Choice for Roon Core

If my options are:

  1. Intel Nuc i7 with Roon Rock
  2. Mac mini M1 chip model

What is the better choice to setup my Roon Core/Rock at home? many thanks.

You asked similar questions in another thread. Not knowing more about your potential use, library size, and OS familiarity, I can only speak for what I would use.

It depends. Neither is a bad choice. Both will be speedy enough (with the caveat of not knowing library size) and I assume you would give the appropriate amount of RAM for that library size (16 GB of RAM is imho good).

Without knowing your library size and intended use cases, it is hard to be more specific.

my current library size is 2644 albums, so about 26K tracks. Half of them are DSD files. They are stored in my Aurender N10. My DAC is Ayre QX5-Twenty (Roon Ready). Yes, I plan to put 8-16GB RAM in either Intel Nuc or Mac mini M1 model.

Based on above information, any further guidance which will be better option?

My understanding is:
Rock is better Roon Core, but Rock could be only on Intel Nuc instead of Mac Mini M1. If they both give the similar Roon sound quality, i prefer to give a try on Mac Mini M1; if the difference is large, i would have to go to Intel Nuc.


The SQ, as mentioned in the other thread should be the same in terms of fidelity. So, no difference. If you are partial to one, then that is what you should use.

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What is your other “eco system” if you are an Apple user go Apple

I recently (6 months) went NUC 10i7 with 32 gb RAM on ROCK with a 4Tb SSD for audio files. It has been Rock Steady (Pun intended)

My library is somewhat bigger (5000 albums 3Tb) and with a lot of classical ie low track count but high file size . I used 32 Gb RAM . I admit probably OTT but RAM is cheap relatively ., The more the merrier.

Just my 2p

This. Ask 10 people and get 11 opinions, but IMO, a ROCK core runs best.
Instead of opening multiple threads with the same question, search for the other 4000 times this question has been asked :wink:


They asked Enzo Ferrari, which is the best car you ever made… he said, the next one. :thinking:

So you’re choice for a roon core… lol :joy::rofl::joy:


if you go NUC, the NUC 11 is not supported for ROCK…only 10 and below

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NUC with ROCK gives the best experience - as mentioned already; avoid NUC11 - since it is not compatible with ROCK.

I’m running NUC8i7, running it for years with no issues (yes, I had to upgrade RAM because of the growth of my library. Currently 32GB, 8GB gave some issues with 200.000 tracks). Also for absolutely best experience, store music on a local SSD on the NUC.


Until Roon properly support M1 architecture and ditch mono which is all in testing then I would avoid Mac as performance is hindered. As soon as that’s sorted I am sure the mini will make a great core.


The m1 macs outperform any intel chip even if it doesn’t run the app natively. I have TBs of music running on a M1 Mac mini with 16g with no issues at all. This setup runs more efficiently than my intel Mac did with 32G of ram.
Don’t get the basic 8G M1 Mac mini, get 16G of memory, run Roon from the macs internal ssd drive, and place all your music on a good hard disk drive setup: NAS, thunderbolt attached RAID or a large thunderbolt hard drive, there are no benefits of using ssd for music files.

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With all guidance above, I just bought the UNCi5FNHN as a try Rock. It works quite well.