Best QNAP for DSD 256

Roon Core 1.6 (build 416, 64bit)

Hello everyone, need advice about config NAS for DSD 256 playing.

I have glitches with DSD 256 on my QNAP TS251+, playing around 3sec till stopped.

Is this problem due to insufficient NAS CPU power?
In my case, Intel Celeron J1900 (4*2GHz)

I’ve seen recommended NAS by Roon, among them was TS-473 (CPU: AMD R-Series RX-421ND). Has anyone played such DSD on that CPU?

DAC (gryphon kalliope) connected with NAS by USB.

Honestly, I would keep the Qnap for music storage and just build yourself an i5 or i7 NUC and load ROCK on it.

I second that, don’t waste time on another Nas as they are not up to the mark. Get a recommended NuC and have a supported and smoother Roon experience.

I can post a screenshot of it tomorrow. I have the TVS-473 here.

Great! I’m waiting

In short, TVS-473 good choice for playing heavy DSD or not?

Sorry, it takes a day longer. I’ll get a (borrowed) Mutec MC3+ tomorrow for testing.

Should I include any DSP features in the test or just plain playback of a DSD file?


I think he was trying to play DSD256 files.

So, I borrowed a Mutec audiointerface and connected it directly to the TVS-473. It was recognised flawlessly by Roon.

Unfortunately I can only play DSD128 with it. I tried to play DSD256 anyway, which requires a Sample-Rate Conversion to output a DSD128 signal. This is quite cpu intense and worked without any stop.



(CPU: AMD Embedded R-Series RX-421BD Radeon R7)

Playing DSD256 (converted to DSD128 on the fly)

This is the Resource Monitor of the QNAP while playing:

Playing DSD128 (without any conversions):

TVS-473 Signalpath: DSD128

Conparison: QNAP TVS-471

Comparison: QNAP TVS-471

(CPU: Intel Core i7-4790T @2.70GHz)

Playing DSD256 (converted to DSD128 on the fly)

Conparison: Apple Mac Pro

Comparison: MacPro

(CPU: 6-Core Xeon @3.50GHz)

MacPro Activity: DSD256 to DSD128

In general, I had no stopping music on any of the Roon Cores so far. And if your audiointerface supports DSD256, there also should be no process stressing the cpu due to sample rate conversions.

Even though I might not have fully illustrated your case, I hope you can better estimate the performance of the TVS-473.

Ok, I have to ask this. And please understand I’m asking to help me understand how other people do things.
Why would a person want to add a $1000 NAS (without disks) on top of an existing NAS when something like a Nuc/ROCK is cheaper and (arguably) more capable for demanding applications.

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I can only speak for myself and maybe other people see other advantages (or disadvantages) in it.

I prefer the fact that the nas has a big storage which holds all my media, while having mechanisms for the case of a failing disk (even though I do not rely on this and want an additional backup).
This leads me to my second point: you can install other services on it. My music files are automatically copied to a cloud storage by the NAS itself. I don‘t have to figure out how to access the music files and how to sync them to a cloud. I‘d need another device to do that on a closed system. In addition to that I can use another app to access my music over internet, when I am not home.

For me the nas is running 24/7 anyway, already before I started with Roon. I use it as a backup system for my video projects as well, which require a lot of space.

There are other advantages, but these are the most important ones to me.

My current setup requires no additional tasks to be done manually and runs solid since the first install.


Thank you Chris. I get it now. It is a convenient environment that you understand well. Your ‘work flow’ of music management its secure and easy to use.
I sort of expected to hear video media storage and/or something like Plex server.
With this perspective, a ROCK seems restrictive and in some ways more work. Perspective is everything.

Still haven’t answer my question…

I read that it is impossible to play DSD 256+ on based-linux-cores, is it true?

I’m not sure of all aspects of your question. FWIW, I ran core on a Synology 1513+, which is a pretty meager processor, an Intel Atom D2700, with 4GB ram. It ran DSD256 fine, but choked on DSD512. Roon responsiveness was a bit slow. This was over ethernet. I don’t connect via USB and don’t know how that would affect things.

Now have a SonicTransporter i7 that handles it all speedily.

I have a QNAP TVS-872XT on the way. It is the sweet spot in their line for power to cost, though may still be above many budgets. It is Intel i5. I think anything from my 1513+ to the QNAP with i5 would run DSD256, based on my experience. Just depends how much power you want for general responsiveness. If you are going to use much DSP, I would go for the higher end of the range as well.

Then there is connectivity. 10GbE or Thunderbolt to get fast transfers if you do much work on the NAS from your computer or transfer files back and forth a lot.

As an aside, I will be putting the Synology 1513+ with at least two 4TB WD Red drives, maybe three, on ebay in a couple of weeks after I finish migration to the QNAP. An inexpensive way to get into, what is now, an entry level NAS.

Well, you probably wouldn’t. If you were looking to upgrade from an older NAS though, it seems like a perfectly acceptable use case to me.

I’ll try to repeat it with a more capable audio device, if I can get my hands on it. It is something that interests me as well and I could not really answer this yet.
In general I don’t think it is true, that it is impossible to play DSD256+ on linux based cores (The nucleus+ for example is also linux based).
May I ask, what audio device you’d like to connect to your core as an DSD capable endpoint?

PS: Sorry, I must have misinterpreted your post and thought you were worried about the cpu performance.

I have the TS-473 with 12GB of ram.

I a few DSD’s and a sample at 256 that plays fine without issue.

When it comes to high data rate samples checkout your network, I have enclosed a post regarding an issue with drop-outs below.

I have a TS473 with 8G of RAM
Conversion to Dsd 256 works perfectly
I noticed that Dsd conversion is less a matter of RAM than CPU
In normal mode my QNAP uses 3-4% CPU and 28-32% of RAM
With Dsd conversion it is about 28-35% of CPU with some pics to 60-75%. %RAM usage remains slightly the same than normal mode

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