Review of Synology DS1511+ Part 1

Yes.. very quietly, I’ve actually gotten the Synology DiskStation 5-Bay Network Attached Storage DS1511+ a couple of weeks back to replace my current D-Link DNS-343, D-Link DNS-323 and 2 sets of D-Link DNS-320.  Yes.. I really got too much NAS at home liao.. That’s why heart pain also told myself to go ahead and give the Synology a try. 🙂  This first part of the review of this set will cover the unboxing experience.  The software review of the DSM 3.1 and also the performance (which is the mind blowing part) will be coming along is the second part.

Actually, the purchasing process is very nice.  Thanxs to the extreme good service provided by SK from Memory World (Funan).  He has been very accomodating with my queries and requests and also waited for me after the normal opening hours to collect the set, something we don’t get to see very often now with the ever decreasing quality of service in Singapore’s retail industry.  Anyway, I would highly recommend anyone who is keen to buy anything from Memory World to approach SK directly for a good sales experience.

Don’t ask me how much I paid for the set cos the price is not in the same range as the D-Link Series.  😀  But still, the experience from using the Synology is of a different class compared with the times when I first laid my hands on my very first NAS.  Oh yah.  I also upgraded the RAM for the DS1511+ from 1GB to 3GB by adding another 2GB of DDR2 SODIMM while I was at Memory World. The installation process was very simple and actually, it can be DIYed easily.

Here are the pictures of the unboxing of this very exciting new toy. 🙂

It comes with quite a big box given that it’s only a 5 bay NAS.  The rest of the accessories are packed in the nice brown box in the middle of the foams and air for cushioning during transport.

The set comes with the unit, complete with 5 removable bays, 2 sets of screws for 2.5 and 3.5 HDDs, instructions and installation CD, power cord and 2 sets of UTP cables.  Of course, the most valuable thing about the Synology DS1511+ is that it comes with 3 years warranty compared with the other NAS that only comes with 1 year normally.

At the back of the DS1511+, there are 2 fans whose speed will be adjusted according to the temperature of the device.  But something I like about these fans is that they are very much quieter than those on the D-Link NAS that I have.  In fact, I wasnt used to the silent and I had to verify that the fans are working fine.  At the back are also the rest of the connectivity of this unit.  There are no additional power brick required and the normal power cord plugs directly to the unit.  There are also 4 USB 2.0 connectors, 2 Gigabit LAN connectors and 2 eSATA connectors.  The 2 eSATA connectors are for expansion to DX510+ units allow a totall of 15 bays to this unit.  Something I would like to venture into in the near future. 😀 For my E4200, I could make use of one of the Gigabit LAN connectors as it is not able to do network teaming.  However, based on my simple testing results, I dont think the Gigabit bandwidth has even been utilized 50% yet.

The 5 bays are front loaded and needs to be unlocked by moving the simple lock upwards and a spring loaded mechanism will push the handle out to allow the HDD bay to be pulled out for use.  The HDD is then fixed onto the bay device by 4 small screws provided.  Synology provided a total of 24 screws although only 20 is required for the 5 bays.  Guess they know people will tend to lose such small items after sometime 😀

Upon powering up the unit, the LEDs in the front will light up.  It too me a while to realise that because I have yet to configure the HDDs, the status light on the far left was amber in color.  This amber color light give me a fright initially as I thought that I have a DOA unit. :-D.  After installation of the Synology  Assistant to located the unit, I quickly configured a RAID-5 configuration for the 5 x Samsung F4 2TB and only then the status light turned green. 

Something else i like about the Synology DS1511+ is the power button.  It not only gives that nice blue blink blink color I have a soft spot for but also provide an easy access to power on the unit.  

Overall, the Synology DS1511+ gives a very professional feel in terms of it’s looks, software package as well as the build of the set.  In terms of performance, it also lives up to its name.  I’ll share more of it in the second part of this review. 🙂

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