Drobo 5N2 alternative from Synology

I am in the market for a NAS storage that really works. I bought a WD MyCloud Duo/Mirror and was vastly disappointed. I am moving from my DAS to NAS as my wife is a flight attendant and I want to build my own cloud storage as we travel. I am interested in the Drobo 5N2 but wanted to know what was the comparable Synology alternative drive? And what gives the best performance for the $$$. Also, the Drobo use mSATA SSDs in its accelerator bay…any recommendations/limitations on whose makes a good SSD? Also does Synology have similar technology? Who’s is better for long term?


If you are traveling often you definitely need something with a transcoding engine. Drobo doesn’t offer this functionality, but Synology does. It will also let you automatically backup your phone, geotag photos and recognize places and people in your pictures. With this functionality you can zoom into any corner of the world you have been and it will show photos taken there. Filter what time you wanna select or which places or people and easily access media you need. Video content can be streamed to anywhere in the world over a secure connection. You can also save movies and songs on your tablet or iPhone for offline viewing.

There are 3 models I would consider getting: DS418, DS418play or DS918+ as alternative

DS418 is affordable solution tailored for new generation video files (not as good for older types of videos) – review

DS418play – is capable of streaming and transcoding all types of media and still be powerful enough to do many other tasks

DS918+ similarly like Drobo, has a msata SSD slot at the bottom (two of them). It also has a more powerful processor to be able to do very same tasks what PLAY model would do, but just a little faster. You should consider SSD only if you plan to have 5 or more users accessing NAS quite frequently. Or if you plan to build something complicated like a virtual machine server or database server.



What hard drive to choose?

I would recommend WD Red NAS drives,  as they can automatically reduce spin rate when data is not being accessed, that will save some energy and be environmentally friendlier.

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