A Roon/Bluetooth/Airpods Pro surprise

I got a pair of Apple AirPods Pro. Was not even using them with Roon or anything else–just testing out the fit (poor in the right ear). I had music playing–Internet Radio via Roon–on the main system. Roon Core is on ROCK on a NUC. I use a MacBook Pro as a remote.

When I took the AirPod Pro out of my right ear, the music stopped. I then opened the computer/remote, looked at the Roon main screen, and did it again with the same result. The music stopped immediately when I pulled the Pod out of my ear.

The airpods have been set up on the MacBook Pro, but the first time this happened, the MacBook Pro was closed; are the Pods still connected when the laptop is closed? That must not matter, since I can think of no other way the AirPods could be controlling Roon.

I guess the most surprising thing is that the music that stopped was in a zone with a regular DAC. I have set up a zone, just for playing around, with “system output” as the end point so that I can send that out by BlueTooth, but the music wasn’t playing in that zone, and I wasn’t listening to it.

Anyway, this came as a surprise. I’m still not sure exactly what happened.


This happens to me all the time when I’m using my AirPods in Zoom meetings (gotta love pandemic life :slight_smile:). Taking it out of your ear will pause the player on the device that they are paired to. Apparently the Roon remote is listening for these events and pauses the player. It would be a better experience if it only did that when playing to a zone on the device, not a remote one.

I love my airpod pros, the sound quality is just ok. OK enough that they aren’t offensive, but I won’t be retiring my other equipment. But the integration with my pandemic life is wonderful, I use them anywhere from 10 to 20 hours a week on meetings and calls. I bought them on a whim before the pandemic hit and I’m so glad I did. The typical airpods don’t fit my weird ear-holes well so the rubber tips on the pros were a godsend.

BTW, in airpod aware programs (apple music for example), taking one airpod out pauses. Removing the second one stops.


It would make total sense if the system output were the endpoint for Roon, since that’s what gets output via BlueTooth. There’s no reason, though, that the music on my main stereo should stop then. On the contrary–it makes more sense to stop the music on my main stereo when I put them in!


I agree with your take on the sound quality, although I might be a little more generous. I thought they were fine. I could live with them, given the functionality.

What I could not live with was the poor fit in my right ear–so, kind of the opposite of you. None of the provided tips allowed me to get a good-enough fit. (I could get a decent seal long enough to evaluate the sound, but not much longer, and when I was active or exercising, it fell out. The left wasn’t much better.)

But I now have another Bluetooth in-ear I’m planning to use in the vicinity of my computer. We’ll see i that works out any better.