Final ThoughtsAlthough the Disk Station DS410j is the cheapest 4-bay NAS device that Synology has on offer, we feel its performance falls short of the target even considering the price. After all, at around $370 it can still be considered expensive and will save buyers a mere $70 against the next model up, the much faster DS409.
Then you must consider the amount of storage you are after, as anything less than 3TB will probably make no sense with this product. The DS109 was just as fast and in some cases faster than the DS410j, while remaining about 38% cheaper, and can be equipped with a 2TB hard drive for as little as $170. Meanwhile, adding four 1TB hard drives to the DS410j should cost at least $320, taking the total cost to ~$700. At that price level spending roughly 10% more for a much faster 4-bay NAS device (DS409) does not seem unreasonable.
As we see it there is a very small target audience for the DS410j, those who want maximum storage at the lowest price possible without considering performance to be a priority.
While the value and performance of the DS410j may be questionable, the build quality and features are not. Like all Synology products the DS410j is very well designed and comes with an impressive software suite to boot. Disk Station Manager 2.2 is perhaps the best of any consumer NAS device we have seen. The included Windows based utilities are also very good and worked without a glitch.
The installation process of the DS410j has been refined compared to other Synology NAS devices. We were pleased to see they have finally eliminated the messy data and power cable system. Other than the price and performance, the only other problem we had with the DS410j was the painfully slow drive configuration process.
Although the initial steps were quick, when it came time to create a volume we were shocked at how long the DS410j took to configure our hard drives. Creating the 1.5TB RAID0 array took around 5 hours! Never before have we had to wait more than a few minutes to complete this task. However, this issue has been reported by others and at least one user claims that it took more than 24 hours to configure 8TB of storage with the DS410j.
At this stage it is not clear if this is something that can be fixed with a simple Firmware update, or if it is just something all DS410j users are going to have to deal with. All we can do is warn anyone who will be configuring it with 4TB or more that this process could take all day.
The Synology Disk Station DS410j is a mixed bag with great key features that include the software, build quality and design. However, as a budget oriented product, we are not convinced that the value is really there due to its performance shortcomings. Therefore we are reluctant to recommend it and instead suggest our readers to check out the slightly more expensive DS409.