Basic version of Roon for less money?

+1 for Audirvana. That’s what I used before I became a Roon fanboy, and I still use it at the office. Great native Mac software, and Damien is a fantastic developer. Super MQA support if you’re into that.

I’m quite sure Roon would like it to be a mass market product.
The target should be people with multiple streaming services plus iTunes. That covers a lot of ground, Provide a single interface to combine all of them.
Roon built in to AV receivers would really help too.

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I like the idea of a Roon capable AV receiver with an endpoint incased. Sixty day trail with the receiver. People would be very pleased once trying it.

I was a CEO of venture capital backed technology companies for over 25 years. One of my early software companies had a monthly subscription business model. We were a public company and by plan, we grew revenues and profits exactly 30% every quarter for 12 years. When we could have grown faster, we held sales back - I only got a bonus for exactly 30% growth in both revenues and profits. We had over 90% of the world market in our space. When we started getting competition and serious pressure from customers to sell them a lifetime license to the software, we sold the company to a major international corporation and became a Harvard Business School case study on how to grow market value. Within a few years of the sale, the business was closed. The market and investors love predictability and growth. With an annual and lifetime license business model like Roon, every month is chaos and there is no predictabity of financials. If I were the CEO of Roon, I would go to a monthly fee, drop the lifetime license option, and sleep well. I am concerned enough about their future that I have not bought a lifetime license.

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James, not to discount what you are saying (you make good points) but as a CEO for a venture capital company, and apparently a successful one, I can’t see how you could be concerned about Roon’s lifetime licensing fee. It would think it would be a only few nickels in your world. $500 is a lot of money for Joe or Jane average, but for the well off, not so much.

That said, I’m happy to have a lifetime subscription, because I don’t see it being offered as a permanent option. Most of us end up dropping more than that on hardware and tweaks.

I’d venture a guess his concern stems from implications for Roon’s revenue stream i.e. he’s opted not to purchase lifetime because he believes that Roon’s continued success is dependent on a steady and healthy cash flow…and has thus purchased an annual license instead to do his part in contributing towards a steady and healthy cash flow.

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Thanks evan. I was simply thinking like a middle class poor guy trying to save a little money :grinning:

@James_Anderson1 – you are right of course, but the big place we differ from your experience is that Roon Labs has had zero external investments.

We had a bad experience not being masters of our destiny in the past, and shyed away from VC or other external funding. Coming up with equally effective mechanisms for funding was an early challenge of starting Roon Labs.

One of the many methods for early funding was to use lifetime sales as a mechanism to get “prepay” for ~4 years. Given the growth we planned for, the early subscriber count would just be a blip in the total by the time that 5th year and we’d just eat that then.

As we continue to accelerate our growth, the lifetime option is looking more and more obsolete, and will surely die off some day.


I must be the ultimate cheap-skate then, taking advantage of the 10% early bird discount on lifetime.

I did order within 10 minutes of the first release though – so maximum funding advantage. :slight_smile:


I am glad to hear that. It makes an investment in a lifetime subscription is less risky.

I have no experience marketing or pricing things. I do have a lot of experience in software development. The important thing to me is that the Roon team is able to build the system consistent with their vision, which certainly seems to be happening, and I’m a strong believer in supporting those things that you really want by paying a price which keeps said things healthy. It may make sense at some point to offer cheaper, less feature-rich versions, but if it came at even the partial expense of creating the architecture they’re really striving for, I hope they hold off.

I’ll admit that I’m fortunate enough to have the lifetime subscription price not be a major decision for me, as well as to have invested many times that amount in my other A/V gear. But I also think it’s fair to point out that if the lifetime subscription is too much, or just unobtainable, that there are other, much cheaper options that are excellent as well. I have used J River for well over a decade - it’s great, it’s really well supported, and they continuously improve it. But what they’ve done feels very different from what Roon has done and is trying to do. To see a company trying to take the whole experience to a new level is really exciting for me, well worth the price of the lifetime subscription to “back” as well as to get to use on a daily basis.


That is one heck of a true statement. We all die some time so lifetime subscription holders will surely die off ending that option.


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Hi. I’m 46. I’m not well off, at all. I’m disabled. I live alone with my two chihuahuas Bitsy and Honey. I decided that I wanted something for myself this holiday season. I wanted a two channel hi-fi that I could stream music too. So, I bit the bullet and sold one of my three guitars. I didn’t even know where to look for “streaming stereo” until my local audio store showed me the Bluesound Powernode 2. It was too rich for my blood, but they sold me their display model at a steep discount. I paired it with a pair of Elac Debut 2.0 B62 speakers I got on the Black Friday sale for $148.00.

After some break in time, I realized that due to my listening environment and other variables, I needed a small boost in the bass and mids. The tone controls for the Powernode 2 seem to only muddy the sound. So I set out in search of a DSP EQ. That search brought me here.

And here I am, a simpleton who doesn’t even know what meta-data is or why I even need it. A simpleton that has a tiny music library and a $9.99 a month subscription to Spotify. A simpleton that sometimes wonders if he is going to have enough money to get by until his next Social Security check. I don’t want sympathy, I’m simply trying to make a point. And if buying a subscription for $120 a year or $499 for life is the only way I’m going to get anything other than bass and treble sliders that color the sound more than they enhance it…I might as well take this device back and buy a cheap AVR to hook these speakers up to.

$500 for this device, and now I’m told that a DSP EQ is going to cost me another $500 if I want to use it for more than a year.

Can anyone recommend an alternative to this Bluesound product? Preferably one I can EQ?

I just purchased a Bluesound Powernode 2. I really dig it. I’m kind of oldschool, so I don’t think I’d take advantage of all that Roon has to offer. So I have a request. Would there be any way the we could buy Roon features individually? Or buy a scaled down version of Roon that consists of just the player and its basic features, such as an EQ?

I think you should have posted this topic under Feature Requests … it’s something that comes up from time-to-time.

However, I’d say that what you seek, i.e. DSP, is indeed a premium feature.

6 posts were split to a new topic: Node 2 and ELAC B6s sound “muddy”

Try a trial copy of JRiver media software. That probably will do everything you want for $60, including video, family picture albums, podcasts, etc. Not to mention audio, complete with software equalizer and DSP…

That’s $60 once, not $60 a year.

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There may be some merit to this approach. Maybe not an AVR, but my second Roon endpoint was a $35 Chromecast Audio plugged into a $60 Fosi Audio power amp. Plus a $6 Amazon Basics cable. Then pay the $120 to Roon, and use their EQ.

Or find a receiver with Chromecast built-in, and room correction.

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Chromecast is unnecessary. Derrick indicates that he is a Spotify user. A great many AVRs include Spotify Connect, which functions as a virtual input, and it works quite well with a smartphone or tablet for remote control.


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I’ve tried it. Jriver will not act as a controller for Bluesound products because they don’t support DLNA, so I can’t stream from Jriver to the power node 2. But thanks for the suggestion.

“Hi-Fi for the Wi-Fi generation” “Audiophile components”. Nah. Its just a Chromecast with an amp built in. Its going back.