Synology seems to be in no hurry to revise the exterior design of its products. The DS210+ looks exactly like Synology products of two or three years ago. The manufacturer seems to think that there is no need to change it.
So, we’ve got an upright case measuring 18.8 x 22 x 16.5 centimeters. The external elements are made from black matte plastic distinguishing the top-performance model from its glossy-white entry-level cousins. The LED indicators and connectors have not changed, either. There are On/Off, LAN and HDD activity indicators as well as USB and eSATA ports on the face panel. You can also see a Power button and a button to copy data from a connected USB drive; both are combined with related indicators. We guess the position of the eSATA connector isn’t quite appropriate, especially as it is not powered. It would be better for this connector to be on the back panel.
There are only two USB ports, one power connector, one LAN port, and a fan grid at the back. The air for ventilation comes in through the holes in the front part of the bottom panel.
By the way, the NAS can be laid on its wide side if necessary, but this will make its rubber feet useless. These feet are good indeed, making the device steady on nearly any type of surface.
The quality of manufacture is very high on the whole, just as we have come to expect from Synology.
As you know from our reviews, Synology’s entry-level products of the 2010 model year are based on the ARM platform. As opposed to them, the DS210+ is based on the Freescale MPC8533E processor that has the PowerPC architecture. And you may also know that a very similar processor was used in Synology’s top-end NASes of the previous year. The difference is in the new processor’s having a hardware encryption unit which is denoted by the added letter in its name. We will check this feature out in our tests.
The system memory is represented by a 512MB DDR2 SO-DIMM. Replacing it with another module will void the warranty. The NAS has 4 megabytes of flash memory to store a bootloader.
Compared to the DS209+II model, the DS210+ has a SiI3531 instead of a SiI3132 chip to support eSATA and an 82574L instead of an 88E8001 chip as a network controller.
The device is cooled by a 70x25mm fan with automatic speed adjustment. The main processor has a heat-spreader on. There is a thermal pad on the reverse side of the PCB that transfers the heat to the NAS’s case.
The DS210+ is average in terms of noisiness. It won’t be irritating even in a home environment.