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Synology DiskStation DS420+ review: Four bays are better than two

Store up to 72TB of data on this beast.

The Synology DiskStation DS220+ is a brilliant NAS enclosure, but it may not be for everyone since the two drive bays are a little on the restricted side of the capacity chart. This is where the DiskStation DS420+ comes into play with an additional two drive bays. Here’s my full in-depth review of this very capable NAS.

Synology makes some cracking enclosures and the DiskStation DS420+ is right up there with the best of the bunch for general use and for Plex. The Intel processor is excellent, so too is the upgradable DDR4 RAM. If you want to do a little more with a NAS enclosure than simply storing files, this may be the ideal pick for you.

This review will help you decide whether this is one of the best NAS for you.

Synology DiskStation DS920+

Synology DiskStation DS420+

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

If you like the DS220+ but need additional bays the DS420+ is for you. It has similar internals but expanded capacity support, making it ideal for a busy home.

  • Intel Celeron J4025 processor
  • Great value
  • Four drive bays
  • Can run Plex
  • Excellent for file storage
  • No 2.5 or 10 Gb LAN ports

Synology DiskStation DS420+: Price and availability

Synology DiskStation DS420+
Rich Edmonds / NAS Master

The Synology DiskStation DS420+ is listed for $500 on Amazon, which is the standard price for this four-bay enclosure. It’s in line with what the DS220+ and DS920+ cost and you’ll find other brands offering similar four-bay NAS at about the same amount.

Promotions like Amazon Prime Day are great ways to save a lot of money on a new NAS enclosure like the DiskStation DS420+ so be sure to keep an eye out.

Synology DiskStation DS420+: What you’ll love

Synology DiskStation DS420+
Rich Edmonds / NAS Master

A two-bay NAS enclosure has enough capacity for file storage and the like, but an additional two drive bays open up a world of possibilities. If you’re considering Plex Media Server, four bays is where you should aim as the base and the Synology DiskStation DS420+ is one fine example.

If you’re familiar with other Synology DS NAS models, you’ll know precisely how the DS420+ will look. It has four hot-swappable drives upfront with the power button and all the status indicator LEDs. The top is bare and the sides have branding.

There are two fans on the rear panel that help pull air through the NAS, cooling the drives and processor. Two 1Gb LAN ports are joined by the second USB port (the first is on the front). A DC input handles power delivery from the external power brick.

SpecificationSynology DiskStation DS420+
ProcessorIntel Celeron J4025
Dual-core (up to 2.9GHz)
GPUIntel UHD Graphics 600
RAM2GB DDR4 (max 6GB)
Drive bays4
Capacity72TB
Expansion2x M.2 (SSD cache)
Cooling2x 92mm
Ports2x 1Gb LAN
1x Rear USB 3.0
1x Front USB 3.0
Power draw~ 28.30W
Dimensions166 x 199 x 223 mm
(6.54 x 7.83 x 8.78 inches)
Weight2.18 kg
(4.8 lbs)

The 2GB of DDR4 RAM is more than enough for most NAS tasks you’d run on a Synology enclosure. If you’d require more, a 4GB module can be installed to bring the total up to 6GB. There are two M.2 slots that can be used for installing NVMe SSDs to act as a speedy cache.

Each Synology NAS is capable of running the company’s excellent DiskStation Manager OS. This is one of my favourite operating systems for prebuilt NAS enclosures. Version 7 is the latest release and has a user experience that matches what you’d usually find on desktop or notebook PCs.

Synology DSM 7.0

The DiskStation DS420+ takes a few moments to set up and install everything. With a Synology Account, you’ll be able to access the NAS from anywhere in the world without having to worry about external IP addresses. Various apps like Plex Media Server can be installed using the Package Center.

It’s a fantastic NAS enclosure that can do numerous tasks. You’ll struggle to find weaknesses with what’s included in terms of specifications of hardware and software.

Synology DiskStation DS420+: What you’ll hate

Synology DiskStation DS420+
Rich Edmonds / NAS Master

The Synology DiskStation DS420+ costs $500, which is a considerable chunk of change for a NAS enclosure that doesn’t have at least a 2.5Gb LAN connection. It does have two 1Gb LAN ports that can be aggregated for additional bandwidth, however.

Synology DiskStation DS420+: Competition

ASUSTOR AS5304T
Rich Edmonds / NAS Master

There’s plenty of competition in the two and four-bay NAS enclosure segment of the market. The DiskStation DS420+ has to contend with the TerraMaster F4-421, which happens to be a full $30 more affordable with similar hardware. An issue with TerraMaster NAS is the OS, which isn’t as refined as Synology DiskStation Manager.

Synology DiskStation DS420+: Should you buy?

Synology DiskStation DS420+
Rich Edmonds / NAS Master

Who should buy this?

  • If you want an affordable NAS.
  • If you need a NAS with four drive bays.
  • If you want a decent NAs experience.
  • If you want to backup devices and media.

Who shouldn’t buy this?

  • If you want to set up a powerful 4K media server.
  • If you have more than 72TB of data to store.
  • If you want an Intel processor.

Synology’s catalogue of NAS enclosures is ideal for the home or a small office. The DS220+ is my go-to option for most people who are picking their first NAS, but if you know you’ll need more than 18TB of capacity, the DiskStation DS420+ is a very close second.

The specifications of the two enclosures are very similar, aside from the number of drive bays. This NAS server will easily handle file storage and even run a Plex Media Server. It’s just a shame that 2.5Gb and 10Gb LAN ports are locked away for more expensive Synology NAS only.

Synology DiskStation DS920+

Synology DiskStation DS420+

I’m a huge fan of the DS220+ and its larger sibling is just as good, allowing you to pack the NAS full of even more data.

By Richard Edmonds

I've been covering the tech industry for more than a decade and have tinkered with NAS for just as long. Follow my ramblings and more right here on NAS Master!

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