology have adopted, the DS414 is the update to the popular DS413.

Up to this point, there has not been much information to be found in the open about this system, but to give a quick run down; over the DS413, the identical looking 414 offers up a better CPU and RAID controller and at a price that is more competitive than ever. There have been rumours circulating around that this system will be home to a CPU that is able to transcode media on the fly, however I can confirm now that this is not the case. Fortunately I can confirm that there is a new system launching very soon that will be able to perform this task and a review will appear in due course.

Alongside the NAS is a user manual, installation disk (although the latest version of Synology’s DSM can be downloaded to the system during setup), power cable with DC inverter and a pair of Cat5e Ethernet cables. With everything the user may need taken care of, Synology pack everything into a simple brown box with a monochrome design.

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8 Responses to “Synology DS414 4-bay NAS Review”
  1. Jon H. says:

    Sounds very interesting, I’d been looking at the 413 but couldn’t justify the £400+ for it so if this one really will sell for under £350, then we’re onto a winner.

    Shame there was no direct comparison to the 413 in the article, such as speed differences. Considering the cheaper price, what do you actually gain or lose with the newer model? It’s now a 1.33GHz dual core ARM compared to 1.067GHz in the 413. You gain a 2nd LAN port (not very useful) but lose the eSATA port (could have been useful).

    Why wasn’t the Synology Hybrid RAID included in the tests? This is a very useful set up and from what I read, it will allow you to take out a single drive and replace with a larger drive which totally invailidates your “con – Drive upgrades require system to be totally reconfigured”

    Also, the article seriously needs proof reading!…
    “Below the status LEDs AS a front mounted USB2.0 port”
    “this will void your warranty as there are NOW user serviceable parts”
    “upper side of the PCB is a LIME of SMB LEDs”
    “little to see apart from a pair IF identical looking chips”
    “we can see THE LIKE the RAID controller”
    “placing on a shelf without the SORRY about it putting too much pressure”

    “is the support for RAID 50. For those who are not full familiar with how the RAID systems work when mixed together, RAID 50 is basically two 3 drive RAID 5 arrays” – so two x 3-drive arrays… that’s 6 disks in total… clever seeing how this box can only fit 4 drives in it! Plus you obviously don’t benchmark RAID 50 in the article because the 414 doesn’t support it.

  2. Ben says:

    I don’t get why there is a eSata port on the board without opening on the plastic shield though.

    • Snoodini says:

      It seems the USB and SATA is on a seperate IO board which is actually labelled DS412. so they’re just re-using that interface board from the DS412+ and don’t interface with it on the mainboard. It’s most likely cheaper for Synology to make the board with the SATA connector and use it for multiple products than it is to produce a different board for the DS414.

  3. Jason says:

    What does the lack of “on chip transcoding” mean? How will the affect a home user that may want to stream videos from a NAS box to a smart TV?

  4. P Kil says:

    I’m curious if the 414 can handle some of the stuff that the 412+ does right now in time. It seems as if this series is the “new” direction of this level of NAS. It’s the top dog for the SOHO brand, whereas the 412+ seems to be middle of the pack for their SMB. I recently ordered one for both NAS storage (media files, syslog, etc) and for a VMware host using NFS. It shows up today and I’ll be interested if I can make the 414 do what I want or if I’ll need to upgrade to the 412+

  5. P Kil says:

    @jgbedford:disqus I think the lack of “on chip transcoding” means that you can xcode via a native CPU instruction set if I understand correctly. So you’ll need to enable some sort of third party xcoder to handle it for you – probably something from the marketplace. The marvell chip might be capable of doing this if properly written into the nas OS, but since this is a first-rev on this SOC I just wonder if it’s “not there yet”. I’m hoping that Synology continues to expand this one like they have the other models for several years now.

  6. johndo24 says:

    @Jason The lack of “on chip transcoding” means, that the Marvell CPU designed for the Synology DS414 doesn’t support hardware transcoding – if you want to stream a HD video to a mobile device, that video is being transcoded to the mobile resolution.

    Transcoding done on chip is usually a lot faster and needs less energy. As a NAS producer, if you can do this in hardware, you do. Doing this kind of calculation in software is possible, but less effective and performant.

    I hope this explanation helps a little.

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