This was posted 1 year 8 months 8 days ago, and might be an out-dated deal.

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Synology 4-Bay NAS DS918+ $615.20 / DS418play $503.20 + Delivery ($0 w/Plus) @ Computer Alliance eBay

1020
PSAVECA

Since there's always good interest in the Synology 4-bay NAS enclosures, the current pricing with coupon on the DS918+ is $615.20. The DS418play is $503.20 for those who don't need the performance benefits of the 918+.

Whilst I'm not entirely convinced on buying the DS918+ given it came out in November 2017 making it about two years old now, I'm sure the specifications and performance will still be plenty for most consumer NAS applications. I do note that the DS918+ has been cheaper before with other sales/Amazon deals/etc (you can check the history on OzBargain) but I haven't seen it below $600 lately so depending on your urgency, this might also be a consideration. If you're on the fence and also looking at other 4-bay NAS options from Synology, here's a convenient table I pulled together since I've been monitoring these since the last sale.

Model 18/11/2019 Less 20% eBay
DS918+ 769 615.2 https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/4-Bay-Synology-DS918-4GB-DiskStation-Scalable-Gigabit-NAS-Unit/172916617612
DS418 Play 629 503.2 https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/4-Bay-Synology-DS418play-2GB-DiskStation-Gigabit-NAS-Unit/172918868747
DS418 599 479.2 https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/4-Bay-Synology-DS418-2GB-DiskStation-Gigabit-NAS-Unit/172918862643
DS418J 449 359.2 https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/4-Bay-Synology-DS418J-DiskStation-Gigabit-NAS-Unit/172829501965

Alternatively if you are wanting a 5-bay NAS and wanting to spend (disproportionately) more, I have included the DS1019+ below so we can start to build up some history of pricing on OzBargain. This appears to be the cheapest price I can find today on StaticIce and eBay.

Model 18/11/2019 Less 20% eBay
DS1019+ 1149 919.2 https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/5-Bay-Synology-DS1019-8GB-DiskStation-Scalable-Gigabit-NAS-Unit/173850958387

Again, for those who are curious about price movements vs the last sale in September 2019, here's the differences (note that DS418 Play might be the "value buy" this time around):

Model 18/11/2019 22/09/2019 Change
DS918+ 769 749 20
DS418 Play 629 699 -70
DS418 599 599 0
DS418J 449 449 0

Unfortunately I do not have historical price details on the DS1019+ from the last sale as I wasn't actively researching it back then. Hope this helps.

For those looking for NAS drives, refer to NAS drive deals
Original Coupon Deal

EDIT: Just spotted the DS918+ marginally cheaper at $614.40 at Futu_Online with the 20% off coupon PLOTS20 ending 21/11 > https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Synology-DS918-4G-4-Bay-NAS-Inte...

EDIT 2: Adding in the DS1019+ just so we start to have a bit of a history of pricing on OzBargain for the 5-bay model. Hopefully it'll get more heavily discounted in the future, but I guess at $919.20, it's still cheaper than everyone else on Staticice/eBay.

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closed Comments

  • +8 votes

    Good effort adding the extra info.

  • +3 votes

    For the true Ozbargainers, Futu has it for 80c less ($614.40) with their coupon PLOTS20:
    https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Synology-DS918-4G-4-Bay-NAS-Inte...

    Edit: I see OP already updated this. Good work OP!

    • +1 vote

      It annoyed me when I had just finished formatting the damn thing and thought I'd double check it was still the best deal at the moment! But thanks for the call out!

    •  

      Never thought I'd see the day when Futu is cheaper than CA.

      • +1 vote

        From memory it's happened a couple of times before (when I was building a PC a couple of months ago) but usually by only a dollar or so.. in which case I tend to stick to CA just because I've had good experience with them when there were issues and I needed to exchange a DOA drive.

  •  

    What's the best option if you don't need video encoding?

    • +3 votes

      Like literally just a place to dump files?

      Cheapest/most basic option would be a USB drive plugged into your router.

      But if you want an actual NAS with some functionality like torrent manager, user access controls, redundancy, etc.. get the "j" value series. I have an older 216j (2-bay) which is going strong and works great (making it a bit harder to justify upgrading it) and if your media client is able to do the decoding itself, then you really don't need anything fancy.

      Note that think this one through as the upgrade path from a "j" value series to the bigger brothers isn't as straightforward - for some reason (I'm sure there's a technical explanation), the value series can't migrate to the other series just by dropping the hard drive into the new enclosure.

      •  

        I have a DS213J, the interface is slow and I need 4 bays.

        It litterally is a dumping ground for all my backups and media, I also have it syncing with family members Synology devices for offsite backups.

        • +1 vote

          I actually want to embark upon a syncing with family members for offsite backups journey too which is why I was thinking of asking for a new NAS from Santa (aka wife). Given you are actually using your NAS properly, I'd just go for the 418play or the 918+ which have the Intel processors over the Realtek ones and should in theory give you much better performance in everyday use. If you have certain data which you regularly access, the DS918+ with the m.2 cache slots might also be appealing but even in my own use case similar to you where it's more for dumping files with no clear pattern over what I read/write more frequently, the cache is unlikely to improve performance that much (maybe the UI loading?).

          • +1 vote

            @jace88: Cheers for your input, these were the two I was going for. I won't regularly access files off there, I reckon the 418Play would be the way to go if I'm not transcoding.

  • +1 vote

    Wow, your posts are great!

    • +1 vote

      thanks! I figured I may as well help offer some relevant comparison options as well when posting a deal.

  • +3 votes

    Jace88 … next time I spot a deal I'll just PM you - the formatting and wording are top notch. Keep up the great work. Maybe a new mod job in the future if ozbargain is hiring ;)

  • +1 vote

    I have the DS918+ and i'm very happy with it. I have put 16GB RAM, 2x 512GB m.2 SSD cache and 4 x 8TB drives in it. I am using it for TimeMachine backups, Plex, Sonarr, Radarr, SABNZBD, Unifi Controller etc. It has a cheap USB UPS attached to it that just plugged any played. The biggest weakness in it is the CPU for raw speed, Unpacking a rar for a large movie can take some time. This is not a problem for me as I prefer the lower power usage for 24/7 operation and the CPU has a TPD of 45w. The CPU in the 918+ is also not an Atom, Like many NASs at this price point because of this it has an Intel GPU, Plex is able to take advantage of the GPU for hardware accelerated transcoding.

    •  

      Quick question on plex performance - do you have any remote users streaming or more than 2 concurrent streams?

      Keen to hear how the performance is on this before pulling the trigger.

      Cheers!

      • +1 vote

        I've had 6 concurrent people playing stuff remotely at the same time off a DS918+, CPU hit 30%. No problems at all.

      • +1 vote

        Most nights there are 2-3 people streaming off it, It will really come down to what the source content is and what the playback devices are. When Plex is streaming "direct" there is no CPU usage, It's just sending the file over the internet so the NAS could handle as many direct streams as your internet connection can support. Transcoding is what uses the CPU and GPU, So playing a 1080P h265 encoded video on a Chromecast at 720p in h264 requires a lot more effort. Most of my media is in 1080p h264 and users usually direct stream, I've seen it doing 3 transcoded streams at once no issue as it was taking advantage of the GPU (hardware offload). Transcoding of audio can't be offloaded to the GPU and if you get really high quality source content with Dolby Atmos, Even if if you direct stream the video the audio transcode could cause CPU issues.

        If you want 4K 10bit HDR with HEVC on Plex this might not be the NAS for you. If you have good playback hardware like an Nvidia Shield, Almost everything will direct stream and you won't need to worry about CPU and transcode limitations.

    •  

      Hey mate.. could you help me with setting up unifi controller on the 918? Is there a link you followed?

      •  

        I've recently moved my unifi controller to my DS918+ using this link: https://lazyadmin.nl/home-network/unifi-controller-on-a-syno...

        It was easy enough to follow despite no prior background using Docker.

      •  

        I'm using a Ubuntu 18.04.3 LTS VM. All i'm doing to update it is sudo apt update && sudo apt install unifi.

        https://help.ubnt.com/hc/en-us/articles/220066768-UniFi-How-...

        https://www.instructables.com/id/Ubuntu-Virtual-Machine-in-a...

        •  

          Noob question, am I right to understand that you replace the original os and install Ubuntu on this nas? Can I install Windows 10?

          Can you install VPN like windscribe and utorrent?

            •  

              @hutsy: Virtual machine? I don't understand how it can be useful especially with limited ram?what is the use case?

              •  

                @DisabledUser225214: Similar use case as newdad had above, run a small application which requires an install on an OS.

                Also the DS918+ is expandable up to 8GB (just add a 4GB so-dimm chip). So you could have two or three VMs each using 2GB and still have plenty left over for basic file services on the NAS.

                •  

                  @hutsy: Very interesting. I have to think if I have enough use cases to justify a purchase.

                  At the moment I'm just using a wd my cloud. But I could sell my pc that only runs torrent and plex from time to time. I suppose I will save more money from electricity.

                  Can I expect just move the hard drive to this nas and it just work or i need to do file transfer?

      •  

        You can just add the Docker package, and create a unifi-controller container (which would use less resources than installing an Ubuntu VM just for the controller.)

        https://hub.docker.com/r/linuxserver/unifi-controller

    •  

      Can I use it like a personal cloud like Dropbox, how good is the apps?

    • +1 vote

      I have been thinking about an SSD cache and more RAM for my 918+. If you don’t mind sharing, which brands did you opt for, from where and what price? Thanks!

    •  

      The spec sheet says the DS918+ has a max 8GB RAM. Did you need any tricks for the 16GB?

  • +2 votes

    The 918+ series is nearly two years old isn't it? Any word on when the new models are out? Great work on the formatting OP btw.

    • +1 vote

      yeah they have a sticker on it for an award in 2017 - surprised that they don't update their lineup every year.

      •  

        Does that mean the 918+ is no good anymore since it didn't win an award in 2018 & 2019?

        • +1 vote

          I don’t even think there’s much challenge in the competition in this segment from QNAP and Asustor (or anyone else) but I would always take those gold medal stickers with a grain of salt.

          Back to the previous point though I’m also surprised they don’t update or refresh annually but then maybe this goes back to my paragraph above.

        •  

          My point wasnt about the awards - it was that they dont update the model with new cpu and memory every year which is a shame

    •  

      They've already announced next year's models and there's no 918+ replacement in the range.

  •  

    Quick need a good deal on HDD's now.

  •  

    Looking for thoughts please as looking to make a pounce if the bargains are right on Black Friday,

    Would the DS918+ & the WD100EMAZ when shucked into the DS918+, make for a good PLEX server that can transcode 1440p files?

    Thank you

    •  

      Well, you buy synology just for the software and ease of use. But to answer your question, yes it should be fine. Just don't expect live transcoding or much multitasking. It's less of a media machine and more of NAS.

      The DS918+ has a Intel Celeron J3455. If you're wanting more media hosting than a pure NAS, I would just buy my own server with a ryzen and ECC ram and just chuck it on UNRAID / FreeNAS etc.

      Plus there's some downsides to Synology, they tend to keep the HDD's on the toasty side which can lead to earlier HDD death.

      •  

        Yes I use an HTPC doubling as a server.
        Stick a fan in front of the hard disks and likely get long life out of them.
        They sleep when not accessed so no worries.

    •  

      I am using the DS918+ with 4x WD100EMAZ. The HDDs are running anywhere between 33C to 36C.
      I run Plex on it with HW decoding and I can HW transcode 2x 4k streams to 1080p.
      Transcode 4x 1080p movies as needed without a hiccup. You need Plex pass for HW transcoding.

      •  

        Yeah it's a great little machine. I would recommend swapping the fans though. Your temps are good, but mine was hitting 38 - 45c, all dependent on temp ambient.

        Since I live in QLD the room temp would hit 30c so the HDD'S were mid 40's. This sort of temperature ruins the drives in the long run.

        •  

          Was planning to keep this inside a close cupboard, I guess it's a bad idea then.

          •  

            @DisabledUser225214: ventilation is always a good idea with computing equipment.

            your cupboard while closed is not going to be 'airtight' - but you do want to get air in there (and the hotter air out) if something is pumping out heat into an enclosed space.

            you could do this by putting in a vent or grille for the cupboard (so it could stay closed) - as passive cooling. Or you could put a ceiling fan or similar to suck any air in the cupboard into the ceiling cavity..

            •  

              @jason andrade: What is passive cooling?

              I rather not drill holes in my cupboard. Atm I got usb desk fan blowing at my pc. It's pretty spacious cupboard as well.

              •  

                @DisabledUser225214: Honestly his idea is pretty good, a vent will cycle some air out. You could put the NAS in there if you upgrade or add more fans to keep it cool.

                •  

                  @Azzazz: I see I understand now what he meant. I think I can make holes at the back and cover with grill to keep dust or insects away.

                  I think I can also install some fan if necessary.

    •  

      If you have a 4K TV, it's most likely able to transcode 1440p by itself. Our 3 year old Samsung can. However 100Mbit TV network cards might be a bottleneck, which can be solved with AC WiFi.

  • +3 votes

    DS218+ at $383.20 is a bargain too - DS218+

  •  

    Recently bought EUFY security cams. Any idea if any of these NAS would work with them?

  •  

    No faith in Synology after my DS1515+ turned brick with the AVR54 bug and PSU issue. Damm thing literally belly up right out of warranty period. Customer service couldn't run fast enough to wipe clean of any assistance.

    Rocking my FreeNAS with custom server setup now, should have done it long time ago.

    •  

      I had a family member with this device / issue. Gave it to me to look at as it was 2 months after the standard warranty expiry.. I didn't touch it after I Google and found they extended the warranties another 12 months as part of the issue. She didn't collect it from me for another few months.. and when she finally contacted them she had a new working unit in 2 weeks.

      •  

        If I can remember correctly, with extended warranty it was 4 years in total for me. Unfortunately the brick bricked itself 3 months or so out of the warranty period. My previous Synology CS406e is still working, albeit they stopped supporting the firmware and I can no longer map the drive unless I disable some security settings on my computer.

        That said, Synology did try to wiggle out of the CPU fiasco. Not getting my money this time for sure. I think people are averse about the unknowns of building their own server and using the likes of FreeNAS or OMV. Given the amount of money a decent ready to go NAS box cost, it's probably more cost effective to build your own. OMV can work with cheap builds, FreeNAS requires better gear but at the end of the day, I'm not subject to proprietary parts at the mercy of manufacturers like Synology.

        • +1 vote

          I did - Odroid H2 $190 (incl shipping), Crucial 8x2 $85 (Non ECC), Intel 512 Nvme $90, 5v4a Adapter $20, DIY Case + fans $20 (All AUD). Bonded + 2 HDD + OMV + Docker + Duplicati + Backblaze work like a charm.

  • +2 votes

    Worth noting that if anyone wants more than 4 bays, in terms of both cost and performance, you're better off building one yourself.

    <=4 bays are the only NAS units that make financial sense, and only on sale really.

  •  

    I'm still running my PLEX on an old Mac Mini and it hasn't missed a beat, however would a NAS serve me better…. and what model for video sharing?

    • +2 votes

      It's easier for me to say this to you than it is for me to realise it if I were in the same situation trying to justify a solution by looking for a problem… but if it does what you need it to do, and you haven't hit any limitations, then why change?

      That being said if it was all about futureproofing and you were convinced of the various other benefits of a NAS with a well supported platform/OS, then maybe you might want to consider one with the potential to do transcoding on the fly like the 418play or better? But if your (client) devices are just going to load the file and decode them on the client without transcoding required, then honestly, even the 418j is overkill for that.

      Suggest you look up various benefits/uses of a NAS and see which ones interest you because that'll help you work out if you want to invest in this since keep in mind, it's not just the enclosure but also the drives you'll need to buy (don't need all 4 though).

  •  

    Never understood the "4K Video" capabilities on marketing NAS' for the higher category? Can't all NAS do "4K Video"? All you need is a video player that can decode it eg. VLC?

    I understand if multiple devices will be playing 4K Videos at the same time, then the higher end NAS makes sense (better CPU/RAM/Networking) but for a single device or 2 a cheap sub $200-250 NAS does it fine?

    •  

      I get where you're coming from and I think it probably should be explained better in the marketing. Here's two excerpts from reviews of the DS918+ and DS418play respectively which explain it a bit better.

      There's a difference between decoding and transcoding when it comes to media playback over the network. The former is the simple process of the NAS sending a media file to a recipient device for display. As long as both devices support the same file type, there's no intense process for the CPU to handle. If the compatibility check fails, the CPU needs to transcode the file into a format the receiving device can handle — that's a lot to ask of a media server.
      If you have a 4K TV or device on the same network as the DS918+ and everything supports the same 4K file format (.mkv in this example) you're good to go and shouldn't hit any walls. The NAS will stream the media file to the TV or device and it'll play. If the TV or device doesn't support the file format, you'll need to transcode it.

      Source: https://www.windowscentral.com/synology-diskstation-ds918-go...

      "Mobile devices supporting 4K video recording are becoming increasingly popular. However, since 4K video clips are capacity-consuming and not all TVs at home support 4K video playback, users tend to record videos with lower resolution as an alternative," says Synology product manager Michael Wang. "With DS418play supporting up to 40TB of raw capacity, users can store their favorite videos in ultra-high definition, organize and share videos with families and friends effortlessly, and transcode videos on-the-fly to allow video playback on devices that do not support 4K."

      Source: https://betanews.com/2017/09/29/synology-ds418play/

      •  

        Ah ok thanks. Makes sense for incompatible devices/formats.

    • +1 vote

      Make sure the NAS has a gigabit networking port, and make sure your client can play the videos without transcode (I.e Nvidia shield) and any NAS will do.

      Most of the 4k stuff on higher end NASs is just marketing.

  • +1 vote

    I have a noob question which of theses would be best for a solo working photographer, I alternate between desktop and laptop and occasionally iPad.can I transfer data over wifi?

    •  

      I've used wifi with a Synology NAS before and it works fine, but honestly it's alot easier and faster if you are able to plug it into your wireless router directly over Ethernet. It helps with stability, removes one more point of potential failure, etc… but that being said I used wifi when I used to keep my NAS locked up in a cabinet which couldn't reach, but then I ended up relocating my wireless router so that it could.

      As for which is best for a solo working photographer, I assume you have a large amount of data from RAW footage. It doesn't sound like you need any of the transcoding or higher end features but rather you just want something which can store data and serve it up to your devices whether it be your desktop or laptop, or even your iPad when you're at home or out. In that case I'd probably go basic with the 418j and populate it with two large drives using SHR to get some redundancy but also opportunity to grow. This way as your needs change/grow over time you can add in more larger hard drives to get capacity, and it's unlikely you need hot swappable since you won't be changing drives out too often except when you go to upgrade.

      Some people might suggest going for a higher end model which can apply analysis to your photos and index them or something, but I've always found those technologies to be a bit hit and miss… and I don't even know if they'll work with RAW footage. You're probably better off managing your own file structure.

      Note the above is coming from someone who is NOT a photographer but rather I just have lots of iPhone/DSLR photos of my kid. Maybe another professional on here might be able to share their experience.

    •  

      Forgot to mention you’ll need to buy a USB wireless adaptor if you don’t want to use the inbuilt Ethernet.

  •  

    Is it possible to backup iPhones to this?

    •  

      Sortof.

      You can backup your photos/videos using the Synology apps (similar to OneDrive/Dropbox/Google Photos). You could also back up your iPhone to your PC using iTunes and then save the backup on the NAS drive. But there's no native functionality (AFAIK) to backup straight from an iPhone to the NAS similar to the iCloud/iTunes backups.

      •  

        Ok, that makes sense, thanks heaps!

        • +1 vote

          The benefit of this setup is you can disable iCloud photos so your iOS device backups will become significantly smaller (assuming photos and videos take up much of your storage space) since apps themselves don’t usually get backed up (only your documents and save data will which is typically a lot smaller than the app).

  •  

    Hmm, to buy now or hold out and wait to see if a new version ( i don't need it for about 4 months). Although surely a new one will be more expensive than this.

    •  

      The OzBargain dilemma. You want it but don't want to pay full price, you wait for it to drop in price, but then you wonder should you wait for the next one around the corner, and then the cycle continues :)

      In all seriousness, if you're waiting for the next DS918+, I doubt the new one will come out that soon - maybe mid next year would be my guess. It may be announced earlier than that but doubt it'll be available to buy let alone at an OzBargain-worthy price. Whilst it is 2 years old, Synology usually preview their products at one of their events and they didn't show a replacement for the DS918+… and some would say that it's because the DS1019+ is the successor to the DS918+, although IMO it's the same thing but with one more drive bay and the second RAM slot filled (all other specs the same including processor).

      If you know you'll definitely need it in 4 months time, then the question becomes whether the current range (or the specific model you want) will go up in price by then. Unlike hard drives which IMO is more susceptible to FX fluctuations than technological change/obsolescence, I think the NAS should be on a downward trajectory given a lot of the key specifications are a bit old now and there will either be a new Synology or a new competitor from QNAP/Asustor/etc. which will bring updated specs to compete. If it were me I'd just wait a little anyway since 20% off Computer Alliance sales seem to come every month or two, and their pricing whilst fluid, doesn't move that much usually. Your risk appetite however may vary and you could just lock in the price now though. (not helpful am I?)

      •  

        A partial solution to the dilema is to buy using a credit card with price protection.

        Buy it now… use it now… and if it drops in price later you can claim the difference back.
        I believe the 28 Degrees card even lets you claim back if you see it cheaper from a different reseller within 1 year - which is crazy.

        •  

          Do you know if any of those schemes work with prices reduced due to coupon codes though?

          • +1 vote

            @jace88: Ive claimed several times on eBay purchases bought with 10-20% off discount codes.

            If originaly bought using a discount code (eg 20% off) you need to decide when you claim whether to use the actual price you paid as the "original price"..

            …or to use the 100% (pre-discount) tax invoice price as the original price, but say you only paid 80% on the credit card and paid the other 20% with a voucher etc.
            In that case, the price drop protection is pro-rata. If if the drop is $100 but you only paid 80% on the credit card, you can only claim 80% of the drop eg $80.
            Makes the claim more complicated.

            •  

              @systmworks: That's cool. I'll have to weigh up whether I'd buy outright or use my various discounted eBay gift cards from prior deals!

              • +1 vote

                @jace88: Yeah that complicates things - choose between likelihood of a future drop you could claim on, vs guaranteed small discount via gift cards.

  •  

    Good recommendation for filling the extra ram slots on 918+?

    •  

      Do you need more RAM or just contemplating?

      I find it funny to think my DS216j with its small amount of ram (512mb) works fine (albeit a tad slow) so just asking in case you haven’t actually tried out the DS918+ yet.

      •  

        Yeah not yet, i'm still traumatised by my experience with a Seagate business nas I purchased. The plex media service is having so many issues and crashes while initially searching the files on the drive. I'm sure this will handle it fine. But always worth knowing. I don't have it yet. I actually bought the DS218+ and cancelled to get this instead.

        •  

          Well given DS220+ is announced (just realised this), I'd also go for one of the models which isn't being replaced yet as well. I'd suggest use it first before upgrading to make sure you know if you need more RAM.

          •  

            @jace88: Think I'm going to go for it with this deal jace. Get this and the extra security licences now (along with a Plex pass and hdhomerun), then get hard drives on black friday.

            What did you end up doing?

            •  

              @kulprit: Ended up not buying anything. Have to exercise self control since my DS216j is going strong and I've still got 600gb free space… so decided to just wait until next generation of NAS comes out and hopefully by then I can justify the spend. In fact I'm using it now to watch some of my old movies streamed to my Apple TV's VLC whilst I post on OzBargain :)

              • +1 vote

                @jace88: Sounds good. I need everything by about March so not too long to wait.

                And currently running a HP 54nl so while ok can't do a lot.

  •  

    In case anyone is still following DS918+ and Computer_Alliance on eBay, it's currently $719 (as at 30/11) less 15% which brings it to $611.15