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You are here: NAS NAS Reviews Synology DS1512+ Disk Station Reviewed - Features

Synology DS1512+ Disk Station Reviewed - Features

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The 1512+ supports all the features in Synology's DiskStation Manager (DSM) 4.0 OS. DSM is probably the most graphically ambitious of the OSes from QNAP and Thecus, using a multi-windowed interface illustrated in the screenshot below.

Synology DSM desktop

The DSM 4.0-2228 build I used for testing has a pretty extensive feature list, which is described in Synology's DSM Highlight pages. I'm going to attempt to summarize many of the key features below.

General Features

  • Individual drive, JBOD, RAID 0, 1, 5, 6, 10 with hot spare for RAID 5 volumes, EXT4 filesystem
  • Synology Hybrid RAID (SHR) (Allows mixing drive sizes)
  • Multi-volume support (512 maximum)
  • Hot-swappable drives
  • SMB/CIFS, HTTP/HTTPS, NFS, AFP, WebDAV file access
  • Online RAID expansion and RAID level migration
  • FTP/SFTP with upload / download bandwidth control and connection limit
  • HTTP / HTTPs admin access
  • Joins NT Domain / Active Directories for account information
  • Dual Gigabit Ethernet ports supporting Failover and 802.3ad link aggregation
  • IPv6 support (very basic)
  • iSCSI target support (32 max, 256 LUN max.)
  • User quotas
  • Email alerts
  • Logging
  • USB print serving w/ Google CloudPrint & Apple AirPrint support
  • Scheduled power down/up
  • Programmable idle disk spindown
  • Wake On LAN


  • Scheduled Backup to USB and eSATA drives
  • Schedulable To/from rsync backup with optional encryption and compression
  • Apple Time Machine support
  • Client Backup: Synology Data Replicator (Windows)


  • BitTorrent/ HTTP / FTP / NZB / eMule download service w/ scheduling (via add-on)
  • iTunes server (via add-on)
  • UPnP AV / DLNA media server (via add-on)
  • Web photo serving with Facebook integration (via add-on)
  • Web audio player (via add-on)
  • Video surveillance support, up to 20 IP cameras, 1 camera license included (via add-on)


  • iOS and Android apps for photo, audio, IP cam and file access
  • Web server with MySQL and PHP support

In addition to the features above, DSM supports a wide array of additional features via installable add-ons. The current list of add-ons is below. Just click the links for add-on descriptions.

You can also check out the live demo. The product datasheet also provides a concise feature and spec summary.

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User reviews

Average user rating from: 2 user(s)

NOTE! Please post product reviews from actual experience only.
Questions, review comments and opinions about products not based on actual use will not be published.

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4.3 Features :
3.5 Performance :
4.5 Reliability :
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What Bob (the reviewer before me) didn't cover

Overall rating: 
Reviewed by kly
July 02, 2012
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What Bob didn't cover in his comments:

- The Surveillance Station is extremely advanced in it's capabilities and support from Synology is really great. Indeed, if you want to connect more than one camera, you have to buy additional licences. If you choose not to pay for this amazing software and support, you can always install open source packages (since it's a linux based device) like you have to on most devices of other brands.

- I haven't noticed any CPU or RAM increases on my unit. However, if it would occur, you can easily monitor CPU and memory usage through the UI. Go up to the resource monitor. This utility will give you a nice graph showing the usage of both. If you click on one of those graphs, you get a nice overview of all processes and their percentages of the selected resource they use.

- Indeed, there were some problems with the upload of photographs in the past. However, they only occured in previous firmwares. With the new DSM4 (installed on the 1512 by default!) this isn't the case anymore.
Also, this problem only occured when you uploaded photo's through Photo Station (a nice package by Synology to showcase your photos). Uploading them the regular way (Samba, NFS, SFTP, FTP, HTTP, ...) didn't cause any problems.
In fact, we shouldn't be spending so much comments on this because it has been fixed months ago.

The only minor for me is the price. There are some (I admit: B-brands) that are cheaper. However, I have never ever regretted my purchase.
Support is absolutely great and their constant firmware-updates and release of packages is great.


What the review doesn't cover

Overall rating: 
Reviewed by Bob
June 28, 2012
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It has become clear in the all the reviews I have read that very little time is actually spent with the units because some interesting, and potentially decision impacting, features and functions are not mentioned.

I have a DS1512+ and can comment on a few of the items which go unmentioned in other reviews.

1.) IP cameras. Synology used to allow several IP camera's with the purchase of the unit. They have changed their policy with later firmware/software releases so now only one IP camera is supported in the purchase of the unit. Additional IP camera licenses cost about $60 each. This change of policy, regardless of their explanations, makes me wonder if future upgrades of firmware/software will remove the single remaining license from the unit and force users to pay.

2.) When your Synology unit begins running the disks a lot of the CPU or RAM increases, you have no way to determine what process on the machine is causing the higher use through the user interface. All you know is that it's busy/slow.

3.) Uploading a large number of photographs to the machine is extremely slow. This is because the NAS creates thumbnails for it's DSPhoto application. If you do not upload the images via the Synology Assistant software, the NAS CPU will attempt to thumbnail the images, which makes the CPU run at about 50% on that one task until it is completed. 1000 images would convert on the NAS in about 3 weeks. If you upload via the Synology Assistant, your computer CPU is used instead and each photo thumbnail can be converted in 5-15 seconds, depending on your hardware. For 1000 images, this could take 4 hours. Photographers, who have tens of thousands of images are looking at days or weeks to upload. When a new version of the Synology firmware/software is released, it apparently tries to re-create the thumbnails. I have not experienced this myself, but mention is made in their user forums.

Good luck and read the manufacturer forums before you make a purchase decision.