Synology has recently launched Synology DS220+, a compact and high-performance NAS (Network-attached storage) solution targeted for Home and small office users in India. It’s a two-bay entry-level NAS that can be used to backup your PCs, Store photos clicked on your phone, create a private media server, to name a few. Many of you might not be aware of NAS and what it does. This review gives you a quick overview of what Synology DS220+ is about and what you can do with it.
Before starting with the Review, let us know a few things about the NAS and its alternatives. Storage capacity is one of the main factors while buying the device, whether it’s a phone, PC, or laptop. If the storage capacity increases, the price of the device also rises considerably. Additionally, laptops or PCs equipped with SSD drives will cost you even more. For instance, there’s about ₹20,000 difference between Apple MacBook Pro 256GB variant and the 512GB variant. So, shelling out ₹20,000 for just an extra 256GB of storage isn’t a smart option.
If you don’t want to invest more money for the storage, you’ll end with two options – External hard drives or Public Cloud. A 1TB external drive costs you ≈₹5,500 but, you’ll have to connect the drive to your PC every time if you want to use it. The biggest drawback of external drives is the lack of Automatic Backup.
There’s a high chance of data loss just in case if you forget to backup manually. Public cloud services like Google One, Dropbox, etc. are expensive in the long run as you need to pay the subscription charges monthly, or yearly and there’s always a privacy threat because 3rd party providers manage your data.
|Synology NAS||Google One||Dropbox|
1TB, 4TB etc.
|Up to 30TB||Unlimited|
So, to overcome all such issues, a smart option is to set up your own cloud storage at home. Synology has been in the industry for a very long time and is also one of the first brands that come to mind because of its technology, best-in-class software, and even brand reputation. Using Synology NAS, you can backup or sync the whole family’s PCs, Mobile devices, and notebooks. It’s a one-time investment, and you can easily upgrade the storage whenever you need it. Check out a few key features of Synology DS220+ below.
- Access, share, and sync data easily across different operating systems and devices
- Restoring previous versions
- Backup your PC or Mac computer etc
- Access files remotely via web browsers or mobile apps
- Backup your photos on from your phone to NAS
- Stream videos stored on your NAS to a large-screen TV
- Supports various file protocols such as SAMBA, AFP, NTS, FTP, WebDAV
- Share photos with anyone through a secure link with custom permission levels
Not only these features, but you can even do many more things. The Synology DS220+ is nearly a sort of computer and has its own operating system. It can be controlled using your PC or Laptop. Let’s find out how Synology DS220+ can help you manage all your data requirements.
In the box
Synology DS220+ comes in a securely packed minimal cardboard box with a plastic handle on top to easily carry it around. Inside the box, you’ll find:
- Synology DS220+
- Synology-branded 65W Power Adapter
- Power Adapter Cable
- Two RJ45 LAN Cables
- Screws to fix hard drives
- User Manual
Design and Tech
The newly introduced Synology DS220+ almost resembles its predecessor DS218+ but comes with the latest processor and a few other enhancements. It is compact, well-built, and almost looks like its predecessor. The NAS is built over a metal chassis and the outer shell is made out of high-quality plastic with a matte-like finish. Overall, it looks great and feels premium when handled.
There is a removable cover at the front that gives you access to the hard drive trays. The drive trays are placed side by side and can be pulled out easily by pressing the button placed on top of each bay. Each tray has two removable plastic straps on the sides to secure the hard drive. Once you remove the straps, insert the hard drive in the tray, and secure the drive by putting the straps back on either side. Then, mount the tray into the NAS enclosure by slowly sliding it inwards. One of the best features of Synology DS220+ is the no-tool setup. You don’t even need a screwdriver or any other additional tool to mount the hard drives.
The Synology DS220+ is powered by Intel’s latest Celeron J4025 dual-core CPU clocked at 2.0GHz with burst up to 2.9GHz. It supports 3.5-inch or 2.5-inch SATA HDD or SSD. The maximum single hard drive capacity is set for 16TB and the maximum total storage supported by DS220+ is 32TB (16TB x 2). Compared to the predecessor, it misses out on the eSATA port so you cannot connect the expansion bays to the NAS. One of the fundamental changes on DS220+ compared to DS218+ is an additional LAN port with support for Link Aggregation.
The DS220+ comes with upgraded 2GB DDR4 RAM (DDR3 on the DS218+) and is also equipped with an additional RAM slot that supports up to 4GB RAM. So the maximum amount of RAM you can avail of is 6GB (2GB+4GB). Make a note that the primary 2GB RAM is soldered and cannot be replaced or upgraded. The RAM is user-replaceable. If you ever plan to upgrade the RAM, you can easily insert the RAM module into the DS220+ by yourself without even opening the case.
There are two 1GbE RJ45 LAN Ports, USB-A 3.0 port, a Kensington security port, and a power connector is placed on the rear side. On the front you’ll get an additional USB-A 3.0 port, a power ON/Off button, and also a dedicated USB Copy button to copy the content of the NAS to a USB drive. There are Five vertically placed LED status lights placed on the front to check the status of the NAS, LAN ports, and Hard drives. Synology has provided a dedicated Fan on the rear to cool down the system and also a Reset button on the rear to reset the NAS in case something goes wrong with the system.
The Synology DS220+ supports Btrfs, EXT4, EXT3, FAT, NTFS, HFS+ exFAT (Optional) files systems, also several RAID types such as Synology Hybrid RAID (SHR), Basic, JBOD, RAID 0, and RAID 1. If you don’t know much about RAID, simply go ahead with SHR. The SHR is an automated RAID management system designed by Synology that allows you to manage the storage volume quickly and easily. You will find more info during the setup.
Selecting the right Hard Disk Drive
The Synology DA220+ does not include the hard drive(s), and you’ll have to purchase the drive(s) separately. Selecting the hard drive is a crucial task because the performance of the NAS also depends on the hard drive you use. There are dedicated NAS drives available in the market which is different from the one you use on your desktop computers. NAS drives are specially designed for round-the-clock operations and also have different technologies for better performance.
Note: You can even use your existing regular SATA Hard Drives (the one which you use in your personal computer) but, it’s not recommended. These hard drives are generally designed for moderate usage but not for 24×7 operations. These drives may fail any time, and the performance you get is below average. So I would recommend you to use only NAS-optimized hard drives.
I have been using the Toshiba internal drives for a very long time and they are just amazing when it comes to performance. I selected Toshiba NAS 300 Series (DWQ140) 4TB Hard drive for my Synology DS220+. It is more than enough for your home or small office usage and depending on the market, you’ll get this for around ₹11,000 to ₹12,000.
The 4TB variant is an entry-level drive in the N300 series and you can opt for a higher variant in case you need more storage. Alongside the 4TB variant, the Toshiba N300 series is also available in 6TB, 8TB, 10TB, 12TB and 14TB capacities. Higher storage variants come with more data rates and buffer sizes for improved performance. Check out the Toshiba N300 Drive Review here.
Synology DS220+ Software
The unique feature of Synology DS220+ (or any Synology NAS) is its powerful, feature-packed Operation System called DSM. The Synology DS220+ runs on its web-based OS called DiskStation Manager (DSM). Once connected to the router, the NAS can be accessed using any browser like Chrome, Safari, Firefox, etc.
Just like App Store on macOS, Microsoft Store on Windows 10, Synology also has its own app store called Package Center that allows you to download official Synology apps as well as 3rd-party apps including Antivirus, Backup, WordPress, PHP, Office apps, etc. At the time of writing this article, there were about 56 official Synology applications, and about 43 third-party applications were available to download from the Synology Package Center.
DSM 6.2.3 was the most recent version available while writing this review. Synology is already working on the next major release DSM 7.0 and also provided a sneak peek into what’s coming next. There is no official information about the release schedule but is expected to be available in a couple of months. Once released, Synology DS220+ will also receive the DSM 7.0 update. You can find more info here.
Setting up the NAS
Before powering on the NAS, make sure you insert the Hard drive (s) in the bay (s) and close the front cover. Now, connect the NAS to your WiFi router using the provided ethernet cable. There are two LAN ports placed on the rear side of the NAS and you can use either one. Then, Power up the NAS using the bundled power adapter and press the Power On/Off button.
It will take about 30 seconds to boot and you’ll get a beep sound once the device is ready to use. The next steps include Setting up NAS, NAS Admin Setup, Setup QuickConnect ID Setup, and Creating Volume. Setting up the software is as easy as setting up your newly bought smartphone. Check out this detailed article to set up your Synology DS220+.
Note: The Synology DS220+ must be connected to the Internet to install the DSM. Also, make sure both the Synology NAS and the computer or Laptop must be in the same network. This means if your NAS is connected to a router via LAN cable, connect the router to your PC or Laptop either using LAN or WiFi.
Once you’re done with the setup, you’ll be redirected to Home Screen which is nothing but Desktop just like your Windows or Mac computer. There are three main sections – Package Center, Control Panel, and File Station. You’ll also find a System Health window on the bottom right that displays the current CPU usage and RAM usage along with the Server name, IP Address, and Uptime.
Package Center – Using the package center, you can download apps such as Antivirus, Text Editor, Photo Station, WordPress, Apache, PHP, Team Viewer, etc. You can also update the apps in case an update is available. There is even a separate section for beta apps. Once you download any app, it will be added to the desktop automatically.
Control Panel – It is almost like the Control Panel of your Windows computer, which allows you to manage users, Control the DHCP server, Change the theme, Update the NAS, Configure FTP, Create a guest account, Configure DNS server, Control network security, etc.
File Station – A file station is the place where you store, manage, and share files. You can also share files on multiple platforms, change file structures, and also edit file-sharing permissions.
Synology also has dedicated apps for Windows, Mac, Linux as well as Android and iOS devices. Mobile applications can be downloaded from Google Play and App Store wherein the desktop software can be downloaded from Synology’s official website. All the apps are available to download without any additional cost. Check out a few popular apps below.
- Synology Drive – Alternative to Google Drive, Dropbox, etc. You can use the real-time or scheduled backup feature to back up important folders on your PC so that you always have a copy in case something goes wrong with the PC.
- Synology Moments – Photo management app from Synology that allows you to backup photos captured on your smartphone and arrange them in a timeline mode for easy management. It has got many features such as Group photos, Collaborate, Auto Color & Rotate, 360-degree view, etc.
- Video Station – It works just like Netflix or Amazon Prime video and allows you to manage all the movies, TV shows, etc. on your Synology NAS. You can also stream these stored videos to various devices such as Computers, Smartphones, Media players, and TVs.
- Synology Chat – Chat is a messaging service that runs on Synology NAS and allows you to collaborate or chat with others using mobile devices. You’ll also receive push notifications whenever there’s a new incoming message or mention.
- Synology Office – It almost like Microsoft Office and allow you to easily create word documents, spreadsheets, and slides with real-time synchronization.
- Synology Hyper Backup – This tool automatically backup the files stored on the server to multiple types of destinations such as Google Drive, Amazon Drive, Dropbox, Microsoft Azure, etc. or even to another Synology NAS.
- Synology Calendar – It works Just like Google Calendar and allows you to share calendars and schedule meetings easily.
- Synology Surveillance Station – It’s a video management tool and allows you to monitor video streams from multiple cameras in real-time and set up smart analytics to catch suspicious behavior.
- Synology Cloud Station – It allows you to synchronize files between the NAS and multiple client computers, mobile, and Synology NAS devices.
- Download Station – Download files from multiple file-hosting sites, and search for torrent files via system default search engines. It also allows you to download files from the Internet through BT, FTP, HTTP, NZB, FlashGet, QQDL, etc.
- Synology USB Copy -This app helps you copy files between your Synology DS220+ and external USB storage devices such as Pen Drive, USB hard drive, etc.
- Synology Multimedia Apps – Dedicated Mobile apps – Video Station, Photo Station, Music Station, File Station, etc. available on Android as well as iOS.
Apart from the above the mentioned apps, there are more apps you can easily download from the Package Center without any additional cost. I’ll cover some popular and useful apps in a dedicated post. You can find those here.
Synology Hard Drive Hibernation
One of the most important features of DS220+ is Hard Drive hibernation. During HDD hibernation hard drives stop spinning and also reduce the power consumption. HDD hibernation not only extends the lifespan of hard drives also saves a lot of power. In normal mode, Synology DS220+ consumes ≈14.96 watts wherein it consumes ≈4.41 watts when the hard drive hibernation is enabled. You can also specify different periods of time for internal hard disks and USB hard disks. Go to DSM > Control Panel > Hardware & Power > HDD Hibernation to configure the hard drive hibernation.
Synology DS220+ comes with built-in dual 1GbE LAN ports and supports Link Aggregation and network failover. Due to the availability of two ports, you can combine both LAN ports to get a 2GBPS connection. With Link Aggregation enabled, the Synology DS220+ provides about 220 MB/s sequential read and 192 MB/s sequential write throughput which is almost 2X compared to regular LAN data transfer (Without Link Aggregation).
Dual USB Ports
Another useful feature of the DS220+ is the Dual USB 3.0 ports that allow you to connect a USB drive or external hard drive and transfer the data to the NAS. Even you can copy the data from your NAS to a USB drive with a click of a button.
Synology DS220+ Performance
The Synology NAS is designed to run round the clock. Just like your PC or Laptop, the temperature of the device including the hard drive consistently increases during usage and reduces once the system becomes idle. To control the heat generation, the DS220+ comes with a built-in 92×92 mm Fan on the rear along with a few air vents on the bottom of the device to control the temperature.
Additionally, you can control the temperature using the pre-defined Fan modes. There are three fan modes:
- Full-Speed Mode: More cooling, Maximum fan speed, More noise
- Cool Mode: More than average cooling, High fan speed, More noise
- Quiet Mode: Low cooling, Low fan speed, Low noise but More temperature during usage
This process is not automatic. By default, the fan is set to Quiet mode, and depending on your usage, you’ll have to change it from the Control panel (Control Panel -> Hardware & Power -> General -> Fan Speed Mode). During my testing, Speed was set to Full-Speed mode most of the time, especially during the substantial data transfer.
The System temperature was Normal (less than 40˚C), but the noise level was more. If you want better performance, keep the Full-speed mode only during the usage and switch to Quiet mode when you leave the system Idle. In Quiet mode, the noise level is almost 80% less compared to Full-speed mode, but the temperature is around 43 to 45˚.
Testing file transfer over WiFi
The results are obtained in a typical home environment. The Synology DS220+ with 4TB Toshiba N300 drive is connected to Mi Router 3C (2.4Hz) through the bundles LAN cable and on the other hand, NAS is interfaced with MacBook Pro (MBP) over WiFi. Google Chrome is used to access the NAS. Files are uploaded from MBP to NAS using the File Station app on the NAS.
|Connection||File Size||Average Speed||Time Taken|
|MBP to NAS||1.03 (Zip)||≈7.2Mbps||2.37 Minutes|
|NAS to MBP||≈10Mbps||1.56 Minutes|
|MBP to NAS||.2.06 (Zip)||≈7.5Mbps||4.5 Minutes|
|NAS to MBP||≈10.4Mbps||3.13 Minutes|
|MBP to NAS||5.14 (Zip)||≈7.7Mbps||11.12 Minutes|
|NAS to MBP||.||≈10.46Mbps||8.27 Minutes|
During the testing, the average speed while transferring the file to NAS from MacBookPro and from MacBook Pro to NAS is around 7Mbps and 11Mbps respectively. Generally, you’ll get slow speeds over WiFi. Also, there are a lot of factors affecting transfer speeds such as File Type, Router, Hard Drive, etc. So, these speeds are above average. If you need better rates over WiFi, you’ll have to use the Dual-band Routers.
Testing file transfer over Gigabit LAN
For performance testing over LAN, the same MacBook Pro is used with an external TP-Link UE300 USB Gigabit (1Gbps) ethernet adapter. The NAS is connected to MBP’s USB ethernet adapter using the bundled LAN cable and Google Chrome is used to access the NAS.
|Connection||File Size||Average Speed||Time Taken|
|PC to NAS||1.03 (Zip)||≈110Mbps||10 Seconds|
|NAS to PC||≈95Mbps||11 Seconds|
|PC to NAS||2.06 (Zip)||≈112.2Mbps||17 Seconds|
|NAS to PC||≈97Mbps||20 Seconds|
|PC to NAS||5.14 (Zip)||≈112.4Mbps||44 Seconds|
|NAS to PC||.||≈99.7Mbps||50 Seconds|
During the testing over LAN, the average speed while transferring the file to NAS from MBP and from MBP to NAS is around 112Mbps and 99Mbps, respectively. Compared to WiFi, you’ll get a higher speed over LAN. During all the transfer tests, the CPU utilization was less than 6%, and the memory utilization was about 8%.
Speed Test using 3rd party apps
Apart from the real usage tests, I also conducted speed tests using a few Popular speed test apps such as Black Magic Speed Test, ATTO Disk Benchmark, and AJA System Test Lite. All the experiments were conducted by mapping the NAS to the Mac. All three benchmark tools also gave satisfactory results. The average Read speed was about 110MB/s, whereas the average Write speed was about 103MB/s. Check out the results below.
Coming to Video Streaming, I was able to stream the same 1080p video stored on DS220+ on three different devices without any issues. The CPU utilization was 83% initially and dropped to 43% in a couple of minutes. RAM utilization was also below 33%, even with three devices streaming the video simultaneously. Similarly, I didn’t experience any issue while streaming audio stored on the DS220+ on the three different devices. The playback was very smooth, just like other online music streaming platforms – YouTube Music, Prime Music, etc.
I have been using the Synology DS220+ for the past few days, and the performance is excellent. It has got tons and tons of features, and you might need a couple of weeks to explore. You can easily backup your data such as photos, videos, etc., from your Laptop, PC, or Mobile without any hassle. Yes. There are a lot of terminologies, and an entry-level user might not understand. But, Synology has made the setup process so easy that even a non-technical user can set up and configure the NAS without anyone’s help. The DSM operating system is Fluid, User-friendly, and I did not experience any kind of software errors or booting issues during the testing.
The 2GB RAM is more than enough for general home usage, such as storing files, setting up an automatic backup, etc. Still, the RAM can be easily upgraded for improved performance whenever you need it. As it’s a two-bay NAS, the maximum amount of storage it supports is 32TB. Unlike the predecessor, it doesn’t include an eSATA port to connect the bays. Once you reach 32GB, the only option you get is to opt for a new NAS that has more bays. But again, it costs more, and also you’ll have shell out money again on hard drives. While transferring large files, the NAS gets slightly noisy, especially when the Fan is set to quiet mode. It won’t be a problem if the NAS is away from the work desk.
Many people think NAS means storing files and the same can be done using an external hard drive. No. it’s not. Storing and managing data is only a part of the NAS. It’s just like your personal computer or Laptop, you can host a website, control surveillance camera, Stream music, Share music, watch a movie stored on the NAS on your smartphone or Smart TV, Create your own e-mail server and the list goes on.
NAS is not only useful for indoor use but it also helps you when you are out of Home. Imagine that you’re on vacation, you captured so many pictures and videos on your smartphone but ran out of storage. In such cases, you can quickly transfer photos captured on your phone to your NAS at home to free up space on your phone without losing the photo quality.
No doubt NAS is the best alternative to the external hard drive and public cloud providers. Even though the price of the NAS is on the higher side it’s a one-time investment that can be well utilized by the entire family. So if you are looking for a permanent home storage solution and want to get rid of monthly subscription fees, Synology DS220+ is the right choice for you.
Note: To make the review short and simple I haven’t included most of its features and it will be covered separately. There is a dedicated section that includes all the information you need about Synology DS220+ including Tips, Tricks, How-to’s, Hard drive reviews, etc. You can find them here.
What I Like
- Supports up to 32TB
- Expandable RAM
- Excellent Software (DSM)
- Bunch of free Apps
- Dual LAN Ports
- No-tool Setup
- Dual USB Ports
- Link Aggregation
- Dedicated Android TV app
What I Didn’t Like
- No NVMe SSD Support
- No Expansion Bay (eSata)
- Fixed primary RAM
- Poor Front Door Lock
Synology DS220+ comes in Black color and will be available to purchase through Amazon.in and also through Synology certified dealers across India. Price starts from ₹31,499. For any other inquiries, submit this form or drop an email to admin[@]gizarena.com.
Synology DS220+ Technical Specifications
|CPU||Intel Celeron J4025 |
Dual-core, 2.0 GHz
Burst Upto 2.9 GHz
|Memory||2 GB DDR4 Onboard|
expandable Upto 6GB
|Max. Internal |
|32 TB (2 x 16 TB)|
|Drive type||3.5″ SATA HDD/SSD|
2.5″ SATA HDD/SSD
|Ports||2 x USB 3.0 port|
2 x Gigabit (RJ-45)
1 x Power Port
|Input Power||100 V to 240 V AC|
|0°C to 40°C |
(32°F to 104°F)
|SMB, AFP, NFS, FTP|
WebDAV, CalDAV, iSCSI
Telnet, SSH, SNMP, VPN
|Internal – Btrfs, ext4|
External – Btrfs, ext4, ext3,
FAT, NTFS, HFS+, exFAT4
|Synology Hybrid RAID (SHR)|
Basic, JBOD, RAID 0, RAID 1
|Windows 7 or Later|
macOS 10.12 or Later
|Chrome, Firefox, Edge |
Internet Explorer 10 or Later
Safari 10 or Later
Safari (iOS 10 or Later)
Chrome (Android 6.0 or Later)
|Security||Shared Folder Encryption|
SMB Encryption, Firewall
FTP over SSL/TLS, SFTP
rsync over SSH
|Dimensions||165 x 108 x 232.2 mm|