ConclusionThe DiskStation DS2411+ is currently Synology's flagship on its ever-expanding standard business line. In terms of raw performance, we found the DS2411+ to be a little slower than the DS1511+ in most scenarios, which leaves us to conclude that the new arrival is more about maximizing storage capacity.
After all, the device comes with 12 drive bays out of the box and offers the ability to add another dozen, pushing the maximum storage capacity to 72TB, or 60% greater than the DS1511+ can handle.
It's scary to think how much you could spend on such a set up. With 3TB drives starting at $140 and the more desirable 7200RPM models going for ~$180, we estimate the hard drives alone will set you back between $3,360 and $4,320. Stack that on top of the DS2411+'s $1,700 plus another $1,500 for the DX1211 expansion unit and you're looking at a cool $6,500 for a 72TB storage server.
Unfortunately, you have to spend money to make money and for professional photographers, video editors and graphic designers, the DS2411+ is a smart investment. The DS2411+'s 1.8GHz dual-core processor was powerful enough that several users could access the device at once, copying large volumes of data back and forth. The latest DiskStation handles this kind of demand very well, just as any high-end desktop computer would.
As mentioned above, the DS2411+ is no faster than the DS1511+, but considering its specifications, we didn't expect it to be. In fact, the DS2411+ is no faster than the DS411+II except for two distinct advantages: it supports Link Aggregation for 2.0Gbps bandwidth and it can handle more than four drives in RAID.
While on the topic of Link Aggregation, while an average read/write performance of 195-165MB/s is advertised, it's not always possible to obtain these speeds. Unless you are transferring very large files, breaking 100MB/s is actually quite difficult to do. The CPU is still the primary bottleneck here and it's why we found Link Aggregation had little impact on performance for the vast majority of our real-world testing. Overall, the performance of Synology's DS2411+ was excellent and it's about as good as you're going to get out of an Atom-driven device.
It's safe to assume not many users seeking 36TB or 72TB storage solutions will be housing large volumes of tiny files anyway. As always, we were impressed with the quality of Synology's DiskStation Manager 3.1 software, which is not only powerful, but also very easy to use.
Outstanding product: Synology DiskStation DS2411+ NAS
As I write this, Synology has just launched its 3.2 beta program and we look forward to trying this latest version on upcoming products -- though if you are a current or prospective owner, it's always possible to upgrade your NAS with the latest version, so DS2411+ owners can install 3.2 once it is released.