Synology DiskStation DS-106e review
Synology may not be the best-known NAS brand, but the DS-101g+ won our previous NAS Labs by combining a stunning array of features with above-average performance.
The updated DS-106e commands an even heftier premium than before, but it once again trounces the competition for the sheer number of features on offer. Capacities range from 160GB to 500GB, and there’s a Gigabit Ethernet connection for quick transfer rates.
Copying 1.3GB of files to the drive took 2mins 9secs, equating to a decent write speed of 10.5MB/sec. Reading was quicker at 13.9MB/sec. These figures aren’t the fastest, but should be more than fast enough for most uses.
The 106e can act as your print, web, FTP, photo and media server. Additionally, it’s a download server, which allows you to redirect downloads to the DiskStation instead of a local PC.
Plus, the Setup Assistant was the only one to find the drive first time – and that was without it being on the same subnet as the test rig.
The white chassis differentiates the 106e model from the grey 106, but the latter boasts ADS (Active Directory Service) and NT4 domain support, as well as better security. Both can be bought as barebone units from www.xspo.co.uk for £131 and £157 respectively.
There’s a single USB port on the front, with a further pair at the rear plus an eSATA port. A Copy button copies the contents of a USB disk into the pre-specified shared folder. Users and groups are simple to set up, while quotas can be set on a per-user basis. If you connect a USB or eSATA disk, it’s easy to schedule backups of the entire DiskStation, and you can also back up over the network to another DiskStation.
There’s no timed power-up/down option, but you can select a hibernate time from ten minutes to five hours. But our real gripes are the single year of warranty and fan noise (which measured 42dBA from the front when seeking).
At £340, the 500GB DiskStation is by far the most expensive here, but it’s a great choice if you need the features on offer. If you already have a spare SATA disk, the barebones chassis are much better value than a turnkey model.