Synology RackStation RS812 NAS Server – Reviewed

Written by Martin Regtien on . Posted in Storage

synology-rs812 unitThis must be one of the longest running "tests" we've done on any NAS (and we have reviewed quite a few!)...
We received the RS812 from Synology in November last year and now finally 11months later we get to write a review on it!
Why the delay and what good has come out of it?

This is our confession: we plainly had forgotten about this particular unit! Sounds a bit strange but when you review as many storage devices as we do, apparently it can happen that a box gets "lost". We had actually started testing the RS812 back in November after installing it in our server rack. We also have the very similar looking RS810+ which we reviewed a bit earlier plus a few other NAS units like the QNAP TS-EC879U-RP and the Synology RS3412RPxs.
So all these months the RS812 has been whirring away unobtrusively doing its thing, as it should. Never drawing attention to itself...
And that's the simple story of this black beauty getting lost in the black forest of our dark 4Cabling server cabinet!

synology-rs812 in rackSo What's the Difference?
The RS812 is indeed very similar in all things to the RS810+ but with a better price/performance ratio. It has just about all of the great features and capabilities that the DS810+ provides, but almost 50% cheaper.  Here are some more details.

The RS812 is a scalable 4-bay NAS server and scalable to accommodate 8 hard drives with the RX410 expansion module.

The RS812 is more energy-efficient than the RS810+.
The unit consumes 37W in operation while the RS810+ consumes 68W.

The official performance figures are much the same.
The RS812 reads at 107.63MB/sec while the RS810+ at 107.95MB/sec.
Both come with failover support to ensure continual service uptime and both are certified by VMware, Citrix, and Microsoft Hyper-V to provide storage solutions for virtualization servers.

The RS812 is aimed at workgroup and office users, whereas the RS810+ is designed for SMB users, but in reality there's not a lot of difference between the two target groups. Nor is there much difference in the two boxes.  We've done an extensive review of the RS810+ and its companion expansion rack, the RX410, here which will give you all the salient bits of this line of NAS units.

We have no gripes or come across any issues with this unit nor with the excellent software that drives these machines. We particularly like the mobile apps of DSM 4.1 which came out recently which tells you the status of the NAS in glorious detail or through which you can easily share photos, video or songs.

synology-rs812 screenshot mobile

The only slight problem I have with the multitude of NAS units Synology brings out is how to tell them apart from the model number. Usually 4 bay units have a 4 in the model number. Same with a 2 bay unit starting with a 2.  Not with this one though...
Anyways, I had the same problem with the IBM model nomenclature when I worked for them in my younger years. No rhyme or reason to their numbering either!

Conclusion
The Synology RS812 is not the only unit from this Taiwanese top supplier of NAS units that has been slaving away in our offices without drawing attention to itself, just doing its job. These really are boxes you install once and "forget" about them. Even hard drive failures can go unnoticed as the RS812 has many built-in ways to cope with HDD problems.
For users who need a powerful solution for resource sharing, there is no doubt that the RS812 is a cost-effective choice.

In Australia you can find the Synology RS812 for an average price of around $700.

Highly recommended!

Note on the next Synology reviews: coming up is the top-of-the-line RS3412RPxs review which is also a rackmounted model. This will be followed by the WiFi model just announced: the DeskStation DS213air. This last review will have more detail on the latest DSM software and mobile apps. And, for those who don't trust the factory tests about throughput speeds, we'll have some old-fashioned real-life user tests again...

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