A newbie question on Roon Core installation please

Roon Core Machine

M1 IMAC, 16GB RAM

Networking Gear & Setup Details

NAIM UNITI ATOM connects to ROON CORE on M1 IMAC via WIFI

Connected Audio Devices

Number of Tracks in Library

ZERO. I dont have any music library. I mainly stream Qobuz via ROON

Description of Issue

Greetings to all! I’m so thrilled to find a better music listening experience by streaming Qobuz using Roon to Uniti Atom, which connect to Kef LS50 Meta and pair of Rel T5x subwoofers. I was in cloud 9 every time listening to music in the past week. I have a few questions please since I am so new to Roon.

  1. From what I’ve heard was the sound quality is much better streaming music from my IMAC (Roon software) than streaming from my iphone (Roon Arc). The music sounds a bit louder, clear and resolved. Are my ears correct?

  2. right now I have my IMAC to run 24/7 because of Roon Core. I am thinking of getting a older mac mini 2014 and have it run Roon Core headless. my question are:

. Can I run Roon Core on the older mac mini and have roon software run on M1 iMac?
. Would the sound quality be worse running Roon Core on an older mac mini than the M1 imac?

Thank you!

That would depend on how you’re listening from the phone and what sort of phone it is. If you’re using Bluetooth from the phone to headphones or speakers then this will affect SQ to some degree.

I’m not able to give a definite (tested) answer here but if you mean using the M1 iMac instance as a remote for an old Mac Mini core, I see no reason why not.

Sound quality should be identical, particularly if you’re playing to bridges connected by ethernet.

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Welcome to Roon and the forum!

Be aware that there are two apps for iPhone, Roon Remote for home use and Roon ARC for when you’re out and about.

The Roon Remote is just a remote control for your Core. It has nothing to do with the actual audio stream, the stream comes from the Core and goes to your various endpoints, like the Atom, just like when using the full Roon app UI on the iMac. (Note that the iPhone remote has not all the features of the full Roon application on the iMac but is focused on replay control and some simple editing, due to screen size)

This is the Roon Remote on the App Store:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/roon-remote/id1014764083

Roon ARC is for mobile listening to your library over the cellular phone network (though it also works on your home wifi). It can only output sound to the iPhone, e.g. for using Bluetooth headphones. Because its audio path goes through the phone and then lossy Bluetooth, it can have an effect on audio quality. It also has its own streaming quality settings for bandwidth saving in the app settings, so check those.

This is Roon ARC on the App Store:

Note that it may be (depending on your router and ISP) necessary to do some setup work to make ARC work from the cellular network because it must be able to talk to your Core at home.

More about ARC in general:

ARC FAQ:

Setting up your home network for mobile ARC access:

Yes, this is one of the main great things about Roon. You have one Core that does the streaming and any number of remote controls, either on the same machine as the Core (like you have it now on your iMac) or on other computers, tablets, and phones. The streaming always comes from the Core, which remote you use makes no difference.

Currently you have the full Roon app on the iMac, which includes both the Core and the Remote functionality. You can split it up and have the Core running on the Mini (possibly without UI, just the Roon Server) while you use the iMac, iPhone, iPad as remotes (and/or remotes on Android or Windows, of course)

(Plus there is Roon ARC for mobile use out of the home)

You should start by reading this:

No. Probably every 2014 Mac mini is fast enough for basic operation and streaming, but how fast it responds to the remotes (e.g., when browsing or searching) and whether it’s fast enough for more demanding DSP and multiroom usage depends on which one you have. They came in 1.4, 2.6, 2.8, and 3.0 GHz variants - a significant difference from the slowest to the faster ones. 2.6 should probably be just fine for even demanding usage.

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Your Mac Mini should be able to handle Roon as a Core. My 2017 MacBook Air which has a 1,8 GHz dual core i5 CPU handles being a Roon Core with ease. With several endpoints served at once if needed.

It plays my local music, and streams Tidal and Qobuz. Also handles Roon ARC without issues.

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