The Synology DS415play, while being my first foray into the world of DSM, leaves a good impression. I enjoyed the layout of the Web GUI or DSM 5.0 rather. While it certainly takes some getting used to if you're moving from another NAS vendor, the ease of use goes quite far in aiding the process.
As many of you know, the big advantage of the Intel Evansport platform is the hardware transcoding feature built into the SoC. Of course, this plays into the hands of the people over at Plex, one of largest and most popular media servers available to support the feature. As of today, as you can see in the image above with CPU usage upwards of 90%, it is not supported.
Not all is lost though, as Synology has taken the issue upon themselves and enabled a custom build of ffmpeg to allow hardware transcoding on their own platform. Judging from the image above, and the noticeable improvement on CPU usage down to 23%, we can say it works quite well.
Performance of the DS415play was quite good, and while it didn't top the charts in all instances, we did manage to get some really good numbers from our sequential testing. Perhaps, one of the more intriguing characteristics of the DS415play is its power consumption figures. In testing, we measured a peak of 41 watts during the single client testing, while at idle the Synology unit was able to calm to a nice 25 watts at idle. Of course, this is with WD Red 4TB drives, and your results will depend severely on what hard disk drives are used.
Overall, the Synology DS415play is great solution for those wanting the option for 24TB of storage capacity, along with the ability to transcode and stream media on-the-fly at 1080p, something not all vendors in the market can provide at this point in time.
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