Roon!!!

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arthur

Roon!!!
« on: 2 Apr 2021, 07:25 pm »
Finally got a new Mac Mini M1 and set up Roon. I’m still learning it, but so far, I have to say that it sounds great and the user experience is dangerously addictive.

The program feels kinda like the bastard child of Apple, Wikipedia, and every record nerd you’ve ever met. It’s still has room to improve (e.g., search function and album recognition can be better), but it looks like they are going full steam ahead with updates. So many details that I’ve never expected. I almost flipped out when I saw that it even gives you the upcoming concert dates for whoever you are looking at. I guess it’s their way of trying to make sure you don’t turn into a hermit with so much to explore at your fingertips.

I wish I had set this up at the beginning of the pandemic.

Tyson

Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #1 on: 2 Apr 2021, 08:34 pm »
I use Roon too.  There's also an outstanding EQ function you can use to get bass tamed in your room. 

lokie

Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #2 on: 2 Apr 2021, 08:51 pm »
I'm a ROON lover as well. I also enjoy the seamless integration with TIDAL.

newzooreview

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #3 on: 2 Apr 2021, 10:36 pm »
I setup Roon a couple months ago, and, for what it's worth, here's what I ended up with:

1. An Intel NUC dedicated as a Roon ROCK server. I started with an M1 Mac Mini as the server, but it would not reliably serve 192/24 files. Clicks and pops. Lots of troubleshooting on a home network that is small-enterprise quality. Turned out to be the Mac. Roon develops their server software as a light, custom Linux installation, and an Intel NUC is their canonical server. All other version of Roon are adapted to the operating system and incur all the interrupted and competing system processes that Roon has eliminated from their pared down Linux implementation. Many people get Roon to run ok on various home computers, but for the best audio quality, the dedicated Roon ROCK server built according the their excellent instrucations is best. Roon sells a pre-built version of this as the Roon Nucleus on their website.

2. Server is connected by ethernet to 1 Gb switch and an Allo DigiOne Signature or Pi2AES running Ropieee is also hardwired to the same switch. Again, a dedicated, stripped down Linux purely focused on cleanly pulling audio from the ethernet input and getting very low jittter signal out to Coax or HDMI I2S (in the case of the Pi2AES). An Allo USBridge Signature is an option as well, but USB has been tested to be a weak link (e.g., https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jvu_doQfAI0).

3. This can then go to a digital-to-digital transport (I use a Denafrips Gaia) for further jitter reduction and conversion (as desired) before heading to the DAC.

The biggest lesson learned for me was to keep the whole chain running on highly optimized, pared down Linux boxes. General purpose computer OSs just have too many irrelevant processes going on and too much eletrical noise to be good audiophile components.

fittebd

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #4 on: 2 Apr 2021, 11:18 pm »
Roon is incredible.  I love it. Been using it for about 3 months now.  I did the same NUC of amazon with i7, 16GB and 128GB drive.  simple to snap together and put on linux.  Hard drive will all my music.  Ripped SACDs to DSF files, DVDAudio to FLAC.  bought some albums of hires sites.  dump all on that hard drive attached to usb to NUC.  All that for under 700.  Can skip on processor and memory to save some cash.  You can do this for all under $500.  Now roon itself is not cheap.  But its addicting when tied to Tidal or Qobuz.  Hoping amazon comes soon.  Play something you like and it shows all the people who helped or guested on the album along with suggestions from the music genre and others that are similar to the performers.  You discover so much. 

You can buy an all in one streaming what is called "end point" that is roon compatable.  I choose the Matrix Mini Pro-3.  Does all things, has the good clock and just plug into LAN (wired is best) and off you go. Many of the integrated amps are now streaming capable and roon tested.  Best way to go with this and get so much more use out of your loved system.

thrak76

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #5 on: 22 May 2021, 01:53 am »
Another Roon lover here! I’ve been discless for quite some time, and I’ve used just about every media player out there. Roon is the best player out there, hands down - especially if you integrate Qobuz (or Tidal).

I currently use an intel NUC for the core, with an HDMI connection to my processor. Various chromecast devices provide endpoints throughout the house.

If your digital music library is managed well, Roon just works.

muslhead

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #6 on: 14 Sep 2021, 02:16 pm »
Am still on my trial (which has been extended 2x due to poor/nonexistent support).
So far, i do like the sound and once its up and running it seems to be seamless and a great interface. I am just not sure its better than jriver, especially when considering the cost differential. As with all choices, each comes with their own benefits and detriments and, at least for me, the pendulum is still stuck in the middle. I will likely by a years subscription to Roon and see if the time extension will make the decision easier. The good news is once you buy jriver, there is no further cost unless you want the new features each upgrade brings. And, each upgrade is less than $30 so its very easy on the wallet.
Any Roon / jriver users out there that had the same dilemma? which way did you go and why?

Craig B

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #7 on: 14 Sep 2021, 06:53 pm »
I had a 90-day $0.99 trial at the start of the year, and it was great fun. I ended up canceling, though, for two reasons:

1. It didn't fit my lifestyle. By that, I mean in order to get the most out of it, it would consume nearly all of my free time. And while I might be willing to do that, the rest of my family would not. Shutting myself in the listening room even more than I do now would not be looked on kindly.

2. Expense. I just couldn't justify the cost (especially if the social construct of family life limited my time with it). Even the annual subscription wasn't worth the price to me. I briefly considered a lifetime subscription, but when I went to the website to arrange for payment, I saw it had increased from $500 to $700. That kind of stuck in my craw, especially since it hadn't been that long since they bumped it up to $500. It appeared they hadn't given a lot of thought to what price point a lifetime subscription needed to be, and were doing their best to discourage them. And as an older person, the effect of that is compounded, especially on a fixed income. It becomes a gamble whether one expects to live long enough to recoup that initial outlay. I'm old enough that I decided I wasn't willing to take that bet.

Again, these are my own personal issues. The only fault I can assign to the company is their pricing, and I understand the value quotient will be different for everyone, depending on their circumstances. But the software itself, as I said, was great fun.

jtwrace

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #8 on: 14 Sep 2021, 07:15 pm »
I've been a lifetime subscriber now for 5 years so it has paid off at this point.   :green:   It has been a life changer in terms of music discovery and just streamlining everything.  I have zero complaints! 

I recently built a 10th Gen NUCi7 which now holds the core and use the Convolution Engine within Roon which all works seamless. 

mgalusha

Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #9 on: 14 Sep 2021, 07:43 pm »
I've been using it for some years as well, lifetime sub when it was still $500. I tried it upon initial launch and it was not suitable for my use, but tried it again a year or two later and found it did what I needed.

I was using an i7 NUC for Roon ROCK and ROCK on a couple of end points, but it didn't always behave as desired. I set up dietPi linux as a virtual machine on my VMWare server and installed Roon server and the needed bits. All the headless end points are also running dietPi but with Roon bridge. I have three endpoints running that, they are dead reliable and it has no problem streaming files at any bit rate, they are all connected to a GBE switch. I have the desktop version on my shop PC and my office machine, works fine and mobile clients on an iPad and a couple android devices. Earlier versions of the android app had issues but it's been well behaved for quite some time now.  The bridge clients typically use about 250MB of ram, super lightweight. The living room device shows 243M at the moment. Roon server is considerably hungrier, at the moment the server is using 5.45GB and roon is nearly all of that. Probably more info than anyone wants. ;)

Nick B

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #10 on: 14 Sep 2021, 10:17 pm »
Roon is excellent and it very nicely integrates Tidal and Qobuz. I took a chance on the lifetime subscription when Roon first came out. Roon core is on my iMac desktop and I can use my iPhone, iPad or iMac laptop as remotes. It all works great together and I’ve been using an Auralic Mini with it since inception. The lifetime subscription price increase was discussed over at the Roon forum and they quite prefer having monthly subscribers. It’s a great product imho  :thumb:

sebrof

Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #11 on: 15 Sep 2021, 02:40 am »
Just throwing out my own experience with Roon, so take it for what it's worth.

I had Roon with my Innuos Zen MKIII music server and loved it. The interface is wonderful, easy to use, sort through, find new music, play, etc. Never really had a hiccup worth noting.

In July Innuos came out with a new version of InnuOS operating system which basically does most of what Roon does...maybe like 80% or something like that. It's free, and the sound quality is head and shoulders above Roon. I'm not sure why, don't really care but it is.
If it weren't for the SQ improvement I just might have kept my Roon subscription because the interface is really good, but I cancelled because InnuOS is close and sounds better.
Just my 2 cents.

dburna

Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #12 on: 15 Sep 2021, 02:40 pm »
Roon server is considerably hungrier, at the moment the server is using 5.45GB and roon is nearly all of that. Probably more info than anyone wants. ;)

Actually Mike, this is exactly the level of info. I wanted. Thank you.

Question for others: is 5.5GB of memory for Roon server consistent with your experience? I think my mini PC (used largely as a dedicated music server) has 16GB, so I should be good there, but I have a massive music collection, so I am thinking that Roon server would probably take up even more memory for me.

Additional question: does anyone know if monthly or annual membership fees can be applied towards a lifetime license? I am considering Roon going forward but wondering if it makes sense to plunge in completely or to pay-as-I-go until I am sure it is the right thing to do.

Thank you, -dGB

Nick B

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #13 on: 15 Sep 2021, 03:40 pm »
Actually Mike, this is exactly the level of info. I wanted. Thank you.

Question for others: is 5.5GB of memory for Roon server consistent with your experience? I think my mini PC (used largely as a dedicated music server) has 16GB, so I should be good there, but I have a massive music collection, so I am thinking that Roon server would probably take up even more memory for me.

Additional question: does anyone know if monthly or annual membership fees can be applied towards a lifetime license? I am considering Roon going forward but wondering if it makes sense to plunge in completely or to pay-as-I-go until I am sure it is the right thing to do.

Thank you, -dGB

It doesn’t appear Roon will allow that.
https://help.roonlabs.com/portal/en/kb/articles/can-i-apply-what-i-ve-paid-for-the-yearly-subscription-towards-the-lifetime-subscription

dburna

Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #14 on: 15 Sep 2021, 03:44 pm »
It doesn’t appear Roon will allow that.
https://help.roonlabs.com/portal/en/kb/articles/can-i-apply-what-i-ve-paid-for-the-yearly-subscription-towards-the-lifetime-subscription

Crap. Oh well, now I know. Thanks for dropping the knowledge, Nick.

Does Roon ever have a Black Friday deal or anything like it? I'm sure it's great, but $700 is steep for a piece of software...from my perspective.

-dGB

mgalusha

Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #15 on: 15 Sep 2021, 07:27 pm »
Actually Mike, this is exactly the level of info. I wanted. Thank you.

Question for others: is 5.5GB of memory for Roon server consistent with your experience? I think my mini PC (used largely as a dedicated music server) has 16GB, so I should be good there, but I have a massive music collection, so I am thinking that Roon server would probably take up even more memory for me.

It's not constant, it seems to creep up over time. I updated to Debian 11 this morning and that resulted in a reboot. At the moment, the roon server is using 1.6GB but it's creeping up as I type this (music is playing via Qobuz). I've read threads that this occurs no matter what version of Linux it's running on. It might occur on the ROCK server but since they don't allow access to the server, there is no way to really know. I don't know if it exhibits this behavior on a Mac but looking at the processes running, I suspect it was written using Mono to make it platform independent, so it may use the same code on other OSes.

I don't think the memory is tied directly to the library size, it keeps a database on disk after indexing and cataloging.

Here is the output when looking at via top.

Code: [Select]
PID USER      PR  NI    VIRT    RES    SHR S  %CPU  %MEM     TIME+ COMMAND
712 root      20   0 4156836   1.9g 477528 S   4.7  24.1   8:57.35 RoonAppliance

HTH, Mike

Saturn94

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Re: Roon!!!
« Reply #16 on: 15 Sep 2021, 08:34 pm »
Crap. Oh well, now I know. Thanks for dropping the knowledge, Nick.

Does Roon ever have a Black Friday deal or anything like it? I'm sure it's great, but $700 is steep for a piece of software...from my perspective.

-dGB

Nope, no “sales” on Lifetime Licenses.  Roon explained they intentionally raised the cost of the Lifetime License to discourage users from going this route.  They keep saying in the future the price will go up again or they will delete the option entirely.