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Synology VS60 review

Synology VS60
Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £235
inc VAT

Thr VS60 will appeal only to those who specifically need it. Even then, it's not great value for money at this price.

Synology’s VS60 is an unusual product. It looks like one of the company’s single-bay Disk Station NAS devices, but its purpose is much more specific. The VS stands for Visual Station and it works in conjunction with a Disk Station’s Surveillance Station and allows you to display the live feeds from your IP cameras on a monitor or TV.

It’s aimed at businesses using IP cameras for security rather than traditional CCTV cameras, although this limits its audience somewhat. For consumers wanting this capability for home security, the VS60 is rather expensive at over £200, considering it doesn’t replace the Disk Station’s surveillance capabilities – it merely allows you to view the live feeds.

In order to use a VS60, then, you’ll need a Disk Station NAS that supports firmware version of 2.2-0914 or later. This provides the necessary Enable Visual Station tickbox to configure which camera feeds are available to the VS60. You’ll also need to connect the VS60 to your network via its 10/100 Ethernet port.

Everything is set up through the Disk Station’s web interface – you simply drag and drop cameras that have already been configured in Surveillance Station to the VS60’s list to make them appear on your remote monitor. You can also choose whether to show four or six feeds, with six being the maximum.

The VS60 has a VGA output only – a slight surprise at this price – but this means it should connect to just about any computer monitor or flat-panel TV. There are two USB ports (one at the front and one at the rear), which allow you to connect a USB flash drive and mouse. If you connect a USB flash drive, you can save snapshots of feeds as JPEGs. The mouse lets you click on a camera’s feed to toggle it between full-screen and thumbnail views. If the camera supports pan, tilt and zoom, these are also controllable using the mouse. Quality is mainly down to your IP cameras, rather than the VS60’s processing. We couldn’t notice any drop in quality compared with viewing our cameras’ feeds on a PC monitor in Internet Explorer.

For a list of supported IP cameras, check out this page on Synology’s website. Frustratingly, despite Surveillance Station supporting HD webcams, the VS60 does not. It’s maximum supported resolution is 720×576 at 60fps. Audio is output via a mini-jack.

Just as Synology claims, the VS60’s power consumption is low at just 5W. However, the constantly flashing LEDs can become a little annoying and there’s no way to turn them off. This could be addressed in a future firmware update, which would be applied from a USB flash drive.

Being a first-generation product, there’s clearly room for improvement with the VS60. Hopefully some of this can be done via firmware updates, but unless you have a specific need for this type of product, it’s not particularly good value.



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