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NAS External Data Storage: Synology Diskstation DS213air review

(1 vote, average 4.00 out of 5)

DS213air sideIntroduction:

We have reviewed a good number of the Synology Diskstation range over the last few years varying from entry level to professinal level models, and whilst all are excellent products, they all are limited to hard wired connections i.e. they all need to be close to either a free network port, or in the case of home users next to a router. Whilst there are options that can be used to remedy this such as Powerline plugs that allow you to share your internet connection through your mains electricity, simply running network cabling everywhere, or using a third party USB wifi dongle, the DS213air provides the simplest of all - in built wireless connectivity.

Specifications:

Hardware:

  • CPU Frequency : 1.6 GHz
  • Hardware Encryption Engine
  • Memory : DDR3 256 MB 
  • Internal HDD/SSD : 3.5" or 2.5" SATA(II) X 2 (Hard drive not included)
  • Max Internal Capacity : 8 TB (4 TB HDD X 2) (Capacity may vary by RAID types) (See All Supported HDD)
  • External HDD Interface : USB 3.0 Port X 2
  • Size (HxWxD) : 165 x 100 x 225.5 mm
  • Weight : 0.94 kg
  • LAN : Gigabit X 1
  • Wake on LAN/WAN
  • System Fan : 92 x 92 mm X 1
  • Built-in Wireless Support
  • Noise Level : 19.0 dB(A)
  • Power Recovery
  • AC Input Power Voltage : 100V to 240V AC
  • Power Frequency : 50/60 Hz, Single Phase
  • Power Consumption : 22.44W (Access); 5.76W (HDD Hibernation);
  • Operating Temperature : 5°C to 35°C (40°F to 95°F)
  • Storage Temperature : -10°C to 70°C (15°F to 155°F)
  • Relative Humidity : 5% to 95% RH
  • Maximum Operating Altitude : 6,500 feet
  • Certification : FCC Class B, CE Class B, BSMI Class B
  • Warranty : 2 Years

For a more detailed specification visit the dedicated Synology page here.

Review:

DS213air backThe Synology DS213j at first glance is very similar to the DS212j that we previously reviewed (here), sharing a similar case design and indeed fairly similar hardware specifications, although with an increased CPU speed. As with other Synology Diskstations, setup requires installation of hard drives and then use of a hardwired connection to a router of network port for setup (installation of the DSM operating system) before the system can be rebooted with settings to use an available wireless network.

Once installed, the DS213j shares it's features with every other diskstation using the excellent DSM operating system, allowing the system to be used as everything from a file or media server through to a cloud backup system or web server and it is this operating system that in our eyes makes the Synology range heads and shoulders over their competition.

Although wireless functionality can be added to any of the Synology servers using a third party USB dongle, the benefit of keeping the limited number of USB ports free for connecting printers is, in our eyes a much better option.

Performance, although obviously dependent on the wireless network it's connected to, is slightly slower over wifi than it's hardwired equivalents, but is still fast enough for media streaming or any of the other functions. When we tested it over a domestic wireless network we acheived average ~40MBps upload and ~64MBps when a mixture of small and large files were transfered to and from the server.

Price:

~£250 - available from Amazon: Synology DS213Air DiskStation (Diskless) 2 Bay Desktop NAS Enclosure with Built-in Wi-Fi Adapter

Verdict:

4/5 - The Synology DS213air comes with issue free wireless connectivity allowing full access to the potential of a Synology diskstation without the need for messing around with wireless dongles, or extending hardwired networks. As with all Synology systems it runs the excellently supported DSM operating system that makes maintenance and usage a doddle for any level of user.


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