AWS Redshift vs Azure Synapse Analytics – A Comparison (Part 2)

Discover the key distinctions between AWS Redshift and Azure Synapse Analytics

AWS Redshift and Microsoft’s Azure Synapse Analytics are considered the two leading industry-standard cloud data warehouse solution platforms. They offer similar features and have a lot in common. However, some key differences set them apart. Knowing how these differences affect your workload can help you decide which platform is the best for your business. Read more below about the key differences between AWS Redshift and Azure Synapse Analytics.

Architecture and Pricing

  • AWS Redshift and Azure Synapse Analytics bill according to the architecture model used. The architecture model charges depend on storage and computation.

One pricing option of AWS Redshit involves different types of nodes, each having a different performance level. These nodes are bundle configurations of CPU, memory, storage, and IOPS. The price of these performance nodes ranges from 0.24$ to – 13.04$ per hour. For managed storage, Redshift charges about 24$ per terabyte. However, managed storage is available only on one type of node.

  • One key feature of Redshift is the ability to procure reserved instances. These nodes will be billed even if you don’t use them. However, this way, you are going to pay a cheaper price. This is excellent if your workloads are predictable.

Azure Synapse Analytics bills for computation and storage resources separately. They use data warehouse units (DWU), which, similar to nodes, are bundles of CPU, memory, and IOPS. DWUs does not include storage. The prices of DWUs range from 1.2$ to 360$ per hour, depending on the selected configuration. Storage is charged per terabyte, which is about 122.28$ per month.

Data Protection

  • In addition to taking manual snapshots, Redshift automatically takes snapshots as well. These snapshots save changes in the cluster that happened since the last automated snapshot. The default setting for the automated snapshots is after every eight hours or five GB of data change per node.

Administrators can change this setting and increase or decrease the frequency of snapshots. Redshift offers a certain number of free snapshots. However, you will incur charges for any additional snapshots stored when this limit is reached.

  • Administrators can set the retention and deletion period for each snapshot, thus helping them effectively manage their data protection and backup. Redshift creates a cluster and restores all the databases into this newly created cluster to restore from a snapshot.

Similar to Redshift, Azure Synapse Analytics also takes automatic snapshots of its data warehouse units. These snapshots are taken throughout the day and are available as restore points for up to seven days. Restoration is easy and can be done quickly.


  • Redshift and Azure Synapse Analytics have scalability as an inbuilt standard feature. This means that they can scale and allocate resources effectively depending on workloads. This helps to maintain performance.

While both perform equally well, it is often recommended that the end-user run their benchmark tests to determine speed and performance. This is because each end user will have a unique workload.


  • azure synapse analyticsAdministrators serve a key role in the management of both AWS Redshift and Azure Synapse Analytics. In Redshift, computing resource bundles are known as nodes. Nodes are often grouped in clusters to perform various workloads. Each cluster operates a Redshift engine that consists of databases. Administrators can configure and customize these clusters for achieving better performance.

In Azure Synapse Analytics, in addition to scaling the data warehouse units (DWUs) Azure services can also be scaled. This scaling can only be done by administrators. Administrators can also run various performance optimization tasks such as partitioning data structures.

  • If you are confused about selecting either AWS Redshift or Azure Synapse Analytics as your key platform for cloud data warehousing, then contact Henson Group today. We are one of the largest and most highly qualified managed service providers (MSP) for Azure services. We’ve been working since 2002 in the US, Europe, and Asia. Call us today for your free Azure assessment, and let us help you select the best platform for your workload needs.