QNAP or Synology - experience of both - preference?

Task for the new year, is to replace ageing 4-bay NAS. It has already chewed through a couple of drives, so time to update. All backed up, hot swaps succesful.

Use, as well as a music store for a US SSD, photos, files and business matters. I also have used Asset, MinimServer and Twonky on current NAS. In due course, I may add a surveillance capability.

Aim is a 16TB capacity, set to raid 10. While not a trained techy, I have enough experience to be willing to change to a new NAS os system.

Question please, is specifically for those who have experience of both Synology and QNAP. Which do you prefer and why?

Searched the forum, @PeakMan and @Mike-B have posted in the past having experience of both. Perhaps they or anyone else with experience of both, can offer some up to date thoughts? Thanks

Best Rich

…. err … minor point of order, since I’ve got into streaming audio in 2014 I have only owned Synology, but have worked on QNAP units for other people plus a few other brands going back in the past

My Qnap hasn’t missed a beat since I installed it in 2016. I wouldn’t have an issue using Synology but I would also consider a Freenas option if I were buying again.

They both run Linux based operating systems so differences will be mostly cosmetic. I have QNAP but would be equally happy with Synology.

The other thing to consider with Synology vs QNAP is what different software/apps are included in the package.
Synology have recently introduced a new system management called DSM-7, it has more stuff than I can imagine what its good for, too much for a simple audio user like me, but if business, security, photos & films are important, there’s lots to choose from. . Thankfully with Synology its all user selectable & the user only needs install the packages required.

Hi Rich,

If you’re planning to use the device as a NAS, then not sure if it matters as both have an excellent reputation.

QNAP (used to?) produce low profile, media specific devices, usually 2-bay, that did not have a fan. Not sure that’s a good idea for spinning rust hard drives, possibly less of an issue for SSD’s……

Other than that, you pays your money….


There are a few articles on www commenting on wider differences and approaches used by the two suppliers. IIRC in very general terms they both work well. Qnap is more like Android and Synology more like Apple in that the Qnap is a bit higher spec in hardware and more open to tweaking whereas the Synology is slightly less powerful in hardware terms but more efficient operating system (less load on hardware) and less tweakable.
Happy to be told things have changed. I’m using Synology for last 7 years or so, now on DSM7, having used Windows Home Server, Buffalo before that.

I have both. They’re used slightly differently but I have (the same) music store on both. As to which is better, TBH I don’t find a big difference between them. I had a QNAP first and perhaps for that reason find managing the QNAP slightly easier but there’s very little in it. I’d go for whichever offers the features you want at a price you’re prepared to pay. I think it’s more important to fit high quality drives. I use Western Red Plus but Seagate IronWolf are also highly regarded.


They still do. In fact, there’s a new model out early 2022. I have a fanless HS251+ that has been running since I started streaming in 2015. Hope it’s not about to give up the ghost!

Fanless models do typically cost more and can restrict the choice of discs to put in them, but if they’re to be located in the listening room I think they have a place.


After running both QNAP and Synology simultaneously, I by far prefer QNAP.
Nicer user interface, easier to navigate, better looking, easier to adjust to my own likes and preferences and presents better to all of my devices.
I actually disabled the Synology server so that I only now use QNAP, using Synolgy purely as a backup device.
I am using Asset server.

Just FYI, I have updated both my Synology NAS to V7 and would say that it offers a much improved user interface to that offered by V6 and earlier.

One point though - if performing the update don’t forget to create your own privileged account to manage the NAS as the update will disable the default ‘admin’ account and you will not be able to access the device with the admin account……


Annoyingly the above also fails, even with a new Administrator account :unamused:. Seems a configuration reset is required - at least data appears to be preserved.

This has been the most annoying Synology DSM update ever!


I had a QNAP TS-251+ which packed up after approx 5 years. The fault appeared to be a faulty drive, bought another one, not the drive. Contacted QNAP they stated it was a problem with the main board - £270 to fix + P&P - not worth it

Doing some investigations, it appears that there is a known issue with the processor clock (QNAP say they have not heard of this), which can occur any time, look up google, quite a bit of info on there.

The TS-451+ shares the same processor I believe, so I bought a different QNAP model, so far no problems.
I quite like the QNAP software, and the helpline is helpful !

Thank you to all who have posted. No clear winner; personal preference / experience seems to be the most influential factor. I checked the dates earlier, current nas is nearly ten years old, two of four disks are original disks; unit and disks will be retired or used as additional backup.

NAS is away from Naim kit in an adjoining room, so fan not an issue, thankfully.

@Orac I had not previous seen reference to each make as Android v Apple. All Apple here nowadays + my Naim dealer’s techy indicates a preference for the latter and Synology.

@PeakMan yep drive quality comments noted, reliability first, features second, price not so critical. I had both makes on my shortlist, just think SSD at current prices is a spec too far.

Best SH

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