Apple mini as ROCK?

Are there any of you that use Mac Mini 2012 (the last one with a dvd drive) as a Rock.
I am quite happy using it with OSX, but the spec (i3, 8Gb Ram and 500Gb HD) should be enough to use it a a ROCK and I kind of think that would be the ideal: Integrated CD drive (for ripping) and expandable HD (which I suppose could even be converted to an SSD).

I like the sturdy build of the Mac mini and would think that it should work with the ROCK operating system.

But are there any of you that have tried it?

It’s not supported in any way. My guess is you’d be hard pressed to even make it boot the linux distro that powers ROCK. Never mind the lack of drivers. My advice: Don’t even try to go there

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Get a NUC for ROCK. It’s the best option.

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Given that OSX is, in essence, a Linux operating system, I would expect it to work with Roon ROCK. Also, given that the 2012 Mac mini runs an intel I3 processor, it should work.

A NUC is tempting, but I do not like the fact that it does not have a CD drive built in (yes, I know, you can add a cd drive via USB, but I what it in the same box, not just attached via an umbilical cord. Also, the recommended (low spec) NUC is identical in spec to the Mac Mini (2012), part from the M2 hard drive.

So, I still think that the Mac mini (2012) may be a good basis for a ROCK installation and repeat my request for input from people who have tried to implement it, especially to find out whether they succeeded (or not!!)

macOS is Unix based (freeBSD originally) not Linux. I personally don’t see any way ROCK could work on a mac, even assuming you managed to install it.

Edit: Also a Mac of that vintage is under-powered for a Roon Core.

The macs use EFI boot, it could be pretty hard to make ROCK work. Stick with OSX and run the core on it.

BTW, I had my 2010 mini running my core with 33,000 tracks and streaming to two zones during my trial, Worked perfectly but I don’t do DSP.

Switched to a NUC and ROCK when I bought my license and it’s not significantly different


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I might try installing Linux on that 2012 Mac mini. Once you’ve done that, it should run Roon Server nicely in a headless fashion. There are some guides for doing this sort of thing here:

As @Sheldon_Stokes says, the mac runs efi, which will be your first obstacle, since a rock linux will only run on oldschool bios. Next, the mac’s firmware is completely custom, so you’d probably have to find someone to reverse engineer it to make it work. Next there’s hardware compatibility: rock doesn’t lets you install additional drivers, so ethernet, wifi and usb would likely not work. All said, if you have a mac mini and want to use it for rock only, you’re better off selling it on ebay and getting a nuc - and you will probably have money left over