Anyone running Roon Core on a *non-dedicated* M1 Mac Mini?

I’ve seen several discussions of people running Roon Core on dedicated M1 Mac Minis with good results. Has anyone run Core successfully on an M1 Mac Mini that is also used fairly intensively for other purposes? I tried looking for threads about this but didn’t find much – sorry if I missed the relevant discussion.

I ask because I’ve tried several clean installs of Roon Core on an M1 Mac Mini with 16 GB RAM (running Monterey 12.2.1) that is also used as a full production machine, running about 10-15 other work apps at the same time. I have experienced Roon Core to be unusable, beach balling all the time. I’m hoping that this is a temporary issue until there’s a native version. Meanwhile, any data points from people runnning Core on a non-dedicated M1 Mini would be very helpful – thanks in advance for any information.

EDIT: for context, Roon Core used to run just fine on an old Intel-based iMac that ran the same set of apps and was used in the same way.

FURTHER EDIT: I do know that running Core on a non-dedicated machine is not the ideal or recommended way – and for that reason, in my “serious” listening areas, I run Roon Core on dedicated NUC i7s running ROCK and Win 10 Pro respectively. But the Macs are my work computers and it would be much preferable for me to just run Core on the work computer. As this did work just fine on the previous work computer (2014 iMac – with a fusion drive, not even an SSD), I am trying to figure out why it doesn’t run on a 2021 M1 Mac Mini with SSD, which is used in the same way as the iMac. Actually, come to think of it, Roon Core used to work just fine on the iMac while it was running Parallels+Windows 8 all the time – so the M1 Mac Minii has a much lower load.

Are they not on the same network? I still think the cost and effort of dedicating a NUC or similar is well worth the effort. This doesn’t explain why you are experiencing instability (or whatever) though but juggling the variables with half a dozen other intense apps at one time? Good luck! :smiley:

I run a MacMini M1 16GB 512SSD split with 2 volumes…11.6.x. and 12.2.1 and 11.6.x was extremely stable but running without anything on it, as was the same for 12.2.1

I’ve moved this to the #roon area for now…

I have general Issues with the M1 Mini and Montenrey. I still experience memory leaks on many different Apps - native and Rosetta. So after running the machine for 2-3 hours I have to restart the machine and everything is fine again.

For me this is not limited to Roon (I not run the server on the M1 Mini though). But roon is most noticeable, as playback sometimes drops. But it’s also noticeable for switching Apps or running memory intensive apps. Another Mac M1 with a lot more memory has less issues. But gets to the same problem after running for a few hours more…

I am not sure, if the problem is related to the Apps I use or to Monterey itself. But the problem is with different Apps and killing different Apps sometimes helps to recover the machine for some time. But it’s always another App so not related to one app only…

My experience isn’t quite as bad as @Basti’s, but I’m also having problems with memory leaks, particularly with Roon Server and Windowserver. I’m rebooting my core twice a week, and logging out once every week or so.

I’m running a 16GB mini, but suspect the problem would be much worse with just 8GB. I also suspect that it’s Monterey that’s at fault rather than specific apps, as there were some really serious memory leaks when it was first released. The problem is less severe now, but I’m hoping that Apple will plug the holes, because in all other respects I’m really happy with the M1 mini.

Yes, the problems appeared for me with the Monterey update! I had no issues before.

I’m running Roon Core on a M1 Mac Mini 8GB, Monterey and no problems so far.

Thanks, all, for all the information —very useful.

A clear pattern seems to be that problems are Monterey- related.

@Mikael_Ollars — yes, I am now just using the Win10 Pro NUC as a dedicated Roon Core at work, as I was tired of banging my head against the wall of running Core on non-dedicated M1 Mac. Too many variables, as you say.

@wizardofoz — thanks for the info. You’re running Big Sur and Monterey on different partitions, is that right?

@Basti — sorry to hear of the extreme issues you’re having with the machine in general. I seem to have been spared those in general, except with Roon.

@DaveN — you’re running the non-GUI Roon Server on the M1 Mini, is that right? Is that machine mostly dedicated to Roon?

Thanks again, everyone.

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Thanks! Is the machine mostly dedicated to Roon?

Yes it is!

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No, it’s my main work machine. Apps that are constantly running include Google Drive, Dropbox and Safari. Apps running a lot of the time: PowerPoint, Excel, Word, Google Chrome Canary and the Roon control app. Apps running less frequently include Lightroom and Photoshop.

Thanks, @DaveN — just one more clarification question please — are you running the Roon Core at all on the M1 Mini? You mentioned running Roon Server (which as I understand it is basically Core), and also mentioned Roon Control (which I understand to be Remote but AFAIK doesn’t run stand-alone on MacOS).

Just trying to identify whether anyone is successfully running Core on a work machine that’s an M1 Mac.


I’m running Roon Server (as the core) but also running Roon (i.e. the app that can be used as a core, but also includes the gui). So yes, other than the issues with memory leaks that I mentioned earlier, I am successfully running the Core on a work machine.

@DaveN – many thanks again, I appreciate the additional info.

[Thinking out loud – feel free to ignore :wink:

Hmm… I suppose there could be a difference in the apps I run then, as compared with what you run. I run the following all the time: Firefox, Thunderbird, Calendar, OmniFocus, Devonthink, Notes, Zotero, Evernote, Tomato One, Terminal, XQuartz, Splashtop Personal, Dropbox, Sync, Boxcryptor, Safari, System Preferences, Alfred, Activity Monitor. A lot of Finder windows spread across multiple Desktops/Spaces, or whatever they’re called now. Maybe a couple more applications that I’m missing, running all the time. And in addition: emacs, LaTeX, Word, Powerpoint, Excel, Acrobat, Calculator, Citrix, and Jamovi, frequently. I suppose that could account for the difference in result, even though CPU and memory loads stay in the green.

But again, all of this and Roon Core ran fine on a 2014 intel iMac with the same amount of RAM, which in addition ran Parallels+Windows 8 all the time.

I’m pretty sure I’ve tried Roon on the M1 Mini even when not running all of that stuff, and it still didn’t work, but I guess I should try again if I want to track down the issue. But as not running all the other stuff would not be a viable solution for me anyway, maybe I’ll just skip troubleshooting and keep using the Win10 NUC as Core – at the very least, until there’s a MacOS native version of Roon…]

At the moment I’m not convinced that a native version would make much of a difference. I’m sure it would be more efficient, but if the memory leak issue is down to Monterey, then maybe it would only be a partial solution.

For now, as you’ve already mentioned, I’d suggest you keep using the Win 10 NUC.

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Ah, right, good point – thanks for that reminder.

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Yes exactly…same system just different OS versions. But again sorry stand-alone no other apps running so this is headless at this time.

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Je n’utilise pas Roon sur un Mac mini M1 mais sur un iMac 24" M1.

Je n’ai eu que des problèmes depuis Monterey. C’est un peu mieux depuis la dernière mise à jour.

Mais je dois rebooter mon iMac presque tous les jours et relancer Roon 1-2 fois par jour. Roon prend toujours plus de mémoire après quelques heures. J’ai plus de 7’000 albums.

Pour moi c’est clairement la mémoire qui manque sur mon M1; j’ai 16 Go de mémoire. J’utilise aussi le Mac pour travailler.


Good morning,

I don’t use Roon on a Mac mini M1 but on a 24" M1 iMac.

I have only had problems since Monterey. It’s a little better since the last update.

But I have to reboot my iMac almost every day and restart Roon 1-2 times a day. Roon always takes more memory after a few hours. I have more than 7,000 albums.

For me, it is clearly memory that is missing on my M1; I have 16 GB of memory. I also use the Mac to work.


Thanks for the info. And for the translation!