Roon Discussion

Discussion in 'Computer Audiophile: Software, Configs, Tools' started by AllanMarcus, Jul 3, 2016.

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  1. winders

    winders Mentally ill. Do not engage.

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    Yes, I suspect I will do that too. It’s not that I am necessarily dissatisfied with Tidal. It’s that I want to see what Qobuz’s library is like compared to Tidal. I most use Tidal to find music I like. Most of the time I end up buying the CD. I suspect I would use Qobuz the same way.
     
  2. direstraitsfan98

    direstraitsfan98 D2Girls v2.0

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    Is there any benefit using Roon over jriver for playing back your digital music collection? I know Roon can interface with Spotify, Tidal, etc, but aside from that, is there any good reason to be paying $100 a year for Roon, when you can just pay $60 one time, for life time for a home license for jriver?

    I suppose I can milk out two months free trial using two different credit cards. The skeptic in me thinks that Roon is overhyped and unworthy of its price tag, but I'm also scared I'll like the experience of the software so much that I'll wind up paying for it. That'll be $20 a month for Roon + Spotify, $30 if I went with Tidal. Does anybody here do one of those combos?
     
  3. winders

    winders Mentally ill. Do not engage.

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    Roon does not interface with Spotify or any other streaming service except Tidal at this time. Qobuz is expected soon.
     
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  4. msommers

    msommers High on Epipens

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    Connectivity to my DSJr is flawless with Roon over the network but not nearly as reliable using JRiver. Additionally any sampling is better than JRiver.

    I’ve been in this same situation myself. Frankly the interface and file management is light years ahead of JRiver but the cost is still so hard to justify for fucking software when literally everything else out there isn’t even close to their pricing.

    I’m using JRiver now because every time I thinking of buying Roon, the though of $700 cad for a program that isn’t making me money (like Adobe for example) kind of makes me throw up in my mouth a little.
     
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  5. Brad Tombaugh

    Brad Tombaugh Almost "Made"

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    I’m using Roon with Tidal, for $30/month. Here is how I rationalize it: Before I started using Roon and Tidal, I was buying a couple of albums (or more) per month from HDTracks when there was something on sale that I was interested in. This was costing $30-40 per month.

    First, Roon’s interface is marvelous. It integrates the metadata from your music library with information from sources like AllMusic.com to provide loads of details about artists, albums, tracks, credits for performance and production, etc. This includes hyperlinks to other artists/albums/musicians which allows you to explore connections with other music in your library.

    Also with Roon, I can manage my music library easily. I am a Mac user, and still use iTunes to manage and sync my music with my iPhone and iPad. Roon can be pointed to my Music folder which includes all of my iTunes Library. In addition, I can move any of the FLAC files, etc., that I have collected into the Music folder as well, outside of iTunes, so that Roon can see all of my music collection. If I have multiple versions of the same music, I can set which one I want preferred as the default.

    Second, with Tidal, for the cost of one album per month from HDTracks, I get access to an enormous library of high quality music. I’m using Tidal because of it’s integration with Roon, and will probably switch to Qobuz when its available, in part because of its extensive jazz collection, and because I’m not a fan of Tidal’s use of MQA. I’m anticipatating that Qobuz will integrate with Roon in the same way that Tidal does today.

    The best part is that Roon integrates all of this together seamlessly. I can “favorite” Tidal tracks or albums to “add to my library” where they show up side-by-side with the music that I own. I can also create playlists combining music from my iTunes library, FLAC files, and Tidal tracks. I have added a number of albums from Tidal to complete my collections for several artists, for instance.

    While @AllanMarcus has mentioned that it lacks a versatile rating system, it has a much more robust tagging system. In iTunes, you can only mark one genre per track, but Roon allows you to add an unlimited number of tags. You could create “rating” tags to have finer control over ratings, I suppose. It also has more powerful filtering/searching/sorting capability.

    Roon is also quite versatile. I have my iMac setup as an endpoint with my Gungnir Multibit, but I can either remotely control the music playback from my iPad, or I can use the iPad as an endpoint as well. I have a TEAC HA-P50 portable headphone amp/DAC that I can use with the iPad or iPhone to stream hi-res music from Roon, anywhere in the house. I haven’t setup additional endpoints in other rooms, but I could if/when I need to. I have created grouped “zones” before with both the D/S DAC in my Jotunheim along with my Gungnir Multibit, and used the volume controls to match the output as Gungnir Multibit is quite a bit hotter that the DAC module in the Jot. This synced the same track to both DACs for easy A/B comparison by switching the input on the Jot. While this probably adds some dithering noise in the Gungnir Multibit, it was effective for some basic comparisons.

    I feel like for less that I had been spending at HDTracks, I have better access to more music, with more options for finding what I’m in the mood to listen, quickly and easily. The cost is consistent and predictable, so it’s easy to manage the subscriptions, so it doesn’t vary from month to month.
     
  6. Faust

    Faust Rando

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    I have been using JRiver for about half a dozen years now. The cost is reasonable and I update every year to support the company. Along the way I have tried Plex, and earlier this year, Roon.

    My music and video files are on a QNAP server. I connect to QNAP through a Surface Pro 4, and also either of two Window 10 JRiver NUCs, one at my desk upstairs, and the other in my living room console downstairs. My music files are flacs, and my video files are ISOs.

    I also have an Ipad Mini, and occasionally connect to my QNAP server via the QServer app for music files, or the native IOS app, Ipeng. While waiting at a doctor's office recently, I was remotely connected to my home NAS music files through my OnePlus 3T smartphone, and Qmusic QNAP app. A very nice convenience, but not a necessity.

    I was disappointed that PLEX does not support ISOs, and Roon does not support videos of any type. I was very impressed with Roon's visual layout, accessibility to files, and ease of investigating genres, composers, etc. However, it just wasn't enough for me to justify the high cost of Roon, and it's inability to play my Video files. Likewise, the absence of video file playback, for me, with Roon.

    I really like Roon, and would switch, but for the lack of video file playback.
     
  7. bigant

    bigant Rando

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    Am I the only person who finds that Roon’s iPad app only running in landscape format unless you have a 12” pro incredibly irritating, or am just too fussy?
     
  8. Taverius

    Taverius Smells like sausages

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    Nah it irritates me too (it's the same on my android tablet) so I launch it on my phone a lot.
     
  9. direstraitsfan98

    direstraitsfan98 D2Girls v2.0

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    I appreciate all the detailed responses you guys, @Brad Tombaugh and @Faust you've convinced me to at least give them my credit info for the free trial. Just noticed its 14 days, but I think I can figure out if it's worth it for me or not by then.
     
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  10. pedalhead

    pedalhead Friend

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    So, 1.6 has finally been released, the headline feature being Qobuz integration. Great that Roon no longer has all its streaming service eggs in the Tidal basket. I've been testing it this morning & all seems to work well. They've also made the usual UI changes, mostly for the better imho, although the play bar at the bottom of the screen looks a bit out of place (in dark mode at least).

    Another feature I've been waiting for that they've implemented is integration of Tidal/Qobuz into Roon radio. Should be a great way to find new music if the algorithm is decent.

    Full release notes here... https://community.roonlabs.com/t/roon-1-6-is-now-live/58657
     
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  11. beemerphile

    beemerphile Friend

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    I'm close to jumping off the Roon cliff with the other lemmings (and getting off the Tidal Hip Hop Train as soon as Qobuz hits the station). Would anyone care to comment whether a purpose-built box like the SGC Sonic Transporter i7 or Roon Nucleus+ is worth the tariff as a Roon Core, or is it easy enough to build the equivalent by installing ROCK/HQPlayer on a suitable NUC? I'd like something small, headless, low energy, and as hassle-free as possible. I have a power-hog i7 PC I could dedicate to Roon if that makes better sense.
     
  12. pedalhead

    pedalhead Friend

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    NUC all the way. The Nucleus is horrifically overpriced imho and only really for people with cash to burn who want a turnkey solution with zero effort. I've used various devices as roon servers and have settled on an i5 NUC running ROCK . In over 18 months I've had absolutely no issues with it, and ROCK is dead simple to install.

    EDIT - only caveat is if you have a crazy huge library...? Then you may require an i7 at least.
     
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  13. Taverius

    Taverius Smells like sausages

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    NUC is super easy.

    You order it sans windows, when it comes you install ROCK on the ssd, then you puts your music in the internal spinner or external spinner and you're done.

    I'm not sure what the value-add of a bespoke box is, unless you want it to be pretty because you'll install it where it's visible because you were lobotomized at birth.

    Don't do that, they do have a fan and when it's scanning music it sounds like a tiny jet engine.

    Be sane and stick it somewhere hidden you can run an ethernet cable to and can dust regularly.
     
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  14. JeffYoung

    JeffYoung Friend

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  15. msommers

    msommers High on Epipens

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    For anyone else like myself who has/had no idea what NUC/ROCK is...

    https://kb.roonlabs.com/Roon_Optimized_Core_Kit

    How does one had more music to the NUC? Or does it retrieve the files/database from my Desktop and process it locally in the NUC using ROCK?
     
  16. Broberto

    Broberto Acquaintance

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    Yeah I'd recommend a 7th gen i5 NUC - consumes less power than the i7 model and 8th gen models and has plenty of oomph for running ROCK, unless you want to upsample beyond DSD 128 (I get 7x processing in Roon when upsampling to DSD128, so plenty of processing "headroom")

    I bumped the fan speeds down in Bios and I sit far enough away from my stack that the fan noise doesnt bother me, but I have been eyeing a fanless enclosure like the Akasa Plato X7. Even with a case like this factored in you are $500 cheaper than a base Nucleus (running i3) and half the price of a Nuc+ or other pre-built solutions

    http://www.akasa.com.tw/search.php?seed=A-NUC37-M1B
     
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  17. pedalhead

    pedalhead Friend

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    ROCK auto-shares your music drive so you can connect to it like any other network share for copying music files.
     
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  18. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    I’m a new Roon user (installed 60 day trial on my laptop a few weeks back).

    Loved it so much, I purchased a used 7th gen i3 NUC recently that was configured optimally for Roon ROCK - cost less than half of buying one new.

    Installed ROCK myself in about 40 minutes - it was super easy. Then put in my Tidal credientials and pointed it to my NAS drive full of music (2 mins). And voila - all my music being indexed in no time and ready to start playing.

    I can’t get over how easy Roon is to setup and use and how fast it is to control from the tablet/phone app. The only problem is the price, but I guess for this ease of use and performance plus all the meta data and recommendations etc, you get what you pay for. I do some minor upsampling as well with no issues. I have yet to hear the fan kick in on the NUC.
     
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  19. pedalhead

    pedalhead Friend

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    Yep, they're a talented bunch of developers imho. For the most part, roon just "works". It's been fun to see how much it's moved on since the early days. DSP & convolution a while back was a big update (for me at least), and now with Qobuz it's going from strength to strength. I don't always agree with their UI choices, but functionally it's a really solid product. Not cheap though, yeah.

    @rlow , do you experience any latency with your music on NAS? I mean, when browsing albums, starting tracks etc...? I used to have a NAS but moved my music to an external USB drive connected to my NUC (originally running Windows, then linux, now ROCK), and found it to be quite a bit snappier.
     
  20. msommers

    msommers High on Epipens

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    I download all my music so it's nice and easy using the download programs, like promaster et al, but I don't want to have to unplug a USB drive, copy/paste the new album over and plug it in again. I assume there is a more automated way to do this?
     
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